While I am dedicating 90% of my time to editing my new novel manuscript, I continue to dedicate 10% to following the news in archaeology through various sources. When I find something big, I’ll write more about it. But most news comes in articles—some of which could be an early clue to something big on the horizon of archaeology. Here are articles that have such potential, and I shall continue to feed similar articles to you in the near future.
Sociology of Families, 4 ka (kiloyears ago).
The following article, Four-thousand-year-old genomes show deep roots of social inequality, hypothesizes a new field of archaeology, the sociology of ancient families as determined by DNA. Related to this new field, but recognizing that for now DNA studies are very expensive, this article, The Evolution of Social Inequality in Bronze Age Europe, offers a (much cheaper) isotopic analysis of tooth enamel to identify regions in which the person spent significant amounts of time, which gives information in lieu of or as a supplement to DNA analysis until more DNA samples from further afield become available—which will grow slowly until the unit price of DNA analysis drops. Look forward to the proliferation of such studies, their implications, and the future interlocking of such studies which will represent a new form of history spawned by DNA analysis.
Evolution of Anatomically Modern Humans hypothesized 200 ka (95% confidence interval, 240–165 ka).
The following abstract, Human origins in a southern African palaeo-wetland and first migrations, summarizes the paywall paper which makes this hypothesis. This is a hypothesis because of the large but limited scope of the study, but it is the latest available. Related to this, the following article, Researchers Pin-Point ‘Ancestral Homeland’ of All Modern Humans, apparently has access to the paywall paper and gives a summary. As such regional studies overlap, we will be forming a solid understanding of the roots of Anatomically Modern Humans (AMH).
Mini-Gobekli Tepe dated to 11.3 ka
A small version of Gobekli Tepe, dated to the same time period, is described in the following article from Ancient Origins: 11,300-Year-Old Mini Göbekli Tepe Unearthed In Turkey. While in this article, make sure you try the links (always fun in Ancient Origins) and especially the link on Gobekli Tepe which describes how the primitive Einkorn Wheat evolved into the staple food that launched the Neolithic Revolution. If dating proves correct, look for a relationship between the big and little locations (assuming there are more conterminous little ones).
Thanks for visiting,
R. E. J. Burke