January 30, 2006

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 8:08 pm

Tiy statue update

A couple more stories on the head and two others found with it:

Egyptian Statue Met Undignified End

In life, King Tut’s grandmother was a powerful woman in ancient Egypt, but after death a monument to her met an undignified end.

A Johns Hopkins University archaeological team found a life-sized statue believed to represent Queen Tiye buried face down under the floor of the sprawling Karnak Temple site in Luxor, the ancient Egyptian royal city.

The statue, which dates to between 1391 and 1352 B.C., was found under the platform of a temple of the goddess Mut, which dates to about 700 B.C. It appears to have been tossed in with rubble used to fill in the floor during that temple’s later expansion, said Betsy Bryan, a professor of Egyptian art and archaeology at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore.

“The reason for using the statue as construction material, however, remains unknown,” Bryan said in an e-mail from Egypt.

Ancient Egyptian royal head puzzles archaeologists

A German archaeological mission stumbled on a mystery with the discovery of three partial pharaonic statues in Luxor, Egyptian officials announced on Monday, because one appears to date to a later period than most previous finds at the site.

Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) announced on Monday the discovery of two statues of Sakhmet, the goddess of war, as well as the head of a member of the royal family, at the temple of Amunhotep III on the west bank of the Nile River in Luxor, 700km south of Cairo.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 1:26 pm

It’s all about Pocahontas Archaeologists unearth part of the city’s past on Pocahontas Island

Since mid-December a group of professional archaeologists has been digging up the past of Pocahontas Island in a mission to paint a picture of one part of the city’s history.

“We first had to establish the potential that we would find artifacts and significant artifacts,” said Dulaney Ward, special projects consultant to the city manager. “I believe that this area probably has the richest untapped archaeological sites in the state.”

Actually seems to be stuff from much later than the actual Pocahontas, mid-19th century.

Man’s best friend stands test of time, study says

The man was buried in Sweden with a dog laid out across his legs.

It could have been yesterday, but that burial site actually dates back 7,000 years to the Mesolithic period.

“It’s a social bond,” Kansas University professor Darcy Morey said of the relationship between humans and dogs, the study of which is his area of expertise. “It just keeps going. It’s an amazing thing.”

Morey, an assistant professor of anthropology, recently published his research on man’s best friend in the Journal of Archaeological Science. Among other things, his research shows that pet cemeteries are no recent invention but have existed for eons.

Best part: In one grave site in what is present-day Israel, an elderly person was buried with a hand lying on the body of a puppy. Awwwwwwwww. . . . .

Archaeologists puzzle over object buried in Civil War cemetery

University of Georgia archaeologists have been puzzling over finding an apparent manmade object buried in a historic Civil War cemetery.

Ground-penetrating radar on parts of Myrtle Hill Cemetery, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, found a reflection that did not look like a grave during a scan of two Civil War grave sites earlier this month.

“There definitely is something manmade there, something big and metal,” said Sheldon Skaggs, a member of the archaeologist team. “Now we have to determine what it is.”

I don’t usually post much stuff on Civil War archaeology, but this has the remote sensing angle to it.

But yet another historical archaeology story anyway UK archaeologists lead dig at McDowell House

A professional team of archaeologists are getting good and dirty while sifting through the dirt at Dr. Ephraim McDowell’s house.

Led by archaeologist Kim McBride, the group has been spending their days with shovels, trying to see what treasures they can unearth. The current project, under way at the home of the famed doctor since Jan. 16, has discovered remains of two previous structures on the site, including a fireplace, trash pits, animal bones and ceramics, which McBride believes could date back to the 1700s.

“There’s a mixture of artifacts from the 1800s and ceramics possibly from the 1800s,” said McBride, who believes the bones are probably the result of cooking done in the fireplace.

7000 year-old sacrificial altar found in Hunan

A sacrificial altar, dating back about 7,000 years, has been discovered in central China’s Hunan Province, according to Chinese archaeologists.

