03 MARS 2011 News - Vizhinjam - Yukon - Girihadu Seya - Barrington - Hama - Newark - etc-


- 03  MARS

 - INDE – Vizhinjam -  A team of archaeologists has stumbled upon ancient pottery in Vizhinjam on the outskirts of the state capital, which they feel reinforces suggestions that it was an important port during the 1-3 AD. "Two trenches have been laid and several interesting pottery types have been recovered. A distinctive amphora base and a section of an amphora with bitumen coating have been found along with two smaller amphora shards. They can be tentatively dated between 1st and 3rd century AD. There are also shards of a very fine grey ware which belongs to the same period," a statement issued by the researchers Ajit Kumar, head of the department of archaeology, University of Kerala and Robert Harding of the Civilisations in Contact Project, University of Cambridge said. According to Kumar who is also director of the project, "the amphora evidence pushes back the antiquity of Vizhinjam to the 2nd-3rd century and supports earlier suggestions that this port may be Balita', mentioned in the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea (1 AD), or Blinca' mentioned in the Peutinger Tables (4 AD)."  Their find includes porcelain from South China kilns, Thailand, Netherlands and Britain besides two unidentified coins, beads, terracotta tiles and pieces of coloured glass from various periods and evidence of iron-work including a crucible and pieces of iron slag.  Many examples of turquoise glazed pottery found at the site have been dated to the first millennium AD. On pieces of large storage jars with bitumen coating on the inner side recovered from the trenches, Harding said "this was done to reduce the jar's porosity, so it could be used to transport liquids such as oils or wine." Both types of pottery have their origins in Mesopotamia and the Arabian Gulf, he said.  The team also found pieces of charcoal from a pot and expressed the hope their Carbon 14 dating would help fix a time-line for the region.


 - CANADA -   Yukon - Archeologists have found new clues about the music early Klondike stampeders were listening to during the Yukon Gold Rush, thanks to recordings found aboard a 110-year-old shipwreck. The three records and a gramophone were discovered last summer in the A.J. Goddard, a sternwheeler that sank in Lake Laberge, north of Whitehorse, in October 1901.The three recordings, including Rendezvous Waltz and a rare 1896 minstrel recording of Ma Onliest One, were previously unknown to Gold Rush-era music experts. Researchers also found many of the ship's contents preserved in the shipwreck, including crew members' clothes and tools, the records and the gramophone.


 - SRI LANKA – Girihadu Seya -  The Department of Archaeology has launched a crash programme to identify archaeological sites in the Eastern Province that had been neglected during the years of military conflict. Archaeological officer in Trincomalee, L B Ranjith said the Department inaugurated the programme by surveying the Girihadu Seya archaeological site in Thiriyaya. He said the Girihadu Seya grounds about 25 acres in extent had been declared an archaeological site by Gazette Extra Ordinary on Nov. 05, 1987. The surveying of archeological sites is carried out by the Eastern Province Asst. Director, of Archaeology - W H  A Sumanadasa on the instructions of the Director General of Archaeology Senerath Dissanayake.  Archaeological officer, Ranjit, also informs that the boundaries of land identified as archaeological sites would be pegged out and boundary stones placed at regular intervals of 50ft.


 - ROYAUME-UNI – Barrington - Survey work has started on clearing an old pond in Bar-rington which is expected to produce a treasure trove of Medieval artefacts. The pond has long been filled in but older villagers in Barrington can still recall it being used in the 1920s for people to wash their clothes. The pond site was once thought to have been provided to the village by the owners of Barrington Court as a water source for washing.


 - SUISSE   Bâle - L’ancien port bâlois de St. Johann, qui est actuellement détruit pour faire place au nouveau campus de Novartis, renferme des trésors. Les archéologues bâlois y ont découvert des offrandes datant de plus de 2000 ans, Les fouilles ne sont pas encore entièrement terminées mais elles peuvent déjà être classées parmi les plus importantes portant sur l’époque celtique en Europe centrale, indiquent les autorités bâloises jeudi. Les objets de rituel avaient été sortis du site dans un bloc de terre de neuf tonnes en août dernier. Les archéologues, qui ont installé un véritable laboratoire sur les lieux des fouilles, poursuivent la mise à jour d’un ensemble spectaculaire de récipients en métal et céramique avec des ornements, armes, harnais et bijoux. Ces ustensiles datent du premier siècle avant J.-C. Ils ont été enterrés par les habitants du village celte dans le cadre d’une cérémonie rituelle, selon les chercheurs. Rien n’indique toutefois que le lieu renferme également des sépultures. Une des pièces les plus importantes est un chaudron avec un grand anneau servant à le suspendre au-dessus du feu. Les scientifiques bâlois ont pris contact avec des collègues londoniens qui étudient actuellement un ensemble de marmites en bronze de la même époque.


 - SYRIE   Hama - A specialized team in restoration of ruins at the Archaeological Monuments Lab at Hama National Museum finished the restoration works of a rare circular-designed pottery coffin dating back to the Byzantine era in preparation to showcase it in the Archaeological Cemeteries Hall of the Museum. Curator of Hama Museum, Rakan Amin, told SANA that the coffin is approximately 2 meters long and a half meter wide. It is one of the rare coffins as it was build in a circular shape with an opening to ensure the entry of the deceased. He added that the coffin carries an inscription to indicate the name of the deceased. Isam Youssef and Ikhlas al-Dbaiyat from the Archaeological Monuments Lab said the restoration works started by removing the glue and cleaning the coffin by clearing the salts layers and dust from all the coffin's joints by using diluted vinegar acid and distilled water. The coffin was then reconstructed in the shape it was modelled into which dates back to the 3rd or 4th centuries AD. The Jar was used for keeping foodstuffs, particularly grains, oils and wines.


 - ROYAUME-UNI   Newark - A treasure hunter has found 18 Bronze Age items in a field near Newark in Nottinghamshire. Maurice Richardson stumbled across the collection, which includes four socket axes, a spear head, a chisel and a fragmented sword, by mistake. The tools were found just a foot below the surface of a farmer's field. The first things to be dug out were three of the four axes-