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Preview: Brightsurf Science News :: Archaeology News

Archaeology Current Events and Archaeology News from Brightsurf

Archaeology Current Events and Archaeology News Events, Discoveries and Articles from Brightsurf

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Huge genetic diversity among Papuan New Guinean peoples revealed

Thu, 14 Sep 17 00:15:10 -0700

The first large-scale genetic study of people in Papua New Guinea has shown that different groups within the country are genetically highly different from each other. Scientists at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and their colleagues reveal that the people there have remained genetically independent from Europe and Asia for most of the last 50,000 years, and that people from the country's isolated highlands region have been completely independent even until the present day.

An officer and a gentlewoman from the Viking army in Birka

Fri, 08 Sep 17 00:11:20 -0700

War was not an activity exclusive to males in the Viking world. A new study conducted by researchers at Stockholm and Uppsala universities shows that women could be found in the higher ranks at the battlefield.

Mobile women were key to cultural exchange in Stone Age and Bronze Age Europe

Mon, 04 Sep 17 00:11:30 -0700

At the end of the Stone Age and in the early Bronze Age, families were established in a surprising manner in the Lechtal, south of Augsburg, Germany. The majority of women probably came from Bohemia or Central Germany, while men usually remained in the region of their birth. This so-called patrilocal pattern combined with individual female mobility persisted over a period of 800 years during the transition from the Neolithic to the Early Bronze Age.

Research on the meaning of ancient geometric earthworks in southwestern Amazonia

Wed, 30 Aug 17 00:04:10 -0700

Researchers examine pre-colonial geometric earthworks in the southwestern Amazonia from the point of view of indigenous peoples and archaeology. The study shows that the earthworks were once important ritual communication spaces.

'Lost city' used 500 years of soil erosion to benefit crop farming

Mon, 21 Aug 17 00:16:00 -0700

Researchers at the University of York working on a 700-year-old abandoned agricultural site in Tanzania have shown that soil erosion benefited farming practices for some 500 years.

Citrus: From luxury item to cash crop

Fri, 18 Aug 17 00:01:00 -0700

New research from Tel Aviv University reveals that citrons and lemons were status symbols for the ancient Roman ruling elite. It also plots the route and evolution of the citrus trade in the ancient Mediterranean.

Archaeologists uncover ancient trading network in Vietnam

Thu, 17 Aug 17 00:03:20 -0700

A team of archaeologists from The Australian National University has uncovered a vast trading network which operated in Vietnam from around 4,500 years ago up until around 3,000 years ago.

Mystery of 8,500-year-old copper-making event revealed through materials science

Tue, 15 Aug 17 00:13:20 -0700

Stone Age metallurgical 'slag' from Turkey -- once thought to be the earliest known example of copper smelting in western Eurasia -- now re-identified as incidentally fired green copper pigment.

Chaco Canyon petroglyph may represent ancient total eclipse says CU professor

Wed, 09 Aug 17 00:03:10 -0700

As the hullabaloo surrounding the Aug. 21 total eclipse of the sun swells by the day, a University of Colorado Boulder faculty member says a petroglyph in New Mexico's Chaco Canyon may represent a total eclipse that occurred there a thousand years ago.

Ancient pottery reveals insights on Iroquoian population's power in 16th century

Wed, 09 Aug 17 00:10:50 -0700

An innovative study published today in the journal Science Advances demonstrates how decorations on ancient pottery can be used to discover new evidence for how groups interacted across large regions.

Ancient DNA analysis reveals Minoan and Mycenaean origins

Wed, 02 Aug 17 00:11:40 -0700

DNA analysis of archaeological remains has revealed that Ancient Minoans and Mycenaens were genetically similar with both peoples descending from early Neolithic farmers. They likely migrated from Anatolia to Greece and Crete thousands of years before the Bronze Age. Modern Greeks are largely descendants of the Mycenaeans, the study found.The Minoan civilization flourished on Crete beginning in the third millennium B.C.E. and was advanced artistically and technologically. The Minoans were also the first literate people of Europe.

'Invasive' species have been around much longer than believed

Mon, 31 Jul 17 00:00:00 -0700

A new study, Chrysocoma ciliata L. (Asteraceae) in the Lesotho Highlands: an anthropogenically introduced invasive or a niche coloniser?, published in Biological Invasions, confirms that a shrub believed to be an invasive in the eastern Lesotho Highlands has been growing in the region for over 4,000 years.

