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  • Scientists Have Discovered The Earliest Evidence of Bread, And It's Much Older Than We Expected

    07/16/2018 9:01:11 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 24 replies
    The people who built the ancient structure, members of what's called the Natufian culture, struggled in a "hostile environment to gain more energy from their food," said Ehud Weiss, an archaeobotanist at Bar-Ilan University in Israel who was not involved with the study. Archaeologists found the bread remains in sediment samples at a site named Shubayqa 1 in Jordan. The structure was oval with a fireplace in the center, and its builders carefully laid stones into the ground. Arranz Otaegui said she did not know whether the building was a dwelling or had other, perhaps ceremonial, purposes. Sifting through the...
  • Did the Human Hand Evolve as a Lean Mean Bone-Smashing Machine?

    07/16/2018 8:36:27 PM PDT · by Simon Green · 19 replies
    Smithsonian ^ | 07/13/18 | Meilan Solly
    Scientists have long linked the evolution of the human hand—unique for its lengthy opposable thumbs and dexterous fingers—to the rise of stone tools some 2.6 million years ago. These instruments, from primitive chunks of rock used as makeshift hammers to sharp stone flakes created by striking one stone against another and even small handaxes, are typically attributed to Homo habilis, an ancient human species nicknamed “handy man” in honor of its theorized role as the first toolmaker. Early hominins practiced an array of tool-related activities, including hunting, foraging and cooking. But according to a new study from researchers at Chatham...
  • The heatwave is uncovering new ancient archaeological sites in the UK and Ireland

    07/16/2018 5:47:36 PM PDT · by edwinland · 26 replies
    Lonely Planet News ^ | Andrea Smith
    The recent heatwave in the UK and Ireland has uncovered ancient archaeological sites that, in some cases, have never been seen before. One such discovery is a henge, or circular enclosure, located 1km from the famous Irish megalithic passage tomb, Newgrange. The henge was discovered by historian Anthony Murphy of Mythical Ireland, who was flying his drone over the Boyne Valley when he spotted a circular shape in the field. It is estimated that this henge was built some 5000 years ago. ... snip ... These new discoveries include a Roman fortlet near Magor, which emerged in ripening crops, and...
  • Scientists Find Lemmings Die as Dinners, Not Suicides

    10/31/2003 5:45:48 AM PST · by OESY · 15 replies · 1,175+ views
    New York Times ^ | October 31, 2003 | CAROL KAESUK YOON
    For centuries, people have puzzled over lemmings, the northern rodents whose populations surge and crash so quickly and so regularly that they inspired an enduring myth: that lemmings commit mass suicide when their numbers grow too large, eagerly pitching themselves off cliffs to their death in a foamy sea. Scientists debunked that notion decades ago. But they have never been certain what causes the rapid boom-and-bust cycles that gave rise to it. Now, in a study of collared lemmings in Greenland, being published today in the journal Science, a team of European researchers report that the reason has nothing to...
  • Bloodstains on Shroud of Turin are probably fake, experts say

    07/16/2018 12:19:27 AM PDT · by Simon Green · 97 replies
    Fox News ^ | 07/15/18 | Christopher Carbone
    The Shroud of Turin, which has been revered by some Christians as the burial cloth of Jesus, could be a fake, according to a new forensic investigation. The investigation into the bloodstain pattern on the cloth was reported Tuesday in the Journal of Forensic Sciences and is apparently the first such analysis of the controversial shroud. Held in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Turin, Italy, the shroud shows the image of a crucified man and has been analyzed and scrutinized for many, many years. The Vatican regards it as an icon, rather than a religious relic—and the...
  • Distinctive Projectile Point Technology Sheds Light on Peopling of the Americas

    07/16/2018 12:06:33 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 27 replies
    EurekAlert! ^ | July 11, 2018 | Thomas J. Williams, Texas State U
    In the lowest layer of the Area 15 archaeological grounds at the Gault Site in Central Texas, researchers have unearthed a projectile point technology never previously seen in North America, which they date to be at least 16,000 years old, or a time before Clovis. While clear evidence for the timing of the peopling of the Americas remains elusive, these findings suggest humans occupied North America prior to Clovis - considered one of the oldest, if not the oldest, Paleo-Indian culture of North America, and dated to around 11,000 years ago. In 2002, Area 15 of the Gault Site in...
  • Finding the first Americans

