Archaeology

Science • Archaeology & History
Ancient teeth from Peru hint now-extinct monkeys crossed Atlantic from Africa
Ancient teeth from Peru hint now-extinct monkeys crossed Atlantic from Africa
Credit: Courtesy of University of Southern California

"This is a completely unique discovery," said Erik Seiffert, the study's lead author and Professor of Clinical Integrative Anatomical Sciences at Keck School of Medicine of USC. "We're suggesting that this group might have made it over to South America right around what we call the Eocene-Oligocene Boundary, a time period between two geological epochs when the Antarctic ice sheet started to build up and the sea level fell," said Seiffert.

When Seiffert was asked to help describe these specimens in 2016, he noticed the similarity of the two broken upper molars to an extinct 32 million-year-old parapithecid monkey species from Egypt he had studied previously. Fossils discovered at the same site in Peru had earlier offered the first proof that South American monkeys evolved from African primates.

Science • Archaeology & History
Enviromentalists discover WWII Enigma machine in the Baltic Sea
Enviromentalists discover WWII Enigma machine in the Baltic Sea
Credit: WWF / Christian Howe

Underwater archeologists, who were commissioned by the environmental organization WWF to clean the Baltic sea from abandoned fishing nets, found inside of one of those fishing nets an old German Enigma machine from the Second World War. The Enigma machine from the M3 series was probably part of one of the vessels which were sunk by the German Kriegsmarine in 1945 during the operation "Regenbogen" to avoid surrendering them to the Allied Forces.

Science • Archaeology & History
Archaeologists unravel the mystery of the Paleolithic children's grave in Krems-Wachtberg (Austria)
Archaeologists unravel the mystery of the Paleolithic children's grave in Krems-Wachtberg (Austria)
Credit: Copyright OREA ÖAW

The mystery of the 2005 excavated grave in Krems-Wachtberg in Austria, which is about 31000 years old and in which two skeletons of new-born children were found, was unraveled by Archeologists of the Natural History Museum Vienna and the University Vienna. Gene analytics showed that the two boys, who were buried under a mammoth scapula, were identical twin brothers.

The one boy died during or shortly after birth, the second one about six or seven weeks later. Those children are the oldest recorded identical human twins. A nearby found skeleton of a male toddler of 13 or 14 weeks appears to be related to both brothers - he was their cousin.

Science
Large 2,000-year-old feline figure discovered in Peru's Nazca lines
Nazca lines
Nazca lines Credit: Cyril Bèle (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

The cat then went unnoticed until plans were recently drawn up for a new path leading to an observation platform. In a statement, Peru's culture ministry said: "The figure was scarcely visible and was about to disappear because it's situated on quite a steep slope that's prone to the effects of natural erosion."

Science • Humans
Vast neolithic monument found near Stonehenge
Stonehenge
Stonehenge Credit: Sumit Surai (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Archaeologists discovered a circle of deep shafts 3km from Stonehenge. The discovery is considered the largest prehistoric structure ever found in Britain.

The structure, that surrounded the settlement of Durrington Walls, consists of a 2km wide circle of large shafts measuring more than 10 meters in diameter by 5 meters depth and was excavated more than 4,500 years ago.