Algorithms identify the dynamics of prehistoric social networks in the Balkans

Thu, 27 Jul 17 00:08:10 -0700

The pioneering application of modularity analyses in archaeology yields a powerful method for highly accurate mapping of social interaction in the human past.

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

Wed, 26 Jul 17 00:16:10 -0700

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.

Diet of the ancient people of Rapa Nui shows adaptation and resilience not 'ecocide'

Thu, 13 Jul 17 00:01:40 -0700

Research by an international team, led by the University of Bristol, has shed new light on the fate of the ancient people of Rapa Nui (Easter Island).

Breakthrough in dating Viking fortress

Tue, 04 Jul 17 00:08:00 -0700

In 2014 archaeologists from the Museum of South East Denmark and Aarhus University discovered the previously unknown Viking fortress at Borgring south of Copenhagen. Since then the search has been on to uncover the life, function, destruction and, not least, the precise dating of the Viking fortress. Now a new find has produced a breakthrough in the investigation.

3,000-year-old textiles are earliest evidence of chemical dyeing in the Levant

Wed, 28 Jun 17 00:02:40 -0700

Tel Aviv University archaeologists have revealed that cloth samples found in the Israeli desert present the earliest evidence of plant-based textile dyeing in the region. They are estimated to date from the 13th-10th centuries BCE, the era of David and Solomon.

Jerusalem tower younger than thought

Thu, 15 Jun 17 00:09:20 -0700

Gihon Spring, was crucial to the survival of its inhabitants, and archaeologists had uncovered the remains of a massive stone tower built to guard this vital water supply. Based on pottery and other regional findings, the archaeologists had originally assigned it a date of 1,700 BCE. But new research conducted at the Weizmann Institute of Science provides conclusive evidence that the stones at the base of the tower were laid nearly 1,000 years later.

Multispectral imaging reveals ancient Hebrew inscription undetected for over 50 years

Wed, 14 Jun 17 00:13:20 -0700

Using advanced imaging technology, Tel Aviv University researchers have discovered a hitherto invisible inscription on the back of a pottery shard dating from 600 BCE that has been on display at The Israel Museum for more than 50 years.

Moroccan fossils show human ancestors' diet of game

Wed, 07 Jun 17 00:07:20 -0700

New fossil finds from the Jebel Irhoud archaeological site in Morocco do more than push back the origins of our species by 100,000 years. They also reveal what was on the menu for our oldest-known Homo sapiens ancestors 300,000 years ago: Plenty of gazelle.

Geology and biology agree on Pangaea supercontinent breakup dates

Wed, 07 Jun 17 00:02:10 -0700

Scientists at The Australian National University have found that independent estimates from geology and biology agree on the timing of the breakup of the Pangaea supercontinent into today's continents.

Radiocarbon dating of phytolith traces rice domestication to 10,000 years ago

Fri, 02 Jun 17 00:06:00 -0700

The study of phytolith carbon-14 and morphological characteristics, by Prof. LU Houyuan's laboratory at the Institute of Geology and Geophysics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, suggests that rice domestication may have begun at Shangshan in the lower reaches of the Yangtze River in China during the beginning of the Holocene.

Genomics tracks migration from lost empires to modern cities

Sun, 28 May 17 00:08:40 -0700

New genomic tools are enabling researchers to overturn long-held beliefs about the origins of populations. Until recently, assumptions about origins were based on where people were buried, but this does not take into account the migrations that scientists now know took place thousands of years ago.

GIS -- a powerful tool to be used with caution

Thu, 18 May 17 00:13:20 -0700

A recent study, published in Open Archaeology, provides a new perspective on the severe impacts of escalating climate change on the heritage resources of Canadian Arctic. Referring to the application of Geographic Information System analytical methods in assessing the threat of shoreline erosion to archaeological sites, it details steps taken to review the quality of the GIS model in light of a discrepancy with rates observed during actual survey visits.

