Current Archaeologists News and Events

Current Archaeologists News and Events, Archaeologists News Articles.
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To find the right network model, compare all possible histories
Scientists rarely have the historical data they need to see exactly how nodes in a network became connected. But a new paper in Physical Review Letters offers hope for reconstructing the missing information, using a new method to evaluate the rules that generate network models. (2021-01-25)

African trade routes sketched out by mediaeval beads
The chemical composition of glass beads and their morphological characteristics can reveal where they come from. Archaeologists from the University of Geneva analyzed glass beads found at rural sites in Mali and Senegal from between the 7th and 13th centuries AD. The scientists demonstrate that the glass they are made of probably came from Egypt, the Levantine coast and the Middle East. The results show that international trade linking Africa to Europe and Asia during was connected with local and regional trade. (2020-12-02)

First exhaustive review of fossils recovered from Iberian archaeological sites
The Iberian Peninsula has one of the richest paleontological records in Western Europe. However,''there were generally only scarce indications of the collection and use of fossils at Iberian sites during Prehistory, and thus the documentation of this behaviour presented an anomalous situation compared to other regions of Europe, where numerous studies have been published on this practice. (2020-11-24)

Rare ancient child burial reveals 8,000-year-old secrets of the dead
An 8,000 year old complete child burial has been discovered at the entrance to a cave at Gua Makpan, Alor Island, Indonesia. It's the first such burial found in the region from the early mid-Holocene period. (2020-11-04)

New evidence found of the ritual significance of a classic Maya sweat bath in Guatemala
An unusual offering in an abandoned and unique-looking Maya sweat bath revealed new evidence of the role it played in the community (2020-10-19)

Anglo-Saxon warlord found by detectorists could redraw map of post-Roman Britain
A discovery by a metal detectorist on club outing proved to be a significant burial with the remains of an imposing warlord, along with well-preserved weapons and items. (2020-10-04)

Early admixture with humans led to Y chromosome replacement in late Neanderthals
In one of the first studies to comprehensively analyze Y chromosomes of humans' two closest relatives, Denisovans and Neanderthals, researchers report what prior studies have suggested: early gene flow events between archaic and modern humans led to the eventual replacement of archaic Neanderthal Y chromosomes by introgressed Homo sapiens Y chromosomes. (2020-09-24)

To recreate ancient recipes, check out the vestiges of clay pots
UC Berkeley archaeologists have discovered that unglazed ceramic cookware can retain the residue of not just the last supper cooked, but earlier meals as well, opening a window onto gastronomic practices possibly going back millennia. (2020-09-11)

New dating of Nebra sky disk
Until now the Nebra sky disk was deemed to be from the Early Bronze Age and therefore the world's oldest depiction of the cosmos. Archaeologists from Goethe University Frankfurt and Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich have now reanalysed diverse data on the reconstruction of the discovery site and surrounding circumstances of the find. Their findings are that the disk must be dated in the Iron Age, making it about 1,000 years younger than previously assumed. This makes all previous astronomical interpretations obsolete. (2020-09-03)

Drone survey reveals large earthwork at ancestral Wichita site in Kansas
A Dartmouth-led study using multisensor drones has revealed a large circular earthwork at what may be Etzanoa, an archaeological site near Wichita, Kansas. Archaeologists speculate that the site was visited by a Spanish expedition, led by Juan de Oñate, a controversial conquistador, in 1601. The earthwork may be the remains of a so-called ''council circle,'' as it is similar to several other circular earthworks in the region, according to the study's findings published in American Antiquity. (2020-09-03)

Archaeology: Ceramic cooking pots record history of ancient food practices
Analysing three components of ceramic cooking pots -- charred remains, inner surface residues and lipids absorbed within the ceramic walls -- may help archaeologists uncover detailed timelines of culinary cooking practices used by ancient civilizations. The findings, from a year-long cooking experiment, are published this week in Scientific Reports. (2020-08-27)

Researchers link end of Green Sahara with SE Asia megadrought
In a new study published by Nature Communications, an interdisciplinary team of researchers link the end of the Green Sahara with a previously unknown megadrought which caused mass population shifts in Southeast Asia during the mid-Holocene period. (2020-08-21)

Research links Southeast Asia megadrought to drying in Africa
Physical evidence found in caves in Laos connects the end of the Green Sahara, when once heavily vegetated Northern Africa became a hyper-arid landscape, and a previously unknown megadrought that crippled Southeast Asia 4,000 to 5,000 years ago. Scientists at the University of California, Irvine, University of Pennsylvania, William Paterson University of New Jersey and other international institutions explain how this major climate transformation led to a shift in human settlement patterns in Southeast Asia. (2020-08-21)

