03 - 04 DECEMBRE 2010


 - 04 DECEMBRE :

 - U.S.A. : Alamance - Those who fought and died at the Alamance Battleground in 1771 left behind artifacts of a struggle that remained under the earth’s surface waiting to be discovered by present-day historians.  New archeological evidence recovered at the 300,000-square-foot search site this year confirmed that the battle occurred where pre-colonial maps showed the battle took place. Nearly 150 artifact pieces have been discovered on the battlefield since September 2009 as part of the state’s Alamance Battleground Research Project. The items discovered confirmed journal reports from American Revolution and Civil War commanders’ accounts of their movements after Regulators fought at the site on May 16, 1771.


 - CANADA : Courtenay Estuary - Some of the ancient fish traps in the Courtenay Estuary are way older than first imagined. Radiocarbon dating of the remains of wooden stakes pounded in to the mud has revealed some date back almost 1400 years.  Archaeologist Nancy Greene and her husband, geologist David McGee, have been investigating the mystery of the fish traps for years. They estimate there are the remains of perhaps 150,000 stakes in the estuary, although many are not immediately obvious as the remnants are below the mud. But at low tide, the remains of huge numbers are visible, and careful mapping of 14,000 of them using GPS equipment has exposed intricate patterns. They include large heart and chevron-shaped compounds, with long straight lines of stakes once used to help guide fish, particularly salmon and herring, into the traps as tides receded. Fragments of basketry and cord have been found buried in the mud, indicating that many stakes were linked like fences to create pens to prevent fish escaping. The oldest date for a stake was 1360 years, and the youngest around 170 years, all before Europeans settled in the Comox Valley. The latest radiocarbon results pushed the earliest trap dates back a further 200 years and had allowed "a whole range of questions to be answered." She added: "There's no doubt now that this is the biggest, most sophisticated and intense fishing site ever recorded in Canada. "Some of the traps are 140ft across and had the capability of catching immense numbers of fish, capable of feeding a vastly larger population than we imagined."The First Nations knew how to fish on a huge scale but they did it sustainably. There's a lesson to be learned from that."


 - MEXIQUE : Chicxulub - An ancient Mayan residential complex some 2,300 years old was destroyed by heavy machinery in the southeastern Mexican state of Yucutan to clear the land for pasture on a private ranch. According to experts at the National Anthropology and History Institute, or INAH, the Maya site near the town of Chicxulub dates to the 300 B.C. Preclassical Period and is registered as No. 15 in the Yucutan archaeological catalog. A previous inspection carried out Wednesday by archaeologists Angel Gongora and Victor Castillo determined that the ancient Mayan settlement covering 1 square kilometer (250 acres) suffered "irreversible" damage because the nucleus of the settlement was directly affected. Both experts said that among the rubble left by the earthmoving equipment they found the remains of walls, roofs and stairways, and a block from a cylindrical column believed to form part of the portico of one of the buildings. Also toppled and cleared away were seven structures and two altars that stood in the main square. The largest building was more than 3 meters (10 feet) tall.


 - 03 DECEMBRE :

 - CHINE :  Quiglong - Eight sites with evidence of Paleolithic and Neolithic human activities have been discovered during the third general cultural relic survey conducted by Qinglong County. Through the analysis of collected stone tools, pottery fragments and broken animal bone fossils, archeological experts have initially ascertained that the unearthed stone tools were made about 10,000 years ago, implying that the history of human activities in Qinglong County may date back to as far as 10,000 years ago. Under the help and guidance from the Guizhou Provincial Cultural Relic Department and the Guizhou Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology, personnel from Qinglong's related departments formed the third general cultural relic survey team and investigated underground relics. They have collected various types of cultural relics in Bihen Village of Bihen Town, Jichang Town, Datian Township and Porong Village of Shazi Town. Among them, there are more than 100 Paleolithic chipped stone tools, one Neolithic polished stone tool, a pottery fragment with string patterns, a pottery fragment without string patterns, five animal remains of three species of cattle, horses and deer as well as plenty of broken animal bone fossils. Investigators have also found burned bones, carbon dust and sintering soil particles within the accumulation horizon. Wang Xinjin, a research fellow from the Guizhou Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology, said that the stone tool samples discovered in Qinglong have existed for more than 10,000 years. The significant discoveries have not only filled the gap in Qinglong's prehistoric archaeology but also provided new material and scientific evidence for the research of the distribution of the Paleolithic and Neolithic culture as well as regional culture in Guizhou.


