"Nanjing Man" has been reconfirmed with over 500,000 years of history with the completion of the latest evaluation of the skull by scientists at home and abroad, said Professor Wang Yongjin with Nanjing Normal University.
According to Wang, upon using a new thermal ionization mass spectrometer, Zhao Jianxin from the University of Queensland, Australia, found the skull dating back to 580,000 to 620,000 years ago, a conclusion that tallies with the results Professor Wang and Chinese American scientists Cheng Hai obtained years ago in the United States.
A male and a female skull of "Nanjing Man" were discovered in 1993 in Tangshan Cave near Nanjing, and they were initially determined to be about 150,000 years old.
Scientists in Nanjing held that the discovery of "Nanjing Man" provides important clues to human evolution, and represent another major discovery following that of "Beijing Man," "Yuanmo Man" in Yunnan, "Lantian Man" in Shaanxi and "Hetian Man" in Anhui.
The scientists, however, expressed doubt over overseas media allegation that "the dating further supports a theory of human evolution in multi regions, which argues Asians evolved locally and not out of Africa."
Such conclusions are poorly grounded, the scientists said.
The skull is now preserved in Nanjing Museum and under in-depth research by authoritative scientists in the field.
Professor Wang first published a thesis on "Nanjing Man" in 1999 to reveal his discovery of the 500,000-years-history of "Nanjing Man".
(People's Daily 03/05/2001)