In the last three years, a flood of new scientific findings - driven by revelations discovered in the human genome - has provided compelling new answers to many long-standing mysteries about our ancient ancestors. When did language emerge? How did our ancestors break out of Africa and defeat the more physically powerful Neanderthals who stood in their way? Why did we come to speak so many different languages? When did we learn to live with animals and where and when did we domesticate man's first animal companions, dogs? How did human nature change in the 35,000 years between the emergence of fully modern humans and the first settlements? In "Before the Dawn", Wade takes readers to the forefront of research in a sweeping and engrossing narrative unlike any other, the first to reveal how genetic discoveries are helping to weave together the perspectives of archaeology, palaeontology, anthropology, linguistics, and many other fields. This is popular science in the mould of Malcolm Gladwell's "Tipping Point" - a compelling synthesis of current research that will surprise and enlighten the general reader.