24 OCTOBRE 2018: Mer Noire - Laona - ChanChan - Sozopol - Sakai - York - Allaippidy -
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MER NOIRE – Archaeologists searching the depths of the Black Sea discovered an intact shipwreck at the bottom that’s been there for at least 2,400 years. They believe it to be the world’s oldest intact wreck, which is incredibly cool. The wreck is 75 feet in length and lying on its side. Its rudder, mast, rowing benches and cargo are completely intact, reports the Guardian. It was found just over a mile beneath the surface, where the lack of oxygen there preserved it, according to researchers with the Black Sea Maritime Archaeology Project, the team that discovered the ship. They think that it was a type of merchant vessel that is similar to the one depicted on a piece of ancient Greek pottery called the “Siren Vase,” which is on display in the British Museum. The pot, which dates from the same time period of 480 BC, shows a scene from Homer’s The Odyssey, in which Odysseus binds himself to the mast of his ship in order to resist the song of the sirens. The wreck was discovered just off the coast of Bulgaria and will give researchers a great look into what kind of Greek ships sailed to the Black Sea through the Bosphorus, or what is known today as the Strait of Istanbul. The team said that it doesn’t intend on moving the ship from its location because they are afraid that it would break, but a small sample was carbon dated to be from 400 BC by the University of Southampton, which “confirmed [it] as the oldest intact shipwreck known to mankind”
CHYPRE – Laona - Excavation work on a huge ancient man-made mound unmatched on the island has been undertaken by the University of Cyprus. The Laona tumulus is monumental in size (100m x 60m x 10m) and as such remains unique in Cyprus to this day. This man-made mound was identified for the first time in 2012 by Professor Maria Iacovou of the Department of History and Archaeology since 2006. The low hillock of Laona, on which the tumulus was raised, lies one kilometre to the east of the sanctuary of Aphrodite from where it is clearly visible. At the beginning of the 5th century BC, the royal dynasty of the city-state of Ancient Paphos implemented an ambitious building programme on the plateau of Hadjiabdoulla, where a royal residence and an extensive economic complex were constructed. At the same time, 70m north of the Hadjiabdoulla citadel, they had a large rampart built on Laona. Over 65 m. of the rampart have now been revealed on the east side of the hill. This impressive defensive project of the Cypro-Classical period was buried under 13,700 cubic meters of marl and red soil, which had been transported for the construction of the tumulus. The Laona fortress was, therefore, well preserved under the tumulus; its NE corner survives to a height of six meters, and this makes it one of the most significant monuments of the “Age of the Cypriot Kingdoms”. The ceramic evidence suggests that the construction of the mound dates to the third century BC. Since 2013, the excavations are concentrated in the SE quarter. About 12m. south of the summit, which rises to 114 above sea level, the UCY team found at a depth of over six meters a small square (4mx4m) monument. Although its east wall stands to a height of 3.5m, the building was already half destroyed when the mound was constructed. It has a foundation ledge made of unworked stones and red clay. However, there is no relation between the external and internal building plan of the monument; the only part that would have been visible above ground are the external walls made of worked blocks. The completion of the investigation has established that this peculiar monument was not made for internal use. It contained no objects and no burial chamber. The stone walls formed a shell around a solid homogeneous filling made of worked marl. The mystery of the absence of the west wall was solved when the research team identified on the south section of the mound that had covered the building a man-made cutting terminating where the west wall was meant to be. The cutting was subsequently “mended” with a different type of soil. The west wall was thoroughly destroyed down to its foundation base, which rests on bedrock. There is little doubt that this was the work of ancient tomb robbers. They expected to loot a burial chamber but, apparently, they had relied on the untrustworthy information or assumption. Maybe this was the main role of the small building: to divert attention away from the position of the burial chamber. Looted or not, the burial chamber or the cenotaph, in the name of which the tumulus of Laona was raised, evaded detection. The excavations on Laona will be resumed in the summer of 2019; the goal will be the north and north-west contour of the Cypro-Classical rampart.
PEROU – Chan Chan - Researchers have discovered twenty wooden, human-like sculptures along with an intricate adobe wall in northern Peru, according to government officials. The figures, 19 of which are in good condition, are thought to have been buried over 800 years ago. Measuring 70 centimetres in height, the sculptures are the oldest idols discovered at the Chan Chan archaeological complex, located in the Moche valley, around 480 kilometres north of the Peruvian capital, Lima. However, researchers believe they were created before the Chan Chan culture, possibly around the year 1,100 AD. Peru's Minister of Culture Patricia Balbuena said the figures appear to be at the entrance of an important ceremonial centre or plaza.
