Boy is it cold outside. I heard it was in the 20s down in New Orleans for Mardi Gras. Too cold for that far south. I checked our weather for today and see we have a wind chill advisory on. The little dog and I will forgo our midday walk. Neither of us need frostbite. She’s such a high-energy little pup. She needs that brisk walk as much as I do. If only I could get us both on the treadmill together.
I felt the vibration of seasonal discontent the other day — little things like walls needing spackle and paint touch-ups and windowless bathrooms in need of a good bleaching. That vibration means I’ll be spring cleaning soon. I mentioned it to my husband the other morning. His reply — Great. Mind you, “great” must be imagined with the Volga Boatmen song playing in the background. The poor man. I’ve been doing my spring cleaning/annual purge for nearly 30 years. lol
I’ve already started cleaning out my computer. Good lord I save everything..something things more than once! I’ve found bits of writing from my two favorite events from Aprils past– the Authors in Bloom blog hop and the A to Z Challenge. They’re pretty interesting, if I do say so myself. I’ve been sharing a few A to Z posts lately.
Today it’s D. I hope you enjoy.
D for Doggerland
Sometime in the middle of the last century, trawling Dutch fishermen working the North Sea began hauling up things in their nets no one ever expected to see — enormous tusks and bones from wooly mammoths and mastodons, and the bones of giant aurochs, woolly rhinos, and other ice age animals. The story goes that fishermen threw these things back in the water, being set in their opinions of what one should expect to haul from the sea.
Amateur paleontologist, Dick Mol, heard of the unusual findings and persuaded the fishermen to bring their tusks and bones to him along with the coordinates of where they had been found. Imagine his surprise when the captain bought him a well-preserved human jawbone with worn molars. Radiocarbon dating says the jawbone is 9,500 years old and came from a man living in the Mesolithic period (12,000 years ago)
Why would a 9,500 year old jawbone be trawled from the North Sea?
During the last ice age, Great Britain wasn’t a handful of islands, it was the western-most tip of the glaciated European mainland. As much of the earth’s water was tied up in ice, lowlands weren’t submerged as they are today. This low-lying land that tied the UK to the rest of Europe was approximately 18,000 square miles in size. This region is refereed to as Doggerland (named for the Dogger Bank — a large hazardous sandbank). The area is thought to have supported large numbers of Mesolithic people. Among fossilized evidence of mammoths and other mega-fauna and game animals, divers have also found harpoons, flint tools, and suspected burial sites. It would appear people lived on Doggerland until the rising sea swallowed a substantial portion of the landmass and cut the UK from the continent. Exploration is ongoing and researchers expect to find standing stones and burials in addition to settlement areas. Can you just imagine? 😀
This fascinating video is shown in 7 parts.
Follow the links at the end of each clip to the next chapter
D for Dolmen.
Usually, when people think of megalithic construction, the first thing that comes to mind is Stonehenge. The fact is, there are prehistoric stoneworks of all sorts peppered across Europe, the Middle East, parts of Asia, and even in the Americas. The early Neolithic period (4000 to 3000 BCE) saw a lot of this puzzling megalithic construction. One such enigma is the dolmen.
A dolmen, also known as a portal tomb or quoit, consists of large upright stones that support an equally large and flat horizontal capstone. It’s believed they were originally covered with earth and what we see today is actually the skeleton of the structure.
No one knows exactly who built them or what their purpose was. The most widely accepted theory is dolmen are tombs or burial chambers, but there’s little archeological evidence to back that up. The one thing everyone is certain of… they’re old. At least 7000 years old. This means the mysterious builders were contemporaries of the ancient Egyptians.
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