Origins of Mysterious Indonesian ‘Hobbits’ Revealed

According to one prevailing but contentious theory, the hobbits descended from the larger Homo erectus, the first hominid to have modern human proportions, whose remains can be found on the nearby Indonesian island of Java.

According to that version, H. erectus traveled to the island of Flores and then shrank over thousands of years through a process called “insular dwarfing.” Some suggested a lack of food in their new environment meant that larger bodies, requiring more sustenance, had less chance of survival.

But the new study finds no evidence for a close connection between the hobbits and H. erectus — and rules out the possibility that H. floresiensis might have really just been a deformed Homo sapiens.


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