Thursday, March 02, 2006

Polish archaeologist unearths Europe's most ancient graves

Five of Europe's most ancient graves, dating back 10,000 years, have been unearthed in the village of Dwreca, central Poland.

Archaeologist Marian Marciniak found the graves on the site of ancient post-glacial dunes, the Rzeczpospolita daily reported. In them, a young woman, believed aged 18 to 21, was put to rest with a baby, a child aged 5 to 7 and another aged 7 to 11.

An adult male found at the site was buried sitting upright, as if on a throne or chair.

Seems like excellent organic preservation if all the stuff about skins and tree bark is correct.

Sun temple update Giant Ancient Egyptian Sun Temple Discovered in Cairo

Archaeologists announced Sunday that they have discovered an ancient sun temple containing large statues of the pharaoh Ramses II under an outdoor marketplace in Cairo, Egypt.

The temple was found in a suburb of Cairo called Ain Shams. The site was once part of the ancient city of Heliopolis, which served as the center of sun worship in ancient Egypt. The chief sun god, Re, was the patron sun god of Heliopolis.

Ramses II, who is believed to have ruled Egypt from around 1279 to 1213 B.C., is known for his military exploits and monumental building projects. To celebrate his victories, he erected statues and temples to himself all over Egypt.

Bit more detail than earlier stories. Hopefully, more and earlier remains will be found (Hawass is quoted as saying the cult there could go back to the Old Kingdom).

KV-63 update KV-63 has its own web site!

Chock full o' picures of the crew and tomb itself. Definitely chec it out now and in the future. I've worked with several of these people and they're all excellent.

Nubi has been with several expeditions in the VK:

Otto story: The Cairo subway/metro has a separate car in