Sadly we have to report that our Web Editor, John, has had an accident on his bicycle. He has injured his right foot and also aggravated his long-term spinal condition, and his doctors have told him not to use computers for a few weeks. He is not a happy bunny at all …
Therefore the various News pages and the Skywatching Calendar will not be updated until he has fully recovered – doctors orders. This is effective immediately following today’s updates, and we apologise to all our regular visitors and our research associatess for the inconvenience.
Please keep sending in the stories and links as usual. They will all be archived and eventually John will put them up on the news pages when things get back to normal – Polly.
[UPDATE JUNE 16 2015 – I am trying to keep the news pages updated while John is recovering. Thank you everyone who has sent in news stories, and the many good wishes for John – Polly]
[UPDATE JUNE 24 2015 – Took John away for a few days to aid recovery as he wasn’t at all well. Apologies for any inconvenience and the delayed updates – Polly]
[UPDATE JUNE 26 2015 – John had the bandages taken off yesterday and is having his first day without the walking stick and had a short stroll in the garden today. Thanks to everyone who have sent in news stories and links recently. I am trying to work my way through them all, and those I can put up will not necessarily be in date order. Sorry for that… – Polly]
“Was it a massive migration? Or was it rather a slow and persistent seeping of people, items and ideas that laid the foundation for the demographic map of Europe and Central Asia that we see today?
The Bronze Age (about 5,000 – 3,000 years ago) was a period with large cultural upheavals. But how these upheavals came about has remained shrouded in mystery.
Now, a recent study published in the journal Nature has shed new light on the question.
Says study author Morten Allentoft, Assistant Professor from the Centre for GeoGenetics at the Natural History Museum of Denmark, University of Copenhagen, ‘both archaeologists and linguists have had theories about how cultures and languages have spread in our part of the world.’
‘We geneticists have now collaborated with them to publish an explanation based on a record amount of DNA-analyses of skeletons from the Bronze Age.’
By analyzing the genome sequence data from samples taken from the ancient skeletal remains of 101 individuals across a broad geographic area, the researchers were able to determine a genetic ‘map’ of past human movements that ultimately contributed to the genetic makeup of people across Eurasia today.”
“Ancient monuments left by mankind present an unsolved enigma: why do humanoid statues from many prehistoric sites- from those found at Göbekli Tepe in Turkey to those at Easter Island-all share similar postures?
The signature and symbolic stances displayed on the incredible statues from locations around the world raise questions about what caused humanity to collectively repeat a ‘rebirth’ theme across great distances and time.
As a result of scientific research, Göbekli Tepe temples have been dated to 9600 BC at the earliest – in archaeological language it’s regarded as Pre-pottery Neolithic A.
Arms can be seen along both sides of the pillar, and hands come together on the omphalos, or navel. This standing position might be considered special and perhaps sacred.
Sumerian goddess Inanna was characterized in a standing position just like as seen on the center pillars of Göbekli Tepe.
Likewise, the huge statues of Easter Islands were constructed in this style of sacred standing position, with hands on omphalos.
According to researchers this posture symbolizes birth or rebirth.”
“After nearly 30 years, a team of archaeologists will be returning once again to the site of So na Cacana on the island of Menorca, Balearic Islands, Spain, to renew investigations of a prehistoric sanctuary complex that archaeologists believe represented the remains of the Talaiotic Culture, a prehistoric culture that flourished, particularly on the islands of Majorca and Menorca, during the 1st Millennium BCE.
‘Between 1982 and 1987, archaeological excavations made by the Museum of Menorca found two sanctuaries [at So na Cacana] with taula and other buildings, probably religious, where there were only scattered remains half hidden by the vegetation’, stated the project principle investigators.
The ancient settlement remains are located about six km away from the municipality of Alaior. ”
[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]
Part of the Antikythera Mechanism
Antikythera Mechanism Research Project
2000-year-old analog computer recreated
More Antikythera Mechanism Information & Commentary:
“Professor Alexander Thom was a foremost scientist and engineer of the last century.
Once Chair of Engineering Science at Brasenose College, Oxford, following an already distinguished career in both the academic and industrial world, during the War, he had been Principal Scientific Officer for the design of the High Speed Wind Tunnel at the Royal Aircraft Establishment, Farnborough, and had assisted Sir Barnes Wallace in the design of the famous ‘bouncing bomb’ of Dambuster’s fame.
From 1934, Thom became interested in the megalithic culture that had erected the stone circles, rows and other monuments in Neolithic and Bronze Age Britain.
He began to accurately survey these sites, and in 1967 published “Megalithic Sites in Britain” (Oxford) where he claimed the builders had been skilled surveyors and astronomers, and had used an identical and accurate unit of length to mark out their constructions throughout Britain, a length he called the Megalithic yard (2.72 feet or 0.829m).
Thom also discovered that they were using a geometry based on right-angled ‘Pythagorean’ triangles, triangles whose sides were whole numbers of this same megalithic yard, or subdivisions or multiples of it.
He also proposed that they were observing both the sun and moon using precision alignments to identified sites or natural features on a distant horizon. He even showed that they could have predicted eclipses.
The book was described by archaeologist Professor Richard Atkinson as ‘a well-constructed time-bomb dropped through the letterbox of archaeology’, and it caused a huge rumpus within the profession.
In effect Thom had demonstrated that there was a huge missing component in our understanding of the Megalithic culture, one that archaeologists had totally missed, and that our model of prehistory was flawed and hopelessly inadequate.”