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14 November 2021

At https://phys.org/news/2021-11-siege-ramps-breached-walls-ancient.html … siege ramps and the breached walls of ancient Lachish. A team of archaeologists have reconstructed how the Assyrian army may have built the ramp by using images on a relief of the siege uncovered in the palace of Sennacherib.

At www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-10191425/ … volcanic eruptions may have triggered the collapse of some of China's most powerful dynasties, over the last 2000 years. Volcanoes can cool the climate and disrupt food production. Or that is the thinking. No mention of losing the mandate of the heavens.

The study was undertaken by environmental scientist Chaochao Gao of Zhejiang University, and his team. Abrupt climate change and extreme weather appear to have weakened the dynasties – or that is the interpretation being made. Volcanoes can lead to cool summer weather but by far more important is the migration of the ITCZ, the Intertropical Convergence Zone, which brings rain, leading to weak monsoons.

At https://phys.org/news/2021-11-interdisciplinary-transeurasian-languages-… … interdisciplinary research on what is called Transeurasian languages, have led to the theory that it was the arrival of agriculture, such as growing millet, and later, rice, that led to similarities or ties between disparate languages from Japanese and Korean to Tungusic, Mongolic, and Turkic. Words can be borrowed from one language to another. A bit like English and its borrowing of French from the Normans and Scandinavian words via the Vikings. Is this a game changer without any genetic evidence to back it up? How big a migration of farmers occurred? The research paper is in Nature journal this month.

At www.nps.gov/whsa/learn/nature/fossilized-footprints.htm and www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-02597-1 . The latest research pushes human presence in North America back to 23,000 years ago – smack bang in the middle of the Late Glacial Maximum. Another archaeological discovery, at a cave in Mexico, has placed human occupation back to 30,000 years ago. The rearguard have rejected this but have no choice but to accept the 23k date.

At https://phys.org/news/2021-11-revisited-parramatta-archaeological-reveal… … Parramatta is located in the geographical centre of Sydney in Australia. Redevelopment has led to archaeological reassessment, as a result of pre-development archaeology. They have dug down below the last 200 years, the dating of the European settlement. Parramatta was the breadbasket of early colonists. Now it is full of high rise buildings. However, it also impacted pre European history in the Sydney region, and therefore in Australia as a whole. Currently, human habitation back to 36,000 years ago is uncontested. It is thought humans were in Australia for a long time before that date.

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