Current Mesopotamia News and Events

Current Mesopotamia News and Events, Mesopotamia News Articles.
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How malaria parasites withstand a fever's heat
The parasites that cause 200 million cases of malaria each year can withstand feverish temperatures that make their human hosts miserable. Now, a Duke University-led team is beginning to understand how they do it. The researchers have identified a lipid-protein combo that springs into action to gird the parasite's innards against heat shock. Understanding how malaria protects its cells against heat and other onslaughts could lead to new ways to fight tough-to-kill strains, researchers say. (2020-10-05)

New mathematical method shows how climate change led to fall of ancient civilization
A Rochester Institute of Technology researcher developed a mathematical method that shows climate change likely caused the rise and fall of an ancient civilization. In an article recently featured in the journal Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science, Nishant Malik, assistant professor in RIT's School of Mathematical Sciences, outlined the new technique he developed and showed how shifting monsoon patterns led to the demise of the Indus Valley Civilization, a Bronze Age civilization contemporary to Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt. (2020-09-03)

Climate change and the rise of the Roman Empire and the fall of the Ptolemies
The assassination of Julius Caesar on the Ides of March in 44 B.C.E. triggered a 17-year power struggle that ultimately ended the Roman Republic leading to the rise of the Roman Empire. To the south, Egypt, which Cleopatra was attempting to restore as a major power in the Eastern Mediterranean, was shook by Nile flood failures, famine, and disease. A new study reveals the role climate change played in these ancient events. (2020-06-22)

Human mobility and Western Asia's early state-level societies
The regions of Anatolia, the Northern Levant and the Caucasus played important roles in the development of complex social and cultural models during the Chalcolithic and Bronze Age. Through genomic analysis of 110 individuals ranging from 7500 to 3000 years ago, this study sheds light on how human mobility accompanied the spread of ideas and material culture prior to and during the emergence of some of the world's earliest state-level societies. (2020-05-28)

Genomic analysis shows long-term genetic mixing in West Asia before world's first cities
Scientists analyzed DNA data from 110 skeletal remains in West Asia dated 3,000 to 7,500 years ago. The study reveals how a high level of human movement in West Asia during the Neolithic to late Bronze Age not only led to the spread of ideas and material culture but to a more genetically connected society well before the rise of cities, not the other way around, as previously thought. (2020-05-28)

Global cooling event 4,200 years ago spurred rice's evolution, spread across asia
A major global cooling event that occurred 4,200 years ago may have led to the evolution of new rice varieties and the spread of rice into both northern and southern Asia, an international team of researchers has found. (2020-05-15)

Strong winter dust storms may have caused the collapse of the Akkadian Empire
Fossil coral records provide new evidence that frequent winter shamals, or dust storms, and a prolonged cold winter season contributed to the collapse of the ancient Akkadian Empire in Mesopotamia. (2019-10-24)

Private property, not productivity, precipitated Neolithic agricultural revolution
The Neolithic Agricultural Revolution is one of the most thoroughly-studied episodes in prehistory. But a new paper by Sam Bowles and Jung-Kyoo Choi shows that most explanations for it don't agree with the evidence, and offers a new interpretation. (2019-10-11)

The beginnings of trade in northwestern Europe during the Bronze Age
People in England were using balance weights and scales to measure the value of materials as early as the late second and early first millennia BC. This is what Professor Lorenz Rahmstorf, scientist at the University of Göttingen and project manager of the ERC 'Weight and Value' project, has discovered. This showed that there was already expertise in using standard weights and measures in many regions of Europe at that time. The results were published in the journal Antiquity. (2019-08-26)

Ancient genomics pinpoint origin and rapid turnover of cattle in the Fertile Crescent
Ancient DNA has revealed how the prehistory of the Near East's largest domestic animal, the cow, chimes with the emergence of the first complex economies, cities and the rise and fall of the world earliest human empires. (2019-07-11)

Genomic analysis reveals ancient origins of domestic cattle
A new genome-wide analysis by Marta Pereira Verdugo and colleagues uncovers the complex origins of domestic cattle (Bos taurus), demonstrating why it has been difficult to untangle these origins from studies of modern breeds. (2019-07-11)

Ancient feces reveal parasites in 8,000-year-old village of Çatalhöyük
Earliest archaeological evidence of intestinal parasitic worms in the ancient inhabitants of Turkey shows whipworm infected this population of prehistoric farmers. (2019-05-31)

