When you wear sunscreen you’re basically painting yourself the color of ultraviolet, and bees can see ultraviolet, so I like to imagine there are bee anthropologists who write papers about human seasonal UV-paint rituals. Clearly, it is done for good fortune before long journeys, to ward off evil spirits.

Fandom language is so fascinating. Like, it needs to be it’s own field of study within Linguistics. A few years ago I had no idea what “headcanon,” “ship,” or “Stan” meant. You people invented your own language. You’re a strange but functional virtual tribe basically. Distance is no longer a factor in what can constitute a cohesive community. Like, you have rules, you choose to include people or kick them out, you trade stories, you’re sort of ranked by popularity, etc etc. It’s really interesting that we set up similar systems of society to the ones we use in real life. The anthropology nerd in me loves this shit.

New Mexico scientist builds carbon dating machine that does not damage artifacts
Marvin Rowe’s machine can accurately date even tiny artifacts without damaging them
By T. S. Last | Journal Staff Writer

“The process is important because, unlike other methods of radiocarbon dating that destroy the sample being tested, LEPRS preserves it. It also works on tiny samples – even a flake of ink or paint – and is considered a more accurate means of dating.”

Some fairy tales may be 6000 years old
Study traces history of some of our favorite folk stories

A really interesting study combining linguistics and anthropology: 

Here’s how it worked: Fairy tales are transmitted through language, and the shoots and branches of the Indo-European language tree are well-defined, so the scientists could trace a tale’s history back up the tree—and thus back in time. If both Slavic languages and Celtic languages had a version of Jack and the Beanstalk (and the analysis revealed they might), for example, chances are the story can be traced back to the “last common ancestor.” That would be the Proto-Western-Indo-Europeans from whom both lineages split at least 6800 years ago (see image). The approach mirrors how an evolutionary biologist might conclude that two species came from a common ancestor if their genes both contain the same mutation not found in other modern animals.

But it’s not quite so simple. Unlike genes, which are almost exclusively transmitted “vertically”—from parent to offspring—fairy tales can also spread horizontally when one culture intermingles with another. Accordingly, much of the authors’ study focuses on recognizing and removing tales that seem to have spread horizontally. When the pruning was done, the team was left with a total of 76 fairy tales.

The article, by Sara Graça da Silva and Jamshid J. Tehrani, is open access and available in full at Royal Society Open Science

This 2,500-year-old corpse could change history
A rare genome has been identified in an ancient body pulled from a sarcophagus on a site near ancient Carthage, in a discovery which could throw new light on the history of human movement. The DNA of the 2,500-year-old remains of the ‘Young Man of Byrsa’ , discovered in 1994 and believed to be that of a young male Phoenician, was sequenced by a team of scientists.