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A possible answer to the title question

Steigl also acknowledges that "the first signs" (whatever this may mean) can be "observed among primates". This is a bit fuzzy (see third point) and does not at all mean that primates always showed "first signs", but leads us to the question of the relational connection between primates and Hominidae as an interesting aside.

This means that the family of Hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

Morality in non-human animals

For some more accounts of the evolution of morality, see: de Waal, F. (Ed.). (2014). Evolved morality: The biology and philosophy of human conscience. Brill: Leiden.

As Conifold points out in a comment below, one could say that it is not only in humans that morality evolved. For some more recent insights about how "natural morality" and the problems of the is/ought divide can be addressed, see the above-mentioned book, pp. 49-68. de Waal argues there that morality evolved in primates as well and describes how they show moral behaviour. He stresses some differences that may disqualify this behaviour as "moral" in the eyes of others, though:

Other primates do not seem to extend norms beyond their immediate social environment, and appear unworried about social relationships or situations that they do not directly participate in. They also may not, like humans, feel any obligation to be good, or experience guilt and shame whenever they fail. We do not know if other animals experience such ‘ought’ feelings. One could argue that their behavior is normative in that it seeks certain outcomes, but that animals manage to do so without normative judgment. They may evaluate social behavior as successful or unsuccessful in furthering their goals, but not in terms of right or wrong. (ibid, p. 64).

Steigl also acknowledges that "the first signs" (whatever this may mean) can be "observed among primates". This is a bit fuzzy and does not at all mean that primates always showed "first signs", but leads us to the question of the relational connection between primates and Hominidae as an interesting aside.

This means that the family of Hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

A possible answer to the title question

Steigl also acknowledges that "the first signs" (whatever this may mean) can be "observed among primates". This is a bit fuzzy (see third point) and does not at all mean that primates always showed "first signs", but leads us to the question of the relational connection between primates and Hominidae as an interesting aside.

This means that the family of Hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

Morality in non-human animals

For some more accounts of the evolution of morality, see: de Waal, F. (Ed.). (2014). Evolved morality: The biology and philosophy of human conscience. Brill: Leiden.

As Conifold points out in a comment below, one could say that it is not only in humans that morality evolved. For some more recent insights about how "natural morality" and the problems of the is/ought divide can be addressed, see the above-mentioned book, pp. 49-68. de Waal argues there that morality evolved in primates as well and describes how they show moral behaviour. He stresses some differences that may disqualify this behaviour as "moral" in the eyes of others, though:

Other primates do not seem to extend norms beyond their immediate social environment, and appear unworried about social relationships or situations that they do not directly participate in. They also may not, like humans, feel any obligation to be good, or experience guilt and shame whenever they fail. We do not know if other animals experience such ‘ought’ feelings. One could argue that their behavior is normative in that it seeks certain outcomes, but that animals manage to do so without normative judgment. They may evaluate social behavior as successful or unsuccessful in furthering their goals, but not in terms of right or wrong. (ibid, p. 64).

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There is no conclusive evidence as morals, for most of human history, were a matter of social habits (lat. mores = habit) that were passed through social learning and forms of direct communication (may it be language or others). In other words: There is nothing to base conclusive evidence on to be found by archaeologists.

Justin Stagl, a cultural sociologist, put it that way (Stagl, J. (2000): 'Anthropological Universality. On the Validity of Generalisations about Human Nature.' In: Being humans: anthropological universality and particularity in transdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, pp. 25-36. Quote on page 26):

An early species of the genus Homo, which lived in Tanzania about 1.8 million years ago (and thus for a time contemporaneously with Australopithecus) and is called Homo habilis, used his hands in a secure and goal-oriented way for the fabrication of tools and implements. Homo habilis' thumbs could be directionally opposed to his other fingers, enabling him thus to perform precision grips. Accordingly, his brain capacity — and as a result, his intelligence — was one and a half times larger that of Australopithecus, although still merely half of that of Homo sapiens. It is reasonable to assume that the systematic use of tools and implements, including their fabrication, evolved pari passu with some system of communication and tradition, i.e. culture (the first signs of which have been observed among primates). (emphasis mine)

This would mean that it is reasonable to assume that morals in the contemporary sense of cultural habits of social life were developed by homo habilishomo habilis as early as around 1.8 million years ago.

Steigl also acknowledges that "the first signs" (whatever this may mean) can be "observed among primates". This is a bit fuzzy and does not at all mean that primates always showed "first signs", but leads us to the question of the relational connection between primates and Hominidae as an interesting aside.

Aside

"Today we no longer speak of the 'missing link', but instead of the 'connecting link', which defines for us the transition from more or less arboreal primates (the Pongidae, J.S.) to the bipedal Hominidae (anthropoids, not to be confused with the genus Homo; minimal definition: Hominidae are bipedal primates)." Seidler goes on to explain that such a "connecting link" was actually found in 1992 in Ethiopia: Ardipithecus ramidus was a "very apelike Hominid", who lived 4.4 million years ago and who was already capable of bipedal locomotion, whilst still feeling at home on trees (Seidler 1997). (ibid, pp. 25-6)

This means that the family of hominidaeHominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

There is no conclusive evidence as morals, for most of human history, were a matter of social habits (lat. mores = habit) that were passed through social learning and forms of direct communication (may it be language or others). In other words: There is nothing to base conclusive evidence on to be found by archaeologists.

