Ancient Colony News

Ancient Colony News

  • Sarmatian Kurgan Discovered in Russia
    on May 17, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    NIKOLSKOYE, RUSSIA—A farmer who discovered a kurgan on his property in southwestern Russia alerted archaeologist Georgiy Stukalov of the Astrakhan State Museum and his team, according to a Live Science report. Their excavation revealed that the kurgan had been looted in antiquity, but still contained three human skeletons, a horse skull, a harness, weapons, gold jewelry, and a bronze cauldron. The three individuals are thought to have been buried in wooden coffins some 2,500 years ago and […]

  • Rock Art in Australia May Depict 19th-Century British Ship
    on May 17, 2019 at 10:11 pm

    PERTH, AUSTRALIA—Mirage News reports that an image of an early nineteenth-century British naval ship has been found scratched into a boulder on an island in the Dampier Archipelago, off the coast of Western Australia. Peter Veth of the University of Western Australia and rangers from the Murujuga Aboriginal Corporation Land and Sea Unit found the rock art during a survey of the area in 2017. The image is thought to depict HMC Mermaid, a cutter captained by Phillip Parker King during his […]

  • DNA Extracted From Sweden’s Prehistoric “Chewing Gum”
    on May 17, 2019 at 9:48 pm

    STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN—According to a Cosmos Magazine report, scientists have recovered DNA from pieces of birch bark chewed into sticky pitch by toolmaking hunters and fishers some 10,000 years ago. Archaeologists Per Persson and Mikael Manninen of the University of Oslo found the chewed bits of “gum” at a Mesolithic campsite on Sweden’s west coast, and asked Natalija Kashuba, then a researcher at Oslo’s Museum of Cultural History, to check them for genetic material. […]

  • Earliest evidence of the cooking and eating of starch
    on May 17, 2019 at 3:51 pm

    New discoveries made at the Klasies River Cave in South Africa's southern Cape, where charred food remains from hearths were found, provide the first archaeological evidence that anatomically modern humans were roasting and eating plant starches, such as those from tubers and rhizomes, as early as 120,000 years ago. […]

  • Museum volunteers discover new species of extinct heron at North Florida fossil site
    on May 17, 2019 at 3:51 pm

    When the bones of an ancient heron were unearthed at a North Florida fossil site, the find wasn't made by researchers but by two Florida Museum of Natural History volunteers. A previously unknown genus and species, the heron has been named Taphophoyx hodgei. […]

  • Museum volunteers discover new species of extinct heron at North Florida fossil site
    on May 17, 2019 at 2:20 pm

    When the bones of an ancient heron were unearthed at a North Florida fossil site, the find wasn't made by researchers but by two Florida Museum of Natural History volunteers. […]

  • A 'high-heeled' dinosaur that walked on its tiptoes
    on May 17, 2019 at 11:39 am

    A 24-tonne dinosaur may have walked in a 'high-heeled' fashion, according to University of Queensland research. […]

  • Tooth Study Suggests Earlier Neanderthal-Modern Human Split
    on May 16, 2019 at 11:23 pm

    LONDON, ENGLAND—According to a Science News report, Neanderthals and modern humans split from a common ancestor more than 800,000 years ago, or significantly earlier than previously thought. Paleoanthropologist Aida Gómez-Robles of University College London calculated the rate of changes in tooth shape for eight ancient hominid species, and then examined 430,000-year-old Neanderthal teeth recovered from Sima de los Huesos, a site in Spain. Based upon the steady rate of change of […]

  • New Dates for Florida’s Ancient, Underwater Burial Site
    on May 16, 2019 at 11:09 pm

    SARASOTA, FLORIDA—The Herald Tribune reports that a Native American burial ground located off Florida’s Manasota Key is about 8,000 years old, or some 1,000 years older than previously thought. Ryan Duggins of the Bureau of Archaeological Research for the Florida Department of State said the site, which was discovered in 2016, was once a shallow, freshwater burial pond that was used for about 1,000 years before it was innundated by the rising waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Surveys in […]

  • Altar Dedicated to Nemesis Uncovered in Mytilene
    on May 16, 2019 at 10:57 pm

    LESBOS, GREECE—According to The Greek Reporter, a temple dedicated to Nemesis, a goddess who enacted retribution against those guilty of foolish pride, was discovered in an entrance to the ancient theater in Mytilene, a port city on the Greek island of Lesbos. The temple is thought to date to the first century A.D., as is a later construction phase of the theater, which had room for at least 10,000 attendants. Pavlos Triantafyllides of the Lesvos Ephorate said the temple, which was […]

