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Tue, 23 May 2017
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Pyramid

Discovery of artifacts sheds new light on the ancient Meroitic civilization


Two examples of Meroitic Hieroglyphs - Votive Plaque of King Tanyidamani and a Meroitic stela.
A team of Italian and Russian archeologists says that they have made one of the most important discoveries connected with the history of Nubia. According to the Sudan Antiquities Service, the hieroglyphic inscription uncovered at Abu Erteila, may be the most important discovery in the last decade.

AGI reports that the excavations conducted from November to December 2015 by the international team were led by Eugenio Fantusati from Sapienza University of Rome, his deputy Marco Baldi, and by Eleonora Kormysheva, the Director of the Golenishev center for Egyptology, Russian State University for the Humanities, and a Principal Researcher in the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

Around 200 km (124.3 miles) north of Khartoum they discovered the most impressive artifacts, which include a basalt ritual altar, a hieroglyphic inscription, and a sacred boat. This discovery, which is a fruit of eight rounds of excavations, is shedding new light on the Nubian civilization that existed between the 1st century BC and 1st century AC. The temple where the findings were made, was thought to have been most likely destroyed by a fire. The ruins are currently being carbon-dated to ascertain the exact date of the event.

Comment: For more information on the Meroitic civilization, see these related articles:


Info

Stone Age pit filled with severed limbs uncovered

© F. Chenal et al, Antiquity 2015
Archaeologists who were overseeing a routine development project in Bergheim, France uncovered many pits dated to the Neolithic period. One of those pits contained the fossilized remains of people who were subjected to extraordinary violence. The victims of the Stone Age violence had their upper arms, fingers and hands cut up. Here, some of the cut up finger and hand bones from the nearly 6,000-year-old pit in France.
An ancient pit filled with severed human arms, hands and fingers has been unearthed in France.

The nearly 6,000-year-old pit was found near the village of Bergheim, which sits near the border with Germany.

"The discovery of Bergheim is the witness of a very violent event, which took place at a specific time," said study co-author Fanny Chenal, an archaeologist at the University of Strasbourg in France. "Its unique and extraordinary nature does not allow or help us to better understand the daily life of these people."

And though Chenal and her colleagues don't know exactly what spurred people to such gory acts, the likeliest explanation is a violent skirmish or war, the researchers speculate in the December 2015 issue of the journal Antiquity. [See Images from the Gruesome Pit of Limbs]

Beaker

Radioactive oatmeal fed to children: Just one, in a long line, of heinous government experiments

It's getting harder to focus on the "news".

Considering that all media is filtered through just five megacorporations (compared with 50 companies in the early '80s), not to mention (but I will) the fact that domestic propaganda was officially "approved" for use against the American people a few years ago, it's kinda hard to tell the difference between what is real and what isn't anymore.

Besides, it's all "hey look, shiny things". Pay attention to the right hand so you won't see what the left is doing.

The distractions on the "news" also serve another purpose. To fill up your short term memory like junk food for the brain. To keep you from remembering what happened last week, let alone last year. From putting these things into perspective, especially historical perspective.

Bug

Symbolic? Ancient Rome was infested with human intestinal parasites

© http://sonyaandtravis.com/
The Roman Empire is famous for its advanced sanitation — public baths and toilets — but human poop from the region shows that it was rife with parasites.

In fact, the empire was infested with a greater number of human parasites, such as whipworm, roundworm and Entamoeba histolytica dysentery, than during prior time periods.

"I was very surprised to find that compared with the Bronze Age and Iron Age, there was no drop in the kind of parasites that are spread by poor sanitation during the Roman period," said the study's author Piers Mitchell, a lecturer of biological anthropology at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.

Star of David

How Zionism helped to create the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia


Abdel Aziz Ibn Saud with Sir Percy Cox.
The covert alliance between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Zionist entity of Israel should be no surprise to any student of British imperialism. The problem is the study of British imperialism has very few students. Indeed, one can peruse any undergraduate or post-graduate British university prospectus and rarely find a module in a Politics degree on the British Empire let alone a dedicated degree or Masters degree. Of course if the European led imperialist carnage in the four years between 1914 - 1918 tickles your cerebral cells then it's not too difficult to find an appropriate institution to teach this subject, but if you would like to delve into how and why the British Empire waged war on mankind for almost four hundred years you're practically on your own in this endeavor. One must admit, that from the British establishment's perspective, this is a formidable and remarkable achievement.

Fire

Remembering Rosewood: Community destroyed by white mob violence over a racist lie

© Rosewood Remembrance Project
Rosewood, Florida
Four black schoolchildren raced home along a dirt road in Archer, Florida, in 1944, kicking up a dust cloud wake as they ran. They were under strict orders from their mother to run - not lollygag or walk or jog, but run - directly home after hitting the road's curve.

The littlest, six-year-old Lizzie Robinson (now Jenkins), led the pack with a brother on each side and her sister behind carrying her books.

"And I would be [running], my feet barely touching the ground," Jenkins, now 77, said at her home in Archer.

Despite strict adherence to their mother's orders, the siblings weren't told why they should race home. To the children, it was one of several mysterious dictates issued during childhood in the Jim Crow south.

