24 MARS 2015 NEWS: Lohardaga - Marsden - Teyu Cuare - Czersk - Monflanquin - Vilavilani - Akitsu - Montreal - Batin - Bretovitsa






INDE – 23ranlohardaga 192423 Lohardaga - An ancient temple in a Lohardaga village, some 100km from Ranchi, may be holding the key to our ancestors from the early Iron Age who walked on Earth roughly between 1000BC and 200BC. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has granted eminent history digger Harendra Prasad Sinha permission to excavate the megalithic site on Prachin Shiva Mandir premises in Bhasko village. "The temple, which is located some 4km from the office of the (Lohardaga) deputy commissioner, houses ancient stone sculptures of Uma-Maheshwara and Shivalingams dating back to 15th or 16th Century AD. The remains that we may find at this site can throw light on the hitherto unknown history of Jharkhand," Sinha, retired deputy director of archaeology in the state art and culture department, told The Telegraph. Sinha had stumbled upon the site in 2010 during one of his visits to Lohardaga. "I had been summoned by the district administration to identify a strange stone that labourers digging a well had found. I was excited, but it did not last long because the stone I saw had no historical value. Then, as I strayed into nearby Bhasko village, a circle of stones covered by shrubs caught my eye," the sexagenarian recalled. And, once the place was cleared of undergrowth, history sprang to life. "These megaliths should date back to the 1st Century AD. I remember similar stone circles being found in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, which yielded a rich cache of pottery, iron spears and tools dating back to 800BC and 600BC. I continued my research on megaliths, which are strewn all over Jharkhand - in Singhbhum, Ranchi, Chatra, Lohardaga, Hazaribagh and many other places. Finally, I am ready to begin digging," he said. In layman language, a megalith is a memorial of the dead. Excavations at megalithic sites around the world, from Scotland to Karnataka, have revealed that the ancient man created a stone vault deep inside the earth, where the dead were placed on stone slabs. Pots, probably stuffed with food for another life that they believed in, iron tools and weapons, and even hooves of horses and saddles have been found inside theses vault. The burial place was finally covered with earth and marked by either a large standing stone or a number of stones in a circle; or like a tabletop with a giant stone resting on two or more smaller stones. "Interestingly, no habitation has yet been found near these burial sites anywhere in the world. So, it is presumed that these men were either nomads or mercenaries who fought for ruling clans, buried their dead, marked the sites with giant stones and moved on. Since iron tools have always been found at these sites, it is also presumed that such a type of burial was in vogue during the Iron Age," the archaeologist said. Surprisingly in Jharkhand, the megalithic form of burial is popular in the Munda tribe. Even today, the tribesmen continue to mark a grave with stones, which makes speculations rife that the Mundas in Jharkhand may be direct descendants of the Stone Age man.


ROYAUME UNI – Js58890932 Marsden - Students from Newcastle University have begun developing a conservation management plan for Marsden Lime Kilns in South Tyneside. The kilns are owned by civil engineering firm Owen Pugh as part of its limestone Marsden Quarry site. Marsden Lime Kilns is an important part of South Tyneside’s industrial heritage. The square kilns were built in the 1870s to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the limestone quarrying at Marsden, with the nearby Whitburn Colliery providing coal for fuel to produce quicklime as an agricultural improver. The quicklime was also an important element of the steel and chemical industry and was used to make cement.


ARGENTINENazi hideout 1 Teyu Cuare - Hidden in a protected park in Argentina near the border of Paraguay are structures that archaeologists think might have been built to hide members of “Nazi Hierarchy” after WWII ended. According to Clarin (via an unofficial translation), three buildings with walls three feet thick were found a 20 minute walk from the entrance of Teyu Cuare. Daniel Schavelzon, director of the Center for Urban Archaeology through the University of Buenos Aires, told the newspaper that “Nazi aircraft generated a secret project to build shelters [where] the top Nazis could hide behind a defeat, inaccessible places, in the desert, on a mountain, on a cliff or in the middle of a jungle like this.” He said that it’s not official that the ruins found in the jungle were to provide refuge to Nazi’s post-WWII, but it’s possible. [...] it is a defensible site, a protected site, an inaccessible place, a place to live in peace, a place of refuge. And I think what we find is a place of refuge for the Nazi hierarchy,” Schavelzon told Clarin. Items found at the location, which included German coins and pottery, support Schavelzon’s hypothesis. Other experts though told Clarin that they think Schaevelzon’s discovery requires more proof before it can be said the buildings were constructed as a hideout for Nazis.


POLOGNEMzawediynq 18926954 18847890 Czersk - By using airborne laser scanning (ALS), a team of archaeologists determined the layout of the German POW camp in Czersk (Pomerania), active during the First World War. Currently, the former camp area is covered by forest, but in 1914-1918 tens of thousands of prisoners of war, mostly Russians, were held there in the open air. The soldiers were held in terrible conditions - they lived in dugouts. The researchers used the data from the state resources collected for the project ISOK (IT System of the Country's Protection against extreme hazards). On this basis, they created a digital terrain model and terrain visualization, which was then subjected to interpretation. Obtained data allowed to identify two parts of the camp - north and south, which significantly differed from each other. The northern part was situated along the not preserved railway track. Preserved material landscape transformation suggests that this part of the camp contained two clusters of dugouts, where prisoners were held. The first cluster of dugouts consists of 26 objects. They were built on the north-south line. According to the researchers, each measured approx. 40 m long and 8-9 meters wide. Interestingly, none of the dugouts is visible to the naked eye in the field.The second cluster of dugouts on the line was on the north-west-south-east line. Structures were similar in size to the first group. Archaeologists were able to distinguish the outlines of only 22 such objects.