  • Archaeological discovery upends a piece of Barbados history
    on May 16, 2019 at 4:14 pm

    Which came first, the pigs or the pioneers? In Barbados, that has been a historical mystery ever since the first English colonists arrived on the island in 1627 to encounter what they thought was a herd of wild European pigs. […]

  • New research reveals what was on the menu for medieval peasants
    on May 16, 2019 at 2:13 pm

    Scientists from the University of Bristol have uncovered, for the first time, definitive evidence that determines what types of food medieval peasants ate and how they managed their animals. […]

  • Analysis of the Palaeolithic diet shows no social divisions in food consumption
    on May 16, 2019 at 1:59 pm

    Biochemical analysis of human remains has become a key feature in our understanding of past peoples. Ancient DNA and stable isotope analysis are now considered primary sources of information in the study of the geographic mobility of populations, their genetic affinities, and their diets. […]

  • Newly discovered fossil footprints force paleontologists to rethink ancient desert inhabitants
    on May 16, 2019 at 1:17 pm

    An international team of paleontologists has united to study important fossil footprints recently discovered in a remote location within Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona. A large sandstone boulder contains several exceptionally well-preserved trackways of primitive tetrapods (four-footed animals) which inhabited an ancient desert environment. The 280-million-year-old fossil tracks date to almost the beginning of the Permian Period, prior to the appearance of the earliest dinosaurs. […]

  • Texas A&M student identifies unique 5-million-year-old rhino species
    on May 16, 2019 at 12:39 pm

    Rhinoceros don't roam the prairies of Texas today, and some might not even know they once roamed the Great Plains. But one Texas A&M University student knows about rhinos: she's identified unique specimens from fossilized remains found in the mountains of Tennessee dating back almost 5 million years. […]

  • Notorious astrology doctors' 400-year-old case notes transcribed and released online
    on May 16, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    Simon Forman and his protégé Richard Napier were infamous in early 17th-century England for their apparent ability to diagnose and even cure all kinds of ailments – from bewitchment to the "bloody flux" – by consulting the planets and stars. […]

  • More mysterious jars of the dead unearthed in Laos
    on May 16, 2019 at 12:28 pm

    ANU Archaeologists have discovered 15 new sites in Laos containing more than one hundred 1000-year-old massive stone jars possibly used for the dead. […]

  • From mother to daughter, Tunisia potters pass on ancestral know-how
    on May 16, 2019 at 5:58 am

    With bucket and spade in hand, Sabiha Ayari from Sejnane in northern Tunisia is among the women keeping alive an ancient tradition of creating pottery with all-natural materials. […]

  • Paleolithic Footprints Studied in Italian Cave
    on May 15, 2019 at 9:29 pm

    JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA—A team of researchers led by Marco Romano of the University of the Witwatersrand used laser scans, sediment analysis, geochemistry, archaeobotany, and 3-D modeling to analyze 180 footprints discovered in northern Italy’s Grotta della Bàsura in the 1950s, according to a Live Science report. The evidence suggests that some 14,000 years ago, a group of two adults, one preteen, and two children—aged six and three—entered the cave barefoot […]

  • Romans May Have Repaired Roads with Molten Iron
    on May 15, 2019 at 9:26 pm

    AMHERST, MASSACHUSETTS—Live Science reports that Eric Poehler of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, independent researcher Juliana van Roggen, and Benjamin Crowther of the University of Texas at Austin suggest iron droplets, spatters, and stains found on Pompeii’s streets are evidence of ancient road repairs. Over decades, the repeated passage of carts on the city’s stone-paved streets eroded away ruts and holes that made travel difficult. The researchers said complete […]

  • Ancient fish ponds in the Bolivian savanna supported human settlement
    on May 15, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    A network of fish ponds supported a permanent human settlement in the seasonal drylands of Bolivia more than one thousand years ago, according to a new study published May 15, 2019 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Gabriela Prestes-Carneiro of Federal University of Western Para, Brazil, and colleagues. The study is the first to document the full range of fish species likely kept in these constructed ponds, and provides new insights into how humans modified the savannah environment to cope […]

  • Neanderthals and modern humans diverged at least 800,000 years ago
    on May 15, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    Neanderthals and modern humans diverged at least 800,000 years ago, substantially earlier than indicated by most DNA-based estimates, according to new research by a UCL academic. […]

