Instructions of Shuruppak – Ancient Sumerian Father/Son Advice.

The earliest know edition of the The Instructions of Shuruppak was written between 2,600 to 2,500 BCE. An example of Sumerian wisdom literature, it is one of the earliest examples of literature known to man.

One translation of this list of good advice from royal father to son, is sourced from the below and attributed to Black, J.A., Cunningham, G., Robson, E., and Zólyomi, G., The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature, Oxford 1998:

This second translation is from the Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature at Oxford University. It makes accessible over 400 literary works composed in the Sumerian language in ancient Mesopotamia during the late third and early second millennia BC.



The Hasanlu Lovers: Skeletons Locked In An Eternal Kiss

Published on the site All That Is Interesting, the story linked below touches on two skeletons among hundreds discovered in an ancienty city in what is now northwest Iran. The city, it seems, was wiped out by an invading army over 2,800 years ago and the two may have taken refuge in the grain bin in which they were ultimately found.

Scientists don’t know if the two figures were lovers, a father and son, or a mother and son.  At the end, they died in an embrace comforting one another. Such a sad story that connects us to the humanity of those in the past. We often forget that they are not just archeological finds but the remains of living human beings.

By Gabe Paoletti
Published September 21, 2017
Updated December 20, 2017

“The University of Pennsylvania first discovered this skeletal couple during an archeological excavation of an ancient city in northwest Iran in the 1970s. The two skeletons were discovered in the remains of the ancient city of Teppe Hasanlu, which stood in the area that is now Iran 2,800 years ago.”

For the story in its entirety, visit the link below.

Becoming Human: The Evolution of Walking Upright | Science | Smithsonian

Bipedalism has very ancient roots in the human family tree.  Some traits of bipedalism show up in hominid ancestors from as much as 7 million years ago. But how and why did walking upright on two legs become such a human trait? This article from Erin Wayman for the does a great job of breaking down the most recent hypotheses and the history of the study of human bipedalism.

Smithsonian has an online article series called “Becoming Human.” It’s a great overview of how the traits we consider “human” came to be.

Click Here for Story on

A Brief History of Bog Butter

Yup. Our Irish ancestors (okay, my Irish ancestors) used to put their butter and cheese in peat bogs.  These ancient blocks of butter and cheese are being studied by archeologists. They may have been deposited in bogs as form of cold storage, a religious offering, or for some other still unknown reason. Some of these big globs of bog butter are thousands of years old.

Writing for Jason Daley writes, “In 2009, a 77-pound, 3,000-year-old oak barrel of the stuff was found in County Kildare. In 2013, a turf cutter in County Offaly found a 100-pound, 5,000-year-old chunk. Many examples of the butter are found in Irish museums, including the place dedicated to the golden spread, Cork’s Butter Museum.”

Read more: A Brief History of Bog Butter
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This Ancient Mosaic Depicts a Thrilling Chariot Race

A rare  2,000-year-old mosaic depicting a Roman-era Chariot Race was unearthed on the island country of  Cyprus.  This mosaic is 85-feet long and is one of only nine known to exist.  The names of horses and riders are included in the mosaic providing a very human glimpse into the past.

Reporter Casey Smith reported for that the names of horses and riders were included in the mosaic providing a very human glimpse into the past.


How Cats and People Grew to Love Each Other

Stefan Sirucek reported for National Geographic in December 2013 that a then recent study showed that cats and humans began hanging out together as far back as 9,500 years ago.

Reported Sirucek:

“Today’s domestic cats are believed to be the descendants of ancient Near Eastern wildcats, and the previous discovery of a wildcat buried near a human in Cyprus roughly 9,500 years ago suggests some type of long-running relationship. The Egyptians famously thought very highly of cats, keeping them domestically and even administering medical treatment to them some 4,000 years ago.

Now a new study marks possibly the earliest known evidence of a beneficial relationship between humans and cats. Researchers analyzing 5,300-year-old cat bones, found at the village of Quanhucun in China, determined that the bones match up closely with those of modern domestic cats—and that people may have even fed the animals. “

10 Historic Women Scientists You Probably Don’t Know

 In 2011, science writer Sarah Zielinski shared biographies of 10 women scientists lost to history.

As a huge fan of dinosaurs, it was a pleasure to see her list included Mary Anning,  (1799 – 1847),  a prolific fossil hunter whose finds included Ichthyosaurus, the “fish-lizard.”

According to Zielinski, she also found long-necked plesiosaurs, “a pterodactyl and hundreds, possibly thousands, of other fossils that helped scientists to draw a picture of the marine world 200 million to 140 million years ago during the Jurassic. ”

Like many women scientists in history, she was self-taught. Her studies included anatomy, geology, paleontology and scientific illustration.

Read more:

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Armenia’s Zorats Karer Site an Intriguing Mystery

Zorats Karer, according to, ” consists of a prehistoric mausoleum and nearby, over two hundred neighboring large stone monoliths, eighty of which have distinctive, well-polished holes bored near their upper edge.” The site has probably been inhabited on-and-off from the prehistoric to medieval civilizations.

Located in the continent of Asia, Armenia covers 28,203 square kilometers of land and 1,540 square kilometers of water, making it the 144th largest nation in the world with a total area of 29,743 square kilometers, according to the World Atlas.

Helicopter image of Karahundj

Tourist agencies may plug the site as the Armenian Stonehenge but the resemblance is superficial.  According to Professor Pavel Avetisyan, an archaeologist at the National Academy of Sciences in Armenia, “was mainly a necropolis from the Middle Bronze Age (1,500 to 1,200 BC) to the Iron Age (around 600 to 900 BC ). Enormous stone tombs of these periods can be found within the area.”

Avetisyan’s team dates the monument to no older than 2000 BCE, after Stonehenge, and also suggests that it served as a refuge during times of war in the Hellenistic period (332 BC to 32 BC), reports

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