Tag: Archaeology

In a first discovery of its kind, researchers have uncovered an ancient Aboriginal archaeological site preserved on the seabed

Reading time: 6 minutes
For most of the human history of Australia, sea levels were much lower than they are today, and there was extra dry land where people lived. When people first arrived in Australia as early as 65,000 years ago, sea levels were around 80m lower than today.

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How Has Our Perception of Vikings Changed due to Recent Discoveries?

Reading time: 6 minutes
The image of “The Viking” has always been a colourful one in the minds of society, with fear-inducing images conjured of blonde-haired, blue-eyed barbarians, and pillaging and plundering their way through Europe on a history-changing quest to conquer. This almost mythical collective interpretation of horned helmets and terrifying ships is certainly a popular one. However, recent explorations have brought to light new insights to shift these perceptions, altering the history books and allowing us to look with better clarity at the era between 750 CE and 1050 CE.

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An incredible journey: the first people to arrive in Australia came in large numbers, and on purpose

Reading time: 5 minutes
The size of the first population of people needed to arrive, survive, and thrive in what is now Australia is revealed in two studies published today. It took more than 1,000 people to form a viable population. But this was no accidental migration, as our work shows the first arrivals must have been planned.

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Slavers in the family: what a castle in Accra reveals about Ghana’s history

Reading time: 6 minutes
The Castle is situated on the West African coast, formerly and notoriously known as the “White Man’s Grave”. The castle’s origins can be traced to a lodge built by Swedes in 1652. Nine years later, the Danish built a fort on the site and called it Fort Christiansborg (“Christian’s Fortress”), named after the King of Denmark, Christian IV.

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Fresh clues to the life and times of the Denisovans, a little-known ancient group of humans

Reading time: 7 minutes
We know that some modern human genomes contain fragments of DNA from an ancient population of humans called Denisovans, the remains of which have been found at only one site, a cave in what is now Siberia.

Two papers published in Nature today give us a firmer understanding of when these little-known archaic humans (hominins) lived.

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What happens now we’ve found the site of the lost Australian freighter SS Iron Crown, sunk in WWII

Reading time: 6 minutes
Finding shipwrecks isn’t easy – it’s a combination of survivor reports, excellent archival research, a highly skilled team, top equipment and some good old-fashioned luck.

And that’s just what happened with the recent discovery of SS Iron Crown, lost off the coast of Victoria in Bass Strait during the second world war.

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LUCKY DISCOVERIES OF LOST ANCIENT HISTORY

Reading time: 8 minutes
Our knowledge of the ancient world owes a lot to chance discoveries. Here, we share the stories of some of the most important and unlikely finds from ancient Western history.

They range from the keys to forgotten scripts from Ancient Egypt and the time of Troy, to lost poems, philosophies and even a legal text book. We owe their preservation not only to luck, but to the fastidious and obsessive geniuses who uncovered and deciphered them.

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Returning looted artefacts will finally restore heritage to the brilliant cultures that made them

Reading time: 6 minutes
European museums are under mounting pressure to return the irreplaceable artefacts plundered during colonial times. As an archaeologist who works in Africa, this debate has a very real impact on my research. I benefit from the convenience of access provided by Western museums, while being struck by the ethical quandary of how they were taken there by illegal means, and by guilt that my colleagues throughout Africa may not have the resources to see material from their own country, which is kept thousands of miles away.

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Rediscovering a ‘lost’ Roman frontier from the air

Reading time: 5 minutes
Frontiers like Hadrian’s Wall are central to the study of the Roman Empire. By now we might expect to have discovered most such major landmarks. However, by scrutinising archives of aerial photography, we have been able to identify as Roman two more walls that will transform our understanding of the frontier of the Roman Empire in Eastern Europe.

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