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Fire was used to make tools 50,000 years earlier than previously thought

Stone Age man was using fire to make tools at least 72,000 years ago, 50,000 years earlier than previously thought.

‘We show that early modern humans at 72,000 years ago, and perhaps as early as 164,000 years ago in coastal South Africa, were using carefully controlled hearths in a complex process to heat stone and change its properties, the process known as heat treatment.”

Previously, the first use of heat treatment was thought to have been in Europe 25,000 years ago. The technique was not believed to have been invented until long after the ancestors of modern humans had left Africa and settled in Europe and Asia.

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