Australian Indigenous banana cultivation found to go back over 2,000 years
Archaeologists at The Australian National University have found the earliest evidence of Indigenous communities cultivating bananas in Australia. The evidence of cultivation and plant management dates back 2,145 years and was found at Wagadagam on the tiny island of Mabuyag in the western Torres Strait. The research is led by a First Australian author. His work makes a statement that goes beyond academia. (2020-08-11)

Native American stone tool technology found in Arabia
Stone fluted points dating back some 8,000 to 7,000 years ago, were discovered on archaeological sites in Manayzah, Yemen and Ad-Dahariz, Oman. Until now, the prehistoric technique of fluting had been uncovered only on 13,000 to 10,000-year-old Native American sites. (2020-08-05)

Most of Stonehenge's large boulders share origin in west woods, Wiltshire
Most of the hulking sandstone boulders -- called sarsens - that make up the United Kingdom's famous Stonehenge monument appear to share a common origin 25 kilometers away in West Woods, Wiltshire, according to an analysis of the stones' chemical composition. The findings support the theory that the stones were brought to Stonehenge at around the same time, (2020-07-29)

Rewriting history: New evidence challenges Euro-centric narrative of early colonization
ew research from Washington University in St. Louis provides evidence that Indigenous people continued to live in southeastern US and actively resist European influence for nearly 150 years after the arrival of Spanish explorers in the 1500s. (2020-07-15)

The earliest cat on the Northern Silk Road
Dr. Irina Arzhantseva and Professor Heinrich Haerke from the Centre for Classical and Oriental Archaeology (IKVIA, Faculty of Humanities, HSE University) have been involved in the discovery of the earliest domestic cat yet found in northern Eurasia. (2020-07-14)

New method solves old mystery: Hafnium isotopes clinch origin of high-quality Roman glass
Archaeological glass contains information about the movement of goods and ancient economies, yet the understanding of critical aspects of the ancient glass industry is fragmentary. Until now, it has been challenging to scientifically determine the origin of the colourless and clear glass, which was particularly favoured by the Romans. The Romans distinguished between two types of clear glass: Alexandrian and Levantine. Now researchers have found a way to localize the furnaces of the two types. (2020-07-09)

Aboriginal artifacts reveal first ancient underwater cultural sites in Australia
The first underwater Aboriginal archaeological sites have been discovered off northwest Australia dating back thousands of years ago when the current seabed was dry land. Aboriginal artefacts discovered off the Plibara coast in Western Australia were discovered through a series of archaeological and geophysical surveys in the Dampier Archipelago, as part of the Deep History of Sea Country Project, funded through the Australian Research Council's Discovery Project Scheme. (2020-07-01)

Radiocarbon dating pins date for construction of Uyghur complex to the year 777
Dating archaeological objects precisely is difficult, even when using techniques such as radiocarbon dating. Using a recently developed method, based on the presence of sudden spikes in carbon-14 concentration, scientists at the University of Groningen, together with Russian colleagues, have pinned the date for the construction of an eighth-century complex in southern Siberia to a specific year. This allows archaeologists to finally understand the purpose for building the complex -- and why it was never used. (2020-06-08)

Ancient DNA provides new insights into the early peopling of the Caribbean
According to a new study by an international team of researchers from the Caribbean, Europe and North America, the Caribbean was settled by several successive population dispersals that originated on the American mainland. (2020-06-04)

Largest, oldest Maya monument suggests importance of communal work
A University of Arizona discovery suggests that the Maya civilization developed more rapidly than archaeologists once thought and hints at less social inequality than later periods. (2020-06-03)

Early African Muslims had a halal -- and cosmopolitan diet -- discovery of thousands of ancient animal
Early Muslim communities in Africa ate a cosmopolitan diet as the region became a trading centre for luxury goods, the discovery of thousands of ancient animal bones has shown. (2020-05-26)

Miniature rock art expands horizons
Australian archaeologists have discovered some of the most detailed examples of rare, small-scale rock art in the form of miniature stencils in a rockshelter traditionally owned by the Marra people. The research, published in the journal Antiquity, examined the unusual art found in the Yilbilinji rockshelter at Limmen National Park in the southwest Gulf of Carpentaria region of northern Australia. (2020-05-26)

Aboriginal rock art, frontier conflict and a swastika
A hidden Murray River rockshelter speaks volumes about local Aboriginal and European settlement in the Riverland, with symbols of conflict -- including a swastika symbol -- discovered in Aboriginal rock art. The engravings studied in 188 engravings in a remote South Australian rockshelter are a stark reminder of colonial invasion and the strife brewing in Europe ahead of World War Two, Flinders University archaeologists have revealed. (2020-05-18)

