‘4,000-year-old skeleton’ uncovered near Windsor

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Archaeologists working near Windsor have unearthed a 4,400-year-old gold-adorned skeleton of an upper-class woman. The Copper Age woman, whose remains were discovered at a site where many previous discoveries have been made, was buried wearing amber buttons, lignite beads and a necklace of folded sheet gold.

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Archaeologist Gareth Chaffey of Wessex Archaeology, who is directing the excavation, said: “She could have been a leader, a person with power and authority, or possibly part of an elite family – perhaps a princess or queen.”

   

  

First World War soldiers buried in France

The remains of two First World War British soldiers have been buried in a cemetery in northern France, almost 100 years after they were killed in action. The bodies were discovered in 2009 by a French farmer and have subsequently been identified. Relatives of both men, who were killed on 15 May 1917 during an enemy attack near Bullecourt, attended the ceremony where the men were given full military honours. 

  

Modern Europe’s genetic history ‘begins in the Stone Age’

A new study conducted at the University of Adelaide has suggested that Europeans as a people are younger than previously thought. DNA recovered from ancient skeletons indicates that the genetic makeup of modern Europe was established around 6,500 years ago in the mid-Neolithic Age, rather than by the first farmers who arrived in the area 7,500 years ago.

Archaeologists race to unearth ancient Buddhist city in Afghanistan

Archeologists have uncovered a hoard of gold jewellery and coins at an ancient Buddhist  settlement at 35km south Kabul. The sites includes an ancient copper mine, a series of monasteries, and what may be homes or workshops at Mes Ainak in Logar province. A Chinese state mining company won a $3bn contract to mine the rest of the copper deposit, one of the largest in the world, which sits directly beneath the ancient settlement.

An international team of archaeologists in Afghanistan is racing to uncover a buried Buddhist city sitting atop an enormous copper deposit and on the site of a planned Chinese open-pit mine. Thanks to delays in the construction of the mine, archaeologists are frantically unearthing what has turned out to be a unique window into Afghanistan’s role on the ancient Silk Road.

History ‘has lessons on preserving rural landscapes’

Economic and social factors have sometimes had a greater influence than climate on rural Scottish landscapes, according to the results of a new study. The research, which was commissioned by Scottish Natural Heritage, examined how Glentanar and Aviemore in the Cairngorms National Park have altered since the 1700s. It cites over-exploitation, particularly during the world wars, as playing an important role in changing the landscape.

2,000-year-old ritual bath found in Jerusalem

Archaeologists in Jerusalem have uncovered a 2,000-year-old ritual bath with an advanced system to keep water pure. The complex water collection and purification system conforms to the Jewish dietary laws known as kashrut, which require bathwater to be collected and transported naturally, by the force of gravity and without human contact.

Margaret Thatcher art posters banned from the Tube

Six posters of Margaret Thatcher due to be displayed at Westminster Tube Station have been banned by advertising bosses. A statement from Transport for London (TfL) said that their advertising contractor had deemed it insensitive to display the artwork at the time of Baroness Thatcher’s funeral.

Coins from Gold Rush history fetch huge sums

A collection of some 200 gold coins from California’s ‘gold rush’ has been sold at auction in Reno, Nevada. The Jack Totheroh collection, which was privately made in San Francisco in the 1850s, sold for the sum of $865,000.

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Image credit: Jerome Starkey (Anyak)