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34

Yes. Residue analysis has found chemical signatures consistent with the presence of honey, and organic compounds associated with fermentation suggesting that mead was being drunk by the late Neolithic / early Bronze Age "Beaker peoples" in Britain and northern Europe. If you want more details of the processes involved, and the nature of the evidence, and ...


21

It was probably approximately 155cm for women, and about 168cm for men. We have direct evidence for this from analysing the skeletal remains of the Romans. For example, in a study [1] of 927 adult male Roman skeletons between 500 B.C. and A.D. 500, Professor Geoffrey Kron of the University of Victoria found an average of 168cm. This is corroborated by ...


18

Most likely because they never had it to start with. There are two big problems with this portion of the book's thesis: I see no evidence whatsoever put forth in the above text supporting the assertion that human women were socially equal or superior prior to the agricultural revolution. Such evidence should not be hard to come by, simply by talking with ...


18

The origins of the Ancient Egyptians remains very much an open question. The latest DNA study that I'm aware of suggests that Ancient Egyptian populations may have more common ancestry with populations in the Near East and Europe than with those in Sub-Saharan Africa. That said, the available evidence is limited and future research may change our ...


15

Being awfully broad as it is, it is nevertheless an issue that might be addressable. But the terminology needs to be clearer. "Jews", in our modern sense, sprang into existence only after 70 CE. Some scholars argue that this process took even longer. Before that we have Israelites, Yehudites, Judeans, Juda(h)ites, Hebrews and so on. Those terms are partly ...


13

Many prominent men of science in the 19th century believed that the Indians' ancestors had always been in America. This belief draws on the theory of polygenism--that the several races had independent origins as separate species. "Scientific" polygenism also had a religious aspect called "Pre-Adamism." Polygenists/Pre-Adamists didn't need to posit ancient ...


12

In his momentous study L'origine des systèmes familiaux, Emmanuel Todd notes that, to the best of a rather sparse archival knowledge, first, the status of women in Eurasia in the 5000BC-1500CE interval seems to historically follow a lowering trajectory, second, this lowering trajectory seems to proceed in a top/down fashion and, third, the adoption of anti-...


12

Scholars have noted that pre-agricultural societies often have more egalitarian gender norms than agricultural societies. This had led to theories that agriculture led to the development of inegalitarian gender norms, because it privileged men's body strength. A more refined version of thesis was first posited by Ester Boserup in "Woman's Role in Economic ...


12

Its actually a pretty astute observation that independent river-valley "cradles of civilization" tend to have their own crops associated with them. I've personally had a lot of luck researching plant domestication and its association with nearby river valleys, even in some unexpected places. The two definitely seem related. However, this isn't a hard and ...


11

Early post-contact beliefs contained an unhealthy dose of myths and legends, e.g. Atlantis or that Native Americans descended from the lost tribes of Israel. These were displaced as rationalism developed, but suspicion that the Old World populated the Americas grew over time (for the alternate view, that the Natives had always been in the New World, see @...


11

In 1944-45, the late forensic anthropologist John Lawrence Angel studied Ancient Greek skeletal remains. His results were 162 cm for men and 153 cm for women. He only had a rather small sample size at the time, though. Right after his death, excavation began on the cemetery of the Magna Graecia colony-city of Metapontum. The Metaontum necropolis was ...


11

This area has evolved much in the past few decades of research. You are asking 'ethnicity' not race (there are only 3, possibly 4, 'races' of humans on the world. I should include as an edit that this is considered an outdated model). Ethnicity divides us into smaller groups from there. http://blog.world-mysteries.com/science/how-many-major-races-are-...


10

Age of consent laws could, in part, explain why we've settled on 18 or ages near to it. Age of consent statutes can be dated as far back as 1275 in England and were adopted in a number of other countries throughout Europe. Some of the first interpretations settled on the "age of marriage", which at the time was 12. Part of the problem with having a set ...


10

Mead was the alcoholic drink of northern Europe, particularly "Celtic" northern Europe, e.g. the British Isles and northern France. It also figures prominently in the literature of the Scandinavians. This drink was made from honey rather than grapes, unlike Roman wine. Recent archaeological research suggests that "beakers" for producing mead (or its ...


