The Roundup #77

While certain US Presidents carry on trying to take us back to the Stone Age in the derogatory sense, it’s good to know there are finds being unearthed around the world to reinforce the complexity of human civilization and our relationship to it. Here’s this week’s roundup. Enjoy!

From Archaeology.org:

Genetic testing on five individuals from Rapa Nui (also known as Easter Island) suggest that the islanders had contact with native peoples from South America earlier than previously believed.

Sweden’s violent history is growing more intriguing with the discovery of gold coins minted during the reign of Roman Emperor Valentinian III on an island off the country’s south coast.

Textiles from another site in Sweden suggest that the Vikings’ burial practices were influenced by interactions with the Arab world.

If you’ve never heard of Luwian, go look it up. This translation, and its accompanying reference to the Sea Peoples, could be game-changing.

More DNA evidence points to a strange conclusion; that the Beothuk peoples of Newfoundland and Labrador were not related to any of the other First Nations in the area. The full article in The Globe and Mail can be found here.

From the Smithsonian:

Painting over history is nothing new, as this restored painting from the 17th century shows.

The canoe dredged up during the catastrophic hurricane season this year dates to between 1640 and 1680, according to recent tests.

From the CBC:

As the water levels of the Thompson River in BC continue to drop, pre-contact artifacts are being discovered all along its banks.

Critically rare Ojibway ponies are preparing for the auction block in Manitoba.

From the University of Victoria:

A legendary settlement on the coast of BC has likely been identified by archaeologists from the Hakai Institute and the University of Victoria.

From Archaeology UK:

Well preserved evidence from a broch in Scotland may shed light on an Iron Age destruction event.

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The Roundup #72

It’s been a week of finding things, including some rather joy-inducing Canadian things. Here’s this week’s roundup. Enjoy!

From the CBC:

Two of the nine prototypes of the Avro Arrow, Canada’s first and only supersonic interceptor, have been discovered at the bottom of Lake Ontario. Kraken Sonar is looking to retrieve all nine models to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the first test flight for a program abruptly scrapped by Ottawa in 1959.

Two ships – a wooden freighter and a steel-hulled steamer that sank 20 years apart – have been discovered in Lake Huron.

From Archaeology.org:

Another well-preserved shipwreck, this one in Stockholm, Sweden, may be the Scepter, archaeologists say.

23,000 year old artifacts from an inland site have been discovered in Brazil.

Fragments of small votive objects have been discovered in Lebanon, leading archaeologists to believe that the Phoenicians may have manufactured disposable figurines of divinities.

Neapolis, possibly the largest centre for the production of the infamous Roman fish sauce called garum has been discovered at an underwater site off the coast of Tunisia.

From the Smithsonian:

The earliest known Latin commentaries on the Bible, lost until 2012, have been translated into English and are now available online.

Palimpsests containing not only a variety of manuscript texts but also a variety of languages, some obscure and defunct, have been discovered during research at St. Catherine’s monastery near Mount Sinai.

The Roundup #54

Just a few days until the American election and the anti-Trump/anti-Clinton rhetoric is beyond exhausting. As Obama says: “Don’t boo. Vote.” And as one of the mother’s in Titanic said, “It’ll all be over soon.”

So without further ado, here’s this week’s roundup. Enjoy!

From Archaeology.org:

Osteologists report that they may have found the remains of Amelia Earhart (again, some more) after examining the records of bones (rather than the bones themselves, which have been lost) discovered on a remote island in Kiribati.

Evidence from caves in Ethiopia suggest a more ubiquitous use of ochre throughout the Middle Stone Age.

A remarkably well-preserved shipwreck has been discovered in shallow waters off the Aland Islands in Finland.

Ostrich eggshell beads of incredible craftsmanship have been discovered in Siberia.

A Phoenician shipwreck off the coast of Malta has yielded more information on local and international trade in the area.

A massive find: a hippodrome mosaic has been discovered in Cyprus, one of less than 10 on the subject so far unearthed.

The Roundup #53

What a week it’s been! Glad to be back to thinking about stuff that matters, like this week’s latest roundup. Enjoy!

From Archaeology.org:

Evidence of a fresco from the high Middle Ages has been discovered under the Great Basilica in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

Along the Black Sea coast of Bulgaria, archaeologists have identified more than 40 shipwrecks in the area and are using laser scanning and digital imaging to create 3D versions of each ship.

Evidence of fire making from approximately 800,000 years ago has been discovered in Spain, the first such evidence of this nature found outside Africa.

An inn from the Byzantine period has been discovered in the ancient city of Assos in Turkey. Archaeological excavations are ongoing.

Now this is very much an ex-parrot, as the Monty Python boys would say, discovered in Mexico as part of an Archaic Period burial.

And a Celtic cross from the Orkney Islands, carrying the figure of a dragon, likely dates to the start of the Christian conversions in the are.

From the Smithsonian:

A remarkable find – a fossilized dinosaur brain has been discovered by an amateur fossil hunter in Bexhill, Sussex.

From Little Things:

Alba amicorum, or ‘friend books’, popular in the 16th century are the subject of Sophie Reinders’ PhD dissertation.

The Roundup #50

“Going to post every week, don’t worry”. Yeah, about that…

My last post – sans trumpet – was on September 3rd. Eep! Now, to be fair, I had a sibling get married and the requisite wrangling of relatives to contend with. Oh, and the shit show that is the American presidential elections. But, beyond that, I was just lazy. Cut to Thanksgiving weekend, enough time on my hands, and the soundtrack from the 2015 film Legend, and I’m settled in to update this thing I call a blog.

