The 2,300-year-old bark shield is the only one of its kind ever found in Europe A unique bark shield from the Iron Age has been discovered by archaeologists from the University of Leicester, the only one of its kind ever found in Europe. The shield, which measured 670 x 370mm in the ground, was found […]
Those who have previously undertaken ‘The Human Journey’ course may be interested in some news recently published in Nature of a new hominin species, Homo luzonensis.
To quote the abstract of the original article:
A hominin third metatarsal discovered in 2007 in Callao Cave (Northern Luzon, the Philippines) and dated to 67 thousand years ago provided the earliest direct evidence of a human presence in the Philippines. Analysis of this foot bone suggested that it belonged to the genus Homo, but to which species was unclear. Here we report the discovery of twelve additional hominin elements that represent at least three individuals that were found in the same stratigraphic layer of Callao Cave as the previously discovered metatarsal. These specimens display a combination of primitive and derived morphological features that is different from the combination of features found in other species in the genus Homo (including Homo floresiensis and Homo sapiens) and warrants their attribution to a new species, which we name Homo luzonensis. The presence of another and previously unknown hominin species east of the Wallace Line during the Late Pleistocene epoch underscores the importance of island Southeast Asia in the evolution of the genus Homo.
This video from the American Museum of Natural History provides a useful synopsis of the different hominin species. Today, our closest living relatives are chimpanzees, but extinct hominins are even closer. Where and when did they live? What can we learn about their lives? Why did they go extinct? Scientists look to fossils for clues.
New evidence of Neolithic, Roman and Anglo-Saxon activity found in community archaeological dig at Market Bosworth. In 2016, the Bosworth Links project set out to reveal the, then, poorly understood development and habitation of Market Bosworth. The main research goals, to learn more about what was going on in the area before the town was […]
In this episode of Curator’s Corner by the British Museum, Neil Wilkin is joined by Susan Greaney, Senior Properties Historian for English Heritage to discuss the history and importance of Stonehenge. Going into the heart of the monument and looking at some related Bronze Age objects, Neil and Susan explore the connections between Stonehenge, the rest of Britain and the continent.
The Ness of Brodgar is one of the largest and most important Neolithic excavations in Northern Europe. The dig is continuing to reveal an increasingly large complex of monumental Neolithic structures together with ‘artwork’, over 30,000 pieces of pottery, large assemblages of bones and stone tools – including over 30 unique stone axes. Last week […]
This is very exciting. It’s not often we get large excavation monographs devoted to single mesolithic sites in the UK (Three Ways Wharf stands out, a site that was published in 2011 and excavated in the 1980s), but recently within the space of a few weeks we got two: Blick Mead in mid March (photo […]
One of the civilisations mentioned during the course was the Assyrians, including one of their Kings, Ashurbanipal, and his library. Before the sun never set on the British Empire; before Genghis Khan swept the steppe; before Rome extended its influence to encircle the Mediterranean Sea; there was ancient Assyria. Considered by historians to be the first true empire, Assyria’s innovations laid the groundwork for every superpower that has followed. Marian H Feldman details the rise and fall of the Assyrian Empire.
Curator Mathilde Touillon-Ricci shares her research into the letters of Old Assyrian traders and the sometimes surprising ways in which they get around paying taxes
In this episode Curator Mathilde Touillon-Ricci explains the ancient Assyrian postal system and shows a number of rare examples of Assyrian envelopes – which don’t differ all that much from those still used today.
In our final session, we looked at religion and belief in Mesopotamia and their link to the rise of complex societies. We considered Mesopotamian deities, comparing and contrasting them to other, perhaps more familiar mythologies such as Graeco-Roman and Ancient Egyptian. We also examined case study sites such as Göbekli Tepe and the Royal Cemetery of Ur.
In this video from the British Museum Curator’s Corner series, Irving Finkel talks Mesopotamian demons, ghosts and sprites and how to deal with them:
In this video, artefacts and treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur are re-examined: