Tag Archives | Archaeology

Engraved Stone Discovered in China May Suggest Complex Language Existed 30,000 Years Ago

Picture: "The Tower of Babel" by Bruegel the Elder (PD)

An artifact unearthed in north China may suggest that complex language systems may have existed in the area as early as 30,000 years ago. The item is a stone engraved with a series of lines deliberately carved by human hands. Dr. Fei Peng, a postgraduate research fellow at the Chinese Academy of Sciences had this to say concerning the stone, as well as an ostrich egg bead also discovered at the site:

Via Sci-News:

“Furthermore, creation of such an engraved object may indicate the possible existence of complex communicative systems such as language,” he said.

“In addition to the engraved stone artifact, one ostrich egg bead was unearthed from Locality 1. The lithic assemblage of this locality includes blade production and elongated tool blanks. The blade technology was probably introduced from the Altai region of Russian Siberia, according to comparison between lithic assemblages.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

North Korea Claims To Have Discovered Ancient Unicorn Habitat

The Guardian reports on North Korean cryptozoology:

The inimitable Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) has now broken the incredible news that archaeologists in Pyongyang have discovered a unicorn’s lair.

Or rather, the report says that they have “recently reconfirmed” the lair of one of the unicorns ridden by the ancient Korean King Tongmyong, founder of a kingdom which ruled parts of China and the Korean peninsula from the the 3rd century BC to 7th century AD.

The KCNA goes on to state that the location happens to be 200 metres from a temple in the North Korean capital, adding: “A rectangular rock carved with words “Unicorn Lair” stands in front…The carved words are believed to date back to the period of Koryo Kingdom (918-1392).” Archaeologists from the Academy of Social Sciences at North Korea’s History Institute were credited with making the discovery.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

Workers Discover Ruins of Bali’s Largest Hindu Temple

Picture: PHGCOM (CC)

Via Raw Story:

Balinese laborers digging a drain in the city of Denpasar have uncovered the remains of an enormous Hindu temple:

They reported the discovery to the Bali archaeology office, which then unearthed substantial foundations of a structure that the excavation team believes dates from around the 13th to 15th centuries.

“We think this is the biggest ancient Hindu temple ever discovered in Bali,” Wayan Suantika, the head of the team, said late Wednesday.

He said the excavation was still in progress and the team did not yet know whether enough stones would be unearthed to allow them to reconstruct the temple.

Hinduism has a very long history in Bali, having first arrived sometime around one AD. The population of Bali is almost 94 percent Hindu, whereas the majority (88 percent) of Indonesia is Muslim. It is estimated that twelve percent of the world’s overall Muslim population resides in the island nation.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

Second Viking Outpost Discovered in Canada

Picture: John Charles Dollman (PD)

A new discovery may shed more light on the early presence of Vikings in North America.

While digging in the ruins of a centuries-old building on Baffin Island (map), far above the Arctic Circle, a team led by (Dr. Patricia) Sutherland, adjunct professor of archaeology at Memorial University in Newfoundland and a research fellow at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, found some very intriguing whetstones. Wear grooves in the blade-sharpening tools bear traces of copper alloys such as bronze—materials known to have been made by Viking metalsmiths but unknown among the Arctic’s native inhabitants.

Taken together with her earlier discoveries, Sutherland’s new findings further strengthen the case for a Viking camp on Baffin Island. “While her evidence was compelling before, I find it convincing now,” said James Tuck, professor emeritus of archaeology, also at Memorial University.

Sharpen your axe, sing your Immigrant Song, and click here to continue.… Read the rest

Continue Reading

Newly-Discovered Canals Were Used in Construction of Angkor Wat

Picture: Louis Delaporte (PD)

Via NewScientist:

Looks like the builders of Angkor Wat may have taken a short cut transporting the materials used in the construction of the temple. Newly-discovered traces of a series of long-gone canals may have halved the distance it took to transport massive blocks of sandstone from quarries at Mount Kulen.

