Results 1 - 20 of 35.
History / Archeology - 21.11.2023
Neanderthals were the world’s first artists
Recent research has shown that engravings in a cave in La Roche-Cotard (France), which has been sealed for thousands of years, were actually made by Neanderthals. This research was performed by Basel archaeologist Dorota Wojtczak together with a team of researchers from France and Denmark, whose findings reveal that the Neanderthals were in fact the first humans with an appreciation of art.
History / Archeology - Life Sciences - 18.10.2023
The encounter between Neanderthals and Sapiens as told by their genomes
By analyzing genomes up to 40,000 years old, a team from the University of Geneva has traced the history of migrations between Sapiens and Neanderthals. About 40,000 years ago, Neanderthals, who had lived for hundreds of thousands of years in the western part of the Eurasian continent, gave way to Homo sapiens, who had arrived from Africa.
History / Archeology - 24.07.2023
New discoveries on the wreck of Antikythera
A team of Swiss and Greek archaeologists recently completed the third season of excavations on the wreck of Antikythera. The wreck of Antikythera was recently brought into the spotlight by the film Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny. Far from the cinematic imagination, an international team of archaeologists, divers, engineers and physical and natural scientists is currently excavating the famous wreck.
History / Archeology - Life Sciences - 12.06.2023
Domestic cattle and society: a tightly interlinked history of development
Meat, milk, labor: domestic cattle have a lot to offer. Their history is consequently closely intertwined with that of humankind. Researchers at the University of Basel have investigated the genetic development of this livestock animal in Switzerland, and it is linked with societal developments. Cows are part of the Swiss landscape, and their meat, milk and resulting products are inextricably linked with traditional Swiss cuisine.
Life Sciences - History / Archeology - 03.08.2022
Global Spread of Powdery Mildew through Migration and Trade
The worldwide distribution of one of the most important cereal pathogens is the result of human activity. Researchers at the University of Zurich have traced the history and spread of wheat powdery mildew along wheat trade routes and found that mixing of genetic ancestries of related powdery mildew species played a central role in the evolution and adaptation of the pathogen.
History / Archeology - 07.07.2022
Schedules and punctuality: requirements of modernity
If timetables and punctuality are an integral part of our society, it has not always been so. This is what Catherine Herr-Laporte, a doctoral student at the Chair in the History of Technology, has shown by studying the development of postal transport in France throughout the 18th century as part of her doctoral thesis on time and mobility.
History / Archeology - Agronomy / Food Science - 28.06.2022
An Age-Old Story: Farmers against Pests
As early as the Neolithic period, pests posed a threat to agricultural yields, as shown by the remains of mice and insects found in prehistoric wells by a Basel-led archaeological research team. However, there are also indications that people knew how to defend against these pests - for example, by switching to less vulnerable kinds of grain.
Linguistics / Literature - History / Archeology - 24.06.2022
Scientists apply genetic methods to linguistics
Scientists have produced a series of maps showing historical migration events, including the migration of mountain farmers native to Upper Valais who began to settle in German-speaking Switzerland in the 13th century, by applying methods from population genetics - but using linguistic data rather than genes.
Architecture - History / Archeology - 22.06.2022
Renovating 19th-century buildings without losing their character
Researcher and architect Catarina Wall Gago has published a guide to renovation best practices, drawing on a study of historic housing in Lisbon, Oporto and Geneva.
History / Archeology - 16.06.2022
Droughts in the sixth century paved the way for Islam
Extreme dry conditions contributed to the decline of the ancient South Arabian kingdom of Himyar. Researchers from the University of Basel have reported these findings. Combined with political unrest and war, the droughts left behind a region in disarray, thereby creating the conditions on the Arabian peninsula that made possible the spread of the newly emerging religion of Islam.
History / Archeology - 02.03.2022
7,000-year-old grains hints at origin of Swiss pile dwellings
There is no other place where so many Neolithic pile dwellings have been uncovered as around the Alps. It is a mystery, however, how this -building boom- came to be. Researchers at the University of Basel have now uncovered new clues, and say that settlers at Lake Varese in northern Italy may have played a leading role.
Architecture - History / Archeology - 07.01.2022
Magnificent complexity of the Alhambra
Scientists have studied the unique features of the decorative vaulting known as muqarnas in Spain's Alhambra palace and fortress complex. Muqarnas are commonly found in Islamic architecture, yet they are poorly understood by the architectural community and the little data that exist on them have been simplified over time.
History / Archeology - 08.12.2021
2,700-Year-Old Leather Armor Proves Technology Transfer Happened in Antiquity
Researchers at the University of Zurich have investigated a unique leather scale armor found in the tomb of a horse rider in Northwest China. Design and construction details of the armor indicate that it originated in the Neo-Assyrian Empire between the 6th and 8th century BCE before being brought to China.
Agronomy / Food Science - History / Archeology - 18.05.2021
Swiss farmers contributed to the domestication of the opium poppy
Fields of opium poppies once bloomed where the Zurich Opera House underground garage now stands. Through a new analysis of archaeological seeds, researchers at the University of Basel have been able to bolster the hypothesis that prehistoric farmers throughout the Alps participated in domesticating the opium poppy.
Health - History / Archeology - 08.02.2021
1918 Pandemic Second Wave Had Fatal Consequences
In the event of a pandemic, delayed reactions and a decentralized approach by the authorities at the start of a follow-up wave can lead to longer-lasting, more severe and more fatal consequences, researchers from the universities of Zurich and Toronto have found. The interdisciplinary team compared the Spanish flu of 1918 and 1919 in the Canton of Bern with the coronavirus pandemic of 2020.
Environment - History / Archeology - 25.01.2021
Climate change in antiquity: mass emigration due to water scarcity
The absence of monsoon rains at the source of the Nile was the cause of migrations and the demise of entire settlements in the late Roman province of Egypt. This demographic development has been compared with environmental data for the first time by professor of ancient history, Sabine Huebner of the University of Basel - leading to a discovery of climate change and its consequences.
History / Archeology - Chemistry - 02.12.2020
African trade routes sketched out by mediaeval beads
An analysis of archaeological glass beads discovered in sub-Saharan West Africa brings to light the full extent of the region's international trade routes between the 7th and 13th centuries. The origin of glass beads dates back to early ancient times. The chemical composition of the beads and their morphological and technical characteristics can reveal where they come from; this information can then be used to reconstruct the trade channels between glass production areas and the sites where the beads were used at different times.
Social Sciences - History / Archeology - 17.09.2020
Raids and bloody rituals among ancient steppe nomads
Traces of violence on 1700 year old skeletons allow researchers to reconstruct warfare and sacrifices of nomads in Siberia. An international and interdisciplinary team of anthropologists, archaeologists and specialists in forensics sciences led by Marco Milella from the University of Bern performed a detailed and revealing analysis of the traumas found on the skeletal remains.
History / Archeology - Health - 13.08.2020
Syphilis May Have Spread through Europe before Columbus
Columbus brought syphilis to Europe - or did he? A recent study conducted at the University of Zurich now indicates that Europeans could already have been infected with this sexually transmitted disease before the 15th century. In addition, researchers have discovered a hitherto unknown pathogen causing a related disease.
Materials Science - History / Archeology - 13.11.2019
In autumn 2017, the archaeological service of the Canton of Berne was amazed when two private individuals delivered a crusted lump of metal. The bronze hand of PrÍles, decorated with a ribbon of gold, turned out to be the oldest bronze sculpture of a human body part in Central Europe. But where did the metals of the sensational find come from? Empa researchers were involved in the investigation.