This Week In History News, March 11 – 17

Published March 16, 2018

Researchers unlock the mysteries of the missing link between dinosaurs and birds, the reason why humans get herpes today, and the truth behind the elongated human skulls found in Germany.

Scientists Finally Determine Whether Famed “Missing Link” Between Dinosaurs And Birds Could Fly

Archaeopteryx Fossil

Wikimedia Commons

Ever since its discovery some 150 years ago, the Archaeopteryx revolutionized our understanding of dinosaurs and evolution itself. This unique, transitional creature marks a critical point in ancient history at which dinosaurs were evolving into birds.

But, for decades, scientists hadn’t been sure whether or not the Archaeopteryx could actually fly. But new research has now come up with an answer.

Read more at National Geographic.

We May Get Herpes Today Because Our Ancestors Had Interspecies Sex

Paranthropus Boisei

Wikimedia CommonsA model of Paranthropus boisei on display at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

For millions of years, our ancestors did not get genital herpes. Then, somewhere between 3 million and 1.4 million years ago, they started getting it.

Researchers have now figured out why. Turns out Paranthropus boisei, a species related to our ancestors, was able to contract the virus from chimps. Then our ancestors got the virus via Paranthropus boisei thanks to infected meat or interspecies sex.

Read more at Seeker.

Mystery Of Alien-Like Elongated Skulls Of Certain Medieval Women Now Solved

Elongated Skulls

State Collection of Anthropology and Paleoanatomy Munich/SmithsonianFrom left, a heavily elongated, mildly elongated, and non-elongated skull found at the dig site.

In the late 1960s, researchers at a dig site in Germany found several female skulls dating back to about 500 A.D. — and many of them, unlike the men, had heavily elongated skulls.

A new analysis has found the reason, one involving a purposeful skull elongation practice that becomes no less unsettling when you discover the reasons why it may have been done.

Read more at Smithsonian.

All That's Interesting
Your curiosity knows no bounds. Neither do we.
Close Pop-in
Like History Uncovered On Facebook

Get The Most Interesting Stories From History In Your Feed