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A tale of two Cradles

There is only one Cradle of Humankind - and although it is foregrounded in the amazing world heritage site in Gauteng, with it unparalleled collection of early hominin fossils, in fact the Cradle of Humankind is the entire continent of Africa, in its unparalleled diversity. In South Africa, we have two “Cradles”.

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From Barbies to bones: Hi-Tec celebrates our curator

“Once upon a time there was a little girl obsessed with Barbies - 23 Barbies – watching an episode of Tintin and then everything changed.”

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The Maropeng family mourns the loss of a shining star

The team at Maropeng is mourning the loss of a dear friend and colleague, Dinaledi Esau. Dinaledi joined the Maropeng team in 2013 and was a member of the first team of Cradle Ambassadors when the programme was launched in 2017.

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Spring in the Cradle of Humankind

It’s nearly that time of year again when the landscape in and around the Cradle of Humankind becomes a blaze of colour as the weather starts to warm up. While the area is best known for its fossil treasures, it also boasts a remarkably rich biodiversity that is on full display in the warmer months.

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Maropeng’s women share their words of wisdom

Women’s Month is all about celebrating the accomplishments and contributions of our female leaders, heroes and icons. So, in this month of August, Maropeng is turning the spotlight on the women who are making a contribution to palaeosciences in South Africa.

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The Maropeng maintenance team: willing, able and upbeat

The Maropeng brand is recognised for so much more than its work showcasing the world-renowned fossil discoveries that have come out of South Africa.

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Maropeng through the eyes of our guides

A tour of Maropeng and the Sterkfontein Caves is a voyage of delight and discovery. It will take you on a trip through time as you visit caves famous for their fossil finds and learn more about humanity’s history.

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Changing the narrative: celebrating South Africa’s young scientists

Whether they’re making their own stone tools, squeezing through caves or making anthropology accessible to more South Africans, our country has a vibrant cohort of young scientists who are doing their bit to uncover humanity’s origin story. During Youth Month this year, we decided to turn the spotlight on them.

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Opinion: I can’t breathe

“It may be innocuous to you, my friend and peer,” my black, 18-year-old son wrote to his white friends at school.

“I don’t usually like posting and talking about race, because it’s such a sensitive, controversial topic. And most people don’t seem to care when it doesn’t involve them. But I would like to ask you a few questions.

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Let’s talk fossils this #FossilFriday

We love connecting with you, so this #FossilFriday we’ve decided to do something a little different! Join our #FossilFriday live Twitter chat to talk about your favourite stones, bones and the fascinating stories around them. 💀

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The most thought-provoking way to spend Africa Day

What does it mean to be African? What sets this continent apart? How can we reclaim Africa’s stories? This Africa Day, we’re pondering the big questions by watching some of the most thought-provoking TED talks on these subjects.

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Owning the African story: the role of museums in 2020

When she took the reins as curator at Maropeng, adventurer and archaeologist Keneiloe Molopyane had a compelling notion of the importance of museums in society. Nine months later, on International Museum Day, Molopyane, an archaeologist and biological anthropology PhD candidate, shared her thoughts on the impact and importance of museums on the African continent.

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Bones and Stones: Curator in the Cradle

Covid-19 and the lockdowns that countries are dealing with worldwide have meant a reinvention of how people stay connected. Faced with this challenge, three archaeologists, Matt Lotter, Tim Forssman and Matt Caruana, have come together to produce a podcast titled “Bones and Stones”.

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Be sure to #VisitTheCradleLater

Right now, the best thing we can all do for each other is to stay at home and stay healthy. While you’re not able to come and visit us right now, we know you’ll #VisitTheCradleLater. In the meantime, share your best pictures of your adventures in the Cradle of Humankind with us.

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How to keep learning during lockdown

Are you scrambling to find interesting ways to keep your children busy during the lockdown? Here’s a look at some of our favourite ideas from around the world.

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Maropeng memories: how our site has been honouring our human rights

Human rights are the moral compass that has been guiding and nurturing human civilisation for centuries. They exist to encourage freedom of expression, ensure that people have access to basic necessities and protect us from all kinds of injustices.

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What we’re doing to help keep you healthy

As South Africans work together to curb the spread of Covid-19 (the new coronavirus), our team at Maropeng has also put measures in place to protect our visitors.

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Find out more about the Cradle by dipping into these three books

Maropeng has contributed a whole lot more to history than acting as a discovery site for archaeological treasures. Since opening to the public in 2005, the Unesco World Heritage Site has spent the past 14-plus years hosting world-class conferences, helping to organise prestigious book launches and collaborating with world-renowned intellectuals who are helping to rewrite human history.

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Kenyan fossil shows chameleons may have ‘rafted’ from mainland Africa to Madagascar

Chameleons (Chamaeleonidae) are a family of unique lizards with unusual characteristics: rapidly extendable tongues, feet with two toes pointing forward and two backward, a prehensile tail, and eyes that can move independently of each other. Many species also have the ability to change the colour of their skin.

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Three reasons to celebrate Valentine’s Day at Maropeng

Whether you’re popping the question this year, celebrating an anniversary or simply looking forward to some quality time with your favourite person in the world, we’ve got you covered. Here’s why.

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Sympathies on the passing of Mayor Lipudi

The team at Maropeng is shocked and saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Mogale City Mayor Naga Patrick Lipudi on Sunday.

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Take your children to see the ‘elephant’ in the cave

My earliest memory of the Cradle of Humankind, as faint as it is, is of a school field trip to the Sterkfontein Caves way back when I was in primary school. I must have been nine or 10 years old. I remember the muddy walk from the buses to caves and I remember being fascinated by the “elephant” in the cave.

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#MaropengTurns14: celebrate our significant discoveries – and win!

Since opening to the public back in 2005, Maropeng has fulfilled more than just its mandate of collecting, preserving and exhibiting items of historical importance.

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#MaropengTurns14 Ts & Cs

Here are the terms and conditions to the #MaropengTurns14 competition