Bulgarian town survived Noah’s flood

“Archaeologists in eastern Bulgaria say they have unearthed the oldest prehistoric town ever found in Europe,” Agence France-Presse reports:

Excavations at the site near the modern-day town of Provadia have so far uncovered the remains of a settlement of two-storey houses, a series of pits used for rituals as well as parts of a gate, bastion structures and three later fortification walls — all carbon dated between the middle and late Chalcolithic age from 4,700 to 4,200 BC.

… “The huge walls around the settlement, which were built very tall and with stone blocks … are also something unseen in excavations of prehistoric sites in southeast Europe so far,” Bachvarov added.

Well fortified, a religious centre and most importantly, a major production centre for a specialized commodity that was traded far and wide, the settlement of about 350 people met all the conditions to be considered the oldest known “prehistoric town” in Europe, the team says.

“At a time when people did not know the wheel and cart these people hauled huge rocks and built massive walls. Why? What did they hide behind them?” Nikolov asked.

The answer: “Salt.”

The area is home to huge rock-salt deposits, some of the largest in southeast Europe and the only ones to be exploited as early as the sixth millennium BC, Nikolov said.

What’s even more remarkable than the town’s unique fortifications or its “peculiar burial positions and objects found in the graves,” of course, is that this settlement was built and occupied by humans centuries before the creation of the universe.

And not only did these Neolithic Bulgarians construct huge walls without “the wheel and cart,” their community also seems to have survived Noah’s flood.

Oh, and that site in Bulgaria, it turns out, was built about 65,000 years after we humans first started making small stone blades:

Paleontologists said Wednesday they have found small blades in a South African cave proving that Man was an advanced thinker making stone tools 71,000 years ago — millennia earlier than thought.

The find suggests early humans from Africa had a capacity for complex thought and weapons production that gave them a distinct evolutionary advantage over Neanderthals, say the authors of a study published in Nature.

See also: “Early humans used stone-tipped spears 500,000 years ago.”

* * * * * * * * *

Charles Darwin got nearly 4,000 write-in votes against anti-science incumbent Republican congressman Paul Broun in Georgia. Broun, who was running unopposed, had called evolution a “lie straight from the pit of hell.”

• Wonkette has a long, and hilarious, collection of other write-in “candidates” who earned votes against “Witchfinder General” Broun.

• Continuing the alphabet: “C is for Cetiosaurus” … “D is for Dyoplosaurus” … “E is for Eotriceratops

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  • Jim Roberts

    [insincerity] Oh, but that’s carbon dating. Can’t trust it. Kent Hovind, a convicted felon, says so. [/insincerity]

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    I’m still intrigued as to how the town existed even before the universe did. No small feat, that.

  • Magic_Cracker

    Obviously, it’s a hold over from the previous universe which God rebooted to paper over the continuity errors, as well as boost sales.

  • Worthless Beast

    Weirdly enough, I’m pretty sure I heard that theory espoused by John Hagee years ago, flipping through television.  Something about both the Bible and an old Earth being right becuase somehow the Bible was an account of “our world” which was created atop an older one (the one with all the dinosaurs).  Something like that.  I thought it made great fantasy-lit-speculation fodder, but considering the source…

  • Jim Roberts

    Old earth creationism was very popular, even before Darwin. In fact, if you look at the writings of many of  Darwin’s critics, you’ll find that many of them had no problem with an old Earth.

    See, Genesis 1 is really hard to translate. I mean, the grammar’s more than a little dodgy, so, “and the Earth was void and without form,” could rather easily be read as, “and the Earth had become desolate.”

  • Magic_Cracker

     “…and the Earth had become desolate.”

    Because of the atomic war between the Atlanteans and Lemurians, no doubt*.

    *I mean, why not? Anatomically modern humans have been around for 50,000-200,000 years now, but we can only account for 5-20% of that time…

  • http://dumas1.livejournal.com/ Winter

    It was the Mulians (or whatever you call people from Mu) taking advantage of their rivals’ distraction during a conventional war to launch an overwhelming strike to eliminate both powers in one blow. Unfortunately, they’d underestimated the length and intensity of the cobalt-thorium G- induced nuclear winter and all starved to death in the aftermath.

    And then came the Hyborian Age, a time of high adventure and mighty heroes who wore suspiciously little clothing in the midst of an ice age.

