10 DECEMBRE 2012 NEWS: Rantidi forest - Sikyon - Tzannata - Lake George - Prairie Grove - Christchurch -







CHYPRErantidi-excavations-new.jpg Rantidi forest - The 2012 Rantidi Forest Excavations (Cyprus) were conducted from the 30th July until the 31st August 2012 under the direction of Dr. Georgia Bonny Bazemore, the Jeffers R. Chertok Professor of Ancient History at Eastern Washington University, USA. A decade of survey and excavation has located several major sites in the Rantidi forest, located six kilometers to the east of ancient Pafos. The primary site under investigation is the sanctuary complex located on the hilltop of “Lingrin tou Dhigeni”. This sanctuary boasted an important cult of the male deity of prophecy, who was also the consort of the goddess Aphrodite. Thousands of life-sized and over life-size terracotta statue fragments have been recovered here, as well as more than 200 inscriptions in the writing system unique to Cyprus, the so-called syllabary. A large sacred forest extended from the temple boundaries to the coast. The sanctuary both contains and is surrounded by numerous tombs. This finding supports the death and resurrection attributes associated with the ancient consort of Aphrodite, Adonis.  Survey this year revealed extensive medieval remains located at the eastern area of the Rantidi Forest known as “Lakkos tou Frankou”. Scatters of dressed building stone and at least one partially standing wall were recorded. These areas have produced large numbers of sgraffito ware, the very fine, highly decorated glazed pottery which characterizes this time period, associated with numbers of large pithoi fragments, indicating the storage of necessary food items. These new findings correlate well with the medieval remains found earlier at the western end of the Rantidi Forest, where a small medieval settlement existed; today, this area lies beneath a hotel and golf club. The results of the Rantidi Forest Excavations indicate that the medieval activity in ancient Pafos, attested by the castle keep which is now the museum of Kouklia, and the adjacent sugar mill, extended to the south and east into the Rantidi Forest. This medieval presence at “Lakkos tou Frangou” may have been defensive in nature, guarding the only route which existed at that time which accessed the Pafian region.


GRECEsicyon-new.jpg Sikyon - “Diazoma” Association will undertake the enhancement and restoration of the ancient theatre of Sikyon. The Hellenistic theatre of Sikyon was built between 303 and 251 BC and was altered at least twice by the Romans. The scene building was expanded in the 1st century and the stage was altered in the Late Roman period. With a seating area estimated at 122 meters wide and 58 meters deep, it is one of the larger theatres in the Peloponnese. The present day ruins at Sikyon are but a faint reminder of the Romanized theatre Pausanias visited in the second century CE.


GRECEtzannata-2011-new.jpg Tzannata - The lecture will focus on the large apsidal/ellipsoidal (ovoid) building of the Late Helladic II-III period, which was uncovered in its entirety in 2012, almost down to floor level. Part of the building had been discovered and excavated during the previous excavation period. The perimeter of the building is 45 m and it covers an area of 168 sq. m. The exterior wall is 1.20 m thick and the interior walls 0.80 m. It is an irregular apsidal or ellipsoidal /ovoid shape. The interior of the building is divided, along the north-south axis, in three unequal sections. The middle section is subdivided, on an east-west axis, into two rooms, i.e. a total of four large rooms. Identically or similarly shaped buildings, already present during the Middle Helladic period, are attested in contemporary Late Helladic architecture all over the mainland, from Messenia, up to central Macedonia, the closest parallel being the ellipsoidal Megaron B, at Thermon, in Aetolia. This is the first time that a megaron of this type and size has been unearthed at Kephalonia, an otherwise heavily Mycenaeanised island, judging by the rich cemeteries excavated over the years. Its discovery at Tzannata contributes significantly to our meagre knowledge concerning the domestic architecture of this period in the Ionian islands. The location of the Late Helladic-Mycenaean settlement at Poros, combined with the nearby royal tholos tomb, excavated in 1992, suggests the need for a re-examination of the theories concerning the historical reality of the territory controlled by Odysseus, the king / wanax of the Kephalenians and of Mycenaean Ithaca. The latter should, as the speaker of the lecture will stress, be indentified with this site, on the basis, for the first time, of ‘instructive’ archaeological stratigraphical data.


AUSTRALIEdm-wide-lakegeorge-20121210232518267474-620x349.jpg Lake George - The Australian National University is embarking on the most comprehensive study yet of Lake George's mysterious water levels, as well as its archaeological, indigenous and European history. A senior fellow at the Research School of Earth Sciences, Professor Pillans said research would look at everything from fossil pollen grains preserved in sediment in the lake's bed, to mega-fauna mammals including kangaroos and wombats as big as cows. 'We want to know when humans first came to the basin, its Aboriginal people, initially,'' Professor Pillans said. ''There's also some interesting European archeology out there.


USA – Prairie Grove - Archaeologists have determined the location of five houses, a post office and a road that existed during the Battle of Prairie Grove, which took place on Dec. 7, 1862. The homes were owned by Hugh Rogers, William Rogers, Josiah Thompson, the Morton family and the Borden family. Archaeologists also located the Ada Post Office and the old Fayetteville-Cane Hill Road. Some of the buildings were burned during the battle or the day after. Others stood for almost a century before being torn down. The road changed when a bridge was built over the Illinois River, north of the original ford, late in the 19th century. The locations were found using a combination of old and new technologies — everything from ground-penetrating radar to shovel tests. Historical descriptions, a map drawn by a Union soldier and aerial photographs from 1941 also provided valuable information.


NOUVELLE ZELANDEladies-fob-watch-found-archaeology-n2.jpg Christchurch - A treasure trove has been discovered in a secret room hidden underground in Christchurch for at least a century.  Archaeologists uncovered a small underground room in the foundations of a 1970s office block demolished in Madras St in the city centre.  When the secret room was opened in March, 1600 treasures from the 19th century were discovered, including a ladies fob watch, a brooch, mustard pots, cutlery, bottles and china. The 1600 artefacts were discovered in a brick basement about four metres long and nearly three metres wide. The basement would have been under a house built after 1877 and demolished by 1916.  The haul included over 800 ceramic fragments, including a pot of ointment for gout and rheumatism, a French mustard bottle, and about 360 glass items, including a bottle for a cocaine-based anaesthetic product used in dental procedures from the late 1880s. A boot and a shoe were also uncovered in the secret room.