Fossils called the fossil remains of plants and animals. Many of them played a major role in folk beliefs and traditions, which provide fossils of magical and medicinal properties. Without fossils all our knowledge about past life on Earth was limited to the period of the last few millennia. To determine which animals lived on our planet in the distant past, they were the shape and size and in what time disappeared, modern science uses left their footprints: footprints and fossils found in the ice and rocks, a kind of negative of the flora and fauna of days gone by. Among the fossils come across startling instances, the beauty of which is staggering. No wonder our ancestors endowed them with magical properties. One of the most famous fossils are Ammonites, cephalopod molluscs with a spiral shell that lived until the Cretaceous, the size of which varied from two inches to nearly two meters. Worthy of mention and the ancestors of the belemnites squid living in the waters of the seas of the Mesozoic. Instead of suction cups of their tentacles are equipped with hooks, and a tapered tail carried the sink, which has reached our days in the form of fossils. It is now more than 200 million years from the moment when the Earth disappeared trilobites, primitive arthropods insects of the Paleozoic era, their fossils so far found in rocks. Another type of fossil molluscs — bokordici related to the order of plastinchatousykh. Their fossils have the shape of a heart and very beautiful. Many civilizations believed Ammonites powerful amulet and gave them supernatural properties.

Some fossils correspond to the organisms that existed in the prehistoric period and surviving, like molluscs, known in Menorca called “eyes of fortune”.

Protection and luck

Hindus believed that the Ammonites and the sacred in them lives the spirit of Vishnu, whose light illuminates the way of the warriors, guiding them to victory. In the Middle ages European peasants have hung sink in the barn to protect the animals from evil spells, and not to give cow’s milk to turn sour. Today these fossils are used as talismans, giving their owners peace of mind and ability to handle difficult situations. Continue reading

Archaeological finds: war is the natural state of man

The other day Kenyan military base in Somalia was attacked by militants of the Islamist group “Shabab”. At the time of the attack, Kenyan soldiers were sound asleep, and it was expensive. Dozens of soldiers and opened her eyes. As the Kenyan member of Parliament Yusuf Hassan, “It was a shock. We don’t Burundi, Ethiopia we don’t, we are not Uganda. Our country has no history of wars. With us this never happened”. It was at this same time, in the lagoon on the shores of lake Turkana in the Kenyan expedition of archaeologists tried to prove the opposite. She found traces of the massacre, which happened approximately 10,000 years ago – before people began to engage in agriculture.

Apparently, one group of hunters attacked another group and were brutally murdered her. Talked about broken skulls, said arrows and spears in the skeletons.

Last Wednesday the journal “Nature” published a report by scientists. It States that from 12 found the bodies of those killed 10 were with traces of explicit violence. In addition, they discovered the bodies of 15 people killed in the same battle. Remains found in Northern Kenya on the shores of the lake, talking about the cruelty of the massacre. So one warrior stuck two arrows, which pierced his skull, and his knees were broken with maces. A woman was found pregnant in sixth month, killed by a blow to the head, perhaps bound his hands before he died.

Violence has always been present in people’s lives. But when it began to develop into war? This question is hotly debated in science. Some scholars argue that war is deeply rooted in human evolution. As evidence they point to the fights between different tribes of chimpanzees. Others stress the influence of complex and hierarchical human societies and the raids on the warehouses of the fruit farming.

March Mirazon Lahr and Robert Foley from Cambridge University and Turkana basin Institute in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, and a group of other scientists, came to the conclusion, reported in “Nature”: was found near the shores of lake Turkana indicate the existence of wars between prehistoric hunting tribes. Continue reading

The most important discoveries in the field of prehistoric archaeology

The nineteenth century for prehistoric archaeology, as well as for the classic, was “the era of great archaeological discoveries.” In 1829, on the lake of Zurich in Switzerland were discovered hidden under water piles. They are not paying much attention, until in 1854 due to the strong drought is not exposed near the shores of the lake bottom. The locals, producing earthworks designed to recapture the water some part of the land, were found stone and bone tools, broken pottery. Learning of this, the Swiss archaeologists have begun excavating the pile and opened a settlement. There were several alternating layers. The top layer of sand followed (deep) layer of silt with remnants of dwellings, utensils, implements, then again a layer of sand, and under it another layer of silt with residential remains.

The existence of the pile settlements in ancient times it was known from the testimony of Herodotus, who described the settlement on the lake is Great-zias (Macedonia) in the V century BC On the pile dwellings in the same century according to Hippocrates and, finally, the bas-relief image on the Trajan’s column, Dating from the II century ad Modern pile settlements are known in many countries, mostly Equatorial, but in the nineteenth century they were still in Portugal.

Ancient pile settlements, open in Switzerland, belong to stone and bronze ages. Further pile settlements were opened in other locations in Switzerland and in other countries. These discoveries put comicsporn about three centuries. Due to the large number of monuments were able to establish that the upper layers containing bronze items, belong to the bronze age, and bottom, do not contain metal, but with a clearly Neolithic tools, Dating from the stone age. Continue reading

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