History of Southeast Asia - Prehistory - Paleolithic

Paleolithic

Archaeologists have found stone tools in Malaysia which have been dated to be 1.83 million years old.

Before the latest ice period, much of the archipelago was not under water. Sometime around the Pleistocene period, the Sunda Shelf was flooded as thawing occurred and thus revealing current geographical features. The area's first known human-like inhabitant some 500,000 years ago was "Java Man" (first classified as Pithecanthropus erectus, then subsequently named a part of the species Homo erectus). Recently discovered was a species of human, dubbed "Flores Man" (Homo floresiensis), a miniature hominid that grew only three feet tall. Flores Man seems to have shared some islands with Java Man until only 10,000 years ago, when they became extinct.

The oldest human settlement in Malaysia has been discovered in Niah Caves. The human remains found there have been dated back to 40,000 BC. Another remain dated back to 9000 BC dubbed the "Perak Man" and tools as old as 75,000 years have been discovered in Lenggong, Malaysia.

The oldest habitation discovered in the Philippines is located at the Tabon Caves and dates back to approximately 50,000 years; while items there found such as burial jars, earthenware, jade ornaments and other jewelry, stone tools, animal bones, and human fossils dating back to 47,000 years ago. Human remains are from approximately 24,000 years ago.

Read more about this topic:  History Of Southeast Asia, Prehistory

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