so are archaeologists

Vast 5,600-year-old religious centre discovered near Stonehenge

A huge, prehistoric religious and ceremonial complex has been discovered near Britain’s most famous prehistoric temple Stonehenge.

Its discovery is likely to transform our understanding of the early development of Stonehenge’s ancient landscape.

Built about 5,650 years ago – more than 1,000 years before the great stones of Stonehenge were erected – the 200m-diameter complex is the first major early Neolithic monument to be discovered in the Stonehenge area for more than a century.

The newly discovered complex, just over a mile and a half north-east of Stonehenge, appears to have consisted of around 950m of segmented ditches – and potentially palisaded earthen banks – arranged in two great concentric circles.

So far, archaeologists have located and excavated around 100 metres worth of the outer ditch. It is not yet known how much, if any, of the rest of the monument has survived. Read more.

alanathon reblogged your post “Stop. Pause your scrolling. Wait. I have a thing for you. Actual Mummy…” and added:

…..Is it bad that I thought this was going to be about Newt as an actual mummy? like wrapped in bandages and living forever

Ok. Stop. Pause your scrolling again. I have another thing for you.

Actual Mummy Newt: The wrapped in bandages and living forever version.

It goes like this:

Graves is not an archaeologist. Graves knows nothing about archaeology, he doesn’t like it, he doesn’t care about it and he hates Egypt. Sand. Sand everywhere. Sand in his hair, sand in his eyes, sand working into his sunburn, sand.

What Graves is is strapped for cash, so when this archaeologist lady starts advertising for some poor sod to handle the digging and the heavy labour and maybe a bit of the security on the side, Graves says screw it all to the empty flat he hasn’t paid rent on for the last two months and goes.

It was potentially not a great decision. Because, you know, sand, but also the fact that the archaeologist lady is fucking insane. The bit she hadn’t advertised in black and white newspaper print? The site they were uncovering was where some complete nutjob of the ancient world had tried to release a demon. The other bit she hadn’t advertised - although, to be fair to her, she may not have known this at the time - was that the nutjob was still there.

Like. It’s been several thousand years. Chill, dude. Take your bandage trailing self back to the creepy sculpture tomb and take the rest of the millenia off. Don’t send tiny minions of darkness out to attack members of the dig team and steal their cufflinks, that’s just rude. Don’t unleash giant serpents on the party when they get a bit close to a private area, just, I don’t know, put up a sign? Keep out, the snakes here grow to the size of the fucking sun and get defensive about their eggs? That’d do it. And for fucks sake, don’t kidnap Graves and squirrel him away to some cavernous underground lair, why would you even do that, why is that even a thing.

“I don’t speak Egyptian,” Graves says for the eighty seventh time.

“I donnnnn’tt sssea-kuh pptiannnnnn,” the mummy repeats, tilting its head and standing way too close. Personal boundaries, dude. Respect them.

“And you shouldn’t be speaking anything at all you pile of rotting corpse flesh. How are you even - do you even have a tongue under all those bandages or has it shrivelled and fallen off?”

Graves, maybe, is not handling his surprise abduction very well. It was fairly unnerving to be singled out as soon as the mummy had found their group, and even more unnerving to be targeted by a flying demon with a literal skull for its head that shot ropes out at unreasonable speed how the fuck does it do that and basically, Graves has had a hard day. He feels he’s allowed to be pissy with the mummy, and the mummy is being entirely unfair when it dips its head and gives him a wounded expression. How does it even manage that when none of its face is visible. How.

“Stop it,” he orders.

The mummy does not. The mummy goes one step further and takes Graves’ hand, leading him through a series of stone benches and messily stacked shelves that seem to form some kind of workshop. Maybe a mad scientist laboratory, but Graves is slightly mixing up his horror stories there, so who knows. Although the mummy isn’t quite acting how an evil mummy ought - he doesn’t shuffle, doesn’t moan, hasn’t actually tried to drain the life out of everyone. He’s just kidnapped Graves, that’s all. And now he’s stopping to talk to a tree full of tiny little - what are those, tree demons? One of the tree demons clambers up his arm and starts fussily tucking loose bandages back into their proper place.

Demons are not quite the horrific things Graves had thought they were. It’s all very confusing and he needs a drink, because now the mummy has led him to a giant stone carving of - a bird? Hawk, maybe, the egyptians liked those. The ominous clouds and thunderbolts the artist has added on are somewhat imposing, but for the most part it looks like a bird. Few too many wings maybe.

The mummy stands next to it and looks hopeful.

“It’s very nice?” Graves tries.

The mummy replies with a string of words he doesn’t understand. It frowns at his blank incomprehension, then slowly, labouriously, sounds out: “Helpp. Grinnnnndlewaldd trrap. Grinnddlewalllld hhelp.”

