04 DECEMBRE 2017 NEWS: Lincoln - Nag Hammadi - Newcastle - Scaptopara - Avesnes-le-Sec






ROYAUME UNI Medieval buildings Lincoln - The secrets of an important medieval road that once connected Lincoln city centre to its busy docks have been revealed hundreds of years after the track became lost in time. The previously unknown 9ft wide cobbled street which ran from Lincoln High Street to the Brayford was discovered in 2012 during an archaeological dig underneath what is now River Island. Allen Archaeology Ltd found a medieval paint palette made from an oyster shell, locally made pottery, and cobblestones worn down by carts bringing goods for sale to the markets and shops in the city centre. The earliest finds of pottery from underneath the road dated from the 12th century and there was evidence of the route being levelled and potholes being repaired in the years that followed.


EGYPTE Jesus teachings to james Nag Hammadi - The first-known original Greek copy of a heretical Christian writing describing Jesus’ secret teachings to his brother James has been discovered at Oxford University by biblical scholars at The University of Texas at Austin.   To date, only a small number of texts from the Nag Hammadi library — a collection of 13 Coptic Gnostic books discovered in 1945 in Upper Egypt — have been found in Greek, their original language of composition. But earlier this year, UT Austin religious studies scholars Geoffrey Smith and Brent Landau added to the list with their discovery of several fifth- or sixth-century Greek fragments of the First Apocalypse of James, which was thought to have been preserved only in its Coptic translations until now. The ancient narrative describes the secret teachings of Jesus to his brother James, in which Jesus reveals information about the heavenly realm and future events, including James’ inevitable death. With its neat, uniform handwriting and words separated into syllables, the original manuscript was probably a teacher’s model used to help students learn to read and write, Smith and Landau said. :The scribe has divided most of the text into syllables by using mid-dots. Such divisions are very uncommon in ancient manuscripts, but they do show up frequently in manuscripts that were used in educational contexts,” said Landau, a lecturer in the UT Austin Department of Religious Studies.


ROYAUME UNI 46ded08f00000578 5136801 image a 1 1512141601378 Newcastle - Medieval artefacts trapped in a waterlogged waste dump for 900 years have been found in Newcastle. Archaeologists have uncovered green-glazed pottery, neatly cut animal horns, as well as a pit-like oven during excavations of a construction site. A woven wooden fence and the boundaries of a home running parallel to the modern street were also discovered. It is thought the objects, many of which have been preserved in a medieval rubbish dump known as a 'midden', date back to the 12th century. 

BULGARIEPhoto verybig 185780 Scaptopara - Archaeologists have discovered the ruins of a large town from the time of the Roman Empire hypothesizing that it might be the Ancient Thracian and Roman settlement of Scaptopara, the predecessor of today’s city of Blagoevgrad in Southwest Bulgaria, whose name is known from a stone inscription of a petition by the locals to Roman Emperor Gordian III. The Scaptopara Inscription, which dates back to 238 AD, was discovered on a stone stele in what is today a suburb of Bulgaria’s Blagoevgrad back in 1868.  It outlined a petition from the residents of Scaptopara, which was inhabited by the Gressitae, a subgroup of the Ancient Thracian tribe of the Dentheletae, to Roman Emperor Gordian III (r. 238 – 244 AD). A large Roman Era settlement from the 1st – 4th century AD which might be ancient Scaptopara has been discovered 5 km away from the modern-day city of Blagoevgrad, the Monitor daily reports. “It is known about Scaptopara that it was built near the hot springs steaming from the Struma River, near the excavations which cover a total area of 80 decares (app. 20 acres)," the archaeologist elaborates. His team of some 200 archaeologists and workers has discovered a number of Roman Era buildings. The most notable of them is a huge building which was 80 meters long and 60 meters wide. It is described as a residential building which contained thermae, i.e. Baths. According to Dimitrov, it dates back to the early 4th century AD, i.e. the reign of Roman Emperor Constantine the Great (r. 306 – 337 AD). The baths inside the building had three pools, including an arc-shaped one. The archaeologists have also discovered a well preserved water pipeline and pipes connecting the thermae to a catchment reservoir. Other newly discovered Late Roman Era buildings include the foundations of a church and pottery kilns. A total of 1,500 archaeological artifacts have been discovered so far in the rescue digs in what is hypothesized to have been the Ancient Thracian and Roman city of Scaptopara, including about 800 coins. Most of those are Roman bronze coins as well as several silver Roman denarii and one gold-plated coin. Over 40 of the coins have been found inside a small ceramic vessel leading to the conclusion that it may have been a concealed coin hoard. The archaeological team has discovered about 20 large pithoi (ceramic vessels) dug into the ground for keeping grain, wine, olive oil, and other foodstuffs, as well as a large number of other pottery vessels such as bowls, pots, and pitchers


FRANCEAvesnes Avesnes-le-Sec - Avant la construction du lotissement, route d’Haspres, sur une superficie de 7 ha, Évelyne Gillet (INRAP) a réalisé une opération de diagnostic archéologique mettant en évidence la présence d’une carrière de pierres d’Avesnes-le-Sec, datée du haut Empire (Ier et IIème siècle après J-C).  L’opération de fouilles, commencée le 2 octobre, a permis d’explorer une carrière calcaire associée à des bâtiments d’exploitation de l’époque gallo-romaine, le tout circonscrit à l’époque par un simple fossé. Deux sondages ont été effectués, ce qui a nécessité le déblaiement de 5 000 m3 de terre argileuse et de terre calcaire, déchets de l’exploitation. Ils atteignent une profondeur variant de 5 m à 7 m. Les propriétaires de ces carrières à ciel ouvert devaient faire appel à une main-d’œuvre servile, sans doute d’origine locale. Afin de réduire les frais de transport au maximum, les pierres devaient être transportées par voie d’eau. Elles devaient sans doute être embarquées sur la Selle sur des radeaux ou des barges afin de rejoindre l’Escaut, pour être revendues tout au long du fleuve. Cette possible route commerciale semble être confirmée par la découverte de pièces réalisées avec cette pierre dans le sud des Pays-Bas. Pour David Poiron, d’après les traces d’outils visibles sur certaines pierres, les esclaves devaient utiliser une sorte de barre à mine ou un pic cintré. Face au front de taille, il a aussi insisté sur le grand nombre de déchets. La qualité de cette pierre est assez médiocre, elle est tendre et elle absorbe facilement l’humidité. À l’époque romaine, les colonnes étaient ensuite taillées à la main par des esclaves expérimentés, ou sur une machine. La pierre était placée sur un axe, dans une caisse ajourée, on la faisait tourner et on plaçait un ciseau, ainsi n’importe qui pouvait l’utiliser. Les fouilles doivent se poursuivre au moins jusqu’au 2 février.