Archeology News

Archeology News

Archaeology News

Bronze Age Iberia received fewer Steppe invaders than the rest of Europe

The genomes of individuals who lived on the Iberian Peninsula in the Bronze Age had minor genetic input from Steppe invaders, suggesting that these migrations played a smaller role in the genetic makeup and culture of Iberian people, compared to other parts of Europe.
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Posted: July 27, 2017, 6:15 pm

A new picture emerges on the origins of photosynthesis in a sun-loving bacteria

Biologists have gained important new insights by resolving with near-atomic clarity, the very first core membrane protein structure in the simplest known photosynthetic bacterium, called Heliobacterium modesticaldum (Helios was the Greek sun god). By solving the heart of photosynthesis in this sun-loving, soil-dwelling bacterium, the research team has gained a fundamental new understanding of the early evolution of photosynthesis, and how this vital process differs between plants systems.
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Posted: July 27, 2017, 6:15 pm

Bronze Age Iberia received fewer Steppe invaders than the rest of Europe

The genomes of individuals who lived on the Iberian Peninsula in the Bronze Age had minor genetic input from Steppe invaders, suggesting that these migrations played a smaller role in the genetic makeup and culture of Iberian people, compared to other parts of Europe.
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Posted: July 27, 2017, 6:15 pm

Who were the Canaanites? Ancient human DNA evidence yields answers

Thousands of years ago, the Canaanite people lived in a part of the world we now recognize as Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan, establishing a culture that became influential in the Middle East and beyond. The Canaanites created the first alphabet, established colonies throughout the Mediterranean, and were mentioned many times in the Bible. But who were they and what ultimately happened to them? Were they annihilated like the Bible says?
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Posted: July 27, 2017, 4:20 pm

Algorithms identify the dynamics of prehistoric social networks in the Balkans

The pioneering application of modularity analyses in archaeology yields a powerful method for highly accurate mapping of social interaction in the human past.
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Posted: July 27, 2017, 2:30 pm

Malaria already endemic in the Mediterranean by the Roman period

Malaria was already widespread on Sardinia by the Roman period, long before the Middle Ages, as research on a Roman who died 2,000 years ago indicates.
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Posted: July 27, 2017, 2:30 pm

Isotopes in prehistoric cattle teeth suggest herding strategies used during the Neolithic

Analysis of strontium isotopes in teeth from Neolithic cattle suggest that early Europeans used different specialized herding strategies.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 6:33 pm

Identifying major transitions in human cultural evolution

Over the past 10,000 years human cultures have expanded from small groups of hunter-gatherers to colossal and complexly organized societies. The secrets to how and why this major cultural transition occurred have largely remained elusive. A new article outlines how advances in computational methods and large cross-cultural datasets are beginning to reveal the broad patterns and processes underlying our cultural histories.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 5:20 pm

Traces of adaptation and cultural diversification found among early North American stone tools

Using new 3-D methods to analyze stone projectile points crafted by North America's earliest human inhabitants, scientists have found that these tools show evidence of a shift toward more experimentation about 12,500 years ago, following hundreds of years of consistent stone-tool production. The findings provide clues into changes in social interactions during a time when people are thought to have been spreading into new parts of North America.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 4:03 pm

New bird that humans drove to extinction discovered in Azores

Inside the crater of a volcano on Graciosa Island in the Azores archipelago, in the Atlantic Ocean, an international team of researchers has discovered the bones of a new extinct species of songbird, a bullfinch which they have named Pyrrhula crassa. The remains were found in a small cavity through which time ago the lava flowed. This bird disappeared a few hundreds of years ago due to human colonization of the islands and the introduction of invasive species.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 3:09 pm

Cultural flexibility was key for early humans to survive extreme dry periods in southern Africa

The early human techno-tradition, known as Howiesons Poort, associated with Homo sapiens who lived in southern Africa about 66,000 to 59,000 years ago indicates that during this period of pronounced aridification they developed cultural innovations that allowed them to significantly enlarge the range of environments they occupied.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 2:29 pm

Large-mouthed fish was top predator after mass extinction

The food chains recovered more rapidly than previously assumed after Earth's most devastating mass extinction event about 252 million years ago as demonstrated by the fossilized skull of a large predatory fish called Birgeria americana discovered by paleontologists from the University of Zurich in the desert of Nevada.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 2:29 pm