  • aunursa

    I’m still intrigued as to how the town existed even before the universe did. No small feat, that.

    God is a six year-old boy.

    Early on, he isolated the small town of Peaksville, Ohio. In fact, the handful of inhabitants do not even know if he destroyed the rest of the world or if he whisked them away to some uncharted territory.

  • Magic_Cracker

    I always wondered. Is the cornfield a heaven or a hell? (Relative to life in Peaksville, I’m inclined to go with “heaven.”)

  • http://kingdomofsharks.com/ D Johnston

    I always figured it was death – a child’s understanding of it, complete with euphemisms.

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

     They apparently did a sequel in which Anthony has a daughter named Audrey who brings people back from the cornfield. 

    She also bring Peaksville back into the world.  Or brings the world back to Peaksville.  Whichever.

    So if Anthony is God, then Audry is Jesus, and clearly the cornfield represents wherever souls went before Jesus — limbo, or purgatory, or wherever.

  • Magic_Cracker

    Limbotory? Hellven?

  • http://kingdomofsharks.com/ D Johnston

    Fair enough, but I’m not sure anything from the TZ revivals should count as canon.

    I’m a purist like that.

  • Carstonio

     Excellent reference, and that’s more true than you might realize. Fundamentalists often sound like Peaksville’s frightened residents, as if Anthony Freemont will be so angry at gays and feminists that he’ll turn the entire town into children’s toys.

    But if the ruler of the universe was Bill Mumy, I wouldn’t object. Science fiction writers would be treated like apostles, and “Fish Heads” would be a worship hymn.

  • SkyknightXi

    Even better, in the original short story, Anthony was three years old, so his brain definitely hadn’t progressed to being able to hold a proper understanding of good and evil (at least, not a non-solipsistic one). Although the implications of him being some sort of Eldritch Abomination…Maybe he’s an avatar of Yog-Sothoth? Now remember that Outer Ones aren’t supposed to be able to understand good and evil as we do…

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

     Although the implications of him being some sort of Eldritch Abomination…Maybe he’s an avatar of Yog-Sothoth? Now remember that Outer Ones aren’t supposed to be able to understand good and evil as we do…

    No, no, Yog-Sothoth’s offspring was born to Lavinia Whateley and was named Wilbur.  

  • Magic_Cracker

    No, no, Yog-Sothoth’s offspring was born to Lavinia Whateley and was named Wilbur.  

    Who was portrayed by none other than the immortal Harry Dean Stanton in Roger Corman’s early 1970 production of  “The Dunwich Horror.”

  • Magic_Cracker

    WOOPS! I meant DEAN STOCKWELL!

  • http://jamoche.dreamwidth.org/ Jamoche

    Hmm… has anyone ever seen them together?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jrandyowens Randy Owens

    Ah yes, I have fond memories of when I finally found that on VHS, and was watching it, and suddenly “holy crap it’s that guy from Quantum Leap!”

  • Magic_Cracker

    I loved his HYP-MO-TISM scenes.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    It probably wasn’t Bill Mumy either, but Wilbur had a twin brother. One that took after his father. 

  • WalterC

     Where do you think the workers who constructed the rest of the universe stayed? In a hotel? Ha, good luck getting decent rates during that eon.

  • Magic_Cracker

    Where do you think the workers who constructed the rest of the universe stayed? In a hotel?

    Per the standard Universe Builders Inter-dimensional Union (Local Tau-0) contract, all planetary job sites are required to contain one (1) Garden of Eden per two (2) workers.

  • VMink

    It was Galactus’s hometown, of course.  Dude had to be born somewhere….

  • Magic_Cracker

    Also, from a distance of 13.3 billion light years*, astronomers have found the most distant, oldest galaxy heretofore seen.

  • ReverendRef

    No, no, no.  It’s just a decoy left by god to test us. 

    We are being tested to believe either in man-made, fictitious lies and the evil science that leads people away from god to evolution, OR we can choose to believe the Really True God who created the world in six, literal, 24-hour days (even though the sun wasn’t created until the 4th day).

    So, if we believe that this town actually existed that long ago, then it proves we are nothing but a bunch of heretical Democrats who want stuff from a black president and will cause humans to become extinct because, GAYS [ick].

