Vampires In The News

Rather than focus on the impending zombie apocalypse I thought I would focus on something less frightening, namely vampires. Continue reading

King Tutankhamun’s Family and Genetics

Back in February of 2010 I blogged about a research paper on Tutankhamun. In that post I focused on the paleopathological findings of the Hawass et al article and didn’t really mention the genetic research and resulting identification of Tutankhamun’s family. Recently this second aspect of the Hawass et al study have bubbled to the surface. Continue reading

The Carthaginians And Human Sacrifice: Carthage Got A Bum Rap

The victors always write the history and the case of Carthage was no exception. Consider this from Wikipedia:

Later commentators have compared the accounts of child sacrifice in the Old Testament with similar ones from Greek and Latin sources speaking of the offering of children by fire as sacrifices in the Punic city of Carthage, which was a Phoenician colony. Cleitarchus, Diodorus Siculus and Plutarch all mention burning of children as an offering to Cronus or Saturn, that is to Ba‘al Hammon, the chief god of Carthage. Issues and practices relating to Moloch and child sacrifice may also have been overemphasized for effect. After the Romans finally defeated Carthage and totally destroyed the city, they engaged in post-war propaganda to make their arch enemies seem cruel and less civilized.

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Paleopathology of King Tutankhamun And His Relatives

As mentioned in a previous post Jama has published the results of some interesting research on Tutankhamun and his family.
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Begging For An Article

Can some one send me a copy of the following article:

Ancestry and Pathology in King Tutankhamun’s Family
Zahi Hawass, PhD; Yehia Z. Gad, MD; Somaia Ismail, PhD; Rabab Khairat, MSc; Dina Fathalla, MSc; Naglaa Hasan, MSc; Amal Ahmed, BPharm; Hisham Elleithy, MA; Markus Ball, MSc; Fawzi Gaballah, PhD; Sally Wasef, MSc; Mohamed Fateen, MD; Hany Amer, PhD; Paul Gostner, MD; Ashraf Selim, MD; Albert Zink, PhD; Carsten M. Pusch, PhD
JAMA. 2010;303(7):638-647.

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Global History of Health Project

I know I have mentioned this before (unfortunately, I can’t find where) but Richard Steckel and Jerome Rose (among others) are working on a fascinating project called the Global History of Health Project. One of the reasons that I brought this up is because the Jewish World review has a fascinating overview of the project: Continue reading

The Nasca Trophy Skulls: What Population Did They Derive From?

The Journal of Anthropological Archaeology has an interesting paper that addresses the issue of what population provided the trophy skulls. The question has, in the past, been part and parcel of the debate as to what the trophy skulls were used for. There are two broad groups of, not necessarily mutually exclusive, explanations for the later question.

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Small Bodied Humans From Palau Revisited

One of the more controversial stories in physical anthropology concerns the small bodied humans found on Palau. The finds were published back in March in PLoS. In that paper Berger et al argued that the material they found represents a population of Palauans that possibly were subject to island dwarfing (although they also imply that Palua could have been populated by small bodied humans who later grew larger). Berger et al also compare the remains to Homo floresiensis and make several suggestions anout small body size and primitive characteristics of the genus Homo (I’ll return to this point later).

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The Logical End Result of Repatriation Laws?

Nature has an interesting news item called Online anthropology draws protest from aboriginal group:

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Detecting Early Diet in Teeth

There is an interesting new paper out in PNAS that looks at enamel chemistry to try and reconstruct early diet. The study is by Humphrey, Dean, Jeffries, and Penn. The abstract is below the fold.

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