Fabulous Ancient Andean Fabrics

We recognize an extremely long and rich tradition of fiber arts from the Andes Mountains -- possibly the longest continuous history of fiber use found on earth. From exquisite embroidered shrouds used to wrap mummies many thousands of years ago, to the finely woven tapestry tunics worn by Inca royalty, the artistry of these textiles is exceptional.

By |2021-03-11T07:59:04-07:00March 11th, 2021|Ancient Andean Cultures|4 Comments

Where Lithium Lurks

The demand for lithium is increasing dramatically – and sources of this metal are being sought from the high elevations of the Andes Mountains to the lowlands of Australia. Lithium is widely distributed on our planet, but since concentrations of this metal are typically quite low, relatively few ores that are economical to mine have been found to date. There are currently three major sources.

By |2021-02-19T13:51:39-07:00February 18th, 2021|Our Amazing Earth|4 Comments

Earthquakes, Copper and Helicopters

Geologists love to have a bird’s eye view of landscapes. They are helpful for all types of research - tracing active faults and identifying copper ore deposits among them. In this post there are two stories about geology fieldwork - one about earthquakes in Egypt and the other about copper in Chile, tied together by arid landscapes and helicopters.

By |2021-01-28T20:13:15-07:00January 28th, 2021|Our Amazing Earth|6 Comments

Encounters with the ENSO – Part 2

El Niños, the warm phase of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) climate pattern, could be devastating for ancient Andean societies. Direct evidence of these events is scarce, but clever archaeological sleuthing has revealed details of event recurrence – and desperate measures taken by authorities to stop destructive flooding.

By |2021-01-23T11:33:01-07:00January 21st, 2021|Ancient Andean Cultures, Our Amazing Earth|2 Comments

Drinking and Feasting

From maize-based chicha, or corn beer, in the Andes Mountains, to mead from honey in ancient Greece, and wine from grapes in Predynastic Egypt, fermented beverages have been a part of cultural rituals for many thousands of years. Celebrations that include copious amounts of alcoholic drinks and specially prepared foods have been widely practiced in numerous cultures over time.

By |2020-12-17T11:38:07-07:00December 17th, 2020|Ancient Andean Cultures|6 Comments

Andean Abundance

Five hundred years ago the Inca Empire stretched across the Andes Mountains of South America, encompassing arid coastal deserts, snow-covered mountains, and humid rainforests.... Since the empire fell in the 16th century, there is something that no subsequent government ruling over this territory has successfully achieved.

By |2020-12-03T07:20:16-07:00December 3rd, 2020|Ancient Andean Cultures|4 Comments
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