    If, however, we believe that this is part of the scientific conspiracy to lead people away from god through faulty carbon dating, then we can rest easy that we are part of the chosen, righteous and persecuted Republicans who only vote for Really True Christians (even though Franklin Graham just lifted the non-christian label from the Mormons last month) and will go to heaven where at least THEY hang the 10 commandments on their walls and we can keep our stuff from falling into the wrong hands.  [/snark]

    Um . . . does that about cover it?  What’d I miss?

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    I’m just going to assume the Grahams are putting Mormonism back on the ‘cult’ list the second everyone’s heads are turned. 

  • Carstonio

    The displays at the Creation Museum suggest a deeper move for that type of tribalism, a variation on “If there is no god then life would have no meaning.” These folks seem desperate to have an explanation for suffering and a promise of life without it. For them, no Fall means no Salvation.

    Darwin’s ideas have generated so much controversy for so long, predating the political battles you describe/ Even Francis Collins, who is no creationist and is far more intelligent than me when it comes to science, doubts that evolution can explain the existence of the moral sense.  So what about evolution gets people’s goats? Strip away politics and religion and I think it’s really a belief in human specialness.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Even Francis Collins, who is no creationist and is far more intelligent than me when it comes to science, doubts that evolution can explain the existence of the moral sense.

    Eh?

    Sometimes the best way for an individual to survive and/or pass on one’s genes is to put one’s own wellbeing first, and sometimes it’s to put one’s immediate circle’s wellbeing first, and there’s nothing wrong with doing either, but generally when someone is lauded for moral behavior it’s for putting first the wellbeing of someone outside one’s immediate circle, or the wellbeing of the community as a whole. Assuming a sufficient degree of reciprocation or a sufficient degree of community concern for the wellbeing of its constituents as appropriate, sometimes that is the best way for an individual to survive and/or pass on one’s genes. We evolved to be community members, not just individuals, and morality is part of that.

  • Carstonio

    (nods) And that behavior has been observed in other primates and in canines. I hope you didn’t assume I was praising Collins for his blind rejection of evolution as an origin for the moral sense.

  • EllieMurasaki

    No, no, just wondering how someone who accepts that evolution is a thing can doubt that morality is a thing that evolved with us.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    You do wonder what it’s all about, life, the universe, and everything.
    But it’s probably either 42, or it really is the Hokey-Pokey.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Some people have mobility disabilities rendering Hokey Pokey difficult or impossible, and also the tune gets on my nerves, so I’d prefer 42.

  • Magic_Cracker

    I think it’s this (NSFW: Swearing)

  • Carstonio

    I thought the same thing about the Hokey Pokey, since it’s arguably the ancestor of all line dances. Although I would accept arguments in favor of the Chicken Dance instead, which would suggest that some types of fast food are really communion rituals.

    Seriously, I might be an exception in that I don’t recall ever wondering “what it’s all about.” While I’ve often been guilty of assuming that I’m to blame when people mistreat me, the idea of a plan or purpose to everything is counterintuitive for me. The universe isn’t all about me individually or us as a species.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    IT DOES…NOT MEAN….A THING! (/Londo)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vr8tOa_En7A 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    No, it doesn’t mean a thing, not if you ain’t got that swing!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMFIejZgJSM

  • http://www.facebook.com/jrandyowens Randy Owens

    And don’t get him started on the comedy team of Rebo & Zooty!

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    While I enjoyed your analysis, the displays at the Creation Museum suggest something deeper underneath that tribalism, a variation on “If there is no god then life would have no meaning.” These folks seem desperate to have an explanation for suffering and a promise of life without it. For them, no Fall means no Salvation and no end to suffering.

    Are they so afraid of a nihilistic universe?  One that does not care, and has no intrinsic moral quality to it?  I can understand a desire to be judged against a moral system (I like to feel like I am held to a standard and made to be accountable for my actions) but why do they assume that such a system can only come from a higher authority?  

  • Carstonio

    Nihilistic? I had thought that meant a bleak, hopeless indulgence of momentary pleasures.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    Nihilistic? I had thought that meant a bleak, hopeless indulgence of momentary pleasures.

