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Eye color of hominids

  1. Feb 24, 2015 #1
    8) Chimpanzees have much less visible white sclera than

    humans. That is, their eyes are basically just black and brown. As

    a result, what do scientists think the eyes of hominids looked like?
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  3. Feb 25, 2015 #2

    Simon Bridge

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  4. Feb 26, 2015 #3
    Neanderthals lived very recently, so it makes sense that they have eyes that are similar to ours. However, chimpanzees have eyes that are basically all black. Therefore, is there any way to determine the eye color of hominids more primitive than neanderthal like homo habilis, erectus etc?
  5. Feb 26, 2015 #4

    Simon Bridge

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    A quick canvass of the lit suggests that early homonim eye color is being figured from DNA.
    Where that is not available, it's basically guesswork.

    You know you can just google for this stuff right?
  6. Feb 26, 2015 #5
    Googling "Hominid eye color" led to "Haeckel divided humanity ... based upon... eye color" and "
    The genes that control eye color are just a few out of tens of thousands of genes..." These are interesting facts about eye color, but they do not answer my question of what the eyes of our ancestors look like.

    Here is what I already know: Humans evolved to have more prominent scleras (white part of eye) because that allows people to track eye movement and thus facilitate nonverbal communication. Our closest living nonhuman relatives, the chimpanzees, have eyes that are basically all black (no sclera, or at least a black one). I was curious if DNA could show whether hominin like homo erectus and homo habilis perhaps had eyes that were in between (that is less visible sclera than modern humans but more so than chimps).
  7. Feb 26, 2015 #6


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    I believe it was in one of the articles I had posted, they had brown skin and brown eyes, Peking man actually is thought to have had more European features although the bones were found in Asia, go figure, we've seen some weird things, there are also pictures in those links. I would suggest reading through everything provided and then ask for clarification, that will help to get you better answers. :oldsmile: The palomar series I had linked to in the other thread takes you through an entire series on the subject.

    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  8. Feb 26, 2015 #7

    Simon Bridge

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    It would also be useful to stick to just one question at a time - the answer in this thread seems to be a moving target: do you want to know what the eye colors are usually thought to be or do you want to know how eye color is assessed when doing reconstructions? Ether way, you have enough to find answers.

    You won't find a direct answer to the questions in the references - you need to read between the lines.
    Look at the arguments - it's mostly guesswork. You can give them purple eyes if you want. Why is it important?
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