Archaeologists find key to tracking ancient wheat in frozen Bronze Age box

A Bronze Age wooden container found in an ice patch at 2,650m in the Swiss Alps could help archaeologists shed new light on the spread and exploitation of cereal grains following a chance discovery.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 1:15 pm

Archaeologists find key to tracking ancient wheat in frozen Bronze Age box

A Bronze Age wooden container found in an ice patch at 2,650m in the Swiss Alps could help archaeologists shed new light on the spread and exploitation of cereal grains following a chance discovery.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 1:15 pm

'Residual echo' of ancient humans in scans may hold clues to mental disorders

Researchers have produced the first direct evidence that parts of our brains implicated in mental disorders may be shaped by a 'residual echo' from Neanderthal DNA in our genomes. Evidence from MRI scans suggests that such ancient genetic variation may affect the way our brains work today -- and may hold clues to understanding deficits seen in schizophrenia and autism-related disorders.
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Posted: July 26, 2017, 1:15 pm

Evolutionary biologists solve puzzle of evolutionary relationships among vertebrates

Using the largest and most informative molecular phylogenetic dataset ever analysed, evolutionary biologists were able to construct a new phylogenetic tree of jawed vertebrates. This new tree resolves several key relationships that have remained controversial, including the identification of lungfishes as the closest living relatives of land vertebrates. The evolution of jawed vertebrates is part of our own history since humans belong to the tetrapods more specifically we are mammals, or, even more specifically, primates.
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Posted: July 24, 2017, 5:31 pm

Strength of tectonic plates may explain shape of the Tibetan Plateau

Geoscientists have long puzzled over the mechanism that created the Tibetan Plateau, but a new study finds that the landform's history may be controlled primarily by the strength of the tectonic plates whose collision prompted its uplift. Given that the region is one of the most seismically active areas in the world, understanding the plateau's geologic history could give scientists insight to modern day earthquake activity.
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Posted: July 24, 2017, 3:35 pm

300 million-year-old 'modern' beetle from Australia reconstructed

He's Australian, around half a centimeter long, fairly nondescript, 300 million years old -- and he's currently causing astonishment among both entomologists and palaeontologists. The discovery of a beetle from the late Permian period is throwing a completely new light on the earliest developments in this group of insects.
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Posted: July 24, 2017, 2:50 pm

Biblical History at What Cost?


Recently, the Hobby Lobby corporation—owned by the Green family—agreed to pay a $3 million fine for the purchase of thousands of artifacts believed to have been smuggled out of Iraq. Given the connection of the Green family and their massive collection of artifacts to the soon-to-be-opened Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C., how are we to understand the significance of this civil case? Cultural heritage expert Roberta Mazza of the University of Manchester explains in this guest blog post.

The post Biblical History at What Cost? appeared first on Biblical Archaeology Society.

Author: Biblical Archaeology Society Staff
Posted: July 24, 2017, 1:11 pm

Our ancestors were already warm-blooded just before the Permian-Triassic extinction event

For how long have warm-blooded animals existed? The time at which this character first appeared in the ancestors of mammals has long been debated. Now, dating analyses carried out on 90 fossils have shown that warm-blooded species first appeared among our ancestors during the Late Permian, 252 -- 259 million years ago. In addition, this new character may have enabled them to survive the Permian-Triassic extinction event, 252 million years ago
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Posted: July 24, 2017, 1:10 pm

In saliva, clues to a 'ghost' species of ancient human

In saliva, scientists have found hints that a 'ghost' species of archaic humans may have contributed genetic material to ancestors of people living in sub-Saharan Africa today. The research adds to a growing body of evidence suggesting that sexual rendezvous between different archaic human species may not have been unusual.
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Posted: July 21, 2017, 3:34 pm

New Kingdom Egypt: The goldsmith’s tomb

Archeologists are studying the impact of intercultural contacts in Ancient Egypt. New excavations in Sudan have uncovered a tomb dating to around 1450 BC on the island of Sai in the Nile.
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Posted: July 21, 2017, 1:01 pm

New Kingdom Egypt: The goldsmith’s tomb

Archeologists are studying the impact of intercultural contacts in Ancient Egypt. New excavations in Sudan have uncovered a tomb dating to around 1450 BC on the island of Sai in the Nile.
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Posted: July 21, 2017, 1:01 pm

5,000-Year-Old Egyptian Billboard Discovered


Egyptologists recently discovered the oldest known monumental hieroglyphs.

