February 9, 2016

More fermenting fishies

Filed under: Uncategorized — acagle @ 7:54 pm

Archaeologists Unearth Earliest Evidence of Fish Fermentation

“The archaeological site of Norje Sunnansund is dated to around 9,600 – 8,600 years before present and is located in south-eastern Sweden, on the shores of the ancient Lake Vesan, next to a 2-km long outlet leading to the Baltic basin,” Dr. Boethius explained.

“We’d never seen a site like this with so many well preserved fish bones, so it was amazing to find,” he added.

The archaeologists also uncovered a long pit surrounded by small stake holes and completely filled with fish bones.

I downloaded the paper but haven’t read it yet so I don’t know how they determined the fish were actually fermented — chemical residues or whatever. I’ll post it temporarily later on so y’all can have a look. For Educational Purposes Only™, obviously.

On Wisconsin! Yeah!

Filed under: Uncategorized — acagle @ 7:50 pm

Bronze Age burial near Stonehenge discovered by badger

Oh wait. . . . . .

February 1, 2016

Yes, climate changes

Filed under: Uncategorized — acagle @ 8:06 pm

Ancient humans dispersed through Arabia during greener times

Traditional theories depicted groups of early modern humans first dispersing out of northeastern Africa north and east through the Levant and then northward into present-day Europe and through northern routes into India and then the Far East. Additional dispersals took them along routes hopping the coasts of Arabia and then coastal across India, then further northward and eastward. These models of early human dispersal avoided the Arabian interior, as few could imagine humans making their way directly and deeply into this desert no-man’s land.
But remote sensing technology, including satellite imagery, has now placed Arabia squarely on the map of early human dispersal paradigms. Recent studies using this new technology have reported ancient systems of lakes (‘paleolakes’) and rivers—green zones—deep within the Arabian desert regions as much as 100,000 or more years ago. Archaeological investigations at some of the ancient lakeshore sites have yielded human stone tools, some of them dated back even earlier than 100,000 years ago.

I link this mostly to show (again) how what we often see today as inhospitable wasteland may have been fairly green and habitable at many times in the past. Much of the Sahara was fairly green in various parts of the Holocene and we can find abundant occupations surrounding seasonal or even permanent lakes in what is now exceedingly dry desert.

Bones bones, dem dry bones

Filed under: Bodies, bodies everywhere! — acagle @ 8:01 pm

Archaeologists Discover a Neolithic Burial Ritual Like No Other

During excavations at Shkārat Msaied, in southern Jordan, a strange burial site was unearthed revealing a ritual unlike any the archaeologists had previously encountered. After the dead were buried and the bodies had decomposed to the point only their skeletons remained; the bones were removed from their grave, the skeletons dismantled and then bones of similar types – and from similar age groups – from multiple skeletons were combined and reburied together.

This isn’t actually all that unusual, bodies were often left to decompose and then the bones gathered up and placed elsewhere, often combined with others.

Footprints in the sand field

Filed under: Uncategorized — acagle @ 7:55 pm

Oldest Human Footprints in the Southwest Discovered at Tucson Construction Site

The barefoot tracks are distinct enough that the movements of specific individuals can be followed across the 15-meter-square field that’s been uncovered, Arnit said.

In one case, a set of deep, large prints shows that a heavy adult male trod diagonally across the field, stopped to do some work on an earthen berm, or perhaps to open a weir to let in water, and then took a different path across the field and over the ditch.

Another set of prints seems to have been made by an infant or toddler. And one print has a dog print inside it, likely made by a farmer being followed by his or her canine companion.

Apparently the place flooded with fine sediments shortly after they were put there. Rare but not unknown.

January 26, 2016

Bodies, bodies everywhere!

Filed under: Cemeteries, Public Health — acagle @ 4:29 pm

Blackburn archaeological survey: Bodies of 800 young children foundT

he bodies of about 800 children aged under six have been unearthed by archaeologists ahead of the construction of a road in Lancashire.
They were among 1,967 bodies exhumed at St Peter’s Burial Ground, which opened in 1821 in Blackburn.
The large number of children found is being put down to a lack of good sanitation and medicines leading to a high mortality rate.
Many of them would have died from infections, the archaeologists believe.

Actually, the kids ought to show abundant evidence of the sorts of chronic diseases that affect (and kill) children, such as malnutrition and vitamin deficiencies. Those may not be the proximate causes of death (usually infections) but they are contributing factors.

January 25, 2016

But it’s a cool name

Filed under: Uncategorized — acagle @ 8:05 pm

Honduras leader proclaims archaeology bonanza but ‘lost city’ doubts linger

“The whole enterprise strikes me as a boondoggle,” archaeologist Geoffrey McCafferty said. “This is not terra incognita, but has been subject to previous scientific investigation.”

The University of Calgary professor, currently doing research in neighboring Nicaragua, noted that there are hundreds of similar sites in the region, most from around 1000 to 1500 AD and built by non-Maya people. But that the artifacts shown so far are not unusual, McCafferty said: “If some archaeological information comes from it, terrific. But this is not going to rewrite history.”

I do vaguely recall linking to this earlier.

They say it’s Mosquitia but we really know. . . .it’s the Hovitos.

Liquid hot mmmagma.

Filed under: Uncategorized — acagle @ 7:57 pm

‘Cave of forgotten dreams’ may hold earliest painting of volcanic eruption

Fearsome animals such as woolly rhinoceroses, cave lions and bears dominate Chauvet’s imagery. But one of its innermost galleries — named after a giant deer species, Megaloceros, that is depicted there — also contains a series of mysterious spray-shaped drawings, partly covered by the Megaloceros painting. A nearby gallery holds similar spray imagery, as does a wall near the cave’s original entrance, but researchers have not determined what the images represent.

The depictions are unique to Chauvet, notes Sebastien Nomade, a geoscientist at the University of Paris-Saclay in Gif-Sur-Yvette, France, who led the study. The Bas-Vivarais volcanic field, a well-known site containing more than a dozen extinct volcanoes, lies just 35 kilometres from the cave, but only eruptions that happened before humans occupied Chauvet had been dated, Nomade says.

I admit to being kind of Meh on this.

January 20, 2016

Blogging update

Filed under: Blogging update — acagle @ 8:45 pm

Pardon the lack of posts. I’ve been spending quite a bit of time attempting to avoid driving 45 minutes to stand in the rain and watch people chip out 7″ of asphalt around manholes. Cuz, you know, probably no mammoth tusks in them.

Nevertheless, I did just buy a new pair of earplugs for a sort of construction monitoring I have never.ever.done.before.

Pictures at 11.

A.M.

Probably Friday.

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January 18, 2016

Bodies, bodies, everywhere!

Filed under: Forensic archaeology, Mummies — acagle @ 8:25 pm

Nine of ‘em and all had violent ends: NON-DESTRUCTIVE DOCUMENTATION OF TRAUMA IN HUMAN MUMMIFIED REMAINS FROM THE GOBI DESERT

Abstract: The total number of individuals in this series is nine. This includes: three adults, one adolescent, two children and three infants. Two of the adults have some muscle tissue but no internal organs while the third adult has some desiccated organs present. The adolescent has some soft tissue and with vestiges of a perineum. All three infants have essentially all soft tissue and organs. One female has displacement of the pubic symphysis and pitting of the preauricular sulcus consistent with childbirth. This individual also revealed perimortem fractures of the ilia near the sacroiliac joints. Seven out of nine individuals show clear evidence of strangulation.

There’s a bit more to the abstract. There’s not a lot of information on the context, however, so we don’t really know if this is in some sort of religious area or what. But, you know, not a happy time.

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