A portable measuring device to detect optimum ripeness in tomatoes

Tue, 09 May 17 00:00:40 -0700

Tomatoes ripen in various phases in which the colour of the fruit undergoes changes. A piece of research by the UPV/EHU's Department of Analytical Chemistry has used a portable Raman spectrometer, an instrument widely used in other fields such as analyzing works of art, to monitor tomatoes. By using this mobile measuring device that analyses the molecular composition of the fruit, the producer can monitor tomatoes in situ and find out when they have reached their point of optimum ripeness.

A first-ever find in Egypt: A funeral garden known of until now only through

Thu, 04 May 17 00:01:00 -0700

The Djehuty Project, led by research professor, José Manuel Galán, from the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), has discovered a 4,000-year-old funerary garden- the first such garden ever to be found- on the Dra Abu el-Naga hill in Luxor, Egypt. The discovery comes during the 16th year of archaeological excavations which are sponsored this year by Técnicas Reunidas and Indra.

Study could provide first clues about the social lives of extinct human relatives

Wed, 03 May 17 00:09:30 -0700

A new study from The Australian National University (ANU) of the bony head-crests of male gorillas could provide some of the first clues about the social structures of our extinct human relatives, including how they chose their sexual partners.

DNA from extinct humans discovered in cave sediments

Thu, 27 Apr 17 00:04:40 -0700

Researchers have developed a new method to retrieve hominin DNA from cave sediments -- even in the absence of skeletal remains.

Flawed forensic science may be hampering identification of human remains

Thu, 27 Apr 17 00:10:00 -0700

Research from The Australian National University (ANU) has cast doubt on a method used in forensic science to determine whether skeletal remains are of a person who has given birth.

Origins of Indonesian hobbits finally revealed

Fri, 21 Apr 17 00:04:50 -0700

The most comprehensive study on the bones of Homo floresiensis, a species of tiny human discovered on the Indonesian island of Flores in 2003, has found that they most likely evolved from an ancestor in Africa and not from Homo erectus as has been widely believed.

Geography and culture may shape Latin American and Caribbean maize

Wed, 12 Apr 17 00:10:00 -0700

Variations in Latin American and Caribbean maize populations may be linked to anthropological events such as migration and agriculture, according to a study published April 12, 2017 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Claudia Bedoya from the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and colleagues.

In search of the wild fava bean

Sun, 09 Apr 17 00:08:20 -0700

Seeds from a site in Northern Israel are the ancestors of today's fava beans.

New DNA research shows true migration route of early farming in Europe 8,000 years ago

Thu, 06 Apr 17 00:02:10 -0700

New DNA research shows true migration route of early farming in Europe 8,000 years ago, correcting previous theories.

Kent State archaeologist explains innovation of 'fluting' ancient stone weaponry

Tue, 04 Apr 17 00:09:00 -0700

Approximately 13,500 years after nomadic Clovis hunters crossed the frozen land bridge from Asia to North America, researchers are still asking questions and putting together clues as to how they not only survived in a new landscape with unique new challenges but adapted with stone tools and weapons to thrive for thousands of years. Kent State University's Metin Eren, Ph.D., and his colleagues are not only asking these questions but testing their unique new theories.

Legends of the lost reservoirs

Wed, 29 Mar 17 00:03:00 -0700

University of Cincinnati interdisciplinary researchers and global collaborators dig into the past to inspire modern water management strategies that can save time and money and may avoid negative effects on our climate.

The Anthropocene: Scientists respond to criticisms of a new geological epoch

Thu, 23 Mar 17 00:13:50 -0700

'Irreversible' changes to the Earth provide striking evidence of new epoch, University of Leicester experts suggest.

Tiller the Hun? Farmers in Roman Empire converted to Hun lifestyle -- and vice versa

Wed, 22 Mar 17 00:05:10 -0700

New archaeological analysis suggests people of Western Roman Empire switched between Hunnic nomadism and settled farming over a lifetime. Findings may be evidence of tribal encroachment that undermined Roman Empire during 5th century AD, contributing to its fall.

Did humans create the Sahara desert?

Tue, 14 Mar 17 00:03:40 -0700

New research investigating the transition of the Sahara from a lush, green landscape 10,000 years ago to the arid conditions found today, suggests that humans may have played an active role in its desertification.

