Scientists have identified a Neanderthal family for the first time in modern history. A father and his teenage daughter, along with several other close relatives, have been found to live about 54,000 years ago. They lived in Siberian caves. Several scientists, along with the Nobel Prize Winner for Physiology and Medicine Svante Pääbo, participated in the discovery. The findings were published in Nature.
Where Did They Live?
Thought to have lived between 350,000 and 40,000 years ago, Neanderthal species inhabited what’s today known as Europe and Asia. They’re believed to have become extinct about 40,000 years ago, about the same time as the emergence of Homo Sapiens on the European continent.
There are many hypotheses associated with the disappearance of the species. According to one of them, fragmentation and degradation of the Neanderthal natural habitat occurred way before the arrival of modern humans. This might have resulted in the decimation of the species and its eventual extinction.
What Neanderthal DNA Reveals
The discovered Neanderthal family is thought to have dwelled in caves in small communities. They’d travel through river valleys in search of horses, bison, and other species to hunt. The species is also known to have created and used tools.
DNA found at the now-famous site gives scientists plenty of new insights into how the species actually lived. More precisely, the findings enable them to determine who migrated and how different communities interacted with each other. Researchers found incredibly little genetic diversity in the clean they studied. That suggests Neanderthal species would live in communities of up to 20 individuals.
A closer look at the DNA has revealed that women could have moved from one community to the other more often than men. The discovery was made by examining the mitochondrial DNA. That is the DNA mothers pass down to children. It was compared to the Y chromosome, passed by fathers.
In any case, the findings published in Nature are among the first of their kind. Still, we have yet many other aspects to discover about Neanderthals, their way of life, and their eventual extinction.
A Roman Zodiac Coin, With a Cancer Sign, was Found In Israel
A bronze coin from one of the Roman Empire’s most tranquil periods was found on the seafloor by archaeologists diving off the coast of Israel in the Mediterranean Sea. The Roman goddess of the moon, Luna (Greek: Selene), is shown on one side of the coin, underneath which is a crab, the astrological symbol for cancer. The team discovered the approximately 1,850-year-old bronze coin while searching in Haifa, Israel.
About the Coin
According to Britannica, Emperor Hadrian attempted to exterminate the Jews and Romanize the populace in the province of Judaea during his reign. Antoninus Pius succeeded him. For instance, according to Britannica, Hadrian renamed Judea’s territory Syria Palaestina and prohibited the teaching of the Torah. According to The Jerusalem Post, it only took Antoninus Pius approximately a year to annul the edicts that were targeting the Jews, therefore conditions for the Jewish people improved under his rule.
Generally speaking, Antoninus Pius is regarded as one of the final emperors to rule during the Pax Romana, the period of comparatively calm in Rome from 27 B.C. and A.D. 180. According to the assertion, Antoninus Pius was known to delegate provincial conflicts through local governors as opposed to deploying military force to resolve problems.
A Coin With a Crab?
A group of 13 coins featuring astrological signs includes the coin with the crab on it. According to Lior Sandberg, a coin expert at the IAA, the first twelve depict each astrological sign, while the thirteenth shows the full zodiac.
Because bronze is formed of tin and copper, which produces an oxide coating when exposed to oxygen and water, the coin has gradually taken on a green hue over time. With time, this layer thickens to the point where the copper underneath is no longer exposed to the air and is, therefore, unable to respond to it.
These discoveries, which were lost at sea and vanished from view for countless centuries, have been astonishingly well preserved. Some of them are incredibly uncommon, and when they are discovered, pieces of the country’s history puzzle are finally put together.