Which, since when did the mummy speak english. And who the fuck was Grindlewald, and why the fuck did the mummy think Graves was someone called Grindlewald. Graves was not Grindlewald. Graves would remember trapping - oh fuck. 

The demon. The mummy had been trying to release a demon when he’d been cursed into mummy-dom, Graves remembers this. 

“You,” Graves said. The mummy perked up hopefully and dammit, it wasn’t at all cute. “You’ve been guarding your trapped demon for fuck knows how many thousand years. You have, don’t even try to deny it, you’ve dedicated your immortal unlife to a demon.”

“Ffrannnnnk,” the mummy corrects, because of course the mummy has called his stone-entombed demon bird Frank. Because this is Graves’ life.

He squashes the completely illogical urge to feel guilty when he admits that, “I’m not Grindelwald. I don’t know how to help, I’m just - I’m just Graves.”

The mummy points to a painted wall over the other side of the room with a petulant stamp of his foot. It shows a man who looks strikingly like Graves, seriously fucking scarily like Graves, standing about three times as high as everyone else in the mural. 'Everyone else’ being a collection of people with whips corralling hosts of different sized demons ready to be turned into stone. Graves recognises the giant snakes and even the tiny tree demon.

“Oh,” Graves says.

“Frrannnnkk,” the mummy insists again. “Hhelpp.”

And that is how, dear readers, Graves discovered that he was a despotic evil wizard in a past life. It was not the best discovery he could have made.

(Although maybe it kinda was because the mummy, once he realises that Graves is a. not evil and b. incompetent takes it upon himself to teach Graves the magic his past self used to throw around like glitter bombs. Between the two of them they break the enchantments and release Frank, who turns out to be able to summon storms and Graves has never in his life been so happy to stand in the rain and get soaking wet.

Eventually, they even release the bindings that keep Newt trapped in his desert prison.

And, well, Graves could call it a day there but he’s got used to having Newt shuffling around after him with various bandages unravelling in his wake and assorted demons pouncing on the trailing ends like over grown cats. The horrified shrieks the tree demon makes when one of the bandages actually tears will haunt Graves’ dreams, but the way the mummy coos and shushes the little thing as he sews himself back together is adorable enough to make up for it.

No. What. Graves doesn’t think the mummy is adorable. Stop it. Graves will travel the world with his entirely non-adorable mummy and attached host of demons and he absolutely does not stand around sometimes with a silly little smile on his face while the mummy fusses over the latest rescued stray and he one hundred percent is not completely head over heels for an ancient undead pile of cloth and stitches. He’s not.

The mummy deposits a baby hippopotamus demon in his arms - or this one might actually be a baby hippopotamus in the completely non-demonic sense, it’s hard to tell - and happily declares that this one is called Ggeorrrge, and, well. 

Fuckit. The mummy’s adorable.)

The Archaeologist and the Skull

A very silly #microfiction…

“Hey buddy.”

The voice appeared to be coming from a skull that sat on one of the tomb’s dusty shelves.

The archaeologist leaned in to take a closer look. He leaned in very close indeed.

“Whoa! Bit hecking close there, aren’t we?”

“I dunno,” the archaeologist stared over the top of his glasses at the skull. “Are we?”

A small tongue flicked out of the skull’s eye and licked him on the nose.

“I guess so, bucko.” Said the little gecko sitting in the skull’s eye socket. “I guess so.”

“Oh,” said the archaeologist, “I thought you were a talking skull, but you’re just a talking gecko.”

“Oh, the skull talks too. She’s just shy.”


“No. She’s actually a real extrovert.”


The archaeologist didn’t lean back at all, but kept leant up close to the skull and the gecko.

They stared at each other.

“Hey, buddy?” Said the gecko. “You know we’re in a tomb, right?”

“I do!”

“So … why are you wearing sunglasses?”

“They’re prescription.”

“Reaaaaally?” The gecko could not raise an eyebrow because it didn’t have any. But, for the sake of understanding its tone, please imagine that it had eyebrows and it was raising one.

“No.” Said the archaeologist. “They look pretty cool though, right?”

“Heck yeah.” Said the gecko. “They do.”

“Rad.” Said the archaeologist, radly.

“Hey, bucko.” Said the gecko. “Can I trust you?”

“Of course.” Said the archaeologist. “I have a PHD.”

“What’s that mean?”

“It stands for Pretty Heroic Dude.”

“Badass. I’ll trust you then.” The gecko continued in a whisper. “This skull is hella magic and some really evil folks want to find it to do An Apocalypse.”