Early humans in China innovated technology to adapt to climate change 1-million years ago
Yang and colleagues examined archaeological evidence and showed the flexibility of early hominins to ecosystem changes 1.1-1.0 million years ago. The view presented in the paper sharply contrasts with traditional arguments that stone tool technologies of China are homogeneous and continuous between 1.6 to 1.0 million years ago. (2020-05-13)

Pofatu: A new database for geochemical 'fingerprints' of artefacts
Due to the improvement and increased use of geochemical fingerprinting techniques during the last 25 years, the archaeological compositional data of stone tools has grown exponentially. The Pofatu Database is a large-scale collaborative project that enables curation and data sharing. The database also provides instrumental details, analytical procedures and reference standards used for calibration purposes or quality control. Thus, Pofatu ensures reproducibility and comparability between provenance studies. (2020-05-13)

During tough times, ancient 'tourists' sought solace in Florida oyster feasts
More than a thousand years ago, people from across the Southeast regularly traveled to a small island on Florida's Gulf Coast to bond over oysters, likely as a means of coping with climate change and social upheaval. (2020-05-01)

Archaeologists verify Florida's Mound Key as location of elusive Spanish fort
Florida and Georgia archaeologists have discovered the location of Fort San Antón de Carlos, home of one of the first Jesuit missions in North America. The Spanish fort was built in 1566 in the capital of the Calusa, the most powerful Native American tribe in the region, on present-day Mound Key in the center of Estero Bay on Florida's Gulf Coast. (2020-04-23)

Amazonian crops domesticated 10,000 years ago
As agriculture emerged in early civilizations, crops were domesticated in four locations around the world -- rice in China; grains and pulses in the Middle East; maize, beans and squash in Mesoamerica; and potatoes and quinoa in the Andes. Now, an international team of researchers have confirmed a fifth domestication area in southwestern Amazonia where manioc, squash and other edibles became garden plants during the early Holocene, starting over 10,000 years ago. (2020-04-08)

Revolutionary new method for dating pottery sheds new light on prehistoric past
A team from University of Bristol developed a new method to date archaeological pottery using fat residues remaining in the pot wall from cooking. The method means prehistoric pottery can be dated with remarkable accuracy, sometimes to the window of a human life span. Pottery found in Shoreditch, London proven to be 5,500 years old and shows the vibrant urban area was once used by established farmers who ate cow, sheep and goat dairy products as a central part of their diet. (2020-04-08)

Mysterious bone circles made from the remains of mammoths reveal clues about Ice Age
Mysterious bone circles made from the remains of dozens of mammoths have revealed clues about how ancient communities survived Europe's ice age. (2020-03-16)

Tang Dynasty noblewoman buried with her donkeys, for the love of polo
A noblewoman from Imperial China enjoyed playing polo on donkeys so much she had her steeds buried with her so she could keep doing it in the afterlife, archaeologists found. This discovery by a team that includes archaeologist Fiona Marshall at Washington University in St. Louis is published March 17 in the journal Antiquity. (2020-03-16)

Sticky tape: A key ingredient for mapping artifact origins
Researchers at the RIKEN Nishina Center for Accelerator-Based Science in Japan have demonstrated that combining a highly sensitive sulfur analysis technique with simple sulfur-free tape is an effective and harmless way to test extremely small samples of vermilion from artifacts that are thousands of years old. The study used this technique to confirm that trade likely existed between Japan's northern island of Hokkaido and the western part of Japan's mainland--a distance of over 1000 miles--more than 3000 years ago. (2020-03-09)

How millets sustained Mongolia's empires
Researchers examined stable isotopes from bone collagen and dental enamel to reconstruct the diets of ancient Mongolians. Findings challenge the popular notion of a completely nomadic prehistoric population, linking grain cultivation with the success of the Xiongnu Empire (c. 200 BCE-150 CE) and showing continual grain consumption during the Mongol Empire of the Khans (c. 1200-1400 CE). (2020-03-03)

Modern technology reveals old secrets about the great, white Maya road
The first lidar study of the 100-kilometer stone highway that connected the ancient cities of Cobá and Yaxuná on the Yucatan Peninsula 13 centuries ago may shed light on the intentions of Lady K'awiil Ajaw, the warrior queen who University of Miami anthropologist Traci Ardren believes commissioned its construction at the turn of the 7th century. (2020-02-24)

Archaeologists receive letter from biblical era
Hebrew University team unearths Canaanite temple at Lachish; find gold artifacts, cultic figurines, and oldest known etching of Hebrew letter 'Samech.' (2020-02-18)

Easter Island society did not collapse prior to European contact, new research shows
Easter Island society did not collapse prior to European contact and its people continued to build its iconic moai statues for much longer than previously believed, according to a team of researchers including faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York. (2020-02-06)

Beach-combing Neanderthals dove for shells
A new study suggests that Neanderthals in what is today Italy may have dived into the Mediterranean Sea to collect clam shells. (2020-01-15)

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