The Caucasus: Complex interplay of genes and cultures
In the Bronze Age, the Caucasus Mountains region was a cultural and genetic contact zone. Here, cultures that originated in Mesopotamia interacted with local hunter-gatherers, Anatolian farmers, and steppe populations from just north of the mountain ranges. Here, pastoralism was developed and technologies such as the wheeled wagon and advanced metal weapons were spread to neighbouring cultures. A new study, examines new genetic evidence in concert with archaeological evidence to paint a more complete picture of the region. (2019-02-04)

Swedes have been brewing beer since the Iron Age, new evidence confirms
Archaeologists at Lund University in Sweden have found carbonised germinated grains showing that malt was produced for beer brewing as early as the Iron Age in the Nordic region. The findings made in Uppåkra in southern Sweden indicate a large-scale production of beer, possibly for feasting and trade. (2018-06-20)

Genetic limits threaten chickpeas, a globally critical food
Scientists have discovered an extreme lack of genetic diversity and other threats to the future adaptability of domestic chickpeas, the primary source of protein of 20 percent of the world's people. But they also collected wild relatives of chickpeas in Turkey that hold great promise as a source of new genes for traits like drought-resistance, resistance to pod-boring beetles, and heat tolerance. (2018-02-13)

It's not how you play the game, but how the dice were made
Over time, dice used in playing games have changed in shape and size and evolved with considerations about fairness, chance and probability. (2018-01-30)

Exploring environmental and technological effects on culture evolution at different spatial scales
The trajectory and dynamics of ancient social evolution in human history is a widely concerned issue. Based on the comprehensive analysis of case studies on the rise and fall of ancient civilizations in relation to climate change and technological innovations, researchers in Lanzhou discuss environmental and technological effects on culture evolution at different spatial scales, as well as possible mechanism behind it. This research has been published in the updating special topic entitled (2017-12-29)

Scientists show how Himalayan rivers influenced ancient Indus civilization settlements
Scientists have discovered that much of the Indus civilization developed around an extinct river, challenging ideas about how urbanization in ancient cultures developed. (2017-11-28)

Professor publishes archaeological research on social inequality
The origins of social inequality might lie in the remnants of ancient Eurasia's agricultural societies, according to an article recently published in the major science journal Nature. (2017-11-17)

Excavation in Northern Iraq: Sasanian loom discovered
A team of Frankfurt-based archaeologists has returned from the Iraqi-Kurdish province of Sulaymaniyah with new findings. The discovery of a loom from the 5th to 6th century AD in particular caused a stir. (2017-11-06)

Sensational grave find in Cypriote Bronze Age city
An archaeological expedition from the University of Gothenburg has discovered one of the richest graves from the Late Bronze Age ever found on the island of Cyprus. The grave and its offering pit, located adjacent the Bronze Age city of Hala Sultan Tekke, contained many fantastic gold objects such as a diadem, pearls, earrings and Egyptian scarabs, as well as more than 100 richly ornamented ceramic vessels. The objects, which originate from several adjacent cultures, confirm the central role of Cyprus in long-distance trade. (2016-08-10)

Hunter-gatherers experimented with farming in Turkey before migrating to Europe
Clusters of hunter-gatherers spent much of the late Stone Age working out the basics of farming on the fertile lands of Turkey before taking this knowledge to Europe. In an analysis of ancient genomes published in Current Biology, researchers report that two waves of early European settlers belonged to the same gene pool as farmers in Turkey -- genealogy that can be traced back to some of the first people to cultivate crops outside of Mesopotamia. (2016-08-04)

A federal origin of Stone Age farming
The transition from hunter-gatherer to sedentary farming 10,000 years ago occurred in multiple neighboring but genetically distinct populations according to research by an international team including UCL. (2016-07-14)

Iraqi Kurdistan site reveals evolution towards the first cities of Mesopotamia
A Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) campaign at the site of Gird Lashkir, in Iraq, reveals the evolution from the first farming societies to the consolidation of the first cities of Mesopotamia. The director of the research, UAB professor Miquel Molist, qualifies the area as an archaeological site of exceptional potential, given that there is no other similar site with so many occupancies in the area. (2016-06-21)

The Lancet Infectious Diseases: Oldest ever schistosomiasis egg found may be first proof of early human technology exacerbating disease burden
The discovery of a schistosomiasis parasite egg in a 6200-year-old grave at a prehistoric town by the Euphrates river in Syria may be the first evidence that agricultural irrigation systems in the Middle East contributed to disease burden, according to new Correspondence published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases. (2014-06-19)