  • Quantum physicists shining new light on cave art
    on May 15, 2019 at 1:26 pm

    Leslie Van Gelder, a well-known American-born archeologist has been working with Dr. Harald Schwefel, and other physicists at Otago University to develop a lamp that mimics the flickering torch light that paleolithic cave artists worked by many thousands of years ago. The lamps will help Leslie and other archeologists reveal intimate details of these ancient people. […]

  • Chewing gums reveal the oldest Scandinavian human DNA
    on May 15, 2019 at 12:54 pm

    The first humans who settled in Scandinavia more than 10,000 years ago left their DNA behind in ancient chewing gums, which are masticated lumps made from birch bark pitch. […]

  • Oldest Scandinavian human DNA found in ancient chewing gum
    on May 15, 2019 at 11:14 am

    The first humans who settled in Scandinavia more than 10,000 years ago left their DNA behind in ancient chewing gum, masticated lumps made from birch bark pitch. This is shown in a new study conducted at Stockholm University and published in Communications Biology. […]

  • Tooth fossils fill 6-million-year-old gap in primate evolution
    on May 15, 2019 at 6:53 am

    Researchers have used fossilized teeth found near Lake Turkana in northwest Kenya to identify a new monkey species—a discovery that helps fill a 6-million-year gap in primate evolution. […]

  • Four Families Detected in Late Neolithic Burial in Poland
    on May 14, 2019 at 10:44 pm

    AARHUS, DENMARK—Live Science reports that the remains of 15 people were found in a 5,000-year-old multiple burial during construction of a sewerage system in southern Poland. Niels Nørkjær Johannsen of Aarhus University said the people had been brutally murdered with blows to the head, but buried carefully with ceramic vessels, flint tools, and amber and bone ornaments. Genetic analysis of the skeletal remains indicates that siblings had been placed together and next to a […]

  • Han Dynasty Cemetery Found in Central China
    on May 14, 2019 at 10:35 pm

    ZHENGZHOU, CHINA—Xinhua reports that 160 tombs dating to the Han Dynasty (202 B.C.–A.D. 220) were discovered in Zhengzhou, a city in central China’s Henan Province. Not many artifacts dating to the Han Dynasty have been found during previous excavations in the city, but more than 1,000 objects, including bronzes, ironware, pottery, and coins, have been recovered from the tombs. “Not far from the tombs is an ancient town, which may prove that the people buried here were […]

  • Low Water Levels Reveal Riverboat Artifacts in Canada
    on May 14, 2019 at 10:14 pm

    WHITEHORSE, CANADA—CBC News reports that low water levels in the Yukon River in northwest Canada have revealed a collection of historic artifacts, including nails, wooden logs and planks, and iron fixtures from sternwheel paddleboats. Yukon government archaeologist Ty Heffner said the vessels were built in warehouses and wharves stationed along the river. Some of the paddleboats burned and sank in the river as well, he explained. “Like, there’s a log cradle here, or a crib, […]

  • Jomon Woman’s Genome Decoded in Japan
    on May 14, 2019 at 9:46 pm

    TOKYO, JAPAN—Analysis of the genome of a woman who was buried on Japan’s northern island of Rebunto during the Jomon Period, some 3,800 years ago, revealed similarities to the genomes of people who live in the Arctic, according to a report in The Asahi Shimbun. Scientists led by biological anthropologist Hideaki Kanzawa of Japan’s National Museum of Nature and History extracted DNA from one of the Jomon woman’s molars, and found that she likely had light brown eyes, […]

  • Traces of crawling in Italian cave give clues to ancient humans' social behavior
    on May 14, 2019 at 2:43 pm

    Evidence of crawling in an Italian cave system sheds new light on how late Stone Age humans behaved as a group, especially when exploring new grounds, says a study published today in eLife. […]

  • Traces of crawling in Italian cave give clues to ancient humans' social behavior
    on May 14, 2019 at 2:40 pm

    Using multiple methods of analysis, researchers have identified the movements of a group of humans as they explored an Italian cave system during the late Stone Age. […]

  • Scientists unearth 'most bird-like' dinosaur ever found
    on May 14, 2019 at 2:00 pm

    Researchers in Germany have unearthed a new species of flying dinosaur that flapped its wings like a raven and could hold vital clues as to how modern-day birds evolved from their reptilian ancestors. […]



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