An ice core reveals the economic health of the Roman Empire…

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A year by year economic history of the Roman Empire might seem as impossible to reconstruct as the lost 107 books of Livy’s history of Rome. Yet something close to such a record has now been retrieved from the unlikeliest of places — a glacier in central Greenland. The record is written not in Latin but in lead. Lead emissions generated by mining operations in Northern Europe reached Greenland and were washed down in snowfall…

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