The world’s oldest face belongs to this 419 million-year-old fish
Date published: 26th September 2013
Scientists believe that a new fossil discovery from China is the world’s oldest known example of the bone structure we now recognize as a face.
The remarkably well-preserved fish (an example of the species Entelognathus primordialis) was discovered in Southeast China in a layer of sediment dating back to the Silurian period – making the specimen roughly 419 million years old.
Detailed in the journal Nature, the find is remarkable because it’s the earliest known example of the basic facial bone structure we recognize today: the ancient predator has a jaw, a mouth, two eyes and a nose.
All other previous finds from this geological time period have been of jawless fish – a type of animal that still exists today as lamprey and hagfish.
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