In 2000, scientists looked to date what they thought was the oldest star in the universe. They made observations via the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Hipparcos satellite and estimated that HD140283 — or Methuselah as it’s commonly known — was a staggering 16 billion years old. Such a figure was rather baffling. After all, the … Read more
Some 40,000 years ago, a small group of foragers parked themselves on a riverbank in what is now northeastern China. Some split pebbles and bones to make small tools while others made a fire. And at least one experienced craftsperson concentrated on the primary task: grinding red, purple, and gray chunks of ochre into a … Read more
Africa is the birthplace of our species, but ancient DNA from the continent has so far provided relatively few clues to our history there, partly because researchers have struggled to recover genetic samples that survived the hot, humid climate. Now, an analysis of ancient DNA from six individuals from southeastern Africa offers a glimpse of … Read more
An ancient temple dating from the early centuries of Buddhism has been unearthed in the Swat Valley in northern Pakistan – part of the ancient Gandhara region that was conquered by Alexander the Great and gave rise to a mixing of Buddhist belief and Greek art. Archaeologists think that the temple dates from about the middle … Read more
Slender gold and silver tubes crafted during the Bronze Age are the world’s oldest drinking straws, a new study finds. Archaeologists found the 3-foot-long (1 meter) metal tubes in 1897 while excavating a burial mound known as a kurgan from the ancient Maikop (also spelled Maykop) culture in the northwestern Caucasus, which primarily includes modern-day … Read more
A Neolithic grave containing five generations.