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Ancient humans held mass banquets to foster brotherhood

Thursday, September 02, 2010 04:58:04 PM, IANS

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London: Humans were into organising mass banquets to promote fellow feelings some 12,000 years ago.

A team stumbled on the remains of at least 71 tortoises and three wild cattle, while excavating a burial cave in Galilee, northern Israel.

The shells and bones showed traces of the animals being butchered and cooked for human consumption, reports the Daily Mail.

Tortoise shells were placed under, around and on top of the remains of a ritually buried shaman, according to the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"Meat from the tortoise alone could probably have fed around 35 people," said study leader Natalie Munro from the University of Connecticut in the US.

"This is the first solid evidence that supports the idea that communal feasts were already occurring - perhaps with some frequency - at the beginning of the transition to agriculture," she said.

Feasts served as community builders at a time of rising social tension, said Munro.





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