What do we primarily consider the litmus test for being human? Like, what separates us from chimpanzees, with whom we share 99% of the same DNA? Is it speech? That’s a good choice for number one on the list. We can talk and they can’t, not in the way we think of speech. What’s number two? Hairiness? No. There are bald chimpanzees. They are still chimpanzees. I would argue that it is bipedalism. The ability to walk exclusively on two legs. “Walk like a man, talk like a man, walk like a man my so-o-o-n!” If you see a hirsute creature otherwise animal-like in appearance but it is walking on two legs, doesn’t that inspire something akin to the “Uncanny Valley” response in us? It’s *almost* human. Almost us. But not quite.
Scientists have found the remains of an ape that possessed the typical long arms necessary for living in trees possessed by modern apes, but also legs built for walking upright. The fossil is some 12 million years old, and previously it was believed that apes didn’t develop the ability to walk on two legs until around six million years ago, so this is a fairly important discovery Science-wise. This relic ape, Danuvius, unearthed in southern Germany, could be the fabled “missing link” between man and ape.