29 AVRIL 2023 NEWS
INSTITUT SUPERIEUR D'ANTHROPOLOGIE
INSTITUTE OF ANTHROPOLOGY
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DEBUT COURS : JUIN 2023
EGYPTE – Bérénice - Une statuette de Bouddha a été découverte sur un site antique égyptien proche de la mer Rouge, révélant les liens commerciaux importants entre l'Empire romain et l'Inde, indique jeudi le ministère des Antiquités. Des archéologues américains et polonais ont découvert cette statue à Bérénice, une ville portuaire antique du sud-est, précise-t-il. La statuette de 71 centimètres, datant de l'ère romaine, représente Bouddha en robe, dépourvu de ses membres du côté droit, un halo entourant sa tête en référence aux rayons du soleil, d'après la photo publiée par le ministère. L'Egypte se trouvait alors "au coeur de la route commerciale reliant l'Empire romain à de nombreuses régions du monde antique", a indiqué Mostafa Waziri, secrétaire général du Conseil suprême des antiquités, Des navires arrivaient notamment d'Inde, chargés d'épices, de bijoux, de textiles ou d'ivoire.
MARTINIQUE – Fort-de-France - Le parking de la Savane à Fort-de-France est fermé depuis plusieurs semaines pour rénovation. Mais avant de passer à cette phase, huit archéologues de l’INRAP (l’Institut National de Recherches Archéologiques Préventives) ont entamé des fouilles pour une durée de 12 semaines sur une surface d’environ 2 000 mètres carrés. Les chercheurs tentent de mieux comprendre l’urbanisation de la ville au 18ème siècle. Il s'agit de documenter les premiers aménagements de la zone de mangrove où s’est développé le centre historique de Fort-de-France. "La fouille se déroule en plusieurs temps", explique Christophe Ars, responsable d'opération à l'INRAP. "Il y a un temps de décapage avec des pelles mécaniques. Toute la difficulté, c'est d'enlever suffisamment de matériaux pour arriver juste au niveau d'apparition des vestiges archéologiques", précise-t-il. Cette phase étant déjà achevée, les archéologues s'attellent désormais à nettoyer les maçonneries "pour bien comprendre l'étendue du site, pour bien comprendre comment il s'articulait". Après avoir dressé un plan, les chercheurs pratiquent des sondages plus profonds pour comprendre la géométrie du terrain pour savoir ce que ceux qui se sont installés à l'époque ont trouvé face à eux. Les fouilles ont été demandées après un diagnostic d’archéologie qui a identifié l’intérêt historique et patrimonial du site. L'achèvement de cette phase du chantier est programmée pour le fin du mois de mai.
USA - Daytona - Archaeologists dive to inspect another likely 1800s shipwreck in Daytona Beach Shores. "We are recognizing ship construction features, like frames, ceiling planking, which is the planking inside of the hull, and then the outer hull planking," Meide said after returning from the water. "We've seen wooden fasteners, which is typical — there are probably iron ones as well." He was also able to identify other iron structures in the hull, which indicates that the shipwreck may be from 1800s or later. In December 2022, a shipwreck was spotted near Frank Rendon Park, just 2 miles north of the one spotted last week. Meide and other LAMP and state archaeologists were able to identify it as an 1800s shipwreck. "We called that the Daytona Beach Shore wreck number 1, and this one is number 2," Meide said. Meide said that the fact both shipwrecks were found close to each other might indicate that "there are probably others" as well, which isn't necessarily unusual
INDE – Pattanam - The archaeological site of Pattanam, on the South-western coast in Kerala’s Ernakulam district, is believed by historians to be part of the ancient port city of the Muziris that played a key role in trade and cultural exchanges between India and the Middle East, North Africa and the Mediterranean regions. The belief stems from the classical Greco-Roman records as well as Tamil and Sanskrit sources. Scientists and archaeologists have also found human bones, storage jars, a gold ornament, glass beads, stone beads, utilitarian objects made of stone, copper and iron, pottery, early Chera coins, brick wall, brick platform, ring well, wharf with bollards, and a six-metre-long wooden canoe parallel to the wharf structure about 2.5 m below surface level at Pattanam. These archaeological evidences and ancient DNA analyses by CSIR-Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology (CCMB) scientists led by Kumarasamy Thangaraj and PAMA Institute for the Advancement of Transdisciplinary Archaeological Sciences (Kerala) P.J. Cherian