Scientists studying cave murals in Spain believe they have found evidence of magic mushroom use 6,000 years ago. The Selva Pascuala cave mural near Villar del Humo depicts a bull, but also appears to show a row of 13 small mushroom-like objects, which some scientists believe could be Psilocybe hispanica, a local funghi with hallucinogenic properties. It is thought the mushrooms may have been used in religious rituals.
Data collected during an extensive genetic study looking at patterns of genetic diversity among 27 (present-day) African populations, has suggested that modern humans may have originated from southern Africa. The results show that hunter-gatherer populations in the region had the greatest degree of genetic diversity, an indicator of longevity, and say that the region was ‘probably the best location for the origin of modern humans’. The findings challenge the view that modern humans came from eastern Africa.
A previously unseen photo album showing photographs of Hitler’s mistress Eva Braun is to feature in this month’s Life magazine. Some of the images depict Braun as a child, while others shed light on her life with Hitler; many of the pictures show her holidaying at the Nazi leader’s retreat in the Bavarian Alps and dressing up for carnivals. The photographs were recovered from Braun’s home by the US Army after the pair had committed suicide in an underground bunker in April 1945.
Almost 2,000 years after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius buried the Italian city of Pompeii, the broken parts of a tomb inscription for a husband and wife have finally been reunited, after the missing piece was discovered. The marble inscription was smashed during the eruption in AD 79, but the missing piece, containing the female name Servilia, has now been reunited with the other fragments. The inscription, which is now legible, reads: ‘Lucius Catilius Pamphilus, freedman of Lucius, member of the Collinian tribe, for his wife Servilia, in a loving spirit.’