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Mon, 29 May 2023
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Secret History


2,700-year-old petroglyphs depicting people, ships and animals discovered in Sweden

About 40 ancient rock carvings have been found on a former rocky island in Sweden.
Sweden petroglyphs
© Foundation for Documentation of Bohuslän’s Rock Carvings
The newly found petroglyphs from Sweden include depictions of humans.
On a steep rock face in western Sweden, researchers uncovered a fascinating find: around 40 petroglyphs — depicting ships, people and animal figures — dating back around 2,700 years.

The petroglyphs were carved on a granite rock face that was once part of an island, meaning people would have had to make the carvings while standing on a boat, or from a platform constructed on ice, said Martin Östholm, a project manager with the Foundation for Documentation of Bohuslän's Rock Carvings who is one of the archaeologists who discovered the petroglyphs, told Live Science.
Sweden petroglyphs 1
© Foundation for Documentation of Bohuslän’s Rock Carvings
The petroglyphs are high up on a granite rock face that cannot be climbed, so researchers built a platform to study them.
Bohuslän is already known for its rock carvings, including Bronze Age art made at Tanum, a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) site. The team was looking for new petroglyphs in the area when they came across the moss-covered rock face. They noticed some lines on it that appeared to be human made, so they removed the moss, revealing the petroglyphs underneath. The rock face is too steep to stand on, Östholm said, so the team had to stand on a platform to do their archaeological work.

Better Earth

Lost since 1362: Researchers discover the church of a medieval trading place sunk by legendary tidal surge

© Dirk Bienen-Scholt
A lightweight survey vehicle provides large-scale magnetic mapping of cultural traces hidden beneath the present-day tidal flat surface.
The medieval trading center of Rungholt, which is today located in the UNESCO Wadden Sea World Heritage Site and currently the focus of interdisciplinary research, drowned in a storm surge in 1362.

Using a combination of geoscientific and archaeological methods, researchers from Kiel University (CAU), Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU), the Center for Baltic and Scandinavian Archaeology (ZBSA), and the State Archaeology Department Schleswig-Holstein (ALSH), both in Schleswig, have now succeeded in locating the site of the Rungholt church. Thus, they can now finally clarify a much-discussed research question that has been going on for over 100 years.

Comment: See also:

Better Earth

Arctic was warmer, ice-free in summertime 10,000 years ago, Aarhus University study finds

Sediment samples show Arctic was warmer 10,000 years ago and was ice free in the summertime. Moreover, the researchers say "it's uncertain" if Arctic sea ice will disappear in the summertime before 2063.
The Aarhus University conducted a study that confirms sea ice disappeared from the Arctic during the summer months during the early Holocene - 10,000 years ago.

Researchers from Aarhus University, in collaboration with Stockholm University and the United States Geological Survey, analyzed samples from the previously inaccessible region north of Greenland. The sediment samples were collected from the seabed in the Lincoln Sea. They showed that the sea ice in this region melted away during summer months around 10,000 years ago.

The research team concluded that summer sea ice melted at a time when temperatures were higher than today.

Comment: That may be in part due to Earth's poles being at a different location: Of Flash Frozen Mammoths and Cosmic Catastrophes

Star of David

Israel's state-building project is unravelling - from within

A demonstrator with a sign against Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu
Tel Aviv • 1 April, 2023
Israel's undoing will not be an attack from Arab states or international sanctions. Rather, its leaders have created a monster they can no longer tame...

As Israel celebrates its 75th anniversary, the state-building project it cemented into place in 1948 by expelling 750,000 Palestinians from their homeland is showing the first signs of unravelling.

The surprise is that Israel's woes spring not, as generations of its leaders feared, from outside forces - a combined attack from Arab states or pressure from the international community - but from Israel's own internal contradictions.

Israeli leaders created the very problems they all too obviously lack the tools to now solve. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's bombardment of Gaza in recent days, killing dozens of Palestinians, should be understood in that light. It is one more indication of Israel's internal crisis.

Once again, the Palestinians are being used in a frantic bid to shore up an increasingly fragile "Jewish" unity.