Justin Stagl, a cultural sociologist, put it that way (Stagl, J. (2000): 'Anthropological Universality. On the Validity of Generalisations about Human Nature.' In: Being humans: anthropological universality and particularity in transdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, pp. 25-36. Quote on page 26):

An early species of the genus Homo, which lived in Tanzania about 1.8 million years ago (and thus for a time contemporaneously with Australopithecus) and is called Homo habilis, used his hands in a secure and goal-oriented way for the fabrication of tools and implements. Homo habilis' thumbs could be directionally opposed to his other fingers, enabling him thus to perform precision grips. Accordingly, his brain capacity — and as a result, his intelligence — was one and a half times larger that of Australopithecus, although still merely half of that of Homo sapiens. It is reasonable to assume that the systematic use of tools and implements, including their fabrication, evolved pari passu with some system of communication and tradition, i.e. culture (the first signs of which have been observed among primates). (emphasis mine)

This would mean that it is reasonable to assume that morals in the contemporary sense of cultural habits of social life were developed by homo habilis as early as around 1.8 million years ago.

Aside

"Today we no longer speak of the 'missing link', but instead of the 'connecting link', which defines for us the transition from more or less arboreal primates (the Pongidae, J.S.) to the bipedal Hominidae (anthropoids, not to be confused with the genus Homo; minimal definition: Hominidae are bipedal primates)." Seidler goes on to explain that such a "connecting link" was actually found in 1992 in Ethiopia: Ardipithecus ramidus was a "very apelike Hominid", who lived 4.4 million years ago and who was already capable of bipedal locomotion, whilst still feeling at home on trees (Seidler 1997). (ibid, pp. 25-6)

This means that the family of hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

There is no conclusive evidence as morals, for most of human history, were a matter of social habits (lat. mores = habit) that were passed through social learning and forms of direct communication (may it be language or others). In other words: There is nothing to base conclusive evidence on to be found by archaeologists.

Justin Stagl, a cultural sociologist, put it that way (Stagl, J. (2000): 'Anthropological Universality. On the Validity of Generalisations about Human Nature.' In: Being humans: anthropological universality and particularity in transdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, pp. 25-36. Quote on page 26):

An early species of the genus Homo, which lived in Tanzania about 1.8 million years ago (and thus for a time contemporaneously with Australopithecus) and is called Homo habilis, used his hands in a secure and goal-oriented way for the fabrication of tools and implements. Homo habilis' thumbs could be directionally opposed to his other fingers, enabling him thus to perform precision grips. Accordingly, his brain capacity — and as a result, his intelligence — was one and a half times larger that of Australopithecus, although still merely half of that of Homo sapiens. It is reasonable to assume that the systematic use of tools and implements, including their fabrication, evolved pari passu with some system of communication and tradition, i.e. culture (the first signs of which have been observed among primates). (emphasis mine)

This would mean that it is reasonable to assume that morals in the contemporary sense of cultural habits of social life were developed by homo habilis as early as around 1.8 million years ago.

Steigl also acknowledges that "the first signs" (whatever this may mean) can be "observed among primates". This is a bit fuzzy and does not at all mean that primates always showed "first signs", but leads us to the question of the relational connection between primates and Hominidae as an interesting aside.

Aside

"Today we no longer speak of the 'missing link', but instead of the 'connecting link', which defines for us the transition from more or less arboreal primates (the Pongidae, J.S.) to the bipedal Hominidae (anthropoids, not to be confused with the genus Homo; minimal definition: Hominidae are bipedal primates)." Seidler goes on to explain that such a "connecting link" was actually found in 1992 in Ethiopia: Ardipithecus ramidus was a "very apelike Hominid", who lived 4.4 million years ago and who was already capable of bipedal locomotion, whilst still feeling at home on trees (Seidler 1997). (ibid, pp. 25-6)

This means that the family of Hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

2 added 102 characters in body
source | link

There is no conclusive evidence as morals, for most of human history, were a matter of social habits (lat. mores = habit) that were passed through social learning and forms of direct communication (may it be language or others). In other words: There is nothing to base conclusive evidence on to be found by archaeologists.

Justin Stagl, a cultural sociologist, put it that way (Stagl, J. (2000): 'Anthropological Universality. On the Validity of Generalisations about Human Nature.' In: Being humans: anthropological universality and particularity in transdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, pp. 25-36. Quote on page 26):

An early species of the genus Homo, which lived in Tanzania about 1.8 million years ago (and thus for a time contemporaneously with Australopithecus) and is called Homo habilis, used his hands in a secure and goal-oriented way for the fabrication of tools and implements. Homo habilis' thumbs could be directionally opposed to his other fingers, enabling him thus to perform precision grips. Accordingly, his brain capacity — and as a result, his intelligence — was one and a half times larger that of Australopithecus, although still merely half of that of Homo sapiens. It is reasonable to assume that the systematic use of tools and implements, including their fabrication, evolved pari passu with some system of communication and tradition, i.e. culture (the first signs of which have been observed among primates). (emphasis mine)

This would mean that it is reasonable to assume that morals in the contemporary sense of cultural habits of social life were developed by homo habilis as early as around 1.8 million years ago.

