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‘Cradle of Life’ book review

Cradle of Life: The Story of the Magaliesberg and the Cradle of Humankind
By Vincent Carruthers | Publisher: Struik Nature, Penguin Random House South Africa | ISBN: 9781775845973

Cradle Life Magaliesberg Humankind

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, situated in the heart of the Magaliesberg Biosphere Reserve, is the jewel in South Africa’s evolutionary crown: an area ‘of outstanding universal value’, it has attracted world-wide interest and furnished key evidence about where, when and how we came to be. The greater Magaliesberg area is peppered with some 200 caves and has a unique geology, history and biodiversity. For decades now, specialists have been combing the area to uncover evidence of our heritage.
     In his spectacular new title, Vincent Carruthers guides readers along a timeline, from the birth of our planet through to developments of the 21st century. Along the way, he documents the formation of our landscapes and the emergence of life, the rise of hominins, the stone and iron ages, early settlement, migrations, wars and modern developments in the Magaliesberg – the entire evolution of life up to the present, as we know it.
     Vividly illustrated with photographs, maps and diagrams, Cradle of Life portrays the intrigue and importance of the site, taking readers on a magical journey of discovery.
     Carruthers is a well-known environmentalist, who has written and contributed to a range of highly regarded publications, including Frogs & Frogging in Southern Africa and the Complete Guide to the Frogs of Southern Africa, published by Penguin Random House.
     He serves on the board of several environmental organisations and runs a management consultancy. In 1989, he was awarded the prestigious Stevenson-Hamilton Medal by the Zoological Society of Southern Africa for his contributions as an amateur zoologist.

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