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Schistosomiasis parasite egg found in a 6200-year-old grave at Tell Zaidan in modern Syria

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posted on Jul, 2 2014 @ 11:31 PM
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Everyone likes a good, 'oldest signs of a parasite egg in a human story'.......well maybe not.



Archaeological find

The find from Syria lends credence to the idea that man's adoption of agriculture and irrigation led to an increase of disease.



According to one of the authors Dr Piers Mitchell, at the University of Cambridge, UK, the discovery might be among the oldest evidence of human-made technology inadvertently causing disease outbreaks.


Thee discovery was made at Tell Zeidan in Syria by an international team of international team of archaeologists and biological anthropologists from Cambridge, the Cyprus Institute, and the University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute. It shows that the parasite infected humans there at least a thousand years earlier than has been found in Egypt. The oldest Schistosomiasis egg found previously was in Egyptian mummies from 5200 years ago. The present civil war has disrupted research at the site.

More on Tell Zaidan

New York Times article on Tell Zaidan

The Tell was a northern Ubaid settlement and it seems to have been complex and differentiated, with some areas of public buildings, private houses, and craft or industrial areas. The Ubaid inhabitants of Zeidan had a distinctively local identity, despite their clear connections and affiliation with the broader context of the Ubaid world in southern Mesopotamia and other regions.

The Ubaid would be conquered or incorporated into the Sumerian world and their joint culture would result in the world's first great Civilization.



In what appears to be the site's industrial area, archaeologists uncovered eight large kilns for firing pottery, one of the most ubiquitous Ubaid commodities over wide trading areas. They found blades made from the high-quality volcanic glass obsidian. An abundance of obsidian chips showed that the blades were produced at the site, and the material's color and chemical composition indicated that it came from mines in what is now Turkey . . . Zeidan also had a smelting industry for making copper tools, the most advanced technology of the fifth millennium B.C.



......and for the parasite lovers

Schistosomiasis

edit on 2/7/14 by Hanslune because: Added map




posted on Jul, 3 2014 @ 12:07 AM
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originally posted by: Hanslune



......and for the parasite lovers

Schistosomiasis

Thanks for the nightmares. There goes my schizopsoriasis flaring up again. "Alice! My pills!"



posted on Jul, 3 2014 @ 12:24 AM
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a reply to: Hanslune

I'm no expert, Hans, but it seems to me that the discovery of a single parasite egg inside a single human remnant is a slender thread by which to hang a hypothesis as big as this one:


The find from Syria lends credence to the idea that man's adoption of agriculture and irrigation led to an increase of disease.

I know you only said it 'lends credence' to the idea, but even so, is it really enough to say anything at all?

Please understand that I'm not rejecting the hypothesis. I've read my Jared Diamond and I am very sympathetic to the idea that the invention of agriculture was, by some lights, a metaphorical selling of our souls to the Devil. But it seems to me that, very often, people who study the deep past often make authoritative statements based on very slender evidence; statements, in fact, that are effectively unfalsifiable.

I've started a thread to express my disquiet about the level of certainty we sometimes attribute to statements made by archaeologists and historians about the past. You may reply me here, or contribute there, as you prefer. I'm hoping to hear from you, and from some of the other respected members of this subforum, such as Byrd, Harte and punkinworks.







edit on 3/7/14 by Astyanax because: added URL.



posted on Jul, 3 2014 @ 12:34 AM
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originally posted by: Astyanax
a reply to: Hanslune

I'm no expert, Hans, but it seems to me that the discovery of a single parasite egg inside a single human remnant is a slender thread by which to hang a hypothesis as big as this one:


The find from Syria lends credence to the idea that man's adoption of agriculture and irrigation led to an increase of disease.

I know you only said it 'lends credence' to the idea, but even so, is it really enough to say anything at all?

Please understand that I'm not rejecting the hypothesis. I've read my Jared Diamond and I am very sympathetic to the idea that the invention of agriculture was, by some lights, a metaphorical selling of our souls to the Devil. But it seems to me that, very often, people who study the deep past often make authoritative statements based on very slender evidence; statements, in fact, that are effectively unfalsifiable.

I've started a thread to express my disquiet about the level of certainty we sometimes attribute to statements made by archaeologists and historians about the past. You may reply me here, or contribute there, as you prefer.


Will or have started a new thread?



posted on Jul, 3 2014 @ 01:12 AM
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a reply to: Hanslune

Started now, and URL added to my post above.



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