Oldest use of flowers in grave lining
Radiocarbon dating at the Weizmann Institute determines the age of flowery graves. A new accelerator will help solve long-standing archaeological mysteries. (2013-07-10)

Research finds crisis in Syria has Mesopotamian precedent
Research carried out at the University of Sheffield has revealed intriguing parallels between modern day and Bronze-Age Syria as the Mesopotamian region underwent urban decline, government collapse, and drought. (2012-12-18)

Most of the harmful mutations in people arose in the past 5,000 to 10,000 years
A study of the age of more than 1 million single-letter variations in the human DNA code reveals that most of these mutations are of recent origin, evolutionarily speaking. They arose as a result of explosive population growth, which provides more chances for new mutations to appear in offspring. Many of these mutations are harmful, some have no effect, and others are beneficial now or may provide an adaptive advantage for future generations. (2012-11-28)

Man and nature 3200 BC to the Middle Ages
New postgraduate research group to study early concepts of Man and Nature from 3200 BC to the Middle Ages. (2012-11-27)

Tomb of Maya queen K'abel discovered in Guatemala
Archaeologists in Guatemala have discovered the tomb of Lady K'abel, a seventh-century Maya Holy Snake Lord considered one of the great queens of Classic Maya civilization. The tomb was discovered during excavations of the royal Maya city of El Perú-Waka' in northwestern Petén, Guatemala, by a team of archaeologists led by Washington University in St. Louis' David Freidel, co-director of the expedition. (2012-10-03)

Climate change led to collapse of ancient Indus civilization, study finds
A new study combining the latest archaeological evidence with state-of-the-art geoscience technologies provides evidence that climate change was a key ingredient in the collapse of the great Indus or Harappan civilization almost 4000 years ago. The study also resolves a long-standing debate over the source and fate of the Sarasvati, the sacred river of Hindu mythology. (2012-05-28)

Rethinking the social structure of ancient Eurasian nomads: Current Anthropology research
Prehistoric Eurasian nomads are commonly perceived as horse riding bandits who utilized their mobility and military skill to antagonize ancient civilizations such as the Chinese, Persians, and Greeks. Although some historical accounts may support this view, a new article by Dr. Michael Frachetti (Washington University, St. Louis) illustrates a considerably different image of prehistoric pastoralist societies and their impact on world civilizations more than 5000 years ago. (2012-02-24)

The fermented cereal beverage of the Sumerians may not have been beer
4000-year-old cuneiform writings from Mesopotamia tell us little about the brewing techniques used at the time. (2012-01-17)

What is war good for? Sparking civilization, suggest UCLA archaeology findings from Peru
Raiding, triggered by political conflict in the 5th century BC, likely shaped the development of the first settlement that would classify as a civilization in the Titicaca basin in southern Peru, a suggests a new UCLA study. (2011-07-25)

Huge ancient language dictionary finished after 90 years
An ambitious project to identify, explain and provide citations for the words written in cuneiform on clay tablets and carved in stone by Babylonians, Assyrians and others in Mesopotamia between 2500 B.C. and A.D. 100 has been completed after 90 years of labor, the University of Chicago announced June 5. (2011-06-05)

Archaeologists investigate Iraqi marshes for origins of Mesopotamian cities
Three National Science Foundation-supported researchers recently undertook the first non-Iraqi archaeological investigation of the Tigris-Euphrates delta in nearly 20 years. (2011-03-31)

Play was important -- even 4,000 years ago
Play was a central element of people's lives as far back as 4,000 years ago. This has been revealed by an archaeology thesis from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, which investigates the social significance of the phenomenon of play and games in the Bronze Age Indus Valley in present-day Pakistan. (2011-02-07)

Secrets of an ancient Tel Aviv fortress revealed
New archeological research from the Tel Qudadi archaeological dig near Tel Aviv suggests an ancient link between the Israeli city and the Greek island of Lesbos -- a find producing new insights into alliances and trade routes in the ancient world. (2010-12-28)

Paradise lost -- and found
Researchers at Tel Aviv University have uncovered an ancient royal garden at the site of Ramat Rachel near Jerusalem, and are leading the first full-scale excavation of this type of archaeological site anywhere in the pre-Hellenistic Levant. The dig is an unparalleled look into the structure and function of ancient gardens. (2010-10-28)

Archaeologists uncover land before wheel; site untouched for 6,000 years
A team of archaeologists from the University of Chicago's Oriental Institute, along with a team of Syrian colleagues, is uncovering new clues about a prehistoric society that formed the foundation of urban life in the Middle East prior to invention of the wheel. (2010-04-06)

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