strengthen the hypothesis. “These structures indicate a vast urban settlement. The excavations suggest that the site was first occupied by the indigenous and ‘Megalithic’ (Iron Age) people, followed by the Roman contact in the early historic period. It appears that the site was continuously occupied at least from the 2nd century BC to the 10th century AD,” said Mr. Cherian. Scientists used the DNA from the human skeletons to pinpoint the genetic ancestry of the people found in the region. “We have analysed the mitochondrial DNA of 12 ancient skeletal samples. We found that these samples show the presence of both South Asian and West Eurasian-specific lineages,” explained DST-Birbal Sahni Institute of Palaeosciences, Lucknow, senior scientist Niraj Rai, also a co-author of the study. “Most excavated skeletal remains from the Pattanam site were in a very fragile state due to the tropical, humid, and acidic soil conditions. However, we have adopted the best practices in the field of ancient DNA and successfully analysed the samples. The unique imprint of West Eurasian and Mediterranean signatures found in these samples exemplify a continuous inflow of traders and multicultural mixing in ancient South India,” said CCMB chief scientist and currently the Director, DBT-Centre for DNA Fingerprinting and Diagnostics, Kumarasamy Thangaraj.“This is the first genetic data generated, so far, to infer their origin and genetic makeup of Pattanam archaeological site. The findings reinforce the early historical occupation of culturally, religiously, and ethnically diverse groups at the site,” said CCMB Director Vinay Kumar Nandicoori. The study has been published in the journal, ‘Genes’, said an official release on Friday.
LAOS – Nadee - Fourteen Buddha statues, 22 swords, and a gong believed to be antiquities were recently discovered by local residents inside a cave in Nadee village in Viengthong district, the central Lao province of Bolikhamxay, Lao media reported on April 28. Based on their appearance, local authorities believe they could be antiquities and have asked archaeologists to verify the age of the items. Local media cited Sonthong Vibounkuang, Director of the Bolikhamxay provincial Information, Culture and Tourism Department, as saying that people came across the relics inside the cave, which is located in a wooded area, and notified authorities who believe that 13 of the Buddha statues are made of gold.
JAPON – Osaka - The discovery was made during excavations to extend the Osaka Monorail in the city of Higashiōsaka, where the team found a mask hewn from a cedar tree with a representation of a human face. The mask measures around 30cm in height by 18cm wide and features two eye holes, a mouth, and a perforated hole surviving on one side that probably held string for holding the mask on the wearers face. The researchers suggest that the mask was used for ritual ceremonies during important agricultural festivals around 1800-years-ago during the Yayoi era. During this period, Japan transitioned to a settled agricultural society using agricultural methods that were introduced initially in the Kyushu region from Korea. Distinguishing characteristics of the Yayoi period include the appearance of new Yayoi pottery styles, improved carpentry and architecture, and the start of an intensive rice agriculture in paddy fields. The discovery is the third example of a wooden mask from this period and is similar to another mask found in the Makimuku ruins in the Nara Prefecture. Kaoru Terasawa, director of the Research Centre for Makimukugaku, said: “I believe the mask represented a ‘spirit of a head,’ which was believed to be a god in the shape of a human and represented the authority of Okimi.”
SOUDAN – Old Dongola -An unexpected discovery in the ancient town of Old Dongola, Sudan, has divulged a set of chambers decorated with medieval Christian paintings unlike any seen before. Archaeologists from the Centre of Mediterranean Archaeology at the University of Warsaw say the artwork, which includes depictions of the Virgin Mary and Jesus and a Nubian king, is more intimate than the typical hieratic style of Nubian art. The paintings, from the 16th to 19th century, were found at the Old Dongola medieval monastery located on the banks of the Nile. According to the archaeologists, the Nubian ruler depicted is believed to be King David being shielded by Archangel Michael. The painting is accompanied by inscriptions calling for God to protect the city, which experts call “unique for Christian art.”
