Ancient history news

How to test the dating system

Revisionists have issues with C14 as it contradicts their ideas on revising downwards, ancient history. In the November issue of Current Archaeology 380, we have a one page piece under the title of Science Notes [a regular feature on a variety of subjects but usually from a science angle]. The idea this time is combining C14 dating with aDNA data. It promises to yield some interesting results if it ever becomes operational. Will the radiocarbon people allow the genetic types to interfere with their carefully constructed calibration curve?

Submerged Past Worlds

Interesting article from The Conservation - but see ... and although some of the evidence produced is very interesting it is unfortunately an article inspired by the idea of modern global warming and rising sea levels. This leads to some strange interpretation of the legendary material - even the stone alignments of Britanny which are said to originate as an attempt to stop sea levels rising by appealing to the gods.

The Griffin

William sent in the link ... geomythology has produced some very interesting parallels between, shall we say, geology and legends. However, it can also be an excuse to stretch the imagination. In this piece from Marshall University we begin with the Greek legend of the Titans in which Zeus and the gods vanquish the older generation of immortals, as recorded by Hesiod. It goes on to suggest it had something to do with the eruption of the Thera volcano in the Aegean.

Genetics in South America

At ... Australasian genetic influence was widespread in South America, much more than previously thought. That is the claim. Not only is it apparent in the Amazon rainforest zone but has been discerned across a wide spectrum of South America, including Patagonia for example. These peoples early on inhabited both South Asia [including India] and probably SE Asia as well as the Melanisian islands [such as the Solomons], New Guinea and Australia. How did they get to the Americas?

David Lappin on dating the MK

New Chronology groups threw up a new paper by David Lappin, 'Observations of the Moon, Sirius, and Solar Eclipses: dating the MK and NK in Egypt (Part One)' ... See ... David Lappin is described as an astronomer and does not appear to be the historian of the same name. It involves the dating of MK pharaohs Senuseret III to 1690-1679 and Amenemhat III to 1679-1633BC.

Geoffrey of Monmouth

At ... which is an interview with Miles Russell, the author of a revised look at Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia (the History of the Kings of Britain) which was reviewed in SIS Review a couple of years ago. The interview is a brief account of what is in his book. At the end of the piece we are told the article was first published in the December of 2014 issue of BBC History magazine.

Ancient Plague

Jovan Kesic on 30th March 2020, posted a reply to the idea that plague was rampant in the time of Akhnaton and Tutankhamon, suggesting there might have been plague in Egypt even earlier, during the reign of Amenophis III, father of Akhnaton and otherwise considered the apogee of the Egyptian empire period. There was an unprecedented number of statues of Sekhmet erected, sometimes avenues of them, installed at palaces and temples throughout the whole land of Egypt. Sekhmet was a goddess of destruction, associated with flaming fire (according to Ramses III around 150 years later).

Exodus Routes

A fascinating discussion on the route of Exodus at the Eric Aitchison email thread. Anyone wanting to join in send an email to the contact address on this web site.

Mesha stele

At ... a new reading of the Moabite Stone by a team led by Finkelstein, Na-aman, and Romer, using high resolution photography (imaging) seems to read somewhat different to earlier attempts at translation. The problem is that the stone was broken up and the text is damaged. The previous transliteration of the text claimed it mentioned Beth Dwd (the House of David) but this is now under dispute. Mesha was a contemporary of Jehoram of Israel, against whom he claims to have rebelled.

Byzantine Setback

At ... ancient rubbish mounds reveal a 6th century AD episode of climate change affecting a Byzantine town site in what is now Israeli territory. The rubbish, or trash mounds, were found outside the settlement of Elusa and a little digging revealed they formed by discarded material from the town, in a way suggesting an organised form of collection and deposit. They also found that the town had fallen on hard times - but what caused it. They suggest it was due to the plunge in temperatures after AD536 (sometimes known as the Late Antique Little Ice Age).