The sandstone blocks each weigh up to 1.5 tonnes and originate from quarries at Mount Kulen. It was thought they were taken 35 kilometres along a canal to Tonlé Sap Lake, rafted another 35 km along the lake, then taken up the Siem Reap River for 15 km, against the current.

Thinking this was unlikely, Etsuo Uchida and Ichita Shimoda of Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan, used satellite images to search for a shortcut. The canals they discovered led from the foot of Mount Kulen to Angkor – a gentle 34-km route, as opposed to the arduous 90-km trek previously suggested.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

Archaeology Being Undermined By Fake Fossils Of Imaginary Animals

Could your favorite ancient animal species not be real? Via the Archaeology News Network:

Fake fossils are duping scientists and museums, a senior paleontologist has warned, after a scholar was forced to retract a controversial essay that stated the cheetah originated in China.

According to Li Chun, associate researcher at the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, counterfeits are now widespread and have become a serious risk to genuine study projects. “I believe many scholars are victims of fake fossils,” he said, before estimating that more than 80 percent of marine reptile specimens on display in Chinese museums “have been altered or artificially combined to varying degrees”.

Li’s alert follows the debunking last month of an essay co-authored by Huang Ji, a Chinese scientist, and Danish researcher Per Christiansen in 2008 about an alleged new species of cheetah.

“Probably to make it appear more complete, thus enhancing its commercial value, Chinese fossil dealers makes numerous fake fossils.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

1970’s Era S&M Dungeon Unearthed in Kentucky

Picture: Yice (CC)

Aren’t archaeology and “history” fascinating?

I don’t see how the identity of the owners is going to remain secret for long, though, as property tax assessments are part of the public record.  Keep an eye out for some interesting revelations about Grammie and Gramps in the coming months.  From Joe Arnold of WHAS11:

LOUISVILLE, Ky (WHAS11) — The mystery of an underground sadomasochism club continued to unravel on Tuesday after WHAS11 News aired images of what work crews discovered during Whiskey Row stabilization efforts.

Judging by the state of decay in the collapsing buildings, demolition crews had estimated the club dated to the 1970’s, but e-mails and posts to WHAS11’s Facebook and Twitter accounts reflect a  more recent sadistic history.

Click here to see pictures from inside.

A former founding member told WHAS11 that LATEX, short for Louisville Area Trust EXchange, was in operation in the mid to late 1990’s with close to 1,000 dues paying members.

Read the rest
Continue Reading

DisinfoCast with Matt Staggs: Episode 15: Lost Mayan Technology with James O’Kon

iTunes | Download (mp3) | RSS | iPhone App

ArchaeoEngineer James A. O'Kon, the author of The Lost Secrets of Maya Technology is here to discuss some of the astonishing discoveries he's made while researching the technological innovations of the Mayan culture. O'Kon, who has spent years in the field, has uncovered evidence of Mayan suspension bridges, concret manufacturing and more. Prepare to have everything you think you know about this ancient civilization challenged.
Continue Reading

Fabled Lost City Discovered In Jungles Of Honduras?

The true adventure will begin soon when some brave souls attempt to enter Ciudad Blanca on foot, opening themselves up to deadly curses. The Los Angeles Times reports:

Since Spanish explorer Herman Cortes first noted the existence of Ciudad Blanca, the White City, in 1526, archaeologists, explorers and treasure hunters have been searching for the site, reputed to contain vast wealth. Many have claimed to find it, including the CIA’s Theodore Morde, who based the bizarre travelogue “Lost City of the Monkey God” on it. None of those claims have held water, however, and contemporary archaeologists are not even sure the city ever existed.

But now a team, using laser-based light detection and ranging (LIDAR) from a survey plane, have found the ruins of an ancient city deep in Honduras’ Mosquito Coast region and hidden by centuries of jungle growth.

Ciudad Blanca plays a central role in many Central American stories and mythology.

Read the rest
Continue Reading