THE estimable pop band Half Man Half Biscuit, composers of The Trumpton Riots, nearly got it right.
We are in fact half chimpanzee, half bonobo. I'm playing fast and loose with my fractions here, as you can probably add half of something else — human? — in there too.
But the point is there's more to us than just educated chimps. Indeed, the bonobo is the gentler of our two ape cousins. They're kinder, gentler, and more into mating than fighting. Scientists mapping the primate's DNA found we were as close genetically to the little-known bonobo as to the more infamous and violent chimp. We share 98.7% of our genetic blueprint with each.
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