– Terrestrial Archaeology, Marine Archaeology & Astro-Archaeology – News Headlines Archive – June 2011 – new archaeological discoveries on land and underwater – with emphasis on the ancient sciences reflected in astro-archaeology and archaeoastronomy from new discoveries revealing its practice in ancient societies under ancient skies
The events of July 16th – 22nd 1994, when the remnants of a fragmenting comet, P/Shoemaker-Levy 9, bombarded the
surface of Jupiter causing fireballs many times the size of our own planet, were an abrupt wake-up call even for those
who were aware of them. The historical sciences generally, and archæology in particular, have collectively painted
a picture of the past as if our planet ‘stands alone in empty space’. Nothing could be further from reality. Our resilient planet exists in a solar system that has had a very dynamic history over the past 20,000 years or so and it is only from this wider solar system perspective that the true history of human civilisation can ever
be fully understood. Therefore, The Morien Institute archive contains information from many disciplines
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“Hours before he died, “Ötzi” the Iceman gorged on the fatty meat of a wild goat, according to a new analysis of the famous mummy’s stomach contents.
The frozen body of the Copper Age hunter was discovered in 1991 in the Alps of northern Italy, where he died some 5,000 years ago.
The circumstances surrounding Ötzi’s death are not fully known, but the most popular theory-based in part on the discovery of an arrowhead in his back-is that he was murdered by other hunters while fleeing through the mountains.
Scientists previously analyzed the contents of Ötzi’s lower intestine and determined that he ate a meal of grains along with possibly cooked red deer and goat meat up to 30 hours before his death.
But attempts using an endoscopic tool to sample Ötzi’s stomach were unsuccessful.”
“Mexican archaeologists have found a new ballplayer monolith dating from between 900 A.D. and 1000 A.D at an archaeological site in the north-central state of Zacatecas, the National Anthropology and History Institute, or INAH, said.
The pre-Columbian sculpture was excavated from a depth of 1.5 meters (5 feet), the INAH said in a statement, noting that another sculpture depicting a ballplayer was located at the end of last year at the same complex, known as El Teul.
Experts say the two pieces may evoke the “divine twins” mentioned in the Popol Vuh, the sacred book of the Mayas.”
“South Americans helped colonise Easter Island centuries before Europeans reached it.
Clear genetic evidence has, for the first time, given support to elements of this controversial theory showing that while the remote island was mostly colonised from the west, there was also some influx of people from the Americas.
Easter Island is the easternmost island of Polynesia, the scattering of islands that stretches across the Pacific.
It is also one of the most remote inhabited islands in the world.”
“The worldwide spread of ancient humans has long been depicted as flowing out of Africa, but tantalizing new evidence suggests it may have been a two-way street.
A long-studied archaeological site in a mountainous region between Europe and Asia was occupied by early humans as long as 1.85 million years ago, much earlier than the previous estimate of 1.7 million years ago, researchers report in Tuesday’s edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Early human Homo erectus is known to have occupied the site at Dmanisi later.
Discovering stone tools and materials from a much earlier date raises the possibility that Homo erectus evolved in Eurasia and might have migrated back to Africa, the researchers said – though much study is needed to confirm that idea.”
“An archeological find in Hafnir on the Reykjanes peninsula (close to Keflavík Airport) may indicate that some men had started to come to Iceland before the year 874 AD, the year that has traditionally been considered the first year Nordic men came to Iceland to stay.
Archeologist dr. Bjarni F. Einarsson says that research at Hafnir indicate ruins of a cabin (Icelandic: Skáli) built well before the traditional year of origin of settlement.”
“Ancient Egyptians may have been exposed to air pollution way back when, according to new evidence of particulates in the lungs of 15 mummies, including noblemen and priests.
Particulates, tiny microscopic particles that irritate the lungs, have been linked to a wide array of modern-day illnesses, including heart disease, lung ailments and cancer. The particulates are typically linked to post-industrial activities, such as fossil-fuel burning.
But after hearing of reports of such particulates being found in mummy tissue, Roger Montgomerie, a doctoral student at the KNH Centre for Biomedical Egyptology at the University of Manchester, decided to take a closer look at mummified lung tissue. His work represents the first attempt to identify and study particulates in multiple Egyptian mummies.
The 15 mummified lungs he’s examined so far all showed particulates and the levels of them are not much below what he’d expect in modern-day lungs.
In the world of Egyptology, where well-preserved lung tissue is rare, and permission to examine it is rarer still, 15 is a significant sample, Montgomerie said.”
[In October 1900, Captain Dimitrious Kondos was leading a team of sponge divers near the the island of Antikythera off the coast of Greece. They noticed a shipwreck about 180 feet below the surface and began to investigate. Amongst the artifacts that they brought up was a coral-encrusted piece of metal that later archaeologists found was some sort of gear wheel.
The rest of the artifacts, along with the shape of the boat, suggested a date around 2000 years ago, which made the find one of the most anomalous that had ever been recovered from the Greek seas. It became known as The Antikythera Mechanism.
In 2006 the journal “Nature” published a letter, and another paper about the mechanism was published in 2008, detailing the findings of Prof. Mike G. Edmunds of Cardiff University. Using high-resolution X-ray tomography to study the fragments of the anomalous Antikythera Mechanism, they found that it was in fact a bronze mechanical analog computer that could be used to calculate the astronomical positions and various cycles of the Moon – as seen from the Earth: – Ed]
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