Forensic anthropologists can be called in when human remains are discovered.
Ashley Cooper/The Image Bank via Getty Images
Forensic anthropologists are specialized scientists who analyze the skeletal remains of the recently deceased to help authorities figure out who the person was and what happened to them.
In small-group, subsistence living, it makes sense for everyone to do lots of jobs.
gorodenkoff/iStock via Getty Images Plus
Female bodies have an advantage in endurance ability that means Paleolithic women likely hunted game, not just gathered plants. The story is written in living and ancient human bodies.
Conditions in rural England around the turn of the 20th century offer a case study for cultural evolution researchers.
Heritage Images/Hulton Archive via Getty Images
People with a common history – often due to significant geographic or social barriers – often share genetics and language. New research finds that even a dialect can act as a barrier within a group.
Any hominid fossil find with molar teeth can be plugged into a new equation that reveals its species’ prenatal growth rate.
Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP via Getty Images
Using a new equation based on today’s primates, scientists can take a few molar teeth from an extinct fossil species and reconstruct exactly how fast their offspring grew during gestation.
The sun’s rays often feel good on your skin, but can cause serious damage.
Maksim Chernyshev/EyeEm via Getty Images
Our ancient ancestors didn’t have clothes or houses – but that constant exposure to the sun helped their skin protect itself from the worst sun damage.
The ruins of the Temple of Victory in Himera, which was constructed to commemorate the first battle in 480 B.C.
Are the descriptions of war passed down by ancient historians accurate? A site in Sicily provided a rare chance to fact-check stories told about two battles from more than 2,400 years ago.
New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman routinely tops 100 mph with his fastball.
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images Sport via Getty Images
We’re the only species that can throw at speeds that kill.
An Indonesian island was home to
H. Floresiensis – but how did the dwarfed human species evolve?
New research models how the Homo floresiensis species could have evolved its small size remarkably quickly while living on an isolated island.
A schoolteacher in the midst of receiving a full pe'a, the traditional Samoan tattoo generally worn by males.
An anthropologist works in American Samoa, taking advantage of the island’s longstanding tattoo culture to tease out the effects tattoos have on the body’s immune function.
New technology means accessing new information from ancient human remains, some which have been in collections for decades.
Ancient DNA allows scientists to learn directly from the remains of people from the past. As this new field takes off, researchers are figuring out how to ethically work with ancient samples and each other.
Teeth and bones can tell something about age – but not someone’s birthday.
Journal of Forensic Dental Sciences
If an undocumented migrant is a minor or an adult can have far-reaching implications. A forensic anthropologist explains why relying solely on dental X-rays to determine age doesn’t work.
Who gets to decide for the dead, such as this Egyptian mummy?
AP Photo/Ric Feld
Are DNA samples today’s version of the human skeletons that hung in 20th-century natural history museums? They can provide genetic revelations about our species’ history – but at an ethical price.
Fossilized teeth from a modern human who lived in Israel close to 200,000 years ago.
Israel Hershkovitz, Tel Aviv University
New discoveries are changing archaeologists’ ideas about the origins of our own species and our migration out of Africa. This fossil pushes Homo sapiens’ African exodus date back by 50,000 years.
Personal ‘hygiene sticks’ used in toilets on the Silk Road.
Hui-Yuan Yeh. Reproduced from the Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports.
How a research team identified parasites in ‘hygiene sticks’ that travellers on the Silk Road effectively used as their toilet paper.