In a new paper, 'Essential Excavation Experts: Alienation and Agency in the History of Archaeological Labor,' published in Archaeologies: Journal of the World Archaeological Congress, archaeologist AllisonMickel illuminates the ways that nineteenth century archaeologists working in the Middle East managed local labor in ways that reflected capitalist labor management models. Her analysis also reveals how much archaeological knowledge production has fundamentally relied upon site workers' active choices in responding to labor conditions.
In 'A New Historical Inscription of Sargon II from Karkemish,' published in the Journal of Near Eastern Studies, Gianni Marchesi translates a recently discovered inscription of the Assyrian King Sargon II found at the ruins of the ancient city of Karkemish. The text implies that Sargon may have been planning to make Karkemish a western capital of Assyria, from which he could administer and control his empire's western territories.
The first genetic study of ancient human remains believed to be Crusaders confirms that warriors travelled from western Europe to the near East, where they mixed and had families with local people, and died together in battle. Researchers analysed ancient DNA extracted from nine skeletons dating back to the 13th century, which were discovered in a burial pit in Sidon, Lebanon. The results show that the Crusaders' genetic presence in the region was short-lived.
Scientists analyzed bits of beer vessels from an ancient Peruvian brewery to learn what the beer was made of and where the materials to make the vessels came from. They learned that production was local and that the ingredients for the beer included pepper berries that would grow even in droughts. The authors argue that this steady, reliable access to beer helped maintain unity in the empire.
History can tell us a lot about the Crusades, the series of religious wars fought between 1095 and 1291, in which Christian invaders tried to claim the Near East. But the DNA of nine 13th century Crusaders buried in a pit in Lebanon shows that there's more to learn about who the Crusaders were and their interactions with the populations they encountered. The work appears April 18 in The American Journal of Human Genetics.
A close examination of midden soil layers at the early Neolithic site of A??kl? Höyük in Turkey reveals that they are highly enriched in sodium, chlorine, and nitrate salts commonly found in human and goat and sheep urine, offering a distinct signal for following the management of those animals through the history of the site.
Even thousands of years ago people wore clothing with colourful patterns made from plant and animal-based dyes. Chemists from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) have created new analytical methods to examine textiles from China and Peru that are several thousand years old. In the scientific journal "Scientific Reports" they describe their new method that is able to reconstruct the spatial distribution of dyes, and hence the patterns, in textile samples.
A new study begins to resolve the scale and pace of change during the first phases of animal domestication beyond the Fertile Crescent. To reconstruct this history, the authors turned to an unusual source: urine salts left behind by humans and animals.
Analysis of human remains from a Pre-Roman Celtic cemetery in Italy shows variations in funerary treatment between individuals that could be related to social status, but these variations were not reflected by differences in their living conditions. Zita Laffranchi of Universidad de Granada, Spain, and colleagues present these new findings in the open access journal PLOS ONE on April 17, 2019.
The complete skeletal remains of a new species of Mongolian dinosaur fill in a gap in the evolution of hadrosaurs, according to a study released April 17, 2019 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Khishigjav Tsogtbataaar of the Mongolian Academy of Science, David Evans of the Royal Ontario Museum, and colleagues.