HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Science » Anthropology (Group) » Chew on this: Ancient Sca...

Sun May 26, 2019, 09:32 AM

Chew on this: Ancient Scandinavians tasted gum 10,000 years ago

Stone Age people of Huseby Klevy chewed birch pitch, but most likely to use it as glue in tools rather than for pleasure.

28 minutes ago
Jan Hoole, The Conversation

Chewing gum may seem like a modern habit but that is apparently not quite the case. Scientists have recovered DNA that is nearly 10,000 years old from gum that was chewed by people in Scandinavia during the Mesolithic – or Stone Age – period.

This gum was used as glue to make tools – the chewing is believed to have helped make it more pliable and sticky. They may not have chewed it for pleasure, but recreational chewing of resin and gum has been known of since ancient times. The gum itself was found at Huseby Klev, a Mesolithic site in western Sweden.

It’s difficult to find DNA from ancient specimens because it is so often degraded. Most samples of ancient DNA are obtained from bones or teeth. Such remains are rare and precious, so grinding them into powder to extract DNA is rarely encouraged. Material that is meant to be chewed but not swallowed has been found in many sites, but is often disregarded during excavations.

The knowledge that human DNA can be obtained from bits of old chewing gum is a breakthrough that offers fascinating possibilities for future work. Through this seemingly inconsequential scrap of ancient detritus come several fascinating insights into life 9,800 years ago.

More:
https://scroll.in/article/924365/chew-on-this-ancient-scandinavians-tasted-gum-10000-years-ago

4 replies, 926 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 4 replies Author Time Post
Reply Chew on this: Ancient Scandinavians tasted gum 10,000 years ago (Original post)
Judi Lynn May 2019 OP
eppur_se_muova May 2019 #1
Faux pas May 2019 #2
murpheeslaw May 2019 #3
Brother Buzz Jun 2019 #4

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2019, 10:27 AM

1. The "gum" in question was birch pitch.

Never heard that recommended for the flavor.

Sweetgum, now ...

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2019, 11:47 AM

2. They're

my people!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun May 26, 2019, 11:52 AM

3. Where did they find it?

Stuck underneath a Mesolithic table?
🤪😂

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to murpheeslaw (Reply #3)

Sun Jun 2, 2019, 01:08 AM

4. That, or on the bedpost

The scientist are trying to determine if it lost its flavor overnight

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread