Modern historians estimate that the earth is only six billion years old. Man and his primitive ancestors have been around for about 5000 years. A civilized human being (cultivating the earth, producing food, and having some form of community life) has only existed for 6,000 to 8,000 years on planet Earth. This period is approximately one millionth of the total age of the world.
If you stretch a piece of paper 100 kilometers in length and imagine that it represents the time of existence of our planet. The history of a human being would only take sixteen inches on that piece of paper. This is approximately the length of one bar of chocolate.
In such a relatively short period man has progressed from shepherd and hunter, inventor of the wheel, skilled potter and pottery maker, a creature who feels the need for an organized society to an educated being capable of taking off from Earth and visiting the moon.
Man has lived almost like an animal for thousands of years. It belongs to the primate genus (mammals from which monkeys and monkeys arose). Then the Earth was covered with ice. Huge glaciers spread across its entire surface. We know this period as the “Ice Age”. There were warmer periods during the ice age, when the ice sheet was pulling back slightly. This process influenced the development of various life forms. Back then, life was a constant struggle with nature, cold winds, storms and floods. This struggle helped man adapt to new and changing natural phenomena.
The remains of the first primitive man, about 750,000 years old, have been preserved. We call it the “australopithecus” and traces have been found in Africa. The scientific method for determining the approximate age (using radioactive carbon) is to learn more about how the “australopithecus” lived. As science evolves, it is possible that in the near future we may learn more about the past and life of the australopithecus and its older ancestors. The australopithecus had a small brain (less than half of our brain). After a quarter of a million years, man is coming to a more mature stage – pitekanstropus.
We can call Pythicanthropus the first specimen of an almost human being. He is the transitional stage between man and monkey. Its remains have been found in Indonesia, Africa, Europe and China. It was created half a million years ago. His head rested erect on the spine. His eyes were set to achieve a three-dimensional image. This allowed him to estimate the distance. His teeth were shorter than those of his ancestors. He used his fingers and thumb to grasp the object. The brain was slightly larger than the ancestors. He made the first primitive tools made of stone and flint. His long hands also served as a tool. He used his hands better and better, which is a major step in man’s development. He collected food and stored it for later use. This early period (from 500,000 years to about 10,000 BC) is called the Stone Age or Paleolithic.
The Paleolithic is divided into three periods: the lower, middle and upper periods. Each of these three periods represents a significant step in the development of humanity.
The next type of ancestor was created about 80,000 years BC. We call him the Neanderthal. His remains were found in Neanderthal (a valley in Germany). His brain was 3x larger than the brain of the pytechanthropus and slightly smaller than the brain of modern humans. In the last century, the remains of a Neanderthal tomb dating back to 6000 BC have been found in Baghdad. This proves that the Neanderthal knew the rites characteristic of modern man. We call this period the Middle Stone Age or Middle Paleolithic. This type of man belongs to the Krapina man whose remains were found in Krapina (Croatia). This great-grandfather of ours was a hunter and gatherer. He made various types of weapons and tools made of stone. He knew the fire.
KRANEAMUS or The Museum of Krapina Neanderthals is located on the site Hušnjakovo in Krapina, next to the most famous world site of the Neanderthal man. The site itself is protected as the first paleontological nature monument in Croatia. The new museum was officially opened on February 27, 2010. The Museum of Krapina Neanderthals operates within the museum institution Museums of the Croatian Zagorje, which unites five museums in the Krapina-Zagorje County.
The exhibition space of the museum is located between two hills – Hušnjakovo and Josipovac near Krapina. It is 1200 meters square and is divided into two floors.
Ever since its opening on February 27, 2010, the Krapina Neanderthal Museum has been attracting attention of visitors, not only due to the intriguing notion of NEANDERTHALS in its name, but surely also due to its specific ways of presenting the topic. Authors of the project and its realisation, palaeontologist Jakov Radovčić and architect Željko Kovačić, worked to bring us a better understanding of the people of Krapina from the Stone Age, who lived in this area 125,000 years ago. The exhibition is set up as a time machine through the history of the Universe, the Earth and Man, leading up to the present day, and lays special emphasis on the Neanderthal period.
Location: Promenade Vilibalda Sluge bb, 49000 Krapina
Type: specialized geological-paleontological
Mentor: Jurica Sabol (Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Mail: email@example.com)
Photos: (www.irishtimes.com, http://www.sci-news.com http://www.mkn.mhz.hr)