The altar is the earliest sacrificial site so far found in China, said He Gang, a researcher with the Hunan Institute of Archaeology.

“Ancients prayed to the gods of nature, such as the gods of the earth, river and heaven,” said He at a archaeological forum held by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences recently in Beijing.

Archaeologists have found China’s oldest white pottery specimens among the altar relics. The pottery is decorated with phoenix and beast patterns.

10,000-year-old site on coast discovered by archaeologists

Another archaeological site on the Southern Oregon coast has been determined to be about 10,000 years old, making it the second-oldest known site in the state, according to Oregon State University researchers.

The site on a bluff just south of Bandon included a large number of stone flakes, charcoal pieces and fire-cracked rock, according to Roberta Hall, professor emeritus of anthropology at Oregon State and principal investigator in the study.

There also is evidence of a stone hearth, Hall added.

“There are a lot of rock outcrops nearby that would make good sources for tools,’’ she said. “And it appears that tool-making is one of the activities the site may have been used for. So there is potential to find much more there.’’

Same thing posted over the weekend, really, not much new detail.

January 28, 2006

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:56 am

Lame use of the “xxxxx can dig it” joke, # 18,479 She can dig it

Sutphin says treasures are buried under the city’s brownstone neighborhoods.

Amanda Sutphin is not accustomed to being in the limelight. As the chief archaeologist for the city of New York, her days typically involve lots of research, meetings, looking at maps, examining excavation plans and more research. But for the department of archaeology, these are not typical days. Early last month, Sutphin was among the city and MTA officials to announce the discovery of a wall, dating to at least the 18th century, unearthed by workers building the new South Ferry subway station in Battery Park.

Much of the article has to do with the recent wall discovered in Battery Park.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:54 am

Fight! Fight! A Sunken Warship Sets Off a New Mediterranean Battle

What is probably the world’s richest sunken treasure — the Sussex, a British warship that went to the bottom of the Mediterranean in 1694 with a cargo of coins now worth up to $4 billion — has become embroiled in a bitter diplomatic dispute that pits Spain against Britain, the United States and an American company that wants to salvage the wreck.

The conflict turns on arcane and often disputed aspects of international law that govern sovereign waters and the rights of shipwreck owners and finders.

Spain claims the waters, off the coast of Gibraltar. Britain claims the ship, says its decomposing hull rests in the high seas, and has struck a deal with the American company, Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. of Tampa, Fla., to split the recovery’s proceeds.

Eh, not really archaeology.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:54 am

Ancient Papyrus Goes on Display in Turin

It served first as a notebook for ancient painters and then as part of a mummy’s wrapping. Now, a first century B.C. parchment believed to contain the earliest cartography of the Greek-Roman era will be on display next month in the northern city of Turin.

The Papyrus of Artemidorus tells a tale of more than 2,000 years of art and culture.

Egyptologist Alessandro Roccati, of the University of Turin, said the parchment was “extraordinary” in that it “conserves direct and ancient testimony that helps reconstruct history.” Roccati was not involved in the project.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:48 am

Using New Methods, Oregon State University Archaeologists Uncover 10,000-Year-Old Coastal

Researchers from Oregon State University have analyzed a second archaeological site on the southern Oregon coast that appears to be about 10,000 years old, and they are hopeful that their newly fine-tuned methodology will lead to the discovery of more and older sites. Results of their study were just published in the journal Radiocarbon.

The site, located on a bluff just south of Bandon, Ore., included a large number of stone flakes, charcoal pieces and fire-cracked rock, according to Roberta Hall, professor emeritus of anthropology at OSU and principal investigator in the study. There also is evidence of a stone hearth, Hall added.

This is the bit describing the new method: The OSU research team . . . developed a model using geologic features, soil type and radiocarbon dating to pinpoint locations most likely to include the oldest sediments. Their theory: these older sediments hold the greatest potential for holding late Pleistocene (older than about 11,000 years) or early Holocene sites.

