Sunday, September 28, 2008

Don't know about fire breathing ...

..., but can you say dragon?

As the article notes, this is not the first example of the type discovered, just the best condition of the known examples. Which lends support to the historical nature of human communication techniques, specifically that known to modern humans as the "meme". Consider ...

In the misty pre-history of pre-Roman Britain, some tribe discovers a similar example of this same type fossil, includes it with the other tribal iconography and develops a ritual to surround it (What? You don't really think shamans were somehow less likely to promote their own job security then are their modern descendants, do you?). Thus is born the legend that culminates (at least in part) with the Arthurian tales of draconic power supporting dynastic legitimacy.

All speculation on my part, of course, but not too unrealistic I fancy. Stripped of it's regalia, the underlying meme process is quite clear, I think. The principal difference being that modern communication technology accelerates the meme dispersion process while modern research infrastructure makes deconstruction of a meme a much easier/rapid and more wide-spread event.

LiveScience link via Charles Johnson.

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