BELGIQUE – Elewijt - What started as a pre-construction archaeological project in Belgium has evolved into a sprawling excavation uncovering a trove of Roman-era artifacts and ruins, government officials say. Ahead of refurbishing Sportpark Hubert Van Innis, archaeologists launched an investigation into the area given its location in Elewijt — which was under Roman rule thousands of years ago. Experts expected to find remains, but the extent of their discoveries was surprising, according to an April 25 news release from the Zemst government.;First, as expected, archaeologists unearthed a building and well dating to the Middle Ages, according to officials. They also discovered several burial mounds. Most surprising, experts discovered an open air shrine dating to the early Roman period, they said. The shrine is a rare find, and it’s been decades since a similar discovery was made in the area, according to experts. It is not yet clear what the shrine was used for, but experts said they plan to work on interpreting and studying its use.
PEROU – Lima - Peruvian archaeologist Cecilia Camargo isn't your usual tomb-finder hunting for lost ruins: she works for the local gas firm. On Wednesday, the firm unearthed a 600-year-old funeral bundle with the remains of an ancient settler, found during excavations in a neighborhood of capital Lima. The cloth-covered bundle - which archaeologists separated with fine tweezers - dates back to the pre-Hispanic Chancay culture that developed in Peru's central coastal region some 800 years ago, said Camargo, who looks after Calidda's warehouse of cultural remains.Camargo said that in almost a decade of work, the firm has uncovered multiple ancient burial sites and other archaeological finds, including a rare and little studied example of a 2,000-year-old ceramic with a style called "white on red."
OMAN – Dafun - International teams led by the CAS' Institute of Archaeology have unearthed archaeological features from several periods of human occupation in the deserts of Oman, including stone ritual monuments that resemble England's Stonehenge. These structures, called triliths, were built some 2,000 years ago in what is now the Dhofar province of southern Oman. It is not yet clear who constructed them or what they were used for. Archaeologists also discovered stone hand axes dating to between 300,000 and 1.3 million years ago, a period that coincided with the first human migration out of Africa. At the site of Nafün in central Oman's Duqm province, a second team of researchers found a Neolithic tomb dating to between 5000 and 4600 B.C. Beneath a megalithic structure were the tomb's two burial chambers, which contained the remains of at least several dozen people, archaeologist Alžběta Danielisová said. Nearby, the team documented rock engravings associated with human settlements spanning from 5000 B.C. to A.D. 1000.
GALLES – Caerwent - Some of the Roman finds, experts believe, could suggest a previously undiscovered settlement in the area.Four treasure finds, including an Iron Age vessel hoard, a Roman coin hoard and two silver artefacts from the 17th century date were declared treasure by assistant coroner for Gwent, Rose Farmer. A hoard of Roman coins was discovered by Colin Price and Rhys Cadwallader between 2014 and 2022, while metal-detecting in a ploughed field in Caerwent. These copper-alloy coins date to the late-third to late-fourth centuries AD. They were found in the same field as Wales’s first hoard of Roman siliquae, a very late Roman silver coin type. Together, these two hoards reveal intriguing insights into a newly discovered site dating from the very end of the Roman occupation of Britain. Alastair Willis, senior curator of numismatics and the Welsh Economy at Museum Wales said: “The discovery of two coin-hoards in the same field and in the general vicinity of the Roman town at Caerwent, is exciting and significant. "The results of the geophysical survey undertaken suggest the presence of a previously unknown settlement or religious site where the coin hoards were buried.” A hoard of Iron Age and Roman vessels was discovered by Jon Matthews in March 2019 while metal-detecting on a field under pasture in Llantrisant. The remains of two coopered wooden tankards and an Iron Age bucket with copper alloy fittings; an Iron Age copper alloy bowl, cauldron and strainer; and two Roman copper alloy saucepans have been identified. The vessels appear to have been buried as a group around the time of the Roman conquest, in the second half of the first century AD.