Radiocarbon dating of the iceman
Then, according to History.com, in 1799 some engineers in Napoleon's army discovered an unusual piece of stone embedded in the wall of Fort Julien in the Egyptian city of Rosetta.
The terracotta army buried with the emperor is thought to be one of the greatest archaeological finds of all time.Instead, they discovered a cave full of 20,000-year-old paintings made by Cro-Magnon, an early modern human.The paintings are exquisitely detailed and some of them are huge — more than 10 or 15 feet in length.And since people still understood how to read Greek, that meant they could figure out the hieroglyphics, too, thus cracking a code that had eluded archaeologists for centuries.In yet another example of cool things found in caves, divers exploring an underwater cave in 2007 in Mexico's Eastern Yucatan Peninsula found a human skeleton, according to Seeker.On its face, the Rosetta Stone tells about an Egyptian ruler going on about how awesome he was.
What's important is the fact that the decree of awesomeness was written in three different languages: Egyptian hieroglyphics, Egyptian demotic, and Greek.
Now, finding skeletons underwater isn't the most unusual thing ever because people who drown are more likely to disappear forever than people who, say, have heart attacks at Denny's.
But this find was unusual because it came at the bottom of a cave that was literally called The Black Hole, about 170 feet underwater.
Sadly, the terracotta army probably wasn't equipped to help the emperor navigate the crowds of tourists and roadside souvenir stands, so there's that. Egyptian hieroglyphics were the royal form of written communication, worthy of the tombs of kings and the walls of temples.
Then the Crusaders came along and went, "Eek, paganism," so hieroglyphics were banned and replaced by the much-less cool "Coptic" alphabet, which was basically Greek with a few extra characters thrown in to keep things interesting.
The four boys joined him, imagining they might have found the entrance to a tunnel that would take them to a lost treasure.