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Confirmed?: Legends of Humans and Near-Humans Walking The Earth

The Old Testament contains references to Nephilim, "giants," who married people and had children. Herodotus, the father of historians, wrote about human cousins, the "Arimaspians," around 450 B.C. They were "strong warriors, good horsemen rich in flocks of cattle and sheep and goats." Legends of hairy wild people, or almases, have been standard fare in the Russian steppes for centuries.

"The reports of wild men, although having typical mythic overtones, do often reflect what we know of primitive hominins," according to Michael Heany of the United Kingdom's Bodleian Library Oxford. "The presumed almases of Central Asia could be any one of a number of pre-(homo) sapien ancestors."

Paleontologists may have unearthed mythic figures of folklore. "Siberia's Denisova cave held the pinky bone of an unknown early human species, a genetics team reported in March. The Nature journal study, led by Johannes Krause of Germany's Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, offered no answer for what happened to this 'archaic' human species, more than one million years old and living near their human and Neanderthal cousins as recently as 30,000 years ago." More

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