Archive for the ‘Archaeology’ Category

The Secret Chambers of King Tut’s Tomb

June 4, 2018

The Secret Chambers of King Tut's Tomb

Remember when Egypt experts were “90 percent positive” that there’s a secret hiding place in King Tut’s tomb, maybe Nefertiti’s burial chamber?

Oops. A third radar scan conclusively shows there are no additional chambers behind its walls.

More:

“In King Tut’s Tomb, Hope For Hidden Chambers Is Crushed By Science,” Vanessa Romo, NPR

“There’s No Secret Chamber Behind King Tut’s Tomb, Investigation Concludes,” George Dvorsky, Gizmodo

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Image by Mike Licht (with apologies to Nicolas Reeves). Download copies here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Richard III’s Parking Lot

December 26, 2017

Richard III's Parking Lot

In 2013, Richard Plantagenet of the House of York, better-known as King Richard III, was discovered under a parking lot in Leicester, England, where he had been since 1485. He was quite dead, so authorities made no attempt to collect 500-years-worth of parking fees.

The scruffy lot, site of Greyfriar’s monastery when Richard III entered long-term parking, was recently declared a national historic site. It’s convenient to the King Richard III Visitor Centre, which notes: “Despite King Richard III being known as the car park king, there is no parking available at the Visitor Centre.” Park at ye olde Holiday Inn or the Highcross Shopping Centre.

More:

“Leicester car park where Richard III was buried given protected status,” Maev Kennedy, The Guardian

“English Car Park Where Remains Of Richard III Were Found Declared A Monument,” Scott Neuman, NPR

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Hobby Lobby Breaks a Commandment. Big Time.

July 7, 2017

Hobby Lobby Breaks a Commandment. Big Time.

The Department of Homeland Security caught Evangelical corporate person Hobby Lobby smuggling ancient ceramics from Iraq. The company will pay a $3 million fine and give up the stolen loot, 5,500 clay tablets and cylinder seals, which will presumably be returned to the Iraqi government as part of its cultural patrimony. Archaeological artifacts are often stolen and smuggled by terrorist groups and provide a major avenue of funding for their activities.

Hobby Lobby is owned by the Green family, currently building a great Ark the Bible Museum in godless Washington, DC. We wonder how many ancient items of dubious provenance are in the museum’s collection.

More:

“Hobby Lobby’s Black-Market Buys Did Real Damage,” Candida Moss and Joel Baden, New York Times

“Christian Retailer Hobby Lobby Stole Middle East History to Make a Bible Museum in Washington, Nina Burleigh, Newsweek

“D.C. Bible Museum Denies Connection to Hobby Lobby’s Smuggled Antiquities,” Julie Strupp, DCist

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Aristotle’s Tomb. Maybe.

June 24, 2016

Artistotle's Tomb. Maybe.
Archaeologist Konstantinos Sismanidis believes he has discovered the 2400 year-old tomb of Aristotle (384-322 BC) on a hilltop in Stagira, in the Greek region of Macedonia. Stagira was the hometown of Aristotle, the ancient philosopher who tutored Alexander the Great, so it would be especially fitting if the domed tomb was built to honor his ashes. There’s no real physical proof backing up the claim, and some classicists are skeptical. In any case, it’s a great looking structure:

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King Tut’s Secret Chamber

December 2, 2015

King Tut's Secret Chamber

Scientists using ground-penetrating radar and x-ray specs have discovered two secret chambers in the tomb of ancient Egyptian King Tutankhamun. One is thought to be be the burial place of Queen Nefertiti and the other is clearly King Tut‘s Man Cave:

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The Real Paleo Diet Was Full of Carbs

November 5, 2015

The Real Paleo Diet Was Full of Carbs

Devotees of the “Paleo Diet” (aka “Caveman Diet”) eat meat, seafood, eggs, and “non-starchy” fresh fruits and vegetables and eshew legumes, dairy products, and grains and other carbohydrates. That’s their idea of what humans ate in the Old Stone Age, before people learned how to farm and raise animals. They claim our prehistory shows the human body is ill-adapted to digest those new-fangled Neolithic farmed foods.

But that’s not the real menu of our ancestors, which included bugs, grubs, and all the starchy carbs they could get. And even though there were Stone Age food processors, they were used to make porridge, not “paleo smoothies.”

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Stone Age Murder

June 2, 2015

Stone Age Murder

“Scientists at Binghamton University have analyzed fatal wounds on a 430,000-year-old skull, and believe that they have uncovered one of the oldest murder cases known to man. The skeletal remains in question were found at an archaeological site in Spain, where at least 28 other skeletons were also discovered.”

–“Wanted: 430,000-Year-Old Murder Suspect,” Dustin Petzold, Big Think

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Barbarians Vandalize Ancient Artifacts

March 9, 2015

Barbarians Vandalize Ancient Artifacts
As you may have heard, barbarians have defaced cultural artifacts thousands of years old. That’s right Isis militants destroyed statues in the Mosul Museum American tourists carved graffiti on Rome’s ancient Coliseum. 

Related:

“Tourists break piece off priceless ‘Statue of the two Hercules’ in Italy while trying to take a selfie,” Louella-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith, The Independent

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Image (“Vandalized Statue of Rameses II, AKA Ozymandias, after David Roberts”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Prehistoric Cave Art

June 30, 2014

Prehistoric Cave Art

“A cave in southern France dubbed the ‘prehistoric Sistine Chapel’ has been added to Unesco’s World Heritage list.

The 1,000 drawings carved in the walls of the Decorated Cave of Pont d’Arc, or Grotte Chauvet, are 36,000 years old and include mammoths and hand prints.

Cave experts only discovered it in 1994 as the entrance had been concealed by a rockfall 23,000 years earlier.”

— ‘”Prehistoric Sistine Chapel’ gets world heritage status,” BBC News

More:

“The Vallon-Pont-d’Arc cave: The world’s oldest decorated cave,” The Vallon Pont-d’Arc Cave Project

“La Grotte ornée Chauvet-Pont d’Arc,” UNESCO World Heritage Centre

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length

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The First Painters Were Cave Women

October 19, 2013

The First Painters Were Cave Women

Penn State Professor Dean R. Snow has discovered strong evidence that most early cave painters were women. Dr. Snow measured hand stencils artists traced on painted walls at cave sites in France and Spain and concluded that three-quarters of these were made by women and not men, as had been previously assumed.

More:

“Were the First Artists Mostly Women?” Virginia Hughes, National Geographic News

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Short link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-hDq

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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