    11/10/2017 1:57:49 AM PST · by kitchen · 8 replies
    Science ^ | 03 Nov 2017 | Todd J. Braje, Tom D. Dillehay, Jon M. Erlandson, Richard G. Klein, Torben C. Rick
    Science 03 Nov 2017: Vol. 358, Issue 6363, pp. 592-594 DOI: 10.1126/science.aao5473 Article Figures & Data Info & Metrics eLetters PDF You are currently viewing the summary. View Full Text This article has a correction. Please see:Erratum for the Perspective “Finding the first Americans” by T. J. Braje, T. D. Dillehay, J. M. Erlandson, R. G. Klein, T. C. Rick - November 03, 2017 Summary For much of the 20th century, most archaeologists believed humans first colonized the Americas ∼13,500 years ago via an overland route that crossed Beringia and followed a long and narrow, mostly ice-free corridor to the...
  • America's Clovis people wiped out by meteorite 12000 years ago

    03/11/2017 8:25:15 AM PST · by ckilmer · 74 replies
    yahoo.com ^ | Martha Henriques
    Traces of platinum, a metal associated with meteorite impact, have been found at archaeological sites of the Clovis people across the US, suggesting that they were wiped out in a mini-Ice-Age triggered by the impact of an extraterrestrial object. The Clovis people disappeared from North America about 12,800 years ago. Many of the large creatures they hunted – a total of about 35 species – went extinct at about the same time.
  • Fingerprint of ancient abrupt climate change found in Arctic [Younger Dryas]

    07/15/2018 11:22:34 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 26 replies
    Phys dot org ^ | July 9, 2018 | Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
    A research team led by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) found the fingerprint of a massive flood of fresh water in the western Arctic, thought to be the cause of an ancient cold snap that began around 13,000 years ago... The cause of the cooling event, which is named after a flower (Dryas octopetala) that flourished in the cold conditions in Europe throughout the time, has remained a mystery and a source of debate for decades. Many researchers believed the source was a huge influx of freshwater from melting ice sheets and glaciers that gushed into the North Atlantic... However,...
  • Malaria and the Fall of Rome

    07/15/2018 4:42:31 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 45 replies
    BBC ^ | February 17, 2011 | Andrew Thompson
    Could an ancient children's burial ground contain clues about how one of the world's greatest empires came to an end? Andrew Thompson explores the theory that malaria was the silent killer responsible for the fall of Rome. Today in the west, most people have forgotten how deadly malaria used to be, although there were serious malarial epidemics in many parts of Italy as recently as the 1950s. But each year, mainly in Africa, it still kills over two million people, most of them children. While there are several mentions of a disease sounding very similar to malaria in historical documents...
  • The Best Radiocarbon-dated Site in Recent Iberian Prehistory [sudden end]

    07/15/2018 3:59:17 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    Popular Archaeology ^ | Tuesday, July 10, 2018 | University of Seville news release
    ...the experts have shown the end of the occupation of this part of the province of Seville happened between the 24th and 23rd centuries BCE, despite evidence of it being frequented and used in the Bronze Age (c. 2200-850 BCE). "In fact, the abandonment of the site seems rather abrupt, without a gradual transition towards a different social model. The possibility that the end of the Valencina settlement was due to a social crisis has been hinted at by the dates obtained from several human skulls separated from the rest of the skeletons in a pit in a Calle Trabajadores...
  • The New Story of Humanity's Origins in Africa

    07/15/2018 3:22:44 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies
    The Atlantic ^ | July 11, 2018 | Ed Yong
    Consider the ancient human fossils from a Moroccan cave called Jebel Irhoud, which were described just last year. These 315,000-year-old bones are the oldest known fossils of Homo sapiens. They not only pushed back the proposed dawn of our species, but they added northwest Africa to the list of possible origin sites. They also had an odd combination of features, combining the flat faces of modern humans with the elongated skulls of ancient species like Homo erectus. From the front, they could have passed for us; from the side, they would have stood out. Fossils from all over Africa have...
  • Romans had whaling industry, archaeological excavation suggests

    07/15/2018 2:09:10 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 10 replies
    Guardian UK ^ | Wednesday, July 11, 2018 | Nicola Davis
    Ancient bones found around the Strait of Gibraltar... dating to the first few centuries AD or earlier, belong to grey whales and North Atlantic right whales -- coastal migratory species that are no longer found in European waters. Researchers... add that Romans would not have had the technology to hunt whale species found in the region today -- sperm or fin whales which live further out at sea -- meaning evidence of whaling might not have been something archaeologists and historians were looking out for... The right whale was once widespread in the North Atlantic, with breeding grounds off the...
  • Medieval games board found in search for Pictish monastery [Hnefatafl]

