The Just-Discovered ‘Dragon Man’ Skull May Be A New Species Of Humans And People Are Going Wild Over The Name

Big day in the world of skulls. In a potentially groundbreaking discovery published in scientistic journal, The Innovation, researchers have unveiled the “Dragon Man” skull, which may be the first evidence of a new species of humans or a link to one of our close cousins. While analysts point to the skull being more than 146,000 years old, it spent the past 90 years buried in a well in China. The skull was reportedly unearthed by a Chinese man while building a bridge during the Japanese occupation of Northern China. Fearing that his supervisors would take the treasure, he buried in it a well where it stayed for almost a century until his family turned it over to scientists. What they discovered about the “Dragon Man” skull was truly remarkable.

Via Science Magazine:

In three papers in the year-old journal The Innovation, paleontologist Qiang Ji of Hebei GEO University and his team call the new species Homo longi. (Long means dragon in Mandarin.) They also claim the new species belongs to the sister group of H. sapiens, and thus, an even closer relative of humans than Neanderthals. Other researchers question that idea of a new species and the team’s analysis of the human family tree. But they suspect the large skull has an equally exciting identity: They think it may be the long-sought skull of a Denisovan, an elusive human ancestor from Asia known chiefly from DNA.

While the scientific ramifications of discovering a new species of man are obviously huge, nothing beats the chance to make a bunch of Lord of the Rings jokes and remind everyone that Donkey in Shrek had sex with a dragon. So, that’s exactly what people got down to on social media in yet another sign that humanity might still have some evolving to do. Or not. Who’s to say?

(Via The Innovation, Science Magazine)