10

Early Israelite religion was not monotheistic, and it remained in that classification for at least several hundred years. YHWH was developed very slowly in a syncretistic process were he was ascribed with all the attributes of the other deities in the region. This process of accumulation of powers and status reached a first high point during the ...


9

I found this quote: “Based on the preceding calculations, a family of five would require an estimated 200 ha of habitat from which to gather animal and plant food. This estimate is based on an ideal ecosystem, one containing those wild plants and animals that are most suitable for human consumption. Researchers report that, in fact, modern-day hunter-...


8

It is quite possible to examine diet through archeological means (composition of bones and teeth). However, I don't know that anybody has done a systematic study of such records with an eye towards looking for vegetarianism. The one piece of similar information I am aware of is that teeth of hunter-gatherers are often discernible at a glance, due to the ...


8

Note: I read the question this morning, then wrote my answer tonight. Somehow I came to think it included language and culture. It's now a bit of TMI, but I'm going to let it hang out there for a little bit because I worked on it for a few hours (sigh). Their is some controversy surrounding the relation of Brittonic and Gaelic people. One theory says that ...


8

Start with whether or not the book gets the basic facts correct. Not the most obvious ones, but the more subtler ones. If those are correct, then one can start to presume a basic competence, and understanding, by the author. For this book, a pdf file exists online. I started reading, and before finishing the first page I found two glaring errors: ...


7

Iceland converted to Christianity in 1000 AD. This was the result of mediation, to avoid a civil war between heathens and Christians, and to maintain good relations with Norway. Public heathen practice was banned. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianization_of_Iceland This was a medieval society.


7

Nobody really knows for sure. El/Elohim (which by the time of the writing of most of the Hebrew scriptures had become synonymous) has ancient Semitic roots, but Yahweh appears to be (nearly) unique to the Hebrews. There is almost no agreement on the origins and meaning of Yahweh's name. It is not attested other than among the Israelites, and seems ...


6

There isn't going to be just one number. It depends a lot on the environment they find themselves in. For example, obviously the Tuareg in their desert envionrment require a lot of territory for every tribe to support itself. On the other extreme, I understand that the pre-columbian Native Americans in the pacific northwest were living in such a productive ...


6

What causes a society to abandon it's own religion (for another religion or for secularism)? Open warfare and subjugation springs to mind. The Saxon Wars were not only forcing the Saxons under Frankish rule, but also forced them from Germanic paganism to Catholicism. To quote Charlemagne: If any one of the race of the Saxons hereafter concealed among ...


6

For a long time, 21 was the "age of adulthood". From Encyclopedia of Adult Development: As early as the thirteenth century, age 21 was an important marker in Britain, at least for men. This was the age, for example, when they could begin to serve as knights. It was believed that the physical requirements of combat - to wear a heavy suit of armor and ...


6

I can't think of any group that doesn't make the connection between sex and reproduction but there are/were cultures that don't understand it in its entirety. In particular, there used to be many societies who believed in multiple paternity, where a baby can have multiple fathers if a woman has sex with multiple men. You can find this belief among several ...


6

Jew is harder to trace than Hebrew or Israelite. Hebrew is a distinct language in the Northwest Semitic group. It split off of the Canaanite language in the second half of the 2nd Millenium B.C. There has been a lot of attention dedicated to connecting Hebrews with Amorites. Certain Hyskos kings have been connected with early Hebrews because they practiced ...


5

The Aten religion in Ancient Egypt 14th Century BC. It virtually came and went with one King, Akhenaten, which may indicate how centralised power must have been in that society. The king's power to make his subjects adopt a new religion that they quickly abandoned after his death may have been to do with the country's natural geographical isolation by ...


5

You may be thinking of the Vanatinai people. From a NY Times article on the Vanatinai: Dr. Lepowsky found evidence of the equality on every hand. Unlike other Pacific cultures, Vanatinai has no special men's meeting houses or male cult activities. The language is gender-neutral, with no pronouns like he or she. Boys as well as girls care for ...


5

An archaeological evidence I think could be impossible: if they analyze the content of the digestive system like they did with Ötzi,even if they can find some bodies like this preserved under some special conditions, will be evidence for a few days of diet. If they analyze some lack of nutrients in the bones that lack might be also due to some other factors, ...


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