Monday, April 11, 2016

Miscellaneous Data Points

* There is strong evidence of a second Viking site, around Y1K, in North America in addition to Lief Erikson's Vinland settlement.

* A Nordic grave from 1400 BCE contains a blue glass bead made in Egypt.

* Scientists have figured out which Alpine pass Hannibal and his elephants and horses and men took in 218 BCE during the Second Punic War, based upon strong evidence of a mass animal presence at precisely 218 BCE in the pass.

* An inscription on a 6th century BCE slab of stone from an Etruscan temple may help scientists decipher the Etruscan language and religion.

* Columbus was able to leverage a lunar eclipse prediction made on February 29, 1504 CE (leap day is not a particularly new invention), to convince the natives to provide supplies to his ships.

* Lead levels in ancient Roman water were 100 times natural levels.

* In Athens, around 400 BCE, somebody left five curses on lead tablets in a young woman's grave, aimed at a husband-wife bartending team in the city. History doesn't tell us if the curses worked.

* A 300 year old mummy from Northern Botswana was from an older individual and shows Sotho-Tswana or Khoesan genetic relatedness based on DNA tests form the mummy.

* A new paper using whole mtDNA sequences largely reaffirms the conventional wisdom about the peopling of the Americas. Its findings on mtDNA lineage loss in South America seem a bit too extraordinary and may point to methodological issues.

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