“Oh no.” Said the archaeologist, his square jaw bristling. “I would hate to do An Apocalypse!”

“Then you must steal this skull, friend!”

“I *will* steal this skull-friend!”

“Great.” Said the gecko. “Ooh. When you leave, duck your head into your coat and put the skull on your head, so it looks like you’re a skellington walking out…”

“I like the way you think.”

So the archaeologist walked out of the tomb with a skull on his head, so he looked like a skellington and the other people at the dig were well freaked out.

And this was just the first of their many adventures.


fellpieces  asked:

Someone mentioned an excavation in one of their questions to you, are you an archaeologist?? I'm a North American archaeologist so it's always cool to run into others :D

(I’m, gonna post it here, maybe you’ll find more people like you) Hi! I’m not an archeologist but we have a summer practice that’s either archeology or cultural anthropology. But I have a lot of friends who are archeologists (they always have time for a drink and a crazy party, unlike us who are stressed out during the academic year and think only abt 20th century drama shit. hi, that’s me btw:D you guys are awesome!

little Alexi things

She never worked on a Prothean dig site. The reason she insists on that story because she doesn’t want people to know that the real reason she ended up in the Initiative is because she got someone killed. One of her older brothers, Ilia, did work as an archaeologist, so she knows just enough to successfully bullshit.

She wasn’t in the Alliance either, just left Earth and chilled on the Citadel with Andrei. The little training she has, she got it from her father who insisted on it. It’s obvious to anyone who ever had any sort of military training.

She is determined to make her race more interesting to Jaal and his people. So she tells him about dinosaurs, except says they’re still around and humans ride them to battle. She says that human nails change color depending on a person’s mood, and paints her nails every single day for a while to keep up this lie. It’s a weird friendship.

She loves tracksuits and would wear them all the time if she could. Hanging aboard the Tempest? Tracksuits. Meeting an entire new alien race? Tracksuits. Doing important Pathfinder business on the Nexus? You know it.

She also has a huge collection of scrunchies to match every outfit in her wardrobe. She doesn’t like it when hair gets in her face, because she has enough problems seeing as it is, so putting her hair in a ponytail at all times is a must.

Her biggest concern before leaving are her braces. She doesn’t know just how they will react to 600 years of cryo and if there is anyone in Andromeda who can adjust or take them off later. 

How An Earthquake Moved A Civilization

Sanxingdui was a Bronze Age civilization which flourished in China’s fertile Sichuan River basin. That’s a ways away from the Yellow River, cradle of Chinese civilization – or so archaeologists had thought before Sanxingdui was uncovered. It was strong for several hundred years, but around 1100 or 1200 BCE mysteriously vanished. Around that same time, a similar civilization appeared in Jinsha, about thirty miles from Sanxingdui. Archaeologists and historians generally accept that Sanxingdui became Jinsha, its culture continuing simply in a different place. Now, a new theory suggests why.

The first clue is that ravines and beds of waterways to and passing the Sanxingdui site are wider than their current amounts of water suggest should be. They were likely filled with much more water, once.  This lead to Sichuan University scientist Niannian Fan’s hypothesis that perhaps an earthquake in the mountains feeding the streams and rivers, similar to the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, sharply decreased the water level in Sanxingdui. Using google earth, Fan found a stretch of mountainous terrain through which the old river would have flowed lacks signs of glacial erosion which should have been there. This mountain section’s erosion signs may have been covered up by a long-ago landslide. Finally, ancient records from the capital of the Zhou Dynasty record an earthquake which occurred in 1099 BCE. Although 300 miles from what Fan presumes is the earthquake’s epicenter near Sichuan, its magnitude would have ensured the earthquake was felt even in the Zhou capital.

This does not answer every question about Sanxingdui. Why did they move to Jinsha, specifically? How was this accomplished – over a generation, or within a harvest season or two of the earthquake? What impact did the earthquake and its aftermath have on the culture? These are questions for archaeologists to answer, as they find more evidence about both civilizations.


@maudyoulook started following fluttermedeadly

“So…do you really think…I could be like an archaeologist if I take from graves…and not a grave robber?” the mare asked. She used the parts for her art after all. So when Maud mentioned archaeologists taking from graves it gave her hope.

{{taken from a comment Maud made on a thread lol}}


Glint in the grass? Often, it’s not even a nickel.

But last week, Israeli Laurie Rimon spotted a gleam while on a hike in northern Israel with several friends. It turned out to be a gold coin so unusual, Israeli archaeologists say there is only one other one with the same symbols in the world.

“It’s extremely exciting,” said Dr. Donald Ariel, an expert with the Israel Antiquities Authority, in comments released by the agency, which says the coin was struck by Roman Emperor Trajan in the year 107. “His gold coins are extremely rare.”