 - GRECE :   Athènes - Nouvelles découvertes sous la ligne de métro. Des travaux sur l'a ligne de métro Omonia-Monastiraki, au centre d'Athènes, ont conduit à la découverte de nouveaux vestiges. La fouille de 25 puits antiques, pleins de vases, stèles, objets métalliques, est en cours.


 - FRANCE :   Lagrave - A la fin du mois de novembre 1970, à l’occasion de travaux effectués dans le premier agrandissement du cimetière, deux sarcophages furent découverts. C’était le départ d’une belle aventure scientifique et humaine. L’équipe archéologique « Broze- Montans » du spéléo club albigeois, dirigée par monsieur Jean Lautier débuta ce qui ne devait être qu’une fouille de sauvetage. La tradition orale locale et quelques rares écrits signalaient qu’à Troclar, hameau situé en bordure du Tarn, aux environs du 7° siècle, sainte Sigolène y aurait fondé un monastère de femmes. Cette longue aventure durera sur le terrain jusqu’en 1998. De nombreuses découvertes ont ponctué les travaux de recherche. Certaines étaient connues par les textes, d’autres totalement oubliées comme la crypte de sainte Sigolène, ou inconnues comme les nombreux habitats creusés verticalement dans le sol. La nécropole à sarcophages mentionnée en 1805 a été localisée et partiellement fouillée, la dernière église gothique a été en grande partie mise au jour, ainsi que des bâtiments en dur, œuvre des moines de saint Victor de Marseille. Le site de Troclar, méconnu du grand public, est devenu une référence européenne. L’Archéocrypte est un reflet de toutes ces années de fouille et de recherches qui ont mis sur le devant de la scène une période méconnue « le haut moyen âge ». A la portée de tous, pédagogique avec de nombreux panneaux explicatifs, sa visite s’impose.


 - ROYAUME-UNI :   Halesowen - The remnants of Halesowen Abbey, which was founded in the 13th century, stand within Manor Abbey Farm, off the A456 Manor Way.The Halesowen Abbey Trust claims the historic site could be under threat if the Government watchdog fails to supervise the creation of six small barn conversions. It claimed English Heritage had failed to supervise previous unauthorised work on the site.


 - PAKISTAN : Taxila - Gold coins were among the relics unearthed from the capital of an ancient Buddhist Kingdom in Northwest Pakistan, according to published reports. Also found in Taxila, the seat of the Kingdom of Gandhara and a learning center, were in excess of 100 seals of ancient Buddhist Kingdom, the rare Red Stone, and sculptures of Buddha, according to People's Daily online. Officials believe the find dates to a time period between the first century BC and the fifth century AD. The Archaeology and Museums Department found the artifacts during their most recent excavations of the Taxila Region. The collection at the Taxila museum will feature the seals. Believed to be the largest collection from one location, the seals were found in a cell. The seals hold images of icons and motifs, which officials believe indicates the monastery was the recipient of donations or had deep economic ties with states. Taxila is the cradle of civilization in the East. Known as Takshasila, Buddhism prospered since the reign of the Indian king Ashoka, whose rule was from 272 to 232 BC.

 - INDE : Okkampitiya Dematagal Rajamahavihara - The Okkampitiya Dematagal Rajamahavihara, a shrine of archaeological importance that has been neglected by the relevant authorities. The Chief Incumbent of the temple Galtemwatte Chandajothi Thera said that the archaeological remains of the historic temple that should be conserved had been left open to the elements. This temple built by King Kawantissa who ruled in Ruhuna after the Anuradhapura Kingdom was seized by the Cholas had been the abode of more than 500 Buddhist monks.  However the remains of the monastery are now covered with thick jungle. Chandajothi Thera said the temple that had been abandoned for many decades had given the opportunity to treasure hunters to remove whatever they liked from the ruins. History has it recorded that Dematagal Rajamahavihara was the hideout of Prince Saddhatissa who antagonized his brother King Dutugemunu over a controversy. Prince Saddhatissa had  fled from the kingdom in fear of his life. It is said that the Buddhist monks of the temple settled the dispute and reconciled the two brothers. Thera also said that the Chaithya was renovated for the last time in 1992 when the Archaeological Department used a special paint for colour washing. However, since then roots of trees had penetrated into the Chaithya causing extensive damage to its structure. If the authorities do not attend to further renovations, the historic temple would be in ruins before long.


 - ITALIE  Rome - The founder and chief executive of luxury shoe company Tod's said he is willing to spend 25 million euros to sponsor Italy's effort to restore the 2,000 year old Roman Colosseum. The catch is the Italian government must scrap a rule that restoration sponsors have to organise the work.