Which is pretty cool.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:45 am

New Discoveries in Jiroft May Change History of Civilization

“One of the reasons the archeologists and historians give for Mesopotamia to be the cradle of civilization is that the most ancient historical evidence and relics which have been discovered in Jiroft so far date back to the third millennium BC or nearer, and therefore they argue that this region could not have been the place where civilization began. However, some cultural evidence and ancient artifacts belonging to the fourth millennium BC were traced while digging a trench beneath the Matot Abad cemetery which gave proof to the fact that the history of this region goes back to the sixth millennium BC. Aside from these ancient articles found so far, archeologists were able to unearth a bronze statue of the head of a goat from one of the graves of Jiroft cemetery which raised new questions about the history of this region and whether or not the civilization that lived here is older than that of Mesopotamia,” said Yousof Majidzadeh, head of excavation team in Jiroft.

Watch this space for more.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:40 am

Archaeologists plumb depths of ancient spring

Watching Casey Coy and Rick Gomez prepare to dive into Little Salt Spring is like observing a pilot getting ready for takeoff.

Step by step, the two divers painstakingly review their equipment, instruments and procedures before taking the plunge into the prehistoric underwater site.

They say such meticulousness is imperative: When you’re 242 feet underwater, there’s no time for mistakes or miscommunication.

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 10:38 am

Breaking news Archeologists Find Ancient Ship Remains

An American-Italian team of archaeologists has found the remains of 4,000-year-old ships that used to carry cargo between Pharaonic Egypt and the mysterious, exotic land of Punt, the Supreme Council of Antiquities has announced.

The ships’ remains were found during a five-year excavation of five caves south of the Red Sea port of Safaga, about 300 miles southeast of Cairo, the chairman of the supreme council, Zahi Hawass, said in a statement late Thursday.

The archaeologists, who came from Boston and East Naples universities, found Pharaonic seals from the era of Sankhkare Mentuhotep III, one of seven rulers of the 11th dynasty, which lasted from about 2133 B.C. to 1991 B.C.. They also found wooden boxes, covered with gypsum, bearing the inscription “Wonders of the land of Punt.”

January 26, 2006

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 2:26 pm

This post by Daniel Goleman is getting a lot of play in and around the blogosphere, thanks to it’s linking by the link Santa Instapundit Glenn Reynolds:

The Internet inadvertently undermines the quality of human interaction, allowing destructive emotional impulses freer reign under specific circumstances. The reason is a neural fluke that results in cyber-disinhibition of brain systems that keep our more unruly urges in check. The tech problem: a major disconnect between the ways our brains are wired to connect, and the interface offered in online interactions.

Basically he’s saying people are rude on the Internet because we don’t get immediate feedback from the person we’re being rude to so we don’t develop any empathy for them and thence go crashing through the gates of inhibition and off to the Land of Invective. That’s an observation people have been making for quite a while, ever since this whole Internet thang got going in a big way. The isolation and anonymity just makes you more likely to rip into someone.
Plus, my own pet theory contributing to this is that people these days tend to treat their written communication as they do speaking. You ‘write what you think you’re saying’ as it were. Trouble is, we think we’re also exporting tone of voice and other vocal and visual clues along with the typed words when we’re really not. Emoticons and ALL CAPS and italics can sometimes make up for this, but a lot of time, people just don’t pay enough attention to how others will actually interpret the words they’re writing. Hence, one might think one is making a perfectly humorous, if slightly sarcastic, comment on something someone else has written, which is then interpreted as a slam requiring immediate retaliation. Written communication is, indeed, an art.

So when I refer to post-processual archaeology as fuzzy-headed mentalist claptrap, just throw in some good-natured facial expressions and quit sending email calling me a “*$@% loser of a $)*@&^$* useless piece of $*&@^$ logicial positivist dog*$&%@. So there, you $@($^@(.”

Of course, most of you out there don’t know this, but the inner voice I was using while writing the above was all done in a French accent akin to Inspector Clouseau.

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