Humans and Chimps - a GEOL 1122 essay

     One of creationists' favorite ways to attack evolution is to say that it's ridiculous to believe that humans evolved from chimps or monkeys.   The funny thing is that biologists agree completely: humans did not evolve from chimps or monkeys.   The biological and geochemical evidence and the paleontological record indicate that humans and chimps evolved from a common ancestor.   The common ancestor probably had some characteristics of both humans and chimps, some characteristics found in one group or the other, and some characteristics found in neither group today.

     To say that humans are descended from chimps would make the same mistake as to say that you are descended from your cousin.   You and your cousin are related, in that you both have a common ancestor: a grandparent or grandparents.   Similarly, humans and chimps have a common ancestor, separated in time and different from both.   That's something very different from saying that humans are descended from chimps.





Railsback's GEOL 1122 main web page
e-mail to Bruce Railsback (
Railsback's main web page
UGA Geology Department web page




The content and opinions expressed on this Web page do not necessarily reflect the views of nor are they endorsed by the University of Georgia or the University System of Georgia.