SELINA Solutions for Class 10 Biology Chapter 14 - Human Evolution

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Chapter 14 - Human Evolution Exercise Ex. 1

Question A.1

The first scientist who proposed his theory for evolution was

(a) Darwin

(b) Mendel

(c) Lamarck

(d) Wallace

Solution A.1

(c) Lamarck

Question A.2

The theory of Natural Selection was proposed by

(a) Mendel

(b) Lamarck

(c) Wallace

(d) Darwin

Solution A.2

(d) Darwin

Question A.3

The organism studied for industrial melanism was a

(a) Butterfly

(b) Moth

(c) Honeybee

(d) Cockroach

Solution A.3

(b) Moth

Question A.4

Identify the pre-human ancestor.

(a) Ramapithecus

(b) Australopithecus

(c) Neanderthal man

(d) Cro-Magnon

Solution A.4

(a) Ramapithecus

Question B.1

Why Neanderthal man and modern man belong to two distinct species?

Solution B.1

Neanderthal man and modern man exhibit different characteristics, and hence, they are considered two distinct species. Below are the characteristic differences between Neanderthal man and modern man:


Neanderthal man

Modern man


Absolute bipedalism

Bipedal locomotion

Head and forehead

Large head, broad, flat and sloping forehead

Upright head, skull on the top of the vertebral column, steep forehead

Brow ridges

Prominent brow ridges

Reduced brow ridges


No chin

Well developed and prominent chin

Hair on body

Less hair on the body

Prominent hair on limbs

Cranial capacity

1450 cm3

1450 to 1600 cm3


Question B.2

The range of cranial capacities in the following ancestral forms were

(a) Australopithecus

(b) Homo habilis

(c) Homo erectus

(d) Cro-magnon

(e) Homo sapiens sapiens

Solution B.2

Ancestral forms

Cranial capacities

(a) Australopithecus

450 to 600 cm3

(b) Homo habilis

680 to 735 cm3

(c) Homo erectus

800 to 1125 cm3

(d) Cro-magnon

1450 to 1600 cm3

(e) Homo sapiens sapiens

1450 to 1600 cm3


Question B.3

Mention the two principles through which Lamarck explained his ideas.

Solution B.3

(a) Use and disuse:

Parts of the body which are used extensively become larger and stronger, while those which are not used deteriorate.


(b) Inheritance of acquired characters:

An organism could pass its modifications to its offspring.

Question B.4

Name any three vestigial organs found in humans.

Solution B.4

Three vestigial organs found in humans are wisdom teeth, vermiform appendix and pinna.

Question B.5

Give the scientific name of the organism which is cited as the classical example of 'natural selection'.

Solution B.5

Biston betularia is a classical example of 'natural selection'.

Question B.6

Tick mark (√) the correct option in the following statements.

(a) The fossil history of humans is complete/fragmentary.

(b) The first remarkable human fossil was that of H. habilis/H. africanus.

(c) Evolution is an ever continuing/promptly ending process.

Solution B.6

(a)The fossil history of humans is fragmentary.

(b)The first remarkable human fossil was that of Homo habilis.

(c)Evolution is an ever continuing process. 

Question C.1

Define the following terms:

(a) Evolution

(b) Vestigial organs

(c) Speciation

Solution C.1

(a) Evolution: Evolution is a slow and continuous process whereby complex forms of life have emerged from simpler forms through millions of years.


(b) Vestigial organs: Vestigial organs are those organs that have ceased to be of any use to the possessor but still persist generation after generation in a reduced form.


(c) Speciation: Speciation is a process of origin of new species by gradual modification. 

Question C.2

Distinguish between:

(a) Australopithecus and Cro-magnon (Chin)

(b) Australopithecus and Modern man (Body hair)

(c) Homo habilis and Homo sapiens (Posture)

Solution C.2

(a) Differences between Australopithecus and Cro-magnon (Chin):



Lack of chin

Well-developed chin


(b) Differences between Australopithecus and Modern man (Body hair):


Modern man

Body covered with hair

Highly reduced body hair


(c) Differences between Homo habilis and Homo sapiens (Posture):

Homo habilis

Homo sapiens

Bent kneed posture

Fully erect posture


Question C.3

Differentiate between Lamarck's Theory and Darwin's Theory.