As Jenkins tells it, the children didn't know why Amos 'n' Andy was often interrupted by revving engines and calls from her father to "Go upstairs now!", or why aunt Mahulda Carrier, a schoolteacher, fled to the bedroom each time a car drove down their rural road.

Explanations for demands to hide came later, when Jenkins's mother, Theresa Brown Robinson, whispered to her daughter the story of violence that befell the settlement of Rosewood in 1923.

The town was 37 miles south-east of Archer on the main road to the Gulf. Carrier worked there as the schoolteacher, while living with her husband Aaron Carrier. On New Year's Day 1923, a white woman told her husband "a nigger" assaulted her, a false claim that precipitated a week of mob violence that wiped the prosperous black hamlet off the map, and led to the near lynching of Aaron Carrier.

Eye 2

Amoral tricksters that enhance world mythology


Prince Arthur and the Fairy Queen by Johann Heinrich Füssli, c. 1788
Mythologies around the world speak of beings which cannot be defined as good or evil. German folklore mentions a household elemental named kobold. Even though he can be helpful, as a trickster, he can make mischief and play pranks on the members of his household. He can hide tools and other objects and he may push over the people who live in the house causing them to fall. On the other hand, he can also help with household chores, provide help in finding lost objects and, sometimes, he even is said to sing to the children.

Apart from the household kobold, there is another type of kobold which legends say resides in caves and mines and haunts them. In 1657, metallurgist Georg Landmann published a study entitled "De Animantibus Subterraneis" in which he explained that the belief in these kobolds dates back to at least the 13th century, but older accounts of similar spirits also existed in Ancient Greece where the mischievous entity was referred to as a "kobalos".

All these examples discussed here are but a few out of the numerous types of tricksters appearing in mythologies, folklore and stories of the world. From fairy tale characters like Reynard the Fox or Rumpelstiltskin and up to jinn, elementals and trickster spirits, mischievous entities play an important part in the tales and mythologies to which they belong.

Read more here

Top Secret

Cultural genocide: Chemawa Indian School unmarked graves

© Oregon Historical Society
Recent research by a Northern Cheyenne researcher indicates many Chemawa students died while at the school, likely due to influenza and other outbreaks.
Unmarked graves shed light on 'America's best kept secret' of abuse towards Native communities.

Marsha Small used ground-penetrating radar to survey beneath the cemetery on the Chemawa Indian School campus near Salem, Oregon. As she worked, she prayed to the children, even though her Northern Cheyenne language would sound foreign to them because the children buried in this earth had been brought to the school from reservations and tribal lands throughout the western United States.

Magnify

Researchers discover origins of the "Celtic Curse" upon the ancient Irish 4,000 years ago

© Daniel Bradley
The skull of the Neolithic woman excavated in 1855 in Ballynahatty, Northern Ireland.
While researchers were analyzing the genes of prehistoric Irish ancestors they discovered that the beginning of a "Celtic Curse" (haemochromatosis) probably arose 4,000 years ago with a wave of migration from the Pontic Steppe to the East. This discovery also provides hard evidence for massive migrations that could have led to changes in Neolithic and Bronze Age lifestyles.

When geneticists at Trinity College in Dublin teamed up with archaeologists at Queen's University of Belfast to study the origins of Ireland's people and culture, they could only imagine the possible outcomes. The team successfully sequenced then compared the genomes of a woman farmer from 5,200 years ago (whose remains were found near Belfast) and three men who lived on Rathlin Island during the Bronze Age. When they analyzed these genes they discovered that a disease often called the "Celtic Curse" arose sometime between the two time periods and that it was related to a massive migration into the region.

The results of their analysis were published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and show that the Ballynahatty Neolithic woman "possessed a genome of predominantly Near Eastern origin" and that "she had some hunter - gatherer ancestry but belonged to a population of large effective size, suggesting a substantial influx of early farmers to the island."

Read more here

Comment: For more information on hemochromatosis, see: The iron elephant - The dangers of iron overload


Holly

Io Saturnalia! The Roman roots of 'Christmas'

Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, whatever your 'Reason for the Season', most of the December holiday traditions that we celebrate today can be traced back to the Ancient Roman holiday of Saturnalia (with a healthy dose of inspiration also coming via the Vikings). From tree decorations, wreaths, ornaments, boughs of holly, carolling (albeit with more clothes and less rude songs these days), gift-giving, and even gingerbread men, most of what we identify as 'Christmas' has roots going back thousands of years.

So what was Saturnalia?

The fact is, the Romans loved festivals, and 'officially', Saturnalia commemorated the winter solstice, as well as honouring Saturn, the god of agriculture, wealth, and liberation. Most Roman holidays were never confined to a single day, and Saturnalia was a week-long celebration, lasting from the 17th to either the 23rd or 24th of December. Described by the Latin poet, Catullus, as "the best of days", it was the most popular holiday of the Roman calendar, attested by the fact that many of its traditions still survive to this day.

Its exact date of origin is unknown, though references to the holiday are made as early as the 4th century B.C. Like other holidays and festivals, at its core, Saturnalia was a religious observance. Albeit, most of the religious aspects were only observed on the first day.