    07/15/2018 1:14:58 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 21 replies
    The Scotsman (strong and handsome built) ^ | Thursday 05 July 2018 | Alison Campsie
    A medieval gaming board has been found by archaeologists working to find a lost Pictish-era monastery in Aberdeenshire. Archaeologist Ali Cameron said the board found near Old Deer was a "very rare" find with it used to play the Norse strategy game of Hnefatafl. A date for the board has yet to be established but a similar piece found in Birsay, Orkney, in 1989 was dated to the Late Iron Age/Pictish period from the 5th to 9th Century AD. Ms Cameron said: "It is a very rare object and only a few have been found in Scotland, mainly on monastic...
  • First dogs in the Americas arrived from Siberia, disappeared after European contact

    07/15/2018 12:57:51 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 56 replies
    ScienceDaily ^ | July 5, 2018 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    By comparing genomic signatures from 71 mitochondrial and seven nuclear genomes of ancient North American and Siberian dogs spanning a period of 9,000 years, the research team was able to gain a clearer picture of the history of the first canine inhabitants of the Americas. The oldest dog remains in the Americas date to about 9,000 years ago... These dogs persisted for thousands of years in the Americas, but almost completely vanished after European contact, the researchers found... The team also discovered that the genomic signature of a transmissible cancer that afflicts dogs appears to be one of the last...
  • Archaeologists in Egypt discover ancient mummification workshop

    07/15/2018 10:09:58 AM PDT · by ETL · 44 replies
    FoxNews/Science ^ | July 15, 2018
    Archaeologists in Egypt made a surprising discovery dating back more 2,500 years near the country's famed pyramids south of Cairo. Their findings, which include a mummification workshop and a shaft, used as a communal burial place, are located at the vast Saqqara necropolis part of the Memphis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Memphis was the first capital of ancient Egypt and its large necropolis houses a wide range of temples and tombs as well as the three pyramids of Giza. The latest find, announced at a press conference Saturday, belongs to the Saite-Persian Period, from 664-404 B.C. The site, which...
  • New evidence: The bones of the 'Princes in the Tower' show no relationship to Richard III

    07/15/2018 2:52:59 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 30 replies
    johnashdownhill.com ^ | July 27, 2016 | Press Release for The Secret Queen by The History Press
    The dental record reveals that Richard III had no congenitally missing teeth, in sharp contrast to the 'bones in the urn', where both skulls are said to present this genetic anomaly. Previously it has been argued that this feature provided strong evidence of the royal identity of the 'bones in the urn'. It was claimed that the 'Princes' inherited their missing teeth from their grandmother, Cecily, Duchess of York. But Dr Ashdown-Hill's latest discovery strongly suggests that the 'bones in the urn' are not related to Cecily's son, Richard III, who was a first degree relative of the 'Princes'. Scientific...
  • Researchers reconstruct the genome of the ‘first animal’

    07/14/2018 8:14:11 AM PDT · by Moonman62 · 54 replies
    IMPC ^ | 7/9/2018 | Jordi Paps
    Humans and mice share approximately 98% of genes, and have similar physiology and anatomy. This is because we share a relatively recent common ancestor, around 80 million-years-ago. In contrast, the ancestor of all animals lived over 500 million-years-ago. As genomic data becomes available for more animal species a detailed family tree can be created, allowing novel insight into the genomes of long extinct species. In the guest post below Jordi Paps summarises recent research that attempts to reconstruct the genome of the ‘first animal’ by using the genomic data available on living animals. The first animals emerged on Earth at...
  • Researchers Solve Mystery of 1,800-Year-Old Basel Papyrus

    07/13/2018 4:18:58 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 10 replies
    Sci-news ^ | 7/13/18 | Enrico de Lazaro
    A team of scientists at the University of Basel, Switzerland, has discovered that a 1,800-year-old papyrus from the Basel Papyrus Collection is an ancient medical text from late antiquity and that it was likely written by the famous Roman physician Galen. The University Library in Basel possesses a collection of 65 papyri, mostly in Greek and several in Coptic, Hieratic and Latin. Less than half of this collection was published by Ernst Rabel in 1917 in Papyrusurkunden der Öffentlichen Bibliothek der Universität zu Basel. With mirror writing on both sides, one of the Basel papyri — dubbed P.Basel 1A —...
  • Ancient 'Iceman' shows signs of a well-balanced last meal

    07/12/2018 5:57:30 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 26 replies
    apey-news ^ | Thursday, July 12, 2018 | Emiliano Rodriguez Mega
    Talk about a paleo diet. Scientists have uncovered the last meal of a frozen hunter who died 5,300 years ago in the Alps. The stomach contents of the corpse, widely known as Oetzi the Iceman, offer a snapshot of what ancient Europeans ate more than five millennia ago, researchers said. On the menu, described Thursday in the journal Current Biology, were the fat and meat of a wild goat, meat of a red deer and whole wheat seeds, which Oetzi ate shortly before his death. Traces of fern leaves and spores were also discovered in Oetzi's stomach. Scientists think he...