The post 5,000-Year-Old Egyptian Billboard Discovered appeared first on Biblical Archaeology Society.

Author: Biblical Archaeology Society Staff
Posted: July 20, 2017, 6:14 pm

Artifacts suggest humans arrived in Australia earlier than thought

Archeologists have found and dated artifacts in northern Australia that indicate humans arrived there about 65,000 years ago -- more than 10,000 years earlier than previously thought.
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Posted: July 19, 2017, 5:22 pm

Thawing permafrost releases old greenhouse gas

The thawing permafrost soils in the Arctic regions might contribute to the greenhouse effect in two respects: on the one hand rising temperatures lead to higher microbial methane production close to the surface. On the other hand thawing subsurface opens increasingly pathways for old, geologic methane.
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Posted: July 19, 2017, 12:48 pm

Sea cave preserves 5,000-year snapshot of tsunamis

Scientists digging in a sea cave in Indonesia have discovered the world's most pristine record of tsunamis, a 5,000-year-old sedimentary snapshot that reveals for the first time how little is known about when earthquakes trigger massive waves.
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Posted: July 19, 2017, 12:48 pm

Did life begin on land rather than in the sea?

A new discovery pushes back the time for the emergence of microbial life on land by 580 million years and also bolsters a paradigm-shifting hypothesis that life began, not in the sea, but on land.
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Posted: July 18, 2017, 6:29 pm

Fused imaging reveals 16th-century writing hidden inside bookbinding

By fusing visible hyperspectral imaging with X-ray fluorescence, researchers have safely revealed Roman law code hidden inside of a 16th century bookbinding.
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Posted: July 18, 2017, 3:37 pm

Why Tyrannosaurus was a slow runner and why the largest are not always the fastest

No other animal on land is faster than a cheetah -- the elephant is indeed larger, but slower. For small to medium-sized animals, larger also means faster, but for really large animals, when it comes to speed, everything goes downhill again. For the first time, it is now possible to describe how this parabola-like relationship between body size and speed comes about.
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Posted: July 17, 2017, 3:56 pm

Climatic stability resulted in the evolution of more bird species

More species of birds have accumulated, in general, inhabiting climatically stable areas.
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Posted: July 17, 2017, 2:04 pm

New species of dinosaur named after Canadian icon

A new species of troodontid theropod dinosaur, Albertavenator curriei, has been identified. It is named after renowned Canadian palaeontologist Dr. Philip J. Currie. Palaeontologists initially thought that the bones of Albertavenator belonged to its close relative Troodon, which lived around 76 million years ago. This new species of troodontid in the Late Cretaceous of North America indicates that small dinosaur diversity in the latest Cretaceous of North America is likely underestimated due to the difficulty of identifying species from fragmentary fossils.
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Posted: July 17, 2017, 1:10 pm

Fossil site shows impact of early Jurassic's low oxygen oceans

Using a combination of fossils and chemical markers, scientists have tracked how a period of globally low ocean-oxygen turned an Early Jurassic marine ecosystem into a stressed community inhabited by only a few species.
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Posted: July 15, 2017, 7:51 pm

Cretaceous Tanaidaceans took care of their offspring more than 105 million years ago

The first evidence of parental care in Tanaidaceans has been found by scientists, dating back to more than 105 million years, according to a new study. These new findings are based on the study of three small crustaceans from different species of the Cretaceous -- Alavatanais carabe, Alavatanais margulisae and Daenerytanais maieuticus -- preserved in amber pieces from the sites in  Peñacerrada (Álava, Spain) and La Buzinie (Charente, France), reference models in the study of fossil records in amber with bioinclusions of the Mesozoic in Europe.
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Posted: July 14, 2017, 11:21 am

Ancient plankton-like microfossils span two continents

Large, robust, lens-shaped microfossils from the approximately 3.4 billion-year-old Kromberg Formation of the Kaapvaal Craton in eastern South Africa are not only among the oldest elaborate microorganisms known, but are also related to other intricate microfossils of the same age found in the Pilbara Craton of Australia, according to an international team of scientists.
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Posted: July 13, 2017, 7:48 pm

Ancient Greek theaters used moveable stages more than 2,000 years ago

Theater has been loved by many people since classical times. Along with its popularity, stage theater construction evolved greatly between the ancient Greek and Roman periods. In this research, an architectural researcher has clarified the development process for some of the stage equipment that was used in the theaters of Messene, an ancient Greek city.
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Posted: July 11, 2017, 1:26 pm

