Secrets in the News: February 2020

A roundup of Secrets in the News for February 2020. Read more below for talking Egyptian mummies, an art sanctuary uncovered in a Spanish cave, and bones recently recovered from underwater.


Voice of a 3,000-year-old Egyptian mummy reproduced by 3-D printing a vocal tract

CNN reports: Scientists have revealed what the voice of a mummified Egyptian priest who lived 3,000 years ago would have sounded like by 3-D printing his vocal tract. The team was able to accurately reproduce a single sound, which sounds a bit like a long, exasperated “meh” without the “m.” David Howard, one of the academics behind the project, describes it as falling somewhere between the vowels in the English words “bed” and “bad.”… [read more]

 

15000-Year-Old Rock Art ‘Sanctuary’ Uncovered in Spanish Cave

Ancient Origins reports: In the autonomous region of Catalonia, Spain, archaeologists have uncovered a treasure trove of prehistoric rock art that is around 15,000 years old. The engravings were found on cave walls during a survey. It is believed that the art indicated that the location was once a Stone Age religious sanctuary or shrine… [read more]

Newly Recovered Paleoindian Bones Examined

Archaeology Magazine: According to a statement released by the Public Library of Science, Wolfgang Stinnesbeck of the University of Heidelberg and his colleagues examined a set of 9,900-year-old bones recently recovered from the underwater Chan Hol Cave, which is located on the Caribbean coast of the Yucatán Peninsula. The remains are thought to have belonged to a woman who died at about 30 years of age. Her skull resembles other Paleoindian skulls found in the cave, and she also had cavities in her teeth… [read more]

 

800-year-old spiral rock carvings marked the solstices for Native Americans

Live Science reports: The Pueblo people created rock carvings in the Mesa Verde region of the Southwest United States about 800 years ago to mark the position of the sun on the longest and shortest days of the year, archaeologists now say. Panels of ancient rock art, called petroglyphs, on canyon walls in the region show complex interactions of sunlight and shadows. These interactions can be seen in the days around the winter and summer solstices, when the sun reaches its southernmost and northernmost points, respectively, and, to a lesser extent, around the equinoxes — the “equal nights”— in spring and fall, the researchers said… [read more]