A frozen woolly mammoth found in 1900 on the banks of the Beresovka River, in Siberia, was in an almost complete state of preservation. Only its head was not frozen. Some of the explorers' dogs were... undiscriminating ... and even managed to eat some of the animal. According to modern radiocarbon dating it is around 44,000 years old. Talk about aging meat!
Unreliable Suppliers Have Been A Problem Since Ancient Times
In ancient Egypt, temples were not just religious places but economic ones. Think medieval monasteries. Depending on their size, ancient Egyptian temples could own large tracts of land, command the labor of dozens to thousands of people, and be local and even regional trade hubs. This meant temples needed bureaucracies to keep themselves running. Bureaucracies meant scribes who could write, and the records they wrote. Which is why historians love ancient Egyptian temples.
Pharaoh Neferirkare Kakai, third pharaoh of the Fifth Dynasty, had a lovely temple to the sun set up. Some of its scribes' records survived to be studied by modern historians. They demonstrate that he might have been pharaoh, but Neferirkare Kakai still had to deal with the hassle of unreliable suppliers, just like modern-day corporations. To quote Wilkinson's The Rise and Fall of Ancient Egypt:
Deliveries of foodstuffs and other supplies were also meticulously recorded, but here again there were systemic failures that even the most assiduous record keeping could not mask. Among the commodities due each day at Neferirkare’s sun temple were fourteen consignments of special bread. During one year, none arrived on the first day of the month, none on the second, and none on the third or fourth, until on the fifth day of the month seventy batches were delivered in one go.
The next six days’ supplies failed to materialize at all and seem to have been written off. By contrast, the next eleven days’ deliveries were received on time.
The cheese, which is believed to be approximately 3,200 years old, was found while the team was excavating the tomb of Ptahmes, mayor of Memphis, the ancient capital of Egypt. Among a group of jars found at the site, one unbroken jar had a mysterious white mass. It was found with a canvas cloth. So the archaeologists thought it might be some sort of food, that had once been covered with a cloth, and had the white mass tested. As you probably guessed from the title of this post, it was cheese!
Technically, it contained “a dairy product obtained by mixing sheep/goat and cow milk.” Since the canvas cloth wouldn't have stopped a liquid, like milk, from escaping over time then it was likely a solid cheese.
Scientists Stunned By a Neanderthal Hybrid Discovered in a Siberian Cave
Okay, the title of The Atlantic's article might be a little click-bait-y. But the discovery is truly remarkable. A new bone has been analyzed from the already-famous cave in Russia, and it belonged to, per DNA analysis, the daughter of a Neanderthal mother and a Denisovan father.
Or maybe they just knew the ladies love well-shaped calves... Anyway, this is from a relief at the palace of Ashurnasirpal II. The leg is a genie’s leg: genies were beings that existed during a godlike generation of humanity, so maybe that’s why they have such well-defined leg muscles.
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By Lillian Audette
This blog is a collection of the interesting, the weird, and sometimes the need-to-know about history, culled from around the internet. It has pictures, it has quotes, it occasionally has my own opinions on things. If you want to know more about anything posted, follow the link at the "source" on the bottom of each post. And if you really like my work, buy me a coffee or become a patron!