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Humans survived off rodents in the mountains during the last ice age, study says

edition.cnn.com
  • 45,000 years ago, during the Paleoithic era, some humans settled in the Bale Mountains (~4,000 meters) to survive the last ice age.
  • This shows that humans started living at high altitudes much earlier than previously believed.
  • Melting glaciers gave them water, and they hunted giant mole rats with obsidian tools.
  • The discovery might be an explanation for why some people living in Ethiopia today are able to prosper in low oxygen levels.

Historian unearths solid evidence for the Armenian Genocide

eurekalert.org
  • Historian uses signature analysis to confirm that two letters regarding the Armenian genocide were written by Bahaettin Shakir, one of the orchestrators of the tragedy.
  • The analysis was carried out by a leading Turkish historian, on documents from the Ottoman Archives.
  • 1.5 million Armenians were exterminated during and after World War I, but present day Turkey continues to contest the figures and the “orchestrated genocide” label.
  • The denial hinges on poor archives from that period, and the UN urges the Turkish government to reinvestigate the tragedy, establish truth and make reparations.

Ancient DNA reveals the origins of the Philistines

sciencenews.org
  • Nuclear DNA was retrieved from 10 skeletons buried in Ashkelon, an ancient port city in Israel.
  • It fits a scenario in which southern european people fled collapsing Bronze Age societies, travelling to the eastern Mediterranean coast 3,000 years ago.
  • These people would be the Philistines, know from the Old Testament for fighting with Israelites.
  • The DNA came from 3 late Bronze Age individuals buried ~3,600 years ago, 4 early Iron Age infants buried ~3,300 years ago, and 3 late Iron Agers from ~3,100 years ago.
  • Larger ancient DNA studies might help to pin-point the Philistines’ origins more precisely.

Chinese tombs yield earliest evidence of cannabis use

bbc.com
  • Researchers from the Max Planck Institute found proofs of cannabis use in the Jirzankal cemetery in western China.
  • Observations indicate that cannabis was used in funeral and religious rituals about 2,500 years ago.
  • To identify the chemical components of the samples found in the Jirzankal cemetery, gas chromatography, and mass spectrometry techniques were employed.
  • These findings agree with other evidence observed elsewhere in China and Russia.

DNA from 31,000-year-old milk teeth leads to discovery of new group of ancient Siberians

cam.ac.uk
  • An investigation indicates that the remains of human beings who lived in Siberia are genetically related to the first inhabitants of the American continent.
  • The study published in the journal Nature indicates that the DNA of 2 milk teeth found in Siberia coincides with the genome of the indigenous peoples of America.
  • Like previous hypothesis, the article suggests that the ancestors of the first inhabitants of America crossed the Bering Strait during the ice age.
  • This is the first study that supports this hypothesis with genetic data of the possible ancestors of the populations of America.

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  • History History (14) Humans survived off rodents in the mountains during the last ice age, study says
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