New research suggests modern humans lived in Europe 10,000 years earlier than previously thought

Since 1990, our research team has been carefully investigating the uppermost 10 feet (3 meters) of sediment on the cave floor. Based on artifacts and tooth fossils, we believe that Mandrin rewrites the consensus story about when modern humans first made their way to Europe.


Why did you post this? Doesn’t it directly contradict any YEC claims?

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People were living in Europe 4000 years before the universe existed? Weird.

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You mean 48 000 years earlier. :slight_smile:


Alright, everyone get your sniper shots in, but then give Valerie credit for not completely avoiding all evidence that contradicts what she believes to be true.


I would if I thought that’s why she posted it. But I suspect she thinks this is some kind of evidence favoring her beliefs, and expect she will eventually explain why that is.

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Fair enough, let’s wait and see.

Well, I can quote what I wrote on the other thread.

Initially I had come across a poorly written ScienceNews article and it gave the impression that Neaderthals occupied the site, then Homo Sapiens, then Neaderthals again separately, thousands of years apart. Since that thread was about worldview I thought I’d explain sometimes dating seems to go against intuition about how humans act - and these occupations make more sense years or decades apart. And plus the scientists think homo sapiens sailed to France. Any mention of possible ancient sailing always amuses me because it’s an argument I tried to make to @swamidass that the authors of the Penteteuch knew the world was a globe, Sargon of Akkad mentioned sailing, and it’s something I came away with thinking was prolific soon after the flood after watching Jeanson’s presentations, even though that’s something he didn’t really mention. Anyway, since I have a hard time understanding the papers themselves sometimes, I thought I’d search the scientist’s name for more articles to see if I could better understand what the research was. I came across the Conversation piece and was really impressed with the scientists’ work and enthusiasm for it, so I thought it deserved it’s own thread, as I know many here like to follow new human history research and it was just really interesting.

I realized I got the wrong impression from the ScienceNews article after reading this.

Vandevelde was then able to determine how much time separated the last Neanderthal fire from the first modern human fire in the cave, showing that it was only a maximum of a year between Neanderthals using Grotte Mandrin and modern humans moving in.

I also read this paragraph and thought it may be really good evidence against YEC.

We first discovered these sooted vault fragments in 2006, and the team recovered thousands, year after year, in every archaeological layer of Mandrin. A decade of work by team member Ségolène Vandevelde has shown that these patterns can be read like tree rings to tell us with what frequency and duration the groups visited the site, demonstrating that human groups came to Mandrin some 500 times over 80,000 years.

I created the post on the forum while thinking that. I decided I had to read the linked paper on the soot patterns to see. I read through it, had to look up a lot of terms, but as far as I could tell there are around 500 seasonal occupations of the site, but they are calibrated against mainstream dates so it isn’t completely independent. But I’m curious about that too, to see if anyone has a better understanding than me. I couldn’t understand what they were trying to say when they mentioned formation of growth could be decennial rather than annual. I wondered why they had to mention that.

No, any impression I have from reading an article isn’t evidence. I just first included my impression in the other thread to show how I think…

Sailing has no necessary connection to the world being round, so I can see why this argument was unconvincing. And “soon after the flood” makes no sense, as there clearly was no flood. Note that the 80,000-year record of occupation of the site you mention precludes any such thing.

You are right. But what do you make of it? If it’s really good evidence against YEC, why doesn’t your belief in YEC change? What’s the point of thinking some science is “interesting” if it can’t affect your opinions?


Of course you realize that you aren’t going that sort of argument for the reason someone has faith. That’s not how it works. :slight_smile:

I would also be careful about projecting our modern lifestyles and 8 billion population onto ancient hunter gatherers with far fewer numbers.

You should also consider changes in climate. For some sites, there may have been glaciers covering the landscape for thousands of years. Even during the current interglacial period there are regions that have seen massive swings in climate, such as the Sahara once being a green and fertile region.


It would be helpful if you read my entire post. See below. To be clear, I’m referring specifically to the paper on soot layers linked within the phrase “a decade of work” in the section I quoted previously. I have not read the paper that builds on that, that is the focus of the Conversation piece, though I just pulled it up and I’m going to.

Not a fair assessment. See above. But you likely didn’t read any of my post and just saw John’s reply, so I don’t fault you too much. :slightly_smiling_face:


Should there be a verb somewhere in that sentence? It seems to me that @thoughful’s view makes science ultimately not very interesting, just a little game with data that has less connection to the real world than Mario Brothers does.

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I did. In what way should it have been helpful?

Yeah, I suppose so.

I was assessing John’s question, not you. :grinning:

You asked me questions that I already answered in my post, so I figured you hadn’t read to the end. I thought the description of the science in the Conversation piece indicated that it might be good evidence against YEC, then when I looked into it, I didn’t see anything new.

I read this several times and am baffled. I can usually figure out the missing word(s) but not in this case.

(Perhaps providing a Wordle clue would make the process more interesting. Hmmm. Come to think about it, Peaceful Science needs a weekly Wordle-like puzzle where the candidate wordlist consists of six or seven letters words instead of the usual five and includes a wide assortment of vocabulary from the peer-reviewed literature of many academic fields as well as current media news topics. Meanwhile, I think Wordle should include proper nouns as well as common nouns. Then I would propose Zzyzx as the hardest-to-guess Wordle solution. It is a town in California. However, for botanists, I think Zyzyxia would be great fun. It is a shrub of the sunflower family.)

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I don’t believe you actually did. You may think you did.

There doesn’t need to be anything new, as there was plenty of old evidence against YEC. The question isn’t whether the evidence here is new but whether it’s good. Have you come to a conclusion on that?

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I guess one of the issues at hand is what, exactly, you mean when you say you find some scientific finding “interesting.”

To this point of my life I have been quite firmly convinced that there exists no such thing as a unicorn. However, if one day I was presented with clear and incontrovertible evidence for the existence of unicorns, I would do more than just say “Hmm, interesting”, and not change my beliefs regarding unicorns.

The thing that prevents you from doing the same is apparently something called “faith”. So maybe it would we, well, interesting if you explained exactly that this thing is and how it works.

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