Lyncean Technologies signs AXT Pty Ltd as representative in Australia and New Zealand

Mon, 13 Mar 17 00:15:30 -0700

Lyncean Technologies, Inc., manufacturer of the Lyncean Compact Light Source (CLS), today announced the signing of AXT Pty Ltd as their exclusive representative in Australia and New Zealand. AXT will be responsible for growing the academic research market for Lyncean as well as providing front line service and operational support for future installations.

Nature: Silk Road evolved as 'grass-routes' movement

Wed, 08 Mar 17 00:10:40 -0800

Nearly 5,000 years ago, long before the vast east-west trade routes of the Great Silk Road were traversed by Marco Polo, the foundations for these trans-Asian interaction networks were being carved by nomads moving herds to lush mountain pastures, suggests new research from Washington University in St. Louis.

Historic cultural records inform scientific perspectives on woodland uses

Wed, 22 Feb 17 00:00:50 -0800

Scientists at the University of York and University College Cork have investigated how cultural records dating back 300 years could help improve understanding of the ways in which science interprets the many uses of woodland areas.

Radiocarbon dating and DNA show ancient Puebloan leadership in the maternal line

Tue, 21 Feb 17 00:13:50 -0800

Discovering who was a leader, or even if leaders existed, from the ruins of archaeological sites is difficult, but now a team of archaeologists and biological anthropologists, using a powerful combination of radiocarbon dating and ancient DNA, have shown that a matrilineal dynasty likely ruled Pueblo Bonito in New Mexico for more than 300 years.

Archaeologists find 12th Dead Sea Scrolls cave

Wed, 08 Feb 17 00:13:30 -0800

Hebrew University archaeologists have found a cave that previously contained Dead Sea scrolls, which were looted in the middle of the 20th Century. Scholars suggest the cave should be numbered as Cave 12, along with the 11 caves previously known to have housed hidden Dead Sea scrolls. 'Finding this additional scroll cave means we can no longer be certain that the original locations assigned to the scrolls that reached the market via the Bedouins are accurate,' said Dr. Oren Gutfeld.

Hundreds of ancient earthworks built in the Amazon

Mon, 06 Feb 17 00:02:20 -0800

The Amazonian rainforest was transformed over 2,000 years ago by ancient people who built hundreds of large, mysterious earthworks.

Baltic hunter-gatherers began farming without influence of migration, ancient DNA suggests

Thu, 02 Feb 17 00:08:00 -0800

Ancient DNA analyses show that -- unlike elsewhere in Europe -- farmers from the Near East did not overtake hunter-gatherer populations in the Baltic. This research suggests the Balto-Slavic branch of the Indo-European language family originated in the Steppe grasslands of the East.

Sciences for art

Fri, 27 Jan 17 00:02:40 -0800

Conservation and preservation of historical monuments as well as of single artworks of our cultural heritage are receiving increasing attention. In the online magazine ChemViews, Austrian scientists take a view on the current technologies used for scientific analysis and documentation. Portable instruments, a combination of noninvasive spectroscopic techniques, and especially designed weathering cells will provide the data needed to develop strategies for better artwork preservation, they propose.

The ancient Indus civilization's adaptation to climate change

Fri, 27 Jan 17 00:01:20 -0800

A new article explores how an ancient culture dealt with variable environments.

Palaeolithic art developed from public galleries towards more private exhibitions

Wed, 25 Jan 17 00:10:40 -0800

Blanca Ochoa, a researcher in the UPV/EHU's department of Geography, Prehistory and Archaeology, proposes analysing the spaces in which the artistic figures of the Palaeolithic are represented to try and deduce the purpose of these expressions. In her study she observed chronological differences in the location of the drawings and engravings, which could indicate that the function and meaning of cave art gradually changed throughout the Upper Palaeolithic.

Structures dating to King Solomon discovered at Tel Aviv University excavation

Tue, 17 Jan 17 00:12:10 -0800

New discoveries at Tel Aviv University's Timna Valley excavation have revealed intact defensive structures and livestock pens that provide insight into the complexity of Iron Age copper production.

Buddhism along the Silk Roads

Wed, 21 Dec 16 00:05:50 -0800

Prof. Dr. Carmen Meinert from Ruhr-Universität Bochum has been awarded a two-million euros Consolidator Grant by the European Research Council (ERC). The researcher at the Center for Religious Studies will spend the next five years investigating how Buddhist localizations were shaped in premodern Central Asian cultures on a regional level.