Archaeology news

Cheese in Croatia

Aty https://phys.org/print455346704.html ... fatty residue on pottery from the Dalmation coast of Croatia has revealed the presence of fermented dairy products - soft cheeses and yoghurt. They datge back 7200 years ago.

3000-2300BC Kenya

At https://phys.org/print453971146.html ... more evidence that migrations of people coincide with major low growth tree ring events. The Lothagum Pillar Site is near Lake Turkana in Kenya, and was built and used between 3000 and 2300BC. This is the pyramid age. It was constructed and used by new comers who brought with them a pastoral economy (sheep, goats and cattle) into what had always been a region dominated by hunter gatherers. Lothogum pillar site was a communal cemetery. Megaliths, stone circles, and cairns flank the 30m high platform.

Discovering Sodom

The book, 'Discovering the City of Sodom' is now listed as a number 1 best seller on Amazon. The author's are Steve Collins and Latayne C Scott. It is published by Howard Books ( a subdivision of Simon and Schuster) : 2013. I purchased my copy a couple of years ago and was impressed by the claims made in it - more or less blowing away the idea Babh ed-Dhra could have been Sodom. The Kikkar region is full of ruin mounds - much like most of the Near East. It is the roundish plain where the river Jordan meets the Dead Sea (in a delta formation).

Dating Thera Eruption

At https://popular-archaeology.com/article/dating-the-ancient-minoan-erupti... ... courtesy of the University of Arizona (dendrochronology unit). An attempt has been made to resolve discrepancies between archaeological and radiocarbon methods of dating the eruption of the Thera volcano by tying up in knots the timeline of ancient Egypt, Crete, Greece, Turkey and the Levant.

Catalhoyuk

We have further evidence of upheaval and climate change around 6200BC. The world suddenly cooled leading to a period of drier summers (and presumably colder winters) across much of the northern hemisphere. Early farming communities must have been impacted, we are told, but nothing was known about how they coped with change. The conditions were very much like a short dryas episode - lasting 200+ years. Hence, scientists decided to try and find out by looking at the ruins of the city of Catalhoyuk in central Turkey.

Laziness Extinction

From the edge of credulity comes this offering - laziness helped lead to the extinction of Homo erectus (see www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-08/anu-lhl080918.php ... or is this a bad press release. Researchers at the Australian National University claim Homo erectus went extinct, in part, out of laziness. This is based on archaeological findings from the Early Stone Age. Basically, the claim is they failed to advance tool techniques - which remained pretty basic. In fact, it is mainly random stones that represent all we know of Homo erectus culture.

Submerged Mesolithic sites

At www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-08/uoh-aft080718.php ... archaeologists have been searching lakes in SE Finland looking for submerged Mesolithic period sites from the early Holocene period. There are echoes here of the Mesolithic remains on the bottom of the North Sea and under the cliffs of the Solent. During early Holocene the water levels in lakes were much lower than today - across Scandinavia. Later, water levels rose as a result of uneven land uplift.

Medieval Ivory

At https://popular-archaeology.com/article/lost-norse-of-greenland-ivory-tr... ... courtesy of the University of Cambridge. The Viking colonies on Greenland were major settlements by the 12th century and Greenland even had its own bishop. However, later, by early 15th century, the Norse had vanished - leaving behind their ruined houses and farms. At first climate change was blamed as colder weather and sea ice around Iceland made it difficult to cope with sea voyages back and forth to Scandinavia.

Psalms

At www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/ancient-cultures/ancient-near-eastern-... ... which refers to an article in Biblical Aarchaeology Review, 'Egyptian Papyrus Sheds New Light on Jewish History' ... (July/August 2018 issue BAR). Papyrus Amherst 63 is written in cursive Egyptian demotic script but also combines this with Aramaic. It has only recently been translated and it seems to be a forerunner of Psalm 20 - and two other psamls not in the Bible.