Archeology Highlights of September 2012

In northeastern Vietnam, five hoes made out of stone have been discovered. The Neolithic tools are estimated to date back 4,000 years ”“ constructed out of local stone that had been polished and most likely fitted with wooden handles. In this article, you will learn more about this find, as well as other archeology news that has appeared in September 2012 headlines.

Neolithic Tools Found in Vietnam

While the family members of Nguyen Van Hoi in Yen Minh Town were getting ready to build a home, they uncovered the set by accident. The found tools highlight the use of stone hoes in agriculture at a specific time period which coincided with the farming conditions related to the region in the northeastern province of Ha Giang. They discovered the stone hoes, which were carved in quadrangle form and showcased a smooth polish. The hoes were situated next to one another with traces of burnt coal close by. Upon careful examination, scientists confirmed initial thoughts that the tools were made out of hard riolit stone, which was a significant resource in the region.

The tools measured 18 centimeter in length and 7 centimeters in width. Marks and chipped edges on the tools show that they were probably tied to sticks, which served as handles. The hoes also showed signs that they were used for quite a while. The head of the Research Department of the Vietnam Archaeology Institute dated the tools as coming from the Late Neolithic to Early Metal Age, which occurred 3,500 to 4,000 years ago.

Scientists will continue to examine the surrounding area for more artifacts.
New Information on Stonehenge

Stonehenge has always been a fascinating subject for archeological and history buffs who ponder about its mysterious features and origin. A new study hitting recent headlines is that the people who erected Stonehenge may have been herders. Researchers have taken a look at the food remains from sites found all over England. About 5,300 years ago, England had a cool, dry climate that made raising cattle, sheep, and pigs a better choice to make a living than farming Mediterranean crops that accommodate a milder, wetter climate. Researchers believe that pastoralists constructed monuments (like Stonehenge) to complement the large gatherings that mobile groups would occasionally hold.

Analyzing Ancient Viking Manuscripts

The photography and digitization of ancient manuscripts held at the 6th century Sacred and Imperial Monastery of the God-Trodden Mount of Sinai may reveal some pretty interesting features. More than 100 texts had been scraped away so that the parchment could be reused ”“ an act that took place about 1,200 years ago.

Researchers are becoming the first people to see such a thing since the 9th century ”“ during a time where the Vikings busied themselves invading others and the days of Charlemagne. Underneath the visible words are other words that will take time to reveal. The surface words that can be read date back 1,200 years, but scientists are more interested in what was written beforehand. The overwritten text was around centuries earlier before the animal-skin parchment was recycled. There is a term for such documents ”“ they are known as palimpsests. Until they undergo further analysis using advanced technology, no one knows what information is hidden.