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Lucy (Australopithecus)

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Lucy Mexico.jpg
Catalog no.AL 288-1
Common nameLucy
SpeciesAustralopithecus afarensis
Age3.2 million years
Place discoveredAfar Depression, Ethiopia
Date discoveredNovember 24, 1974
Discovered byJohanson and Gray[1]

Lucy is the common name of AL 288-1, several hundred pieces of bone representing about 40% of the skeleton of a female Australopithecus afarensis. It was discovered in 1974 at Hadar in the Awash Valley of Ethiopia's Afar Depression.

This discovery gave much scientific evidence. Lucy lived about 3.2 million years ago,[2] and is classified as a hominid.

The skeleton shows evidence of small skull capacity akin to that of apes and of bipedal upright walk akin to that of humans. This supported the view that bipedalism came before increase in brain size in human evolution. Those features are true of all australopithecines.[3][4]


  1. "Instutute of Human Origins". Retrieved 2007-08-30. 
  2. "Mother of man - 3.2 million years ago". BBC Home. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  3. Johanson D.C. & Maitland A.E. 1981. Lucy: the beginning of humankind. St Albans: Granada, 283–297. ISBN 0-586-08437-1
  4. Wood, B.A. 1994. Evolution of australopithecines. In Jones S. Martin R. & Pilbeam D. (eds) 2004. The Cambridge encyclopedia of human evolution. 8th ed, Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-46786-1