Ancient Greek theaters used moveable stages more than 2,000 years ago

Theater has been loved by many people since classical times. Along with its popularity, stage theater construction evolved greatly between the ancient Greek and Roman periods. In this research, an architectural researcher has clarified the development process for some of the stage equipment that was used in the theaters of Messene, an ancient Greek city.
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Posted: July 11, 2017, 1:26 pm

Easter Island not victim of 'ecocide,' analysis of remains shows

Analysis of remains found on Rapa Nui, Chile (Easter Island) provides evidence contrary to the widely-held belief that the ancient civilization recklessly destroyed its environment.
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Posted: July 10, 2017, 8:14 pm

X-ray finds unique fingerprint in Medieval manuscript ink

Analyzing pigments in medieval illuminated manuscript pages is opening up some new areas of research bridging the arts and sciences, report investigators.
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Posted: July 10, 2017, 8:09 pm

Big, shape-shifting animals from the dawn of time

Major changes in the chemical composition of the world's oceans enabled the first large organisms -- possibly some of the earliest animals -- to exist and thrive more than half a billion years ago, marking the point when conditions on Earth changed and animals began to take over the world.
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Posted: July 10, 2017, 3:37 pm

On Display in Rome: Images of the Temple Menorah


The Menorah: Worship, History and Myth, a major exhibition on display at the Vatican Museum and the Jewish Museum in Rome, provides dramatic images of the Temple Menorah.

The post On Display in Rome: Images of the Temple Menorah appeared first on Biblical Archaeology Society.

Author: Biblical Archaeology Society Staff
Posted: July 7, 2017, 1:34 pm

Archaeologists put sound back into a previously silent past

Many attempts to explain how past people experienced their wider world have focused on sight at the expense of sound, but researchers have now developed a tool that puts sound back into the ancient landscape.
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Posted: July 6, 2017, 6:31 pm

How humans transformed wild wheat into its modern counterpart

A sophisticated sequencing study reveals genetic changes that emerged in wheat as it became domesticated by agricultural societies in the Fertile Crescent, roughly 10,000 years ago.
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Posted: July 6, 2017, 6:31 pm

Archaeologists put sound back into a previously silent past

Many attempts to explain how past people experienced their wider world have focused on sight at the expense of sound, but researchers have now developed a tool that puts sound back into the ancient landscape.
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Posted: July 6, 2017, 6:31 pm

Fern fossil data clarifies origination and extinction of species

Throughout the history of life, new groups of species have flourished at the expense of earlier ones and global biodiversity has varied dramatically over geologic time. A new study shows that completely different factors regulate the rise and fall of species.
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Posted: July 6, 2017, 3:32 pm

Falling sea level caused volcanoes to overflow

During the transition to the last ice age approximately 80,000 years ago global temperature declined, while the carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere remained relatively stable. Scientists have now discovered that a falling sea level may have caused enhanced volcanic activity in the ocean, which can explain the anomaly.
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Posted: July 6, 2017, 3:32 pm

Kinect scan of T. rex skull addresses paleontological mystery

A new system with $150 worth of hardware offers alternative to 3-D scanners that cost 200 times as much, report scientists who have used it on the skull of a T. rex dinosaur.
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Posted: July 5, 2017, 8:45 pm

Sticking your neck out: How did plesiosaurs swim with such long necks?

When dinosaurs ruled the land, plesiosaurs ruled the oceans. Famous for their incredibly long necks -- some of which were up to 7 meters long -- plesiosaurs have remained an evolutionary mystery for hundreds of years. Scientists are now simulating plesiosaur locomotion with 3-D models to understand how they could swim with such long necks.
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Posted: July 5, 2017, 5:29 pm

DNA of early Neanderthal gives timeline for new modern human-related dispersal from Africa

Ancient mitochondrial DNA from the femur of an archaic European hominin is helping resolve the complicated relationship between modern humans and Neanderthals. The genetic data provides a timeline for a proposed migration out of Africa that occurred after the ancestors of Neanderthals arrived in Europe by a lineage more closely related to modern humans.
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Posted: July 5, 2017, 5:29 pm

Why does a Yellowstone microorganism prefer meager rations over rich ones?

A microorganism that thrives in a hot spring draws its nutrients from low-energy sources rather than rich ones -- and scientists can't figure out why.
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Posted: July 5, 2017, 5:29 pm

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