Aside

"Today we no longer speak of the 'missing link', but instead of the 'connecting link', which defines for us the transition from more or less arboreal primates (the Pongidae, J.S.) to the bipedal Hominidae (anthropoids, not to be confused with the genus Homo; minimal definition: Hominidae are bipedal primates)." Seidler goes on to explain that such a "connecting link" was actually found in 1992 in Ethiopia: Ardipithecus ramidus was a "very apelike Hominid", who lived 4.4 million years ago and who was already capable of bipedal locomotion, whilst still feeling at home on trees (Seidler 1997). (ibid, pp. 25-6)

This means that the family of hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

There is no conclusive evidence as morals, for most of human history, were a matter of social habits (lat. mores = habit) that were passed through social learning and forms of communication (may it be language or others).

Justin Stagl, a cultural sociologist, put it that way (Stagl, J. (2000): 'Anthropological Universality. On the Validity of Generalisations about Human Nature.' In: Being humans: anthropological universality and particularity in transdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, pp. 25-36. Quote on page 26):

An early species of the genus Homo, which lived in Tanzania about 1.8 million years ago (and thus for a time contemporaneously with Australopithecus) and is called Homo habilis, used his hands in a secure and goal-oriented way for the fabrication of tools and implements. Homo habilis' thumbs could be directionally opposed to his other fingers, enabling him thus to perform precision grips. Accordingly, his brain capacity — and as a result, his intelligence — was one and a half times larger that of Australopithecus, although still merely half of that of Homo sapiens. It is reasonable to assume that the systematic use of tools and implements, including their fabrication, evolved pari passu with some system of communication and tradition, i.e. culture (the first signs of which have been observed among primates). (emphasis mine)

This would mean that it is reasonable to assume that morals in the contemporary sense of cultural habits of social life were developed by homo habilis as early as around 1.8 million years ago.

Aside

"Today we no longer speak of the 'missing link', but instead of the 'connecting link', which defines for us the transition from more or less arboreal primates (the Pongidae, J.S.) to the bipedal Hominidae (anthropoids, not to be confused with the genus Homo; minimal definition: Hominidae are bipedal primates)." Seidler goes on to explain that such a "connecting link" was actually found in 1992 in Ethiopia: Ardipithecus ramidus was a "very apelike Hominid", who lived 4.4 million years ago and who was already capable of bipedal locomotion, whilst still feeling at home on trees (Seidler 1997). (ibid, pp. 25-6)

This means that the family of hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

There is no conclusive evidence as morals, for most of human history, were a matter of social habits (lat. mores = habit) that were passed through social learning and forms of direct communication (may it be language or others). In other words: There is nothing to base conclusive evidence on to be found by archaeologists.

Justin Stagl, a cultural sociologist, put it that way (Stagl, J. (2000): 'Anthropological Universality. On the Validity of Generalisations about Human Nature.' In: Being humans: anthropological universality and particularity in transdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, pp. 25-36. Quote on page 26):

An early species of the genus Homo, which lived in Tanzania about 1.8 million years ago (and thus for a time contemporaneously with Australopithecus) and is called Homo habilis, used his hands in a secure and goal-oriented way for the fabrication of tools and implements. Homo habilis' thumbs could be directionally opposed to his other fingers, enabling him thus to perform precision grips. Accordingly, his brain capacity — and as a result, his intelligence — was one and a half times larger that of Australopithecus, although still merely half of that of Homo sapiens. It is reasonable to assume that the systematic use of tools and implements, including their fabrication, evolved pari passu with some system of communication and tradition, i.e. culture (the first signs of which have been observed among primates). (emphasis mine)

This would mean that it is reasonable to assume that morals in the contemporary sense of cultural habits of social life were developed by homo habilis as early as around 1.8 million years ago.

Aside

"Today we no longer speak of the 'missing link', but instead of the 'connecting link', which defines for us the transition from more or less arboreal primates (the Pongidae, J.S.) to the bipedal Hominidae (anthropoids, not to be confused with the genus Homo; minimal definition: Hominidae are bipedal primates)." Seidler goes on to explain that such a "connecting link" was actually found in 1992 in Ethiopia: Ardipithecus ramidus was a "very apelike Hominid", who lived 4.4 million years ago and who was already capable of bipedal locomotion, whilst still feeling at home on trees (Seidler 1997). (ibid, pp. 25-6)

This means that the family of hominidae parted ways with primates around 4.4 million years ago and it took another 2.6 million years to develop (the biological prerequisites of) morals.

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