    Not necessarily.  Nihilism simply means that there is no fixed meaning to life and the universe itself does not have a moral factor.  There is neither heavenly reward nor eternal punishment, and no cosmic judge to hold us accountable for our actions in life.  

    While the “bleak, hopeless indulgence of momentary pleasures” is a popular image to spin a nihilist as having (and some certainly do) as a contrast with, say, a belief in a higher power with moral authority, that is not necessarily true.  While a nihilistic perspective means that the universe does not have its own moral factor, it does not challenge the concept of morals.  Rather, it attributes those morals to social constructs between people, rather than people conforming to an innate standard.  

    An existential nihilist would say, “There is no meaning to life, so we must make our own meaning out of life.”  A complimentary take on that is, “The universe is vast, we are tiny, and nothing we do will make any difference in the cosmic scale of things.  Thus, we ought to focus on making the part of the universe we do see and can influence the best we can make it.”  

    Or to phrase it from a Ḥashshāshīn perspective, “Nothing is true, everything is permitted.”  

  • Carstonio

    An existential nihilist would say, “There is no meaning to life, so we must make our own meaning out of life.”  A complimentary take on that is, “The universe is vast, we are tiny, and nothing we do will make any difference in the cosmic scale of things.  Thus, we ought to focus on making the part of the universe we do see and can influence the best we can make it.”  

    That’s pretty much my philosophy, with one exception – while there is no evidence that life has inherent meaning, I don’t know for a fact that such inherent meaning doesn’t exist.

  • Tricksterson

    Works for me.

  • ReverendRef

    Oh, and I should probably go to confession now for that last post.

    Damn, I am so going to hell.

  • hidden_urchin

    Damn, I am so going to hell.

    Yes, you probably are.  On the bright side it’s going to be a Slacktivist reunion party.

  • EllieMurasaki

    There’s an Irish joke. I forget exactly how it goes, but this is close:
    The only thing you have to worry about is whether you’re sick or well. If you’re well, there’s no need to worry.

    If you’re sick, the only thing you have to worry about is whether you’ll get better or worse. If you’ll get better, there’s no need to worry.

    If you’ll get worse, the only thing you have to worry about is whether you’ll live or die. If you’ll live, there’s no need to worry.

    If you’ll die, the only thing you have to worry about is whether you’ll go to heaven or hell. If you’ll go to heaven, there’s no need to worry–and if you’ll go to hell, you’ll be so busy shaking hands with all your friends there’ll be no time to worry!

  • Worthless Beast

    The question then is… who brings the weenies, who brings the marshmallows and who brings the roasting-sticks?  

    No sense in letting the flames go to waste.

  • Tricksterson

    We’ll keep a seat cold for you.

  • Damanoid

    Scientific fact:

    Bulgaria floats.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Scientific fact:
    Bulgaria floats.

    Huh? More, please.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jrandyowens Randy Owens

    I’m pretty sure it’s a joke that explains how this town survived the Flood.  By floating on the rising floodwaters, obviously!

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    D’oh. Reading an interesting article about archaeology put my brain into “the world is fascinating” gear so that flew right by me!

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I used to be really fascinated by human evolution and would read about the earliest beginnings of modern man, so hearing that humans were actually tool-using and perhaps even creating fairly complicated structures that long ago is really amazing and interesting. :D

  • Michael Pullmann

    Vote Lurr in 2014!

  • Magic_Cracker

    And then came the Hyborian Age, a time of high adventure and mighty heroes who wore suspiciously little clothing in the midst of an ice age.

    Well, the men were insulated from the cold by the muscles on their muscles, and the women by their big, natural antediluvian boobs.

  • Jim Roberts

    “Antediluvian boobs.”

    Hard to think of a better description for young earth creationists, amirite.

    . . .

    I’ll get my coat.

    (You’re right, though, in that part of the reason there was a surge in “pre-Earth” literature is because of old Earth creationism. Heck, you can make the argument that it inspired Tolkein.)

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    To quote the Greek playwright Aristophanes in his play “Birds”, “You’re mistaken: men of sense often learn from their enemies. Prudence is the best safeguard. This principle cannot be learned from a friend, but an enemy extorts it immediately. It is from their foes, not their friends, that cities learn the lesson of building high walls and ships of war. And this lesson saves their children, their homes, and their properties.”

    In other words, the high stone walls of this city imply something about the kind of neighbors that they had.  

