In a study published in Nature, researchers describe that rock fragments produced unintentionally today by primates in Serra da Capivara National Park in Brazil resemble tools made deliberately 2.6 million years ago by ancestors of humans.
New genetic research from an international team including McMaster University, University of Helsinki, Vilnius University and the University of Sydney, suggests that smallpox, a pathogen that caused millions of deaths worldwide, may not be an ancient disease but a much more modern killer that went on to become the first human disease eradicated by vaccination.
Good news for archaeologists and natural scientists! You will be able to continue to use the radiocarbon method as a reliable tool for determining the age of artifacts and sample materials.
A new study demonstrates strong genetic evidence that, when man first settled into the Tibetan plateau, the recently domesticated Tibetan Mastiff interbred with the Tibet grey wolf, and a DNA swap being introduced at two genomic hotspots is the key to acquiring their special high altitude powers. And in a spectacular coincidence, it turns out to be the same location, same gene, same mechanism -- interbreeding -- as in humans with an ancient hominid known as the Denisovans.
Eleven-thousand years ago, a Syrian community began a practice which would change man's relationship with his surroundings forever: the initiation of cereal domestication and, with it, the commencement of agriculture, a process which lasted several millennia. The discoveries, made at the Tell Qarassa North archaeological site, situated near the city of Sweida in Syria, are the oldest evidence of the domestication of three species of cereal: one of barley and two of wheat (spelt and farrow).
A collection of 780,000-year-old edible plants found in Israel reveals the plant-based diet of the prehistoric man and is the largest and most diverse in the Levantine corridor linking Africa and Eurasia.
A team of international archaeologists believe a pair of mummified legs on display in an Italian museum may belong to Egyptian Queen Nefertari -- the favorite wife of the pharaoh Ramses II.
A new study shows that the process of cultivation and domestication of cereals occurred at different times across southwest Asia. The analyses of plant remains from archaeological sites dated to around 11,600-10,700 years ago suggest that in regions such as Turkey, Iran and Iraq, legumes, fruits and nuts dominated the diet, whereas cereals were the preferred types of plants in Jordan, Syria, Palestine and Israel. This means that Neolithic plant-based subsistence strategies were regionally diverse.
An analysis of 2,000-year-old human remains from several regions across the Italian peninsula has confirmed the presence of malaria during the Roman Empire, addressing a longstanding debate about its pervasiveness in this ancient civilization.
Industrial pollution may seem like a modern phenomenon, but in fact, an international team of researchers may have discovered what could be the world's first polluted river, contaminated approximately 7,000 years ago.