In The News

Welcome to our "In the News" page, featuring summaries of Internet news, relevant to Catastrophism and Ancient History.

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18 Aug 2018
Laziness Extinction

From the edge of credulity comes this offering - laziness helped lead to the extinction of Homo erectus (see ... 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.

18 Aug 2018
K/T boundary event again

This subject was sent in by several people including Jovan and William but Robert has gone straight to the source of the sauce in an article at ... the controversy over the K/T boundary event in which both sides have had an acrimonious relationship since the Alvarez theory was adopted as mainstream science. That is the gist of the article - but is there a political angle the magazine is trying to push? As I don't read The Atlantic I have no idea.

18 Aug 2018
Water vapour and ice crystals

At ... a strange event - earth's upper atmosphere is creating glowing clouds.

16 Aug 2018
Easter Island Again

Sent in by William. At ... a new investigation into Easter Island (2300 miles off the coast of Chile). This is where society is supposed to have imploded as a result of over exploitation of natural resources. A new article in the Journal of Pacific Archaeology begs to differ. They say the Jared Diamond theory is over stated as evidence from the carving of the stone heads and their erection appears to have been a joint effort - indicating mutual appreciation of different roles in society.

16 Aug 2018
Early IPCC reports

The Canadian climate scientist, now retired, Dr Timothy Ball, has a guest post at ... which discusses differences in the IPCC reports of 1990 and 1995 - which is going back a bit - but then he has been involved in the global warming debate for a long time (as a working climate scientist as well as a retired denier of global warming).

16 Aug 2018

At ... 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.

16 Aug 2018
Medieval Ivory

At ... 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.

16 Aug 2018
Submerged Mesolithic sites

At ... 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.

13 Aug 2018

In Chris Catling's 'Sherds' column in Current Archaeology (Aug/Sept 2018) he makes a reference to a recent discovery at Tintagel in Cornwall. This is the name of Budic found inscribed on a slate window ledge that appears to have an affinity with the name of Boudicca, This is reminiscent of a tombstone found in Roman Cirencester back in 2015 - 'to the shades of Bodicaeia my wife who lived 27 years'.

13 Aug 2018
Quiet Sunday

At ... on a quiet Sunday two astronomers in Australia came across a supermassive black hole. It is so big it can chomp up a mass equivalent to our Sun every two days. They found a bright point in the sky, later defined as a high redshift quasar. How they got from that to the hungry monster is not clear from the press release but we may visualise a certain amount of assumption.