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Researcher Claims Modern Man Conquered Europe Earlier Than Thought

A British researcher says modern man may have replaced Neanderthals in Europe thousands of years earlier than previously thought.

Cambridge University archaeology professor Paul Mellars published his findings in the British scientific journal Nature Wednesday.

Mellars says he used fossil dating to show that modern man first appeared in Europe about 46,000 years ago - at least 3,000 years earlier than believed.

He also says modern man and Neanderthals co-existed in Europe for less time than many believed - only about 5,000 years.

Mellars says modern man had better clothing and technology than Neanderthals, allowing modern humans to survive sudden drops in temperature they experienced.

The new conclusions are based on more precise measurements using radiocarbon dating - a process that helps determine the age of fossils.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.