So, without further ado – although there does seem to be a fair amount of ado, doesn’t there? – I offer up the September and early October roundup. Enjoy!

From Archaeology.org:

Close on the heels of the discovery of the HMS Erebus in March 2015, archaeologists have also discovered Franklin’s second ship, the HMS Terror in the Arctic Ocean. Here’s the Government of Canada’s press release on the discovery.

Human remains have been identified at the site where the Antikythera Mechanism was discovered.

As I must have mentioned before, I’m absolutely fascinated by neolithic figurines, and this discovery from Turkey is no exception.

Murder! Murder most foul! Looks like Otzi the Ice Man met a less than natural end, depending on how you philosophize it, as evidence of his murder comes to light.

In one of the more unusual discoveries of the last month, Roman coins from the fourth century AD have been found at a medieval castle in southern Japan. The Smithsonian has also reported on this, as has the mighty New York Times.

From The Guardian:

In a direct assault on silly people like Niall Ferguson and ideas about the west being the centre of the universe (get a compass, and a telescope, dude, seriously), the world’s oldest library in Morocco has reopened after decades of unrest and a major restoration of the library itself.

Digital reconstruction of burnt scrolls have the Biblical world all atwitter. This technology has also been used effectively on scrolls from Pompeii and Herculaneum, as I understand it.

The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded this week to the President of Colombia for brokering a peace deal (which was narrowly voted down) to end the country’s 50 year long civil war. Before that announcement was made, there was much rumble about the Prize going to a group of civilians in war-torn Syria. For more on this, see here, here, and the Netflix documentary called, simply, “The White Helmets”.

From the American Schools of Oriental Research:

A new documentary is forthcoming about Gertrude Bell, a contemporary of T.E. Lawrence and of Winston Churchill, who wrote a white paper on the Civil Administration of Mesopotamia in 1920.

From the CBC:

Archaeologists have succeeded in raising the Maud, the famous ship of Roald Amundsen, from its grave in Cambridge Bay after it sank in 1930. She will be on her way back home to Norway in due course.

The Roundup #48

The 2016 Olympics in Rio are well underway and people are discovering all kinds of sports they didn’t know they enjoyed watching, like rugby sevens apparently. And, in spite of the volcanic heat in Toronto, things are happening all over the world. My favourite of the week  has to be this note in the Washington Post about a massive mosaic depicting chariot racing discovered in Cyprus.

So, without further ado, here’s this week’s roundup. Enjoy!

From Archaeology.org:

Massive structures have been found near Risan, Montenegro dating to the third century BCE. Risan is the capital of ancient Illyria.

Healthy living isn’t a new fad, as the discovery of a plunge pool built in the 19th century inside a 12th century abbey proves.

Evidence from horses that died in the Middle Ages suggests that the elusive ‘ambling’ gait originated in Medieval England.

Fragments of Roman fresco discovered in Israel may have been part of a public building constructed in the second century CE.

Ongoing archaeological work around the site of Tintagel in Cornwall is providing new information on the date of the first settlements there.

From the Smithsonian:

The oldest known processed gold has been discovered in Bulgaria.

Evidence of the mysterious snake-head dynasty have been discovered in Belize.

From the Independent:

At first blush, the news that a Portuguese sailing ship has been discovered in a Namibian desert might sound outlandish (sorry, bad pun), but this is apparently not that unusual: the latest is the Bom Jesus, that set sail in 1533 and vanished with its crew and cargo on its way to India.

From the Guardian:

A unique find during the excavation of a burial site in Serbia: magic spells inscribed on gold leaf found with skeletons as amulets.

From History Today:

A feature on the largest pyramid in the world – and it’s not in Egypt, but in Mexico: the Great Pyramid of Cholula.

The Roundup #44

On this historic day, as France battles the tiny nation of Iceland for a berth in the Euro Cup semi-finals, I may find it hard to concentrate while watching this match – particularly since France has just gone up 2-0 in the first 20 minutes! – but I’ll do my best.

There was a #tbt article this week on refereeing in gladiatorial combats. And Mary Beard spoke to the Times Literary Supplement about the EU referendum.

With that, and without further ado, here is this week’s roundup. Enjoy!

From Archaeology.org:

Arson experts are ever in demand as archaeologists in Denmark are currently investigating whether a Viking palace was deliberately set alight nearly a thousand years ago.

An example of why I love archaeologists: having found a hunk of rock in southern Greece, archaeologists suggest it is part of the throne of the kings of Mycenae, because of course.

At the site of Hippos, near the Sea of Galilee, archaeologists believe they may have identified a sanctuary of Pan, following the discovery of a bronze mask of the god nearby.

Artefacts are popping up all over the place, most recently on a beach in Israel, where a lifeguard discovered a 12th century Crusader-era oil lamp during his regular rounds.

A medieval weapons manufacturing site has been discovered near Lake Baikal in Siberia.

In Hungary, work is ongoing at the site of the Mosque of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, where it is possible that the remains of his son may be discovered in the mosque next door.

It’s entirely possible that the partial remains of the Buddha have been discovered in Nanjing.

Ancient languages never cease being tricky, as attempts to translate this stone stele are proving.

From the Smithsonian:

If you’ve ever wanted to know what the Confederate “Rebel Yell” sounded like, here you go.

The schooner Royal Albert has been discovered in Lake Ontario after she sank in 1868.