05 AOÛT 2011 NEWS : Poyang Lake Laoyemiao - New York - Moccasin Bend - Gournia - Kintore - Dehli - Llanarthne -


 - 05  AOÛT 


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 - CHINE –  Poyang Lake Laoyemiao - A large number of blue and white porcelain objects were found in the mysterious "Chinese Bermuda Triangle" waters of the Poyang Lake Laoyemiao after a month-long cultural relic exploration in this area, according to Jiangxi's Institute of Archaeology. The porcelain, which probably dates back to the mid-to-late Ming dynasty, together with some copy celadon of Longquan kilns were mainly exports of Jindezhen, said Xiao Fabiao, leader of the exploration group. He revealed that debris also signals the location of the sunken ship. Known as "China's Bermuda Triangle," this 24-kilometer stretch of Laoyemiao waters located in Duchang County of Jiangxi province are long and narrow waters connecting the Gan River and Poyang Lake, China's biggest fresh water lake. Famous for rushing waters and powerful waves, the waters are a dangerous area where shipwrecks frequently take place.


 - USA –  New York - Archaeologists helping to excavate the World Trade Center site have uncovered a second piece of the more than 200-year-old ship that was discovered there last summer. The find, made last Friday, came as workers began digging up the east side of the construction area, which once housed the World Trade Center complex. "We were expecting there to be something there," said Michael Pappalardo, an archaeologist. "Now no more of these remains are on the site," he added, explaining that the rest of the relevant area had already been excavated. Archaeologists first noticed remnants of the ship —  curved pieces of wood buried 25 feet below street level — last July and spent two weeks excavating the artifact, which turned out to be a 32-foot-long section of the boat's hull. The piece that was found last Friday belongs to the very front of the ship, providing crucial clues as to its size, shape and, therefore, use, according to Pappalardo. "It does give us a much better sense of the boat's original dimensions," the archaeologist, who now estimates that the ship was 50 feet long at its base and 60 feet long on the deck, explained. Scientists from AKRF spent two days removing the newest piece, which measures roughly 6 feet long, 3 to 5 feet wide and approximately 1 foot tall. It was still being stored at a facility in New York as of Thursday morning, but it will soon be reunited with the rest of the ship's remains at Texas A&M's Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation, Pappalardo said. The artifacts will be saved there under stable conditions until the Port Authority decides what to do with them, according to Pappalardo. The authority might decide to undergo the lengthy process of preserving all of the remains — perhaps to be reconstructed later — or they might just decide to preserve some of the artifacts, the archaeologist explained. At a panel last fall, convened to discuss the ship's probable history, experts speculated that it had been a merchant ship used to transport commodities like sugar, salt, molasses and rum up and down the Atlantic coast. At some point it likely traveled to the Caribbean, where it became infested with Teredo worms, maritime historian Norman Brouwer said at the panel. By 1797, the worm-damaged ship had been added to the landfill that was created to extend lower Manhattan westward. Since the panel, Pappalardo said experts have continued to piece together the ship's history, using dendrochronology to date the ship's construction to the 1770's. Additionally, they have linked the wood that was used to construct the ship to Pennsylvania, suggesting that the boat — which was likely created around the time of the Declaration of Independence — might also have been born in the Philadelphia area.


 - USA - Moccasin Bend - According to the National Park Service, the first human inhabitants began settling on Moccasin Bend during the Paleo-Indian period, between 10,000 and 8,000 B.C. Archeological excavations have uncovered approximately 20 villages on the site, including remnants from Cherokee civilizations and Spanish explorers, who passed through during the 1500s, long before the formation of Chattanooga as a city.  "This is a rare place where you can see the building blocks of a modern day city," Young said. "Our history didn't just begin with the establishment of Chattanooga in the 1830s, it was much earlier than that. It's a rich historical area, and there's not many places in metropolitan areas that are quite like it."


 - GRECE –  x Gournia (Crète) - Morgan, a 2009 graduate of Greenwich High School and a rising junior at Hamilton College, in Clinton, N.Y., is spending her summer with her art history professor, John McEnroe, at one of the oldest archaeological sites on Crete. Morgan and McEnroe are working in the Minoan Bronze Age town of Gournia, one of the few fully excavated sites dating from that historical period. The pioneering American archaeologist Harriet Boyd-Hawes was the first to work on the site in 1901, and the group this summer represents only the second research undertaking there in the past century. Morgan's goal this summer is to help McEnroe chronologically date the different structures at the site in order to redraw the layout of the town. Although the site has been excavated for more than a century, there has been relatively little fieldwork done in Gournia. Using electronic distance-measuring survey equipment, McEnroe and Morgan are examining the relationships between the structural joints of the buildings to help them create a chronology of construction for the town.


 - ROYAUME UNI - Kintore - A five-year project to find out more about a Bronze Age community is underway in Forestry Commission Scotland's Balbithan Wood, Kintore. It is the first time the site has been examined so closely since it was discovered around 100 years ago. Oxford Archaeology North is leading an international team to survey and date the settlement.


 - INDE –  Dehli - Restorers at the Isa Khan's tomb in the precincts of the Humayun's Tomb World Heritage Site have discovered that the Isa Khan's tomb stood within a hitherto unknown sunken garden that predates the famed gardens that the Mughals built and popularised. Also uncovered at site are pieces of underlying archaeology. And with this discovery, the country now has a new chapter added to the history of the Mughal gardens. “It is an important discovery as the Isa Khan's Tomb garden predates the Humanyun's Tomb garden by two decades. It is also very significant as Isa Khan's garden tomb can now be considered the earliest example of a sunken garden in India – attached to a tomb – a concept later developed at Akbar's Tomb and at the Taj Mahal,” said Ratish Nanda, Project Director of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture, that has been undertaking an urban renewal project in the Humanyun's Tomb Nizamuddin Basti area. “We were not expecting to discover that the earth levels in the enclosure were over a metre lower than the existing levels, when we began the restoration of the Isa Khan tomb. We realised that the level of the garden, as was designed originally was much lower than its existing level. So we began the work of restoring the garden to its original design,” he added. It is an exciting and a wonderful discovery. The sunken garden here has revealed how the gardens have risen over the years, just as layers are added to history; layers have been added to the gardens as well. Over the years gardens have come up at the level of the monuments, but this garden has revealed that here it was originally three to four feet below the monument with the tomb sitting high,” said Amita Beg of the WMF. Isa Khan finds mention in history as a brave and valiant noble under Sher Shah Suri, the Afghan ruler who had overthrown Humayun. The tomb built in 1547 is octagonal in shape and has exceptional decorative detailing.


 - ROYAUME UNI – Llanarthne - Archaeologists at the National Botanic Garden are marvelling over the discovery of a 17th century courtyard during of their dig for the remains of Middleton Hall. The area where once stood a mansion for the elite Middleton family in the early 17th century lay buried beneath the grounds of the Llanarthne attraction. Archaeologists have been helped by garden staff and up to 30 volunteers as they excavated a site on the Garden’s Waun Las National Nature Reserve looking for evidence of the home of the influential Middleton family. They had uncovered masonry nails, roof tiles, parts of walls, a host of pottery and a stone which was once part of the 18th century Paxton mansion. The dig team mapped out the probable courtyard during the final day of excavation. The cobbles also have two circular spaces, which suggest there would have been columns as well.The dig’s principal archaeological supervisor, Jon Dollery, called the find – likely to be the house’s portico – hugely important “It means we know the surface and the outside level we can dig to,” he said. “We were only expecting to find structurals so it’s fantastic, really unexpected. We really didn’t think we’d find the surface because we were not going down that deep.”