Changing History: The Ferris Wheel of Lost Civilizations

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From the royal tombs of Ur, the Standard of Ur mosaic, made of lapis lazuli and shell, shows peacetime. (Public Domain)

Changing History: The Ferris Wheel of Lost Civilizations

Although history textbooks often present information as if it is set in stone and firmly established, recent research into ancient civilization reveals one embarrassing fact that continuously seems to elude expert analysis. Simply put, no one culture ever claims to be the first. Civilizations which have formed and, in some cases, disappeared, almost always seem to come equipped with a back story. In virtually every historical example, someone came before. No matter how far back in time one goes, legends and mythologies of founders who had mysteriously arrived from somewhere else rise to the surface.

Tel Moza

Take, for example a recent discovery announced by the Israel Antiquities Authority in July of 2019. It put the dating of the whole traditional Agricultural Revolution hypothesis into question. Archaeologists uncovered evidence of a city at Tel Moza, that seemed to exist in a transforming phase between hunting/gathering culture and the invention of agriculture, casting doubts upon traditional theories of urban life in the Levant.

Archaeological excavations near Motza, Israel. (Bukvoet / CC BY-SA 4.0)

Archaeological excavations near Motza, Israel. (Bukvoet / CC BY-SA 4.0)


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