Archaeology news

The Dark Age Illuminated ?

www.montrealgazette.com July 26th ... reports on Canadian excavations at Tell Tayinat in SE Anatolia (previously mentioned on In the News). This story is all about a temple uncovered on the tell which has yielded lots of artifacts and a distinct layering suggesting continuous occupation over a long period of time. The oldest occupation is dated to the 12th and 11th centuries BC - it doesn't elaborate on why this is so, and the project has now reached the late 8th and early 7th centuries BC (again, no reason why is given).

Ancient America

The Guardian July 24th .... a study of the remains of a woman who lived on Mexico's Caribbean coast in the early Holocene period is causing a change of attitude among prehistorians. Anthropologists were sure humans initially migrated to the Americas in a short window of time after the end of the Ice Age and came from a limited region in NE Asia. The reconstruction of the woman's face and body have thrown this idea up in the air as she resembles in many details a person akin to modern people in SE Asia - particularly, Indonesia.

Marden Henge Hog Roast

The Independent July 24th ... David Keys reports on the latest find at Marden Henge near Devizes - the remains of dozens of pigs that had been consumed in what is thought to have been a ceremonial or seasonal feast. Also, the remains of a large timber structure, possibly a temporary affair in which the ceremonial meal was eaten as the pig bones were found in the ground around the building. The building overlooked the river Avon which may be significant as the Avon continued south towards Durrington and the Stonehenge avenue.

News: archaeological stories hot from the press

At www.novinite.com/newsletter/print.php?id=118366 we learn that Bulgarian archaeologists have discovered the palace of the ruler of the Odysian federation of Thracian tribes in the 5th and 4th centuries BC. A fortress and sanctuary in the mountains.

A virtual Stonehenge

BBC News July 19th ... archaeologists intend to 'virtually' excavate Stonehenge and its surrounding environs in a mult-million poun mapping of the terrain and what may lie bured under the ground - with pinpoint accuracy. Millions of measurements will be taken and will then be incorporated into 'gaming' technology to produce 2D and 3D images. Equipment will explore over 14km within the next 3 years, led by Vince Gaffney of the University of Birmingham. Large banks of sensors will be pulled by a quad bike and GPS will the plot the measurements precisely.

Peru - monumental architecture

At www.peruviantimes.com/history-of-peru-part-3-monumental-architecture/ which is part three of a series on the archaeology of Peru - between 3000 and 500BC.

Woodhenge in North America

www.dispatch.com/live/content/local_news July 11th ... 'Diggers unearth mysteries of Fort Ancient's Woodhenge' - Fort Ancient is a massive earthwork of the Hopewell culture which flourished contemporarily with the Romans in the Old World. Woodhenge is a small part of Fort Ancient - otherwise known as the Moorehead Circle, consisting of two concentric rings of post, one being as large as 180 feet in diameter. The posts were up to 15 feet high when standing. In the centre was discovered a pit of orange-red soil.

The Golden Warrior

At www.eurekalert.org/print/61549 - the grave of a Scythian warrior whose torso was covered in gold has been found in Kazakhstan - dating from some time in the first millennium BC. It was one of a group of seven burial mounds and contained a large amount of gold and bronze objects. Whether these were of local manufacture or loot from raiding parties is not mentioned.

Marden Henge

BBC News July 19th (accessible on their website at www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-wiltshire-10684042/ ) reports on a Neolithic building found at Marden Henge near Devizes.

Grooved Ware

At www.physorg.com/print198495505.html there is a story on the discovery of a hand sized piece of rock found in a quarry near the village of Over in Cambridgeshire. It date backs to the Late Neolithic period, it has been suggested, as it has a pair of concentric circles etched onto the surface, a motif typically associated with Grooved Ware art/design. The find is significant as no such rock art, for obvious reasons, has ever been found previously in eastern England.