Newfound pieces of human skull from “the Cave of the Monkeys” in Laos are the earliest skeletal evidence yet that humans once had an ancient, rapid migration to Asia.
Anatomically modern humans first arose about 200,000 years ago in Africa. When and how our lineage then dispersed out of Africa has long proven controversial.
Archaeological evidence and genetic data suggest that modern humans rapidly migrated out of Africa and into Southeast Asia by at least 60,000 years ago. However, complicating this notion is the notable absence of fossil evidence for modern human occupation in mainland Southeast Asia, likely because those bones do not survive well in the warm, tropical region.
Now a partial skull from Tam Pa Ling, “the Cave of the Monkeys” in northern Laos helps fill in this mysterious gap in the fossil record. Read more.
A fractured skull and a thigh bone hacked in half, along with axes, spears, clubs and shields confirm that the bog at Alken Enge in Denmark was the site of violent conflict.
‘It’s clear that this must have been a quite far-reaching and dramatic event that must have had profound effect on the society of the time,’ explains Project Manager Mads Kähler Holst, professor of archaeology at Aarhus University.
For almost two months now, Dr Holst and a team of fifteen archaeologists and geologists have been working to excavate the remains of a large army that was sacrificed at the site around the time of the birth of Christ. The skeletal remains of hundreds of warriors lie buried in the Alken Enge wetlands near Lake Mossø in East Jutland, Denmark.
The remains will be exhumed from the excavation site over the coming days. Then an international team of researchers will attempt to discover who these warriors were and where they came from by performing detailed analyses of the remains. Read more.
The skull seemed a daunting thing, amid the trove of worldly antiquities, fine jewelry, rare gems and ancient fossils. It was an austere war relic, and for more than half a century it loomed in the vast collection of Franklin’s Ruby City Gem and Mineral museum.
From temple to temple, crossing the tip of the skull, grim words were written in black.
“Made in Japan. Tried in the Solomons and Found Wanting.”
The words were, supposedly, written by a U.S. Marine gunner C.N. Baumand, signed 1942. The hand-drawn mark of the U.S. Marine symbol adorned the center of the message.
But last year, after decades of being showcased as an artifact in the establishment’s inventory, Ruby City proprietors were asked in an email to remove the item by the Japanese Consulate.
An anonymous woman from South Carolina contacted the Japanese Embassy after seeing the skull, alerting them of the possible find. Read more.
The Actun Tunichil Muknal cave or ATM - for short, may be the most prized and treasured Mayan site in Belize - and that’s because of the spectacular skeletal remains of 15 individuals that can be found there.
They are estimated to be over a thousand years old - and the most precious is the so called Crystal Maiden, the skeletal remains of a young woman.
Not far from Belmopan, it is a popular tourist destination, but a couple weeks ago, during one of the regular tours, one of the tourists got a little careless around one of the skeletons. He dropped his camera, fracturing one of the thousand year old skulls.
No, it wasn’t on the famous crystal maiden - but it is still a very serious issue, and today we spoke to Director of the Institute of Archaeology Jaime Awe who told us how serious it is, and how they plan to prevent this from happening again. Read more.
ScienceDaily — A 33,000-year-old dog skull unearthed in a Siberian mountain cave presents some of the oldest known evidence of dog domestication and, together with an equally ancient find in a cave in Belgium, indicates that modern dogs may be descended from multiple ancestors.
If you think a Chihuahua doesn’t have much in common with a Rottweiler, you might be on to something.
An ancient dog skull, preserved in a cave in the Altai Mountains of Siberia for 33,000 years, presents some of the oldest known evidence of dog domestication and, together with equally ancient dog remains from a cave in Belgium, indicates that domestication of dogs may have occurred repeatedly in different geographic locations rather than with a single domestication event.
In other words, man’s best friends may have originated from more than one ancient ancestor, contrary to what some DNA evidence previously has indicated. Read more.
PORT ANGELES — The Lower Elwha Klallam tribe plans to rebury a skull found on a beach near the mouth of the Elwha River.
Tribal Chairwoman Frances Charles said the skull was found Monday afternoon by tribal members.
It has been placed in a cedar box pending reburial.
Bill White, tribal archeologist, said the skull belonged to a set of remains repatriated from the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture in Seattle in 1980 and buried near the river mouth.
It was apparently unearthed through erosion, he said.
The four partial skeletons reclaimed from the museum were removed in 1920 by University of Washington archeologists working at the river’s mouth.
White said the skull is in good shape, though it is missing its lower jaw.
It’s unclear how old it is.
“It’s in pretty good condition considering that it actually has been buried twice,” White said.
He said the box it was last buried in was found partially exposed a few yards away. (source)
THE SKELETON of a young man killed 1,000 years ago by an iron arrowhead found in his skull has been unearthed by archaeologists in east Galway.
The shallow grave with the man’s body was discovered by a farmer during recent quarrying work near Newcastle village.
During further examination, the iron arrowhead which claimed his life was retrieved from inside his skull.
Traces of an underground passage dating from the ninth century have also been identified in the same section of quarry face in the townland of Tisaxon near Newcastle, according to archaeologist Martin Fitzpatrick of Arch Consultancy Ltd.
Mr Fitzpatrick’s team was called in after the find was reported to the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. Archaeological work was co- funded by that department and the Department of the Environment. Read more.
A healed fracture discovered on an ancient skull from China may be the oldest documented evidence of violence between humans, a study has shown.
The individual, who lived 150,000-200,000 years ago, suffered blunt force trauma to the right temple - possibly from being hit with a projectile.
But the ancient hunter-gatherer - whose sex is unclear - survived to tell the tale: the injury was completely healed by the time of the person’s death.
"There are older cases of bumps and bruises - and cases of trauma," said co-author Erik Trinkaus from Washington University in St Louis, US.
"But this is the first one I’m aware of where the most likely interpretation is getting whooped by someone else - to put it bluntly."
The skull was unearthed at a cave near Maba, southern China, in 1958. Before it was buried, a large rodent - probably a porcupine - gnawed on the bone, removing a significant portion of the face. Read more.