Archaeology news

Fayoum discoveries

http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/print/2010/1000/eg10.htm Al Ahram says archaeologists working in the Fayoum have found a group of 45 intact Egyptian tombs complete with painted sarcophagi at Lahoun. A dynasty 18 tomb contained 12 wooden sarcophagi stacked on top of one another - each having its own well preserved mummy. They were covered in caronnage decorated with writings from the Book of the Dead and scene depicting various Egyptian deities. Images will be interesting when they are available.

The Northern Jordan Valley

The Jordan Times May 30th (see www.jordantimes.c0m/index.php?news=26973 ) ... Archaeological finds in the northern Jordan Valley are causing experts to re-evaluate the pattern of civilisation. At Tabqet Fahel 90km N of Amman, the suggested site of ancient Pella, may have been occupied from the early Holocene to the Mamaluke era, and may have been integral to the cradle of civilisation.

Titbits

At www.google.com/hostednews/ there is an article on divers exploring the ruins of Cleopatra's palace, dated May 26th. An international team with a French leader who has spent some years exploring ship wrecks and treasure hunts, is investigating underwater archaeology off the coast at what was Alexandria. It slid into the sea after earthquakes in the 4th and 8th centuries AD and much of the city is still intact - including temples, palaces and military outposts and the general mundane things of life.

A cave in the desert ...

At http://af.reuters.com/articlePrint?articleId=AFJOE64NO9L20100524 May 24th ... archaeologists have found prehistoric rock art in a remote cave in Egypt which included dancing figurines and strange headless beasts, and they are being studied in order to find clues to early Egyptian civilisation. Some 5000 images have been found in the cave in the desert near the SW border with Libya and Sudan. The rock art has been dated to about 8000 years ago - 6000BC.

Bows and Arrows, and Spears that changed the Climate of the world ...

At www.physorg.com/print193847219.html May 23rd ... a paper by 3 researchers published in Nature this week has a novel take on the Younger Dryas event - it was caused by humans killing off herds of mammoth and causing temperatures to drop. This is perhaps the whackiest global warming alarm story of the year and it's hard to accept that it was written in all seriousness - but it must have been as it was published by Nature - and they aren't into comedy. Are they?

The Sudan, Cyprus, and Tracks that aren't tracks ... or are they?

At www.nytimes.com/2010/05/22/arts/22iht-melik22.html ... the New York Times May 22nd has a story on Meroe in present day Sudan. Its art and religion had historical parallels with Egypt but it also had a distinct indigenous element. It cursive script has now been decyphered - and it is an African language as expected, closely related to those spoken today in Dafur and Chad, as well as modern Sudan (and ancient Nubia).

Archaeology of the YD boundary event

At http://journalofcosmology.com/Extinction119.html 'Archaeological Perspectives on the Extra Terrestrial Impact Hypothesis at 12900BC: A View from Western North America' by Terry Jones - available to download in pdf format. It is surprising that so many Clovis culture objects and associated archaeology are assumed to date from the Clovis Period (the few centuries or so leading up to the YD event) and Palaeo-Indian Holocene deposits do not appear to connect with them.

Djedefre's Pyramid and Easter Island

At http://heritage-key.com/blogs/owenjarus/could-djedefres-pyramid-be-solar-temple-not-according-new-research-Baud  May 11th ... could Djedefre's pyramid be a solar temple? Not according to new research. Dr Michael Baud of the Louvre Museum in Paris gave a lecture on the pyramid at Abu Roash (see also http://heritage-key.com/site/abu-roash/ ) which was quarried in Roman times for its stone.

Beakers in Morocco

At www.int.iol.co.za/general/news/newsprint.php?art_id=mw20100507170221770/ there is a very brief report on the find of seven skeletons from graves found in a cave 80 km east of Rabat in Morocco which have Beaker parallels - including the introduction of copper artifacts. This post will probably be updated when further information is available.

Third century AD climatic blip/ event

At the Egyptian newspaper Al Ahram Weekly (see http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/print/2010/997/cu4.htm ) there is a couple of pages on the Kushite kingdom based at Meroe, contemporary the Greeks and Romans. From a lot of evidence I picked out the fact the kingdom entered a phase of decline in the 3rd century AD - which must be significant.