Thursday, August 30, 2012

And I Forgot to Mention Bug Poop

After writing my earlier post on ancient pottery, I found a link to a Bostonia (Boston University Alumni) article about fragments of pottery that are believed to be 20,000 years old. Previously, it was thought that pottery developed about 10,000 years ago, when humans switched from hunting/gathering to farming. Paul Goldberg, a professor of archaeology at BU; Trina Arpin, a research associate; and David Cohen, an adjunct assistant professor of archaeology discovered pottery shards in the Xianrendong cave in southern China in a sediment layer 20,000 years old. To corroborate the date, the researchers tested whether the soil layers had been disturbed thus potentially shifting the pottery shards. They found no insect droppings which indicate disrupted soil layers.   

This work was reported in the journal Science.

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