FRANCE201503181108 full Monflanquin - Lorsque les travaux ont été entrepris rue du Laurès, divers indices laissaient penser que ce secteur devait receler d'éventuelles pièces fort anciennes. Très vite le chantier a été interrompu et les recherches ont pu commencer sur place, avec l'autorisation de la Société archéologique aquitaine et ce ne sont pas moins de cinq camions de remblai gravats qui ont été passés au peigne fin et tamis par les membres de la section archéologique de la MJC de la bastide. Les travailleurs passionnés et inlassablement minutieux ont récolté 1 908 morceaux de céramique ancienne. «Ces opérations qui ont duré de longues semaines ont permis le ramassage d'un important lot de mobilier céramique provenant de la couche protohistorique, englobant donc les fragments attribuables au néolithique, à l'âge du bronze, à l'âge du fer et à la période médiévale. Les lots observés confirment la forte présence d'amphores massaliotes (-600 à -400 av. J.-C.). La qualité et la rareté de ces fragments d'amphores de Marseille récoltés au fil de ces recherches dépassent de loin les autres attestations de ce type de mobilier dans le reste de l'Aquitaine ; et de ce fait, Monflanquin devient l'unique site majeur connu à ce jour dans le sud-ouest de la France. Monflanquin devait à cette époque présenter l'existence d'un pouvoir local conséquent en capacité de drainer une telle circulation de biens exogènes, expliquent les archéologues locaux.


PEROU –  624x468 47  Vilavilani - A cave containing some of southern Peru’s most beautiful, ancient paintings is unprotected and hardly known by the public. The Vilavilani cave, located in the Palca district of the region of Tacna in southern Peru houses cave paintings dating back to approximately 7,000 B.C. Archaeologist Jesus Gordillo told El Comercio that, although scientific analysis has not dated the paintings, the symbols, style, and medium provide answers to their epoch. Gordillo claims that “we could be talking about paintings taking back 7,000 years B.C., since they have very similar characteristics to the cave paintings found in the caves of Toquepala.” Despite the relevance these cave paintings have to Peruvian history, they remain widely unknown to even locals, and are left unprotected. Former director of the National Institute of Culture in Tacna, archaeologist Oscar Ayca, claims it could become the most important site for rock art in all of Southern Peru. Considering the colors, bright reds, yellows, oranges, and browns, whites, and blacks and greens, its a unique site. The paintings tell stories of the hunter-gatherers that used to live there, and perhaps used the caves for shelter and even a corral for camelids and vizcachas. It is urgent to restore many of the paintings that are being destroyed by rains and strong winds that erode them. We also must provide security and care so that commoners can have access to Vilavilani cave paintings,” Ayca told El Comercio. Just a rock’s throw away are the Toquepala caves. There scientists have dated the bright and active paintings to go back to 7000 B.C. In Toquepala the paintings include depictions a unique Andean hunting tactic called “chaco” demonstrating how they caught their prey.


JAPONAkitsu - Grains of brown rice thought to be thousands of years old were actually grown in the modern era, Nara Prefecture’s Archaeological Institute of Kashihara has announced. The grains were found at the location of a former paddy in the Akitsu archaeological site in Gose, Nara Prefecture, and were initially believed to date back to the early Yayoi period, about 2,600 to 2,400 years ago. The flow of rainwater and other factors likely caused the rice to drift into the excavation site from the surrounding area, said the institute, which announced at a research meeting in January last year that the grains dated from prehistoric times. The 11 grains of brown rice were discovered in November 2013. They had not undergone carbonization, leading to intense speculation among experts as to whether they might provide clues about the varieties of rice cultivated by ancient people of the period. The institute outsourced analysis of two grains to a private analysis firm in autumn last year. According to the results of radiocarbon dating, the rice was clearly produced sometime after 1955-1956.


CANADA – Montreal - The Dawson excavation site is considered a potential site of the Iroquois village of Hochelaga as described by Jacques Cartier during his second trip in 1535. The village near Mount Royal was located in present-day Montreal, although its exact location remains unknown. The Dawson site has historical resonance for many, said Andre Costopoulos, a McGill University anthropology professor. "It (the Dawson site) was clearly an important residential site, a large village site that was probably occupied for a long period of time," Costopoulos said. "The finds that were made there are still quite important in understanding what happened in the St-Lawrence Valley in late pre-history." The chances of finding Hochelaga are fairly remote. "The more development on the island, the fewer candidate sites remain undisturbed," Costopoulos said. The survey, conducted by the firm Archeotec, said the soils were stripped during road and infrastructure construction in the 19th and 20th, leaving little to unearth. "In particular, the surface soils that could conceal archaeological elements connected to site are clearly not there," the firm said.


BULGARIEBatin brestovitsa finds ruse museum Batin / Bretovitsa - The skull of what is most probably a human sacrifice victim, and a Roman military diploma are some of the most interesting finds discovered at Ancient Thracians sites in the towns of Batin and Bretovitsa by Varbin Varbanov, an archaeologist from the Regional Museum of History in Bulgaria’s Danube city of Ruse. Near the town of Batin, his team excavated three pits in the Scaidava Fortress which throughout the ages was an Ancient Thracian settlement, a Late Antiquity Roman fortress, and a medieval fortress from the period of the Second Bulgarian Empire (1185-1396 AD). In one of the pits at ScaidavaVarbanov’s team has found a skull of a 20-year-old man. The archaeologist belives that this must have been a case of a human sacrifice, as cited by Top Novini. The other pits have revealed ceramic vessels which have already been restored and exhibited at theRuse Museum of History. These ancient finds from Scaidava have been dated back to the 1st century BC – 1st century AD, with the exception of a part of a Roman military veteran’s diploma dated back to the 2nd century. Thosediplomas were handed to Roman legionaries after their dismissal from the armed forces.