7 Stories

'Astonishing' Clay Tablet May Rewrite Math History

Babylonian insights predate calculus

(Newser) - A newly deciphered clay tablet from ancient Babylon has science writers buzzing because it just might "rewrite the history of mathematics," as Live Science puts it. The tablet shows that Babylonians were using sophisticated geometric principles to track the path of Jupiter in the sky, says researcher Mathieu... More »

Scientists Uncover Missing Piece to Ancient Poem

Offers new details of Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh

(Newser) - When a man arrived at Iraq's Sulaymaniyah Museum offering to sell 80 to 90 clay tablets in 2011, it was Farouk Al-Rawi's job to study them. The professor at SOAS, University of London, found a few fakes in the mix, but spent much of his time examining a... More »

'Ancient Music of Babylon' Recorded for 1st Time

Stef Conner writes music, sings to ancient poems

(Newser) - A singer with folk roots and a guy who "plays a mean lyre" have recorded haunting songs that sound something like ancient Babylonian music, Raw Story reports. No one knows what Babylonians listened to—the tunes are long-lost—but singer/composer Stef Conner says she relied on the natural stresses... More »

Babylonian Tablet 'Confirms' Noah's Ark, With a Twist

The boat was round, says expert at the British Museum

(Newser) - Anyone seeking alternate versions of the Noah's Ark tale need look no further than Babylonian cuneiform tablets. One, discovered in 1872, pre-dated the Bible and told its own Ark story. Now a tablet has arrived at the British Museum that actually describes how to build the ark, according to... More »

Behold: Oldest 'Yo Mama' Joke of All Time?

Ancient Babylonian tablet analyzed by researchers

(Newser) - At 3,500 years old, researchers may have deciphered the world's most ancient "yo mama" joke. Using images of a tablet discovered in 1976 but since lost, the pair dissected a series of jokes carved by a Babylonian student thousands of years ago, and their conclusions, originally published... More »

Archaeologists Scramble to Restore Babylon

Work begins for first time since US invasion

(Newser) - Archaeologists are once again digging into the ruins of Babylon and the rest of Mesopotamia, left unexplored since the American invasion of Iraq, the New York Times reports. “There is great potential at this site. You could excavate the street plan of the entire city,” says an expert.... More »

Gator Goes to the Beach—on Long Island

Traveling pillowcase proves to contain 2½-foot male reptile

(Newser) - And you thought your Halloween costume was scary: A pillowcase found wriggling in a Long Island parking lot early yesterday turned out to contain a 2½-foot male alligator. An official from the town of Babylon found the creature near a beach, Newsday reports, with a message on the pillowcase:... More »

7 Stories