3.5 billion-year-old rock structures are one of the oldest signs of life on Earth

Layered rocks in Western Australia are some of Earth’s earliest known life, according to a new study.  The fossils in question are stromatolites, layered rocks that are formed by the excretions of photosynthetic microbes. The oldest stromatolites that scientists agree were made by living organisms date back 3.43 billion years, but there are older specimens, […]

Archaeologists unearth 2,700-year-old rock carvings in Iraq | Archaeology

Archaeologists in northern Iraq have unearthed 2,700-year-old rock carvings featuring war scenes and trees from the Assyrian empire, an archaeologist has said. The carvings on marble slabs were discovered in Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, where experts have been working to restore the site of the ancient Mashki Gate, which was bulldozed by Islamic State militants […]

Largest asteroid ever to hit Earth was twice as big as the rock that killed off the dinosaurs

The Vredefort crater was birthed 2 billion years ago when the largest asteroid ever to hit Earth impacted the planet. A new study suggests the gargantuan space rock was even bigger than previously predicted. (Image credit: Lauren Dauphin/NASA Earth Observatory/Landsat) (opens in new tab) The largest asteroid ever to hit Earth, which slammed into the […]

‘Magical’ rock crystals found at Stone Age ceremonial site in England

Hundreds of fragments of a rare transparent type of quartz called “rock crystal” suggest Neolithic people used the mineral to decorate graves and other structures at a ceremonial site in western England, archaeologists say. The rock crystals were likely brought to the site from a source more than 80 miles (130 kilometers) away, over mountainous […]

‘Original archaeologists’: Arnhem Land traditional owners take charge of priceless rock art | Indigenous Australians

Traditional owners from western Arnhem Land say they are the “original archaeologists” of their country, and now they are taking action to preserve their priceless history on their own terms. “Many of the stories are still hidden away from non-Indigenous people who have learned very little about them,” Bininj traditional owner Conrad Maralngurra says. “They […]