08 NOVEMBRE 2016 NEWS: Bassetki - Ramanathapuram - Van - Bruay/La Buissière - Saint Fuscien
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IRAQ – Bassetki - The remains of an ancient city has been discovered in northern Iraq. The settlement, near the town of Dohuk, is believed to have served as an outpost for the Akkadian Empire, having been founded 5,000 years ago. The Bronze Age city was unearthed by archaeologist from the Institute for Ancient Near Eastern Studies (IANES) at the University of Tübingen during excavation work at the Kurdish village of Bassetki between August and October of this year. Their findings showed the city was established in 3,000 BCE. Settlement layers showed it flourished for 1,200 years, with layers indicating it was occupied during the Akkadian Empire period (2340-2200 BCE). A city wall was erected approximately 2,700 BCE, while large stone structures were built in 1,800 BCE. On the outskirts, the team found a town that stretched around 1km, along with a number of grand houses dating to the Bronze Age. The city appears to have continued to thrive after the fall of the Akkadian Empire – evidence of extensive road networks built in 1800 BCE were uncovered during excavations. These would have connected the city to Mesopotamia and Anatolia. They also discovered Assyrian cuneiform tablets dating to 1,300 BCE. These tablets indicate there was a temple in the city dedicated to the Mesopotamian storm and rain god Adad. Bassetki was first recognised as a site of archaeological importance in 1975 following the discovery of the Bassetki statue – a fragment of a bronze figure of the Akkadian god-king Naram-Sin that dated to 2250 BCE. The latest excavation has helped archaeologists explain why the figure was found in the location. They believe the city served as an important outpost for the Akkadian Empire during its short history.
INDE – Ramanathapuram - The Ramanathapuram Archaeological and Historical Conservation Centre, headed by Mr. Rajaguru, a school teacher and an amateur archaeologist, has discovered two Siva temples belonging to the Pandya period in the coastal hamlets of Therkku Naripaiyur and Vettukadu off east coast in the district.“Both the temples, found buried in the two villages, are believed to belong to the 13th century and built by Maravarman Sundara Pandyan I, who ruled the region between 1216 and 1238 CE,” Mr. Rajaguru, who visited the villages during a field visit, said. Finding that fishing landing centres in the coastal hamlets were called ‘padu’ and the coastal hamlets had names with ‘padu’ suffix, the teacher and his mechanical engineer friend, Kalimuthu, also an amateur archaeologist, launched an exploration to find whether Chokkanathar (Sivan) temple existed at Chokkanpadu, now called Therkku Naripaiyur. They found a kodungai (a rainwater outlet) and some pillars partly buried at a coconut grove in the area. An ‘L’ shaped area barren in the midst of the ruins increased their curiosity and enquiries with local people revealed that stones were unearthed in the area. Mr Rajaguru quoted Chidambara Nataraj (85), a local villager, having said that he had seen a temple in the area about six decades ago and it could have been buried in sands as it was located within 100 metres from the shore. Chokkanpadu was earlier called Sambumanagar and later as Naripaiyur as sambu meant nari (jackal), the archaeologist said. There was a roofless Ulagamman temple (Kali temple) in close proximity and it belonged to the 13th century, if the illegible inscriptions in the temple were any indication, he said and added that the buried Siva temple could belong to the same period. They discovered a Siva temple at Vettukadu, another coastal hamlet on the east coast after locating a partly buried ‘Nandhi’ in the area. ‘Amman’, ‘Murugan’ and ‘Bairavar’ idols were unearthed in the area when people dug foundation for building an overhead tank in 2007. This bore testimony to the existence of Siva temple in the location, Mr. Rajaguru, a teacher in SSAM Government Higher Secondary School at Thirupullani said. The idols, now kept in the government museum, belonged to 13th century, he said. Here too, a Kali temple – ‘Pizhaiporuthamman’ temple — existed and local people had unearthed terracotta figurines while digging a well and they too turned out to be 13th century figurines. As 13th century Siva temples were found in the coastal areas of Kilakarai, Melakidaram, Melaselvanoor, Mariyur, and Thirumalugandakottai, the two sites at Therkku Naripaiyur and Vettukadu were worth of exploration, he said and wanted the State archaeological department to take up the work. This would throw more light on the trade and style of governance during the Pandya period, he said.
TURQUIE – Van - New findings have been obtained during excavations being carried out in the south of Van Fortress in the city of Van in southeast Turkey. The findings have discovered the lifestyles of Ottoman-era residents and Ottoman-era architecture. Collapsed during the Russian occupation in World War I, the old city of Van is home to many structures, and excavations are constantly being conducted to revive them. Associate Professor Erkan Konyar, the head of the Van History and Archaeology Research Center at Istanbul University, has led the excavations for seven years. The structures reveal the unique and well-planned structure of the old city of Van, and excavators recently uncovered ruins of the Ottoman-era municipality, assembly, court and club of retired soldiers. Konyar said that Van, the ancient capital of the Urartian Empire and one of the most important cities in the region throughout the later Ottoman Empire, was multi-cultured and open to the West. He said Russian ceramics and European accessories were found in Van, which was also a major stop on the Silk Road. He added that this year’s excavations on an area of 6,000 square-meters had ended.
FRANCE – Bruay-La Buissière - Les archéologues ont mis au jour un habitat du IIe siècle. Contrairement à ce que les archéologues pensaient trouver (habitat des potiers de l’officine voisine), ces restes d’habitat prouvent que les occupants étaient issus de familles aisées. L’actuelle zone commerciale était donc densément peuplée il y a 1 800 ans. On sait que sous l’hypermarché sont restés enfouis des dizaines de fours de potiers. Sur les hauteurs, en approche d’Hesdigneul, a été découverte une zone de nécropoles avec de nombreuses sépultures. Sous la route entre Brico-Dépôt et le rond-point, une autre voie commerciale existait déjà et enfin, de l’autre côté, à l’arrière du cimetière actuel, les archéologues viennent d’exhumer un habitat de familles aisées. L’une des prochaines étapes sera de découvrir la vocation des cuvettes mises au jour à côté des maisons. La première hypothèse est qu’il s’agisse d’une réserve d’eau pour stocker les poissons. Des scientifiques vont analyser les échantillons extraits.Toutes ces découvertes ont repoussé la date de fin de chantier reportée de quelques mois. L’analyse des découvertes, elle, prendra quelques années.
FRANCE – Saint-Fuscien - Diagnostic préalablement à un lotissement à Saint-Fuscien. Deux silex taillés, un biface (Paléolithique moyen?) et un éclat ont trouvés en dehors de tout contexte stratigraphique. Ces pièces présentent un état de fraîcheur évoquant une faible mobilisation.Les fondations d’un bâtiment mentionné sur le cadastre de 1810 ont également été mises au jour ainsi que des traces d’impact d’obus.