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Egypt

  1. Museum Officials Admit to Gluing King Tut’s Beard Back On, Damaging It With Spatula

    This is why we can't have nice pharaohs.

    According to the Associated Press, the 3,300-year-old burial mask of pharaoh Tutankhamun, one of the most prized artifacts at the at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, was irreversibly damaged last year during a bout of overzealous spatulating.

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  2. Bow Down: Archaeologists Discover Tomb of Previously Unknown Pharaonic Queen

    The 3rd Khentakawess, but first in our hearts.

    Czech archaeologists have unearthed a tomb in Egypt belonging to a queen who ruled 4,500 years ago.

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  3. The Secret To Moving Heavy Stones In Egypt Has Been Discovered, And It Wasn’t Aliens

    Ancient Astronaut Theorists will be disappointed.

    You'd think that we are smart enough to understand that our ancient friends had the tools to build awe-inspiring pyramids in Egypt. However, the question of how the ancients built anything without the help of modern technology still stands. Scientists have discovered that Egyptians had their ways to efficiently move heavy stones.

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  4. Pre-Raphaelite Painters Used Ground up Humans and Cats to Make “Mummy Brown”

    I bet they wish they'd kept this...under wraps.

    If you're a fan of paintings from the 1800s through the 1960s, you've probably admired a highly-prized shade of paint called "Mummy Brown." Why the macabre name, you ask? Oh, no reason, just the ancient cat and human corpses used in its composition. Guys, now I'm worried...what's in my Bitches Brew nail polish? What?

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  5. Egyptian Cats Domesticated 2,000 Years Earlier Than We Thought, According To These Kitten Bones

    Who's a widdle recently discovered corpse? You are! Yes you are!

    Dead kittens are usually the punchline to a very tired and overly-done kind of joke on the Internet, but to scientists who've been surveying a cemetery in Hierakonpolis, Egypt, they're a very important archeological discovery that may help us pin down when exactly the human species first began to domesticate cats.

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  6. Child Finds Mummy In Attic, Accompanying Canopic Jars Only Maybe Cursed

    German citizens: keep alert for clouds of locusts and overly aggressive American cowboys.

    The childhood miracle we all wished for: finding something ancient and amazing (and maybe cursed) in the attic. One of the biggest nightmares of every parent: your child stumbling onto a dead body. Rarely do those two things intersect -- but they sure did for Alexander Kettler, the boy who found a sarcophagus in his grandmother's attic.

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  7. As Chaos Continues in Egypt, Wikipedia Can’t Decide If Latest Uprising’s a Revolution or a Coup

    Contributors to the massive online encyclopedia find themselves in conflict over how to define the recent events in Egypt.

    What's in a name? Kind of a lot, sometimes. Case in point: as supporters of the Egyptian military and those loyal to ousted former president Mohamed Morsi continue to clash in the streets, a smaller, safer clash has broken out in the pages of Wikipedia, where editors are debating whether to call this latest uprising -- which saw Morsi driven from office as the military seized control of the nation -- a coup or a revolution. That definition isn't just important semantically -- outside the hallowed halls of Wikipedia, which term is used could have real implications for U.S. foreign policy toward Egypt.

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  8. As Trouble Brews in Egypt, Facebook Plays an Interesting Role

    Social media suddenly seems a lot less silly.

    Social media has played an important role in the political situation in Egypt since the first protests began happening in Tahrir square back in 2011. As more protests erupt today, Essam El Haddad, the assistant to President Mohammed Morsi took to his Facebook page to call the opposition to Morsi a "military coup."

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  9. Mystery of the Spinning Statue Turns Manchester Museum Into a Hardy Boys Story

    What could be causing a statue to spin in a U.K. museum, apparently untouched by passersby?

    In what looks like a job for the crew of the Mystery Machine, an ancient Egyptian statue in the collection of the Manchester Museum seems to have taken on a life of its own, rotating 180 degrees in its closed glass case, apparently untouched by any outside force. A time lapse video of the statue moving -- seemingly of its own accord -- has gone viral, causing some to go full O'Reilly and claim that supernatural forces are behind the motion. Others, including noted physicist Brian Cox, remain convinced that the statue's spin can be explained without resorting to sentences containing the phrase "mummy's ghost." For our part, we want someone to find Old Man Withers, stat.

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  10. Could Game of Thrones’ Jaime Lannister Play One of the Gods of Egypt?

    old gods do new jobs

    Insert joke about Nikolaj Coster-Waldau already being a god here. The Game of Thrones actor is in negotiations to star in Summit Entertainment's Gods of Egypt. But which one would he play?

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  11. No Freedom Isn’t Free: Ancient Egyptians Paid Their Way Into Slavery

    With the sorry state the job market is currently in, having years of knowledgeable experience and a cordial workplace attitude aren't enough to improve one's station in the office. Desperate times call for desperate measures, and sometimes you just have to buck up and rely on the power of the almighty dollar to skyrocket up that corporate ladder. It's a common misconception that the oftentimes unsavory practice of paying one's way to the top is a modern conception reserved only for the truly manipulative, but a recent discovery has shown that ancient Egyptians had done the same a little over 2,000 years ago. While this development isn't all that surprising, the fact that some Egyptians paid their way into slavery is certainly baffling enough to raise an eyebrow.

