Archeologist Thomas Ingicco and the 700,000 Year-Old Rhino Mystery

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via Esquire Philippines, 02 July 2018: Esquire’s interview of Thomas Ingicco, head of the team that discovered the fossil of 700,000-year-old butchered rhino in the Philippines (see here).

Dr. Ingicco is the leader of the archaeological team that unearthed a find in Kalinga that may prove that humans were in the Philippines ten times longer than previously believed.

Source: Archeologist Thomas Ingicco and the 700,000 Year-Old Rhino Mystery

New law on Philippine National Museum as the ‘primary keeper’ of Filipino heritage one step closer to being passed

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National Museum of the Philippines. Source: Rappler, 07 August 2018

via Rappler, 07 August 2018: The Philippine senate has voted on its third unanimously to pass a law strengthening the National Museum as the ‘keeper of Filipino Heritage’. The bill still has several administrative steps to complete, including approval by the president before it becomes law.

If the bill becomes law, the National Museum will be tasked with acquiring documents as well as preserving, exhibiting, and fostering research of artworks, cultural, and historical artifacts that represent Filipino heritage and the country’s natural history.

The law will also allow the National Museum to retain and use all income derived from all its operations nationwide and overseas. This will grant it more flexibility in generating and spending its income to fund redevelopment.

Source: National Museum will be ‘primary keeper’ of Filipino heritage

Visiting the National Museum of Natural History? Here’s what to expect

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via The Inquirer, 10 June 2018:

Even as only four of its 12 galleries were open to visitors on the opening weekend of the National Museum of Natural History in Manila, it didn’t deter the thousands of visitors who came, curious to check out the impressive structure and the artifacts displayed within.

Source: Visiting the National Museum of Natural History? Here’s what to expect | Inquirer Lifestyle

What we lost in the fire: Notes on our archives, and the buildings that house them

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via ABS-CBN News, 1 June 2018: Last week, the Juan Luna Building in Manila, which is the home of the National Archives of the Philippines, caught fire. Fortunately no historic documents were lost (the documents are kept elsewhere), but the building itself was historic.

Early this week, panic swept through the heritage conservation set, the culturati, historians, and concerned citizens of Facebook as news broke that our National Archives was on fire. That it was the building that was burning, and not all the documentation housed inside it, came almost as an afterthought.

Source: What we lost in the fire: Notes on our archives, and the buildings that house them

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Earliest known hominin activity in the Philippines by 709 thousand years ago

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Very exciting news out of the Philippines today, a paper published in Nature describes the discovery of stone tools and a butchered rhino fossil in the Cagayan Valley that dates to between 777,000 – 631,000 years ago. This early date forces us to rethink hominin capabilities in crossing water during the Pleistocene.

Earliest known hominin activity in the Philippines by 709 thousand years ago
Ingicco et al.
Nature, doi:10.1038/s41586-018-0072-8

Over 60 years ago, stone tools and remains of megafauna were discovered on the Southeast Asian islands of Flores, Sulawesi and Luzon, and a Middle Pleistocene colonization by Homo erectus was initially proposed to have occurred on these islands1,2,3,4. However, until the discovery of Homo floresiensis in 2003, claims of the presence of archaic hominins on Wallacean islands were hypothetical owing to the absence of in situ fossils and/or stone artefacts that were excavated from well-documented stratigraphic contexts, or because secure numerical dating methods of these sites were lacking. As a consequence, these claims were generally treated with scepticism5. Here we describe the results of recent excavations at Kalinga in the Cagayan Valley of northern Luzon in the Philippines that have yielded 57 stone tools associated with an almost-complete disarticulated skeleton of Rhinoceros philippinensis, which shows clear signs of butchery, together with other fossil fauna remains attributed to stegodon, Philippine brown deer, freshwater turtle and monitor lizard. All finds originate from a clay-rich bone bed that was dated to between 777 and 631 thousand years ago using electron-spin resonance methods that were applied to tooth enamel and fluvial quartz. This evidence pushes back the proven period of colonization6 of the Philippines by hundreds of thousands of years, and furthermore suggests that early overseas dispersal in Island South East Asia by premodern hominins took place several times during the Early and Middle Pleistocene stages1,2,3,4. The Philippines therefore may have had a central role in southward movements into Wallacea, not only of Pleistocene megafauna7, but also of archaic hominins.

Source: Earliest known hominin activity in the Philippines by 709 thousand years ago | Nature

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