  • SketchesbyBoze

    “Man was an advanced thinker making stone tools 71,000 years ago — millennia earlier than thought.”

    The real question is, how did they make them stones without thought?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    “Man was an advanced thinker making stone tools 71,000 years ago — millennia earlier than thought.”

    The real question is, how did they make them stones without thought?

    GROANER TIME.

  • reynard61

    “Wonkette has a long, and hilarious, collection of other write-in ‘candidates’ who earned votes against ‘Witchfinder General’ Broun.”

    What?! No “Princess Celestia”??? I am disappoint!

  • EllieMurasaki

    Gotta be a US citizen to be elected to pretty much any US political office, I believe, and I believe US citizens can’t hold titles from other nations, of which ‘princess’ is certainly one. Sorry.

  • reynard61

    “Gotta be a US citizen to be elected to pretty much any US political office, I believe, and I believe US citizens can’t hold titles from other nations, of which ‘princess’ is certainly one. Sorry.”

    Charles Darwin is a) dead, and b) British. That didn’t seem to stop anyone from writing *him* in…

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Riastlin-Lovecraft/100000678992705 Riastlin Lovecraft

    There must be more than one person named Charles Darwin ;)…Wait, how do you handle elections where there’s more than one person with the same name running? especially if they’re not running on opposing tickets (In a primary or both being independents) 

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     Statistically speaking, an American girl is twice as likely to become a princess as to become a supreme court justice.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Which says something exceedingly sad about the present and historical demographics of the Court.

  • P J Evans

    I believe US citizens can’t hold titles from other nations, of which ‘princess’ is certainly one

    You mean ‘Princess’ isn’t her first name? I’m shocked, shocked! *g*

  • Baby_Raptor

    Forget the white one! Celestia has made some very dumb decisions over the course of her rule. She’s careless and irresponsible. Plus, Luna is prettier. 

    For the New Lunar Republic!

  • reynard61

    “Forget the white one! Celestia has made some very dumb decisions over the course of her rule. She’s careless and irresponsible. Plus, Luna is prettier. “For the New Lunar Republic!”
    Well, I will admit that Luna is my favorite as well; but Celestia, for all her faults, has a thousand years more experience in leading a government than her sister. I think that, given time, Luna will eventually come into her own as a great leader and take her place as Equestria’s ruler Congresspony of Georgia’s 10th District.

  • Tricksterson

    Uh oh, holy war in the offing.

  • Stone_Monkey

    I think what is being talked about is actually the so-called Great Leap Forward aka the start of behavioural modernity in modern Homo sapiens. Which means setting an earlier date for it is very interesting but is an entirely different thing altogether.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavioral_modernity
    I was confused by the wording of the quote for a moment, as it seemed to imply that what was at issue was the start of toolmaking for modern Homo sapiens, which surely couldn’t be the case as we probably evolved from tool users. Tool use and manufacture is well known for Homo erectus – indeed, their toolkit survived pretty much unchanged for getting on for a million years.

    http://www.public.wsu.edu/gened/learn-modules/top_longfor/timeline/26_h_erectus_tool_adapt.html

  • caryjamesbond

    Are they so afraid of a nihilistic universe?  One that does not care, and has no intrinsic moral quality to it?  
    Actually, I think it’s laziness.  A world without inherent meaning means that you have to create your own meaning.  Look at the RTC reaction to the catholic doctrine of works, for example. A world where all you have to do to get eternal reward is say a few words is a very easy world. A word where the vast majority will fade into meaningless obscurity, where there is no inherent justice, where nothing will be made right unless we make it so, is a challenging world that demands a great deal of effort and consideration. A world that is inherently morally void not only means that we have to create our own morality, it will often be fuzzy and difficult.

    Intellectual and moral turpitude. Odd, because a lot of RTCs are very hard working in the physical sense.   

  • Erp

    And then there is Çatalhöyük in Turkey which  dates from 5700-7500 BCE.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    That is a cool story. Thanks for sharing it, Fred.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_AAWT7KGJATPEGZFFBCF6ER6XBM The Mighty Wombat

    Does it actually count if it is not in the US, Western Europe, or any of the “usual” Holy lands?

    I mean, seriously, Bulgaria… that was communist country, who knows what happened there :P .


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