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Maia Atlantis: Ancient World Blogs - http://planet.atlantides.org/maia

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    About 2.6 million years ago, an oddly bright light arrived in the prehistoric sky and lingered there for weeks or months. It was a supernova some 150 light years away from Earth. Within a few hundred years, long after the strange light in the sky had dwindled, a tsunami of cosmic energy from that same shattering star explosion could have reached our planet and pummeled the atmosphere, touching off climate change and triggering mass...

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    Small, local patches of habitat could be playing a much bigger role in conserving biodiversity than you think, according to new research. Eastern rosella at Edithvale wetland [Credit Wayne Butterworth]The global study just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences looked at the conservation values of vegetation patches in 27 countries on four continents, and considered their size and distance to other...

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    Seventy percent of the current infrastructure in the Arctic has a high potential to be affected by thawing permafrost in the next 30 years. Even meeting the climate change targets of the Paris Agreement will not substantially reduce those projected impacts, according to a new study published in Nature Communications. UAF researcher Vladimir Romanovsky poses near Fairbanks, Alaska in a place where permafrost has thawed, causing a...

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    NOAA's annual report card on the Arctic, released today at the American Geophysical Union fall meeting in Washington, D.C., measures the changing climate of the polar region including warmer air and ocean temperatures and declines in sea-ice that are driving shifts in animal habitats. Eyeing the Arctic: The southern Greenland town of Narsaq. Photo taken during a NASA Operation IceBridge flight April 26, 2018 [Credit: NASA/Joe...

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    Something peculiar is happening in the azure waters off the rocky cliffs of Ischia, Italy. There, streams of gas-filled volcanic bubbles rising up to the surface are radically changing life around them by making seawater acidic. Stanford researchers studying species living near these gassy vents have learned what it takes to survive in acidic waters, providing a glimpse of what future oceans might look like as they grow more...

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    Researchers have genetically transformed the Common Primrose (Primula vulgaris) for the first time in a development that could shed light on one of the plant world's most renowned reproductive systems. Credit: John Innes Historical CollectionThe complicated sex life of Primula was a subject that fascinated Charles Darwin and generations of geneticists that followed because it's one of the best examples of heteromorphic flower...

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    Throughout Earth’s long geologic history, the magnetic pole has not remained stable. For reasons that are still little understood, the Earth’s magnetic field can suddenly – and without warning – weaken, start to shift around, and even completely reverse direction. Credit: ShutterstockRecords indicate that over the last 160 million years, the magnetic pole has reversed its polarity at least several hundred times. Called a “geomagnetic...

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    December 12, 2018 19.30 -

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    December 12, 2018 18.00 - BOOK LAUNCH Έλενα Παρτίδα, Δρ. Αρχαιολόγος, Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο Πατρών, Υπουργείο Πολιτισμού & Αθλητισμού -Ντόρα Κατσωνοπούλου, Καθ. Αρχαιολογίας Δρ. Πανεπιστημίου Cornell, Ινστιτούτο Αρχαιολογίας Πάρου & Κυκλάδων -Λίλιαν Καραλή, Ομότ. Καθ. Αρχαιολογίας, Εθνικό & Καποδιστριακό Πανεπιστήμιο Αθηνών

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    More statistical evidence for a deep Palaeoafrican layer in modern Sub-Saharan Africans in the preprint by Ragsdale and Gravel (below). When I proposed that modern Africans are a mixture of Afrasians and diverse Palaeoafricans I only had two things to go on: greater African genetic diversity (produced by admixture between diverse Palaeoafricans and Afrasians), and cranioskeletal archaicity in known African specimens.

    Current models of African origins have African groups tracing their ancestry to groups that split off 200-300 thousand years from the rest of mankind, as well as even more archaic Africans (such as the ones proposed in this preprint) that split off as early as 500 thousand years ago. I'm pretty sure there are multiple layers in-between yet to be discovered: counterintuitively archaic admixture is easiest to discover if it is more distant (as it's more distinctive). But, it's unimaginable that Afrasians admixed with people that split off 200 thousand years ago, 500 thousand years ago, and none in-between.

    We now know that Eurasians are not pure Afrasian either: they have some admixture with archaic Eurasians. Interestingly, archaic Eurasians are the most deeply splitting branches of humans to have contributed to modern mankind. All African genetic lineages (both Palaeoafrican and Afrasian) are nested within Eurasian genetic variation, with the jury still out on whether this happened when (1) African Afrasian populations left Africa and met archaic Eurasians, or (2) Eurasian Afrasian populations left West Eurasia and met archaic Africans.