One side of the gold disc shows an image of Augustus, the founder of the Roman Empire more than a century earlier. The other has symbols of Roman military legions.

That’s No Bottlecap! Hiker In Israel Finds Rare Gold Coin

Photos: Provided by the Israel Antiquities Authority


I finished some commissions today so I rewarded myself by drawing Jonathan giving my favorite pick-up line ever to some lucky person. He was an archaeologist, so he probably went to school with paleontologists, right??? GOOD ENOUGH.

Also, the above image is partially transparent, so like… you can. Fill in whoever you want there. It’s an exploitable, go ahead! I couldn’t decide who to draw in, so I’ll let someone else decide!

Calling all Anthro Foxes!

So, I started collecting ideas for an anthropology/archaeology drinking game to play while watching horrible old video ethnographies. I have a good list so far, but I think it can be, like, 60000% better.

Now, disclaimer, I don’t suggest actually playing this for real, because your liver might cut its way out of your body and jump ship. But you could pick and choose a few to go with whatever stuffy 1980s ethnography you have to watch for class with your lab partners. Or make it a party with your university’s Anthropology Society (OBEY DRINKING AGE LAWS IN YOUR COUNTRY PLEASE).

Or, you know, if you’re pathetic like me you can just do it alone in your room, while silently crying about the looming debt, narrow job prospects, and exorbitantly expensive field schools that are all in your future.

Okay, back on track. Here’s the list so far:

Take one sip:

  • every time you see an archaeologist/anthropologist with a beard
  • every time you hear a new accent
  • every time an archaeologist/anthropologist wears really inappropriate clothing for the weather/country/life in general (bad fashion choices count too)
  • every time alcohol/drinking/pubs/bars is/are mentioned
  • every time someone either makes up a word, or uses a word that is absurdly specific to their particular project
  • every time a white anthropologist/archaeologists attempts to say a word in a different language and butchers it
  • every time you feel skeptical of a translation of something an indigenous person said
  • every time someone discusses Lewis Binford picking a fight with another anthropologist
  • *NEW* every time someone calls Franz Boas the “Father of American Anthropology”

Take one shot:

  • every time someone says “primitive” or uses similarly ethnocentric language
  • every time an indigenous person or local guide/helper makes an awesomely snarky comment about white people/white anthropologists/white archaeologists
  • every time an indigenous group is described as “unchanging”, “proud”, having a “simple way of life”, or something else equally as insulting and incorrect.
  • every time someone with more letters in the acronyms AFTER their name than letters actually IN their name speaks/appears

Chug your drink:

  • every time you see White Saviour Complex rearing its ugly head

So, any more ideas?

Message the blog, or reply to this post!


David and Gillian turn 55 and 47, August 2015

This moment, and these people, are so precious. I am so incredibly grateful to know that there is a documentary crew on set this summer. Because this show is so special and the people who make it are special and goddammit the world needs to know it. I truly hope they don’t miss a single one of David’s corny puns, or a single one of Gillian’s giggles. Even if most of it doesn’t make it into the finished product, I want it all on film so the archaeologists of the future will one day uncover it and, like us, will marvel at how crazy and weird and amazing this thing that happened was, and how much was accomplished despite a grossly underfunded lighting department.

Happy Birthday, Gigi and the Dukes, you perfect little unicorn butts.
Palmyra's Baalshamin temple 'blown up by IS' - BBC News
Islamic State militants have blown up the ancient temple of Baalshamin at Palmyra, Syrian officials and activists say.

So my dad is an archaeologist and he is on a civil war battlefield dig right now and he dug up two full skeletons and seven amputated limbs and he’s like a kid he’s so excited about these assorted dead people.

as an archaeologist, nothing will be more hilarious to me than the fight over the how people got into the americas cause everyone is SO PASSIONATE about it

like the only way i can describe it is like a suburban neighborhood you know you have the passive aggressive wine moms who write papers about their theory and then throw in a “but SOME people still believe in clovis first and OBVIOUSLY that isnt true at all” like goddamn helen i just want to read about all my options but its 10 degrees cooler in here cause of all ur shade

and then you have the academics who don’t give a fuck and they call people out by name LITERALLY IN THEIR PUBLISHED. ACADEMIC. PAPERS. and hand out criticisms like fuckin oprah

and then theres the neighborhood kids who are like “what if we all just tried to get along???”

and then you get to conferences and the wine moms are all doing the “nothings wrong im fine i just wish SOME people wouldn’t suggest theories that are wrong” and the one academic who doesnt give a fuck is like “you wanna GO” and then people start throwing out yo mamma jokes and insulting families until that one fucker throws a punch

archaeology is WILD man