Composition of Roman perfume identified for first time, and it smelled like patchouli

urn roman
© University of Córdoba
A little bottle of the solidified scent was found in a glass urn inside a Roman tomb.
In Roman Spain, some 2,000 years ago, people may have been perfuming themselves with the musky scent of patchouli, new research hints. The study marks the first time that the composition of a Roman perfume has been identified, offering us a rare whiff of a bygone empire.

The perfume, which has solidified after two millennia inside a carved quartz bottle, was discovered in a funerary urn found in a mausoleum in Seville, Spain. Unearthed in 2019, during an excavation in modern-day Carmona, the mystery ointment has now been chemically described, revealing the inclusion of patchouli, an essential oil common in modern perfumery but never before known in use in ancient Rome.

As well as the essence of patchouli, obtained from Pogostemon cablin, a plant of Indian origin, the cologne was found to have a base of vegetable oil - possibly olive oil - although the researchers cannot be certain about this.

Comment: See also:


Why the idea of western civilization is more myth than history

Bayeaux Tapestry
© Lit Hub
One weekend, I found my younger son at the kitchen table, carefully writing out everything he knew about the Olympian gods for his school homework. His brow was furrowed, and he trained his eyes on the page with a level of concentration that I wish he would pay to his maths homework. So I asked him — casually, I thought — why he was so interested in the ancient Greeks. He beamed up at me with an angelic smile and answered, "Because that's what you study, Mama."

At this point, my heart nearly burst with parental pride. I am a Professor of Classical Archaeology and the ancient Greeks are, quite literally, my bread and butter. But my heart sank when my son added as an afterthought, "and because the Greeks gave us Western Civilization." Buckle up, kid, I thought, you're in for a lecture.

I wanted to tell him that the ancient Greeks did not give us Western Civilization. That there is no golden thread, unfurling unbroken through time from Plato to NATO. That we in the modern West are not the heirs of a unique and elevated cultural tradition, stretching back through Atlantic modernity to Enlightenment and Renaissance Europe, and from there through the darkness of the medieval period and ultimately back to the glories of classical Greece and Rome.

For most of us, it seems normal — even natural — to think of Western history in these terms. Unthinkingly, we assume that the modern West is the custodian of a privileged inheritance, passed down through a kind of cultural genealogy that we usually refer to as "Western Civilization."

It is a version of history that is all around us, set out in popular textbooks, encoded implicitly into children's stories and Hollywood movies, and proclaimed loudly and sometimes even angrily by commentators on both sides of the political spectrum. But it is a version of history that is simply wrong.

Research points to a different version of Western history. I have myself spent two decades of my professional life uncovering how ancient Greeks and Romans were much more diverse than we might think. They were neither predominantly white nor predominantly European, and indeed did not conceive of racial and geographical categories in the same way that we now do. As a result, the monks of western Europe, laboriously copying Latin manuscripts in their dusty scriptoria, were not the only medieval heirs of classical antiquity.


Archaeologists discovered the earliest Iron Age house in Athens and Attica

Iron Age house2
© Thorikos Archaeological Project Gent-Göttingen
Iron Age house from the 10th to 9th. Century BC BC in Thorikos ( Attica / Greece ): courtyard with adjoining rooms.
Archaeologists from the University of Göttingen discovered the earliest Iron Age house in Athens in Thorikos ( Greece ) south of Athens. This is an important finding that was unexpected and unique for early Greek history: building structures from this early period, from the 10th to the 9th Century BC, have never been excavated in Attica. The Gerda Henkel Foundation is now funding the continuation of the excavations with around 82,000 euros.

The ancient settlement is located in the area of ancient silver mining, 60 kilometers south of Athens. Here you can see Mycenaean dome tombs and a classic settlement with houses, production facilities, sanctuaries, the theater and burial sites. What is striking is the unprotected location just 20 meters above sea coast - from the sea, so there was apparently no danger at the time. Only in the course of the 8th Century BC the settlement activity shifted to the safe hill plateau, which is over 100 meters high. After geophysical investigations of the southeastern slope, the scientists found a grave from the 5th Century BC.