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  12. 2,700 Year Old Egyptian Mummy’s Fake Toe Is World’s First Prosthetic Device, Works Surprisingly Well

    Researchers at the University of Manchester have proven that a pair of false toes found in Egyptian archaeological sites weren't just for looks. Modern tests on replicas of the ancient replacement digits show that they really do help people walk, confirming their status as the world's first prosthetic devices and pushing back the timeline on mankind's development of convenient spare body parts -- because hey, sometimes you're gonna lose a toe -- as much as half a century.

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  13. New Egyptian Pyramids May Have Been Discovered Thanks To Google Earth And Keen Eyes

    Imagine What You'll Know Tomorrow

    Lots of folks have tried to claim throughout the years that the famous pyramids of Egypt were built by aliens. I have a feeling this news will only strengthen those opinions. Google Earth may have accidentally found some undiscovered pyramids thanks to a photo taken from their satellite in outer space. Hit the jump to find out how this all happened and see exactly what Google Earth saw.

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  14. 10 Women Who Took Titles Normally Reserved For Men

    Power Grid

    Captain Janeway was referred to as "Sir," despite clearly not being a man. Perhaps she was taking cues from Marcy from Peanuts, who called Peppermint Patty "Sir." (Actually, it's just military custom to refer to superiors as "sir," no matter what gender they are.) And then Elizabeth Swann became the King of the Pirates. While women taking titles normally reserved for men shows up in fiction every once in a while, what's more impressive is that it's not a product of fiction -- this happens in real life, more often than you'd think, and in pretty high places. For Women's History Month, we've taken a break from fictional female characters to put the spotlight on a few women who became significant rulers, even kings. Yes, kings. Not queens, not empresses, but kings.

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  15. Things We Saw Today: The X-Community

    Things We Saw Today

    Illustrator Aviv Or has single-handedly given us something wonderful to tide us over until Community comes back to NBC's lineup in the spring: Xaver's Community College For Gifted Students. Of course they are. Visit Imgur for individual pics.

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  16. U.S. Government Announces TechGirls Exchange Program For Teens In The Middle East

    Clever Girl

    Last  year, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton spearheaded an initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs called TechWomen. It was an exchange program (the kind students usually take part in) of women leaders in technology from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and those from America. With the first exchange successfully completed, Clinton has now announced another, similar initiative targeted at a younger group called TechGirls.

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  17. Software Uses Supercomputer to Predict Revolutions

    A new piece of software, with the aid of a supercomputer for processing, seems to have the ability to predict revolutions with stunning accuracy by analyzing news stories pertaining to the region in question. The software, developed by Kalev Leetaru of University of Illinois’ Institute for Computing in the Humanities, Arts and Social Science, was able to retroactively predict the recent unrest in Egypt. By collecting and analyzing news stories from the U.S. Open Source Center, Britain's BBC Monitoring, Times articles archived all the way back to 1945 and a variety of other sources, the software was able to detect a souring in tone matched only by the bombing of Iraqi troops in Kuwait in 1991 and the invasion of Iraq in 2003. While this spike didn't necessarily predict a revolution, such a strong drop in sentiment devoid from any extreme outside influences certainly suggests it.

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  18. Arab Women Get Their Voices Heard Using Social Media

    Rights of Passage

    The woman above, Manal al-Sharif, is currently in a Saudi Arabia jail because of what she's doing in this video: driving. Sharif, who is a 32-year old information technology specialist, is normally expected to hire a driver to take her to her job because women are not legally permitted to drive. Right now, there is a growing movement taking place to allow women to drive. A lot of that awareness is being spread over the Internet, which has proven to be a crucial and powerful tool in not only this movement, but the Arab Spring. This is one of those times where social media actually serves an important purpose. Let's take some time to appreciate that.

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  19. What Do You Mean There is Such a Thing as a Space Archaeologist?

    hold on to your butts

    As it happens, infrared satellite technology does not only detect heat -- it can uncover cities, tell us if a tomb has been looted, and provide tons of new information from space. Dr. Sarah Parcak, an Egyptologist from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, has used this technology to find "two pyramids, one thousand tombs, and 3,000 ancient settlements" in the Egyptian city of Tanis using a satellite orbiting 700 km (435 miles) from the Earth. Parcak says that we've officially "moved on" from Indiana Jones.

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  20. 17 Lost Pyramids Found In Satellite Survey of Egypt

    University of Alabama at Birmingham Egyptologist Dr. Sarah Parcak and her team analyzed images taken from satellites orbiting 700 km above the earth, using infrared imaging to highlight different materials under the surface, and discovered 17 lost pyramids, over 1,000 tombs and over 3,000 ancient settlements. BBC News reports that initial excavations have already confirmed some of the findings.

    How is infrared imaging able to differentiate between the mud bricks ancient Egyptians used to build structures and soil and earth? The mud bricks are more dense than the surrounding soil, and as a commenter on Hacker News points out, the higher density of the bricks means they absorb more light, as well as absorb different regions of light in the spectrum, and is thus detectable due to the light that is reflected back.

    Among the initial excavations, the city streets of the ancient city of Tanis were revealed near the modern-day city of San El Hagar. A 3,000-year-old house has since been excavated, and the outline of the structure almost perfectly matches what the satellite imagery had shown, thus validating the method of exploration and quite probably the rest of Parcak's team's findings. The discovered sites are just the tip of the sandberg, as Parcak theorizes many more sites are buried even deeper, covered by the silt of the River Nile. The satellite method, if put into common use, would allow teams to find better starting points when faced with a large site, and in theory, would make the exploration and excavation processes move more quickly than they have in the past.

    (BBC News via Hacker News)

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