Scientists may have finally solved the mystery behind one of the most infamous hoaxes in palaeontology.
The fossil remains of what became known as the Piltdown man were discovered in a Sussex gravel pit in 1912. The find was hailed as a missing link in the evolutionary ladder between apes and humans, evidence of an ancient human ancestor that lived 500,000 years ago. It would take another 50 years for Piltdown man to be exposed as a hoax, how it had been orchestrated and who had been responsible for it however was to remain a mystery.
Now a group of archaeologists, palaeontologists and anthropologists are to hold a meeting to discuss the results of a new investigation in to the hoax aimed at solving the mystery once and for all. Among the suspects are amateur archaeologist Charles Dawson who discovered the bones and Sherlock Holmes author Arthur Conan Doyle.
"Now scientists believe they can finally put to rest the mystery of how one of the most famous scientific frauds in history was orchestrated and who was responsible for creating the fake remains of a human ancestor known as Piltdown man."
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