In 2019, a exposed corner of the wall initially indicated a classic grave building. "However, it turned out that there was no burial there before, but a building from the 10th to the 9th Century BC.", says Prof. Dr. Johannes Bergemann, director of the Archaeological Institute of the University of Göttingen. Last year, the scientists continued to research the expansion of the building, recognizing five to six rooms. In the largest room there were still numerous pebbles in the association, which indicate a cobbled courtyard. An analysis of inorganic and organic characteristics of the rock confirmed the use of around 950 to 825 BC.


7,000 year old cave paintings discovered in Spain using drones

cave painting
© University of Alicante
Archaeologists discover cave paintings using drones Share Archaeologists from the University of Alicante have discovered cave paintings in Penáguila, Spain.

The team were conducting a drone survey of the Castellet-Barranc del Salt ravine and Port de Penáguila, revealing Neolithic cave paintings from 7,000-years-ago.

The survey is part of a pioneering project, enabling the researchers to study inaccessible mountain shelters by photographing and recording videos of the walls in 18 shallow cavities using small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV's).

Two of the shelters contained wall paintings, with the most notable being in the del Salt ravine that contains painted figures of anthropomorphic archers, in addition to depictions of deer and goats, some of which appear wounded with arrows.

Comment: See also:


Rescue from the history of the Matrix

© Snimok Ekrana/geopolitika.ru
Paul Craig Roberts
"Of all the endangered species, Truth is the most endangered. I am watching it go out."
- Paul Craig Roberts, September 4, 2019
What makes Paul Craig Roberts' writing so powerful, is his ability to cut through false narratives and identify the elite agendas that are shaping events. This is the work of a truth-teller which is the designation that is typically applied to Roberts. The term refers to a person of deep moral convictions who devotes his life to exposing the lies and fabrications of the state and its corrupt allies. This is what Roberts has been doing for more than 40 years, and this is why thousands of people around the world flock to his website every day. They know his posts will be hard-hitting, well-researched and engrossing. More importantly, they know he will make every effort to bring them the unvarnished truth just as he has for more than four decades.

Roberts' latest collection of essays, titled Empire Of Lies, is an assortment of articles that show the remarkable scope and depth of the author's knowledge. Frequent visitors to his website will notice some familiar themes here while other topics may not have been as thoroughly explored. For example, there are many essays on the fragile US economy, the "experimental" Covid-19 vaccine, the war in Ukraine, the stolen presidential election and the January 6 fraud. At the same time, there are a number of other articles that one might not typically associate with Roberts. These include a short but riveting post on 9-11, ominous reflections on the year 2022, the manipulation of the bullion markets, and an astonishing piece titled "Germany did not Start World War 2".


Science and an Ancient Apocalypse

Gobekli Tepe
© PreHistory Decoded
The aim of science is simple. We aim to create consistent models of reality. If we can model everything perfectly (within the bounds of measurement uncertainty), i.e. explain everything, then there is no practical difference between our models and the truth. Ultimately, then, we seek the truth. Some scientist don't believe this, but this is how I see it. Religion used to be how this was achieved, but religions are not flexible enough to adapt to new information. They are too rigid. The advantage of science is that is infinitely adaptable; it changes to fit whatever the latest and best information is. Or, at least, it should (maybe even science has become too monolithic and politically motivated recently, with too much inertia in certain areas). Moreover, science uses mathematics and probability to find the most likely way forward; which explanation is most likely to be correct? Which brings us to Occam's razor.

Occam's razor is an excellent guide in developing our models. It says that if we have two models that can explain a specific set of observations equally well, the simpler one that requires least data to define it is more likely to be correct. A corollary is that if two models are equally simple, the one that can explain the most is more likely to be correct. Occam's razor is an intuitive guide. Although proofs have been attempted, to my knowledge none are completely satisfactory. It is the key scientific principle that guides me to consider the Younger Dryas impact hypothesis to be almost certainly correct, at least as far as the impact itself is concerned. The secondary effects, such as the Younger Dryas climate shift and associated megafaunal extinctions are more debatable, but still quite likely to be correct, in my view.

It is also how I approach decoding Gobekli Tepe and related symbolism. As a scientist, I am continually seeking connections, making links, simplifying explanations, using Occam's razor. There is considerable evidence now that many ancient cultures were fascinated by the sky, and their astronomical-symbolism was often linked and therefore likely derives from an earlier epoch.