This year has provided an array of exciting, and sometimes puzzling, discoveries for archaeologists and ancient history enthusiasts.
Looking back to our most ancient ancestors, a few of the fascinating finds highlighted the fact that Denisovans and Neanderthals were more sophisticated than previously believed, and showed us that the early human family tree is still missing some branches.
A University of Kentucky professor and his team further deciphered the writings in the ancient En-Gedi scroll - the first severely damaged, ink-based scroll to be unrolled and identified noninvasively.
Through virtual unwrapping, they revealed it to be the earliest copy of a Pentateuchal book - Leviticus - ever found in a Holy Ark.
Neanderthals carried out tasks to arrange the circles, which the researchers claim points to social organization.