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22 November 2010

Humans are Apes

It's frustrating when creationists claim that humans came from monkeys, or that evolution tells us that we are monkeys. Humans are not monkeys (they're in a separate infraorder or parvorder, depending on which monkeys you're talking about).

But I hear skeptics who aren't quite as careful as they should be roundly declare that humans are not apes, when, in point of fact, we are.

Another member of our parvorder, an immensely cute infant stump-tailed macaque.

Here's roughly where humans fall:

Order: Primates, which contains Prosimians (lemurs, etc.) and Simians (monkeys and apes).
Infraorder: Simiiformes (simians), which contains Platyrrhini (New World monkeys) and Catarrhini (Old World monkeys and apes).
Parvorder: Catarrhini, which contains Cercopithecoidea (Old World monkeys) and Hominoidea (apes).
Superfamily: Hominoidea (apes), which contains Hylobatidae (gibbons) and Hominidae (great apes).
Family: Hominidae (great apes), which contains Pongo (orangutans), Gorilla (gorillas), Pan (chimpanzees), and Homo (humans).
Genus: Homo (humans). That's us!

1 comment:

  1. Couldn't agree more. Quite frankly, I'm quite proud of my proto-ape heritage.