VIDEO = https://uk.reuters.com/video/2018/10/23/insight-peru-unearths-800-year-old-idols?rpc=401&videoId=476179382&feedType=VideoRSS&feedName=LatestVideosUK&rpc=401&videoChannel=117759
BULGARIE – Sozopol - Archaeologists discovered a kind of metallurgical plant during digs near Sozopol. The find dates back to the first decades since Apollonia was founded. An ancient mine has emerged during excavations in the Meden Rid area, near the Bakarlaka Hill. There were the most well-known and richest mines in the ancient antiquity, experts said. The discovery of Peter Leshakov and Krasimir Nikov proves that Sozopol in the classical antiquity was one of the largest metallurgical and ore mining centers in the ancient world. A rocky field is about a kilometer and two hundred meters without tunnels, with open spouts, and in its most concentrated part, on the northern slope of the excavation, from which the ancient miners have mined ores, two types of furnaces were found. Examinations continue. Experts recall that six years earlier in the studies behind the church's apse to the south wall, below the lower level of the necropolis dating back to the late sixth-seven centuries, two other foundries were found. The findings show that the intensive development of ore deposits in a copper hill in the region began since the archaic period and testify to the advanced technology in the field of metallurgy, said Dimitar Nedev. He stressed that with the same technique, in the old Sozopol, a cast of the Colossal statue of the god Apollo, reflected in the works of the ancient chroniclers, was made. The statue has decorated the central temple in Apollonia and its author is the famous ancient Greek sculptor Kalamis. Bronze maneuver of Apollo cost 500 talents of gold. It was extremely expensive and was the only colossus in the outside of the Greek world.
JAPON – Sakai - The Imperial Household Agency and Sakai city government began their first joint excavation project Oct. 23 on the nation's largest burial mound, apparently built for an emperor over 1,500 years ago. The group in charge of the dig, seven people from the agency and city government, gathered at the keyhole-shaped Daisen “kofun” burial mound via an entrance on its north side around 8:25 a.m. The site, also known as Nintoku-ryo kofun (Tomb of Emperor Nintoku), is about 486 meters long and 307 meters wide, and surrounded by a three-tiered moat. Researchers plan to dig three trenches about 2 meters wide and 28 to 30 meters long across the embankment around the moat immediately surrounding the mound, one on the eastern side and two on the southern banks. The excavation is scheduled to be completed in early December.
ROYAUME UNI - York - Experts have finally managed to shed a light on the origins of this ancient and mysterious golden relic which has baffled archaeologists for more than a century. The small, flat golden plate was unearthed at a grave site with a female skeleton and coin beneath York Station in 1872. But after nearly 150 years, the team at the Yorkshire Museum, working with experts from around the globe, have confirmed it is a Roman mouth plaque dating back to the third century. The 1,800-year-old plaque is the only example of its kind in Britain – and is one only 23 discovered worldwide. The plaque would be used to cover the mouth of a dead body, and experts said it would usually be used by a person of high status. But mystery still surrounds how and why it was used, with theories including it being a magical or medicinal amulet to protect the person in death, or a sinister talisman to silence or restrain them.
SRI LANKA – Allaippidy - Archaeologists from Shanghai Museum have unearthed a large number of ceramic pieces, most of which appear to be have been made in China, from the Allaippidy ruins in Sri Lanka, a country on the Indian Ocean, the China Daily reported. This shows the links that existed between China and other countries through the ancient maritime Silk Road.. Chen and his colleagues excavated in an area of 92.4 square meters at the Allaippidy ruins, where 650 pieces of ceramic were found, more than 600 of which were made in China. Majority of the Chinese ceramic pieces date to the late half of the 11th century or the early 12th century, according to Lu Minghua, a researcher on Chinese ceramic with Shanghai Museum. There were bowls, plates, saucers and pots, mostly produced in places that are now located in present-day provinces of Guangdong and Fujian for the overseas sale.Historical documents in Sri Lanka and China show that visits between China and Sri Lanka started 2,000 years ago. In 1911, a stone tablet with inscriptions discovered in Sri Lanka spoke of Chinese explorer Zheng He making multiple visits to the island country to expand trade and friendship between the two countries.