Solution C.3

Differences between Lamarck's Theory and Darwin's Theory:

Lamarck's Theory

Darwin's Theory

1. Known as the theory of inheritance of acquired characters

1. Known as the theory of natural selection

2. Believes in the use and disuse of an organ. Parts used or changes acquired get transmitted to the next generation.

2. Believes that since variations exist in individuals, only the fittest survive in the struggle for existence.

3. New species evolve after a long period of time after several generations by acquiring new characters.

3. New species evolve due to accumulation of favourable variations over a long period of time.


Question C.4

Explain four observable facts on which "Theory of Natural Selection" is based.

Solution C.4

The Darwin's theory of Natural Selection is based on four observable facts which are as follows:

(i) Overproduction:

  • All organisms have the capacity to reproduce at a very high rate.
  • However, organisms cannot survive by reproduction alone.
  • Due to lack of food and space, offspring soon begin to die.
  • Some are eaten by predators, while some get destroyed due to adverse environmental conditions.


(ii) Struggle for existence:

  • Overproduction of organisms results in a struggle for existence among organisms.
  • The struggle is to obtain food, space and mate.


(iii) Variation:

  • Progeny of the same parents are not exactly alike. Such differences are known as variations. The variations may be harmful or advantageous.

(iv) Survival of fittest:

  • In the struggle for existence, organisms that develop new favourable characteristics will survive in the long run. This idea is called 'Survival of the fittest'.
  • Organisms which survive will transmit favourable characters to their offspring.
  • These characters get accumulated and give rise to new species.
Question C.5

Industrial melanism provides a good example of natural selection. Discuss.

Solution C.5
  • The best example is industrial melanism showing the effect of industrial pollution on the moth population on a nearby tree.
  • Before industrialisation, light-coloured lichen used to grow on trees and moth predators could not spot white moths easily, while dark moths were lesser in the moth population. However, due to industrial pollution, lichens could not grow on trees and it became difficult for predators to spot dark moths on the dark background of the stem bark, and thus, the population of white moths became less than that of dark moths.
  • This process is termed industrial melanism. Before industrialisation, white moths were better adapted towards nature, but after industrialisation, dark-coloured moths were more fit towards the changed environmental conditions.
Question D.1

Given alongside are two figures (A and B) representing the two stages of evolution of human beings.

Selina Solutions Icse Class 10 Biology Chapter - Human Evolution 

Answer the following:

(a) Mention any two contrasting characters between the two stages.

(b) Write all the stages of human evolution in their correct sequence.

(c) State any two characteristic features of stage B.

Solution D.1

Stage A: Australopithecus

Stage B: Homo sapiens sapiens

(a) Contrasting characters between Australopithecus and Homo sapiens sapiens:



Homo sapiens sapiens

Cranial capacity

450 to 600 cm3

1450 to 1600 cm3

Development of chin

Lack of chin, prognathous face

Prominent chin, snout disappeared


(b) Stages of human evolution in their correct sequence:

Australopithecus → Homo habilis → Homo erectus → Neanderthal man → Cro-Magnon man → Homo sapiens sapiens


(c) Characteristic features of stage B (Homo sapiens sapiens):

 Bipedal locomotion with four reversed curves in the spine

 Forehead steep, reduced brow ridges

Question D.2

Given alongside are two figures (A and B) showing a phenomenon that was first observed in Manchester before and after the year 1850.

Selina Solutions Icse Class 10 Biology Chapter - Human Evolution 

Answer the following.

(a) What name has been given to this phenomenon?

(b) Give the common name and the scientific name of the insect involved in this phenomenon.

(c) Briefly mention why the changes shown in the two figures appeared.

(d) The following phenomenon provides a classical explanation of a scientific theory given by a certain scientist.

(i) Name and explain the said theory.

(ii) Give the name of the scientist who gave this theory.

Solution D.2

(a) Industrial melanism


(b) Common name: Peppered moth

Scientific name: Biston betularia


(c) Reasons for changes in the two figures:

  • Before the Industrial Revolution, a thick growth of white-coloured lichen covered the trees. As a result, the light-coloured moths were camouflaged and survived under this cover, while the dark-coloured moths were easily spotted by predators.
  • After the Industrial Revolution, pollution resulted in a decline in the growth of lichens. The tree bark got exposed due to the absence of lichens. As a result, dark-coloured moths now got an advantage of a dark background, were camouflaged and survived, while the light-coloured moths were easily picked by predators.
  • This showed that in a mixed population, those moths which could adapt to the changing environment after the Industrial Revolution survived and increased in number, while the ones which could not adapt were slowly wiped out from the population.


(i) Natural selection. During the struggle for existence, only those individuals which have advantageous variations survive while the ones which lack these variations are wiped out. Nature selects only those variations which are suitable for existence. This process is called natural selection.

(ii) Charles Darwin