Archaeologists from Stockholm University's Archaeological Research Laboratory have located a unique Viking Age shipyard site at Birka on Björkö in Lake Mälaren. The discovery challenges previous theories about how the maritime activities of the Viking Age were organised. “A site like this has never been found before, it is the first of its kind, but the finds convincingly show that it was a shipyard”, says Sven Isaksson, Professor of Archaeological Science at Stockholm University.
The Earth is a dynamic planet that has undergone major changes over the many millions of years of its history. In order to recognize and understand these changes and to derive forecasts for the planet’s future, archives are needed that have stored historical information. The Temagami BIF, a rock formation in Ontario, Canada, is such a geo-archive. A European group of researchers, including Michael Bau, Professor of Geochemistry at Jacobs University, has studied this formation for the first time using high-precision geochemical methods. The results were recently published in the renowned journals Nature Communications and Earth and Planetary Science Letters.
A royal shipwreck has been discovered off the English coast. The wreck is of one of the most famous ships of the 17th century - The Gloucester - which sank 340 years ago while carrying the future King of England, James Stuart. Since running aground on a sandbank on May 6, 1682, the wreck has lain half-buried on the seabed, its exact whereabouts unknown. It was found by brothers Julian and Lincoln Barnwell, with their friend James Little, after a four-year search. The discovery is described by University of East Anglia (UEA) maritime history expert Prof Claire Jowitt as the most important maritime discovery since the Mary Rose.
- Leverhulme Trust
DNA analysis of ancient human remains has shed new light on an "explosion" of intermixing cultures and genetics in an island region north of Australia known as Wallacea - an imprint that is still detectable in East Indonesians today.
- Nature Ecology & Evolution
A new study combining archaeological, historical and bioarchaeological data provides new insights into the early Islamic period in modern-day Syria. The research team was planning to focus on a much older time period but came across what they believe to be remains of early Muslims in the Syrian countryside.
- Communications Biology
The Wādī Sūq period represents a 400 years during which there was a significant and perhaps turbulent shift in lifestyle. A large aridification event likely made farming and the sedentary lifestyle that accompanies it suddenly difficult. To explain this change, researchers at the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN), Kyoto, Japan, have been conducting archaeological work in the Mugharat al-Kahf cave and surrounding region in Wādī Tanūf, Oman, under the auspice of the Omani Ministry of Heritage and Tourism. Their latest report, seen in Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy, reveals the cave was a critical storage site for food and other items, which allowed inhabitants to adapt to their new mobile lifestyle.
- Arabian archaeology and epigraphy
- Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Heiwa Nakajima Foundation