Bronze Age pastoralists in what is now southern Russia apparently covered shorter distances than previously thought. It is believed that the Indo-European languages may have originated from this region, and these findings raise new questions about how technical and agricultural innovations spread to Europe. An international research team, with the participation of the University of Basel, has published a paper on this topic.
Assessment of a Papyrus in the Field Museum has led to a new analysis of the First Book of Breathing, an ancient Egyptian funerary text intended to enable deceased people to join the gods in the afterlife.
The capacity for language is built upon our ability to understand combinations of words and the relationships between them, but the evolutionary history of this ability is little understood. Now, researchers from the University of Warwick have managed to date this capacity to at least 30-40 million years ago, the last common ancestor of monkeys, apes and humans.
The legend of Solomon and the birds associated with the Dome of the Rock was developed over time. Stories about the two birds demonstrate that Sufi traditions and the figure of Solomon were still very influential in shaping the appearance and conception of the Dome of the Rock.
For anthropologists and other social scientists, the space race in the 1950s served as a period of cultural and technological transformation as well as an opportunity to advance the public good.
Globally, millennials are most dissatisfied with democracy, and more so than previous generations were when under 35. Major Cambridge report analysed data from close to 5 million people from 160 nations across almost half a century. Researchers find millennials are most satisfied with democracy under populist leaders, the sole exception being the Trump presidency. Millennials in developed democracies are more likely to judge political opponents as 'morally flawed' than older voters.
McMaster University researchers who analyzed thousands of documents covering a 300-year span of plague outbreaks in London, England, have estimated that the disease spread four times faster in the 17th century than it had in the 14th century.
When anthropologists examined a broad, global sample of 30 pre-modern societies, they found that when 'good' governments -- ones that provided goods and services for their people and did not starkly concentrate wealth and power -- fell apart, they broke down more intensely than collapsing despotic regimes. And the researchers found a common thread in the collapse of good governments: leaders who undermined and broke from upholding core societal principles, morals, and ideals. It's... relevant.
Of the six or more different species of early humans, all belonging to the genus Homo, only we Homo sapiens have managed to survive. Now, a study reported in the journal One Earth combining climate modeling and the fossil record in search of clues to what led to all those earlier extinctions suggests that climate change--the inability to adapt to either warming or cooling temperatures--likely played a major role in sealing their fate.
Researchers have long been stumped for an explanation of how tens of millions of years-old giant crystals known as glendonites came to be on the Danish islands of Fur and Mors. A recent study from the University of Copenhagen offers a possible explanation to the conundrum: major volcanic eruptions resulted in episodes of much cooler prehistoric climates than once thought.