    Related:


    Models of archaic admixture and recent history from two-locus statistics 
    Aaron P Ragsdale, Simon Gravel
    doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/489401

    We learn about population history and underlying evolutionary biology through patterns of genetic polymorphism. Many approaches to reconstruct evolutionary histories focus on a limited number of informative statistics describing distributions of allele frequencies or patterns of linkage disequilibrium. We show that many commonly used statistics are part of a broad family of two-locus moments whose expectation can be computed jointly and rapidly under a wide range of scenarios, including complex multi-population demographies with continuous migration and admixture events. A full inspection of these statistics reveals that widely used models of human history fail to predict simple patterns of linkage disequilibrium. To jointly capture the information contained in classical and novel statistics, we implemented a tractable likelihood-based inference framework for demographic history. Using this approach, we show that human evolutionary models that include archaic admixture in Africa, Asia, and Europe provide a much better description of patterns of genetic diversity across the human genome. We estimate that individuals in two African populations have 6−8% ancestry through admixture from an unidentified archaic population that diverged from the ancestors of modern humans 500 thousand years ago.

    Link

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    Francesca Romana Berno, L. Annaeus Seneca, De constantia sapientis - La fermezza del saggio, Naples, 2018.

    Éditeur : Paolo Loffredo Iniziative editoriali srl, iniziativeditoriali@libero.it
    Collection : Studi latini, Collana diretta da Giovanni Cupaiuolo e Valeria Viparelli, vol. n. 92
    260 pages
    ISBN : 9 788899 306854
    24,50 €

    Il De constantia sapientis, tramandato come secondo libro dei Dialogi di Seneca, è dedicato ad Anneo Sereno, e argomenta il paradosso stoico secondo cui ‘il saggio non può subire offesa'. Con questo studio si intende offrire una chiave di lettura di un testo, che non ha ricevuto sinora particolare attenzione da parte della critica. L'introduzione mette in luce le problematiche relative alla datazione, che alcuni rimandi interni permettono di collocare in un periodo antecedente alla morte di Claudio; alle fonti, fra cui acquista rilievo la giurisprudenza romana; all'intento politico in senso lato, con la valorizzazione dell'importanza del filosofo per lo Stato; allo stile, che si contraddistingue per la presenza di sillogismi e similitudini laddove il Seneca maturo ricorrerà a sentenze e metafore. La traduzione cerca di valorizzare il ricorrere dei termini chiave e la vivacità icastica delle formulazioni senecane. Il commento mette in luce, sul piano dei contenuti, il radicamento del tema, proprio dello Stoicismo ortodosso, nella realtà giuridica e sociale romana, sia sul piano legislativo che su quello della vita quotidiana dei nobili del tempo, con esempi di turpiloquio in senato, di salutatio inopportuna, di banchetti poco onorevoli e servi maliziosi; sul piano della forma, la pervasività di uno spazio immaginario disegnato lungo l'asse verticale: chi reca offesa pretende di porsi più in alto del suo bersaglio, ma è in effetti un miserabile, mentre il saggio possiede una levatura morale che lo colloca in una posizione tanto elevata da riuscire irraggiungibile per ogni possibile attacco.

    Lire la suite...


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    Review of Georges Fabre, Jacques Lapart, Inscriptions latines d'Aquitaine (ILA): Auscii. Inscriptions latines d'Aquitaine, 9. Bordeaux: 2017. Pp. 233. €40,00. ISBN 9782356131935.

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    Review of Matthew F. A. Symonds, Protecting the Roman Empire: Fortlets, Frontiers, and the Quest for Post-Conquest Security. Cambridge: 2018. Pp. xiv, 251. £75.00. ISBN 9781108421553.

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    Review of Massimiliano Vitiello, Amalasuintha: The Transformation of Queenship in the Post-Roman World. Philadelphia: 2017. Pp. xii, 293. $69.95. ISBN 9780812249477.

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    Review of David Fearn, Pindar’s Eyes: Visual and Material Culture in Epinician Poetry. Oxford: 2017. Pp. x, 318. $99.00. ISBN 9780198746379.

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  • 12/12/18--01:45: Edmund Wilson on the DSS
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    This week’s episode of the ReligionProf Podcast features Karen Keen, who blogs at Reverent Sexuality. In it, we talk about her recent book, Scripture, Ethics, and the Possibility of Same-Sex Relationships. See also her response to a review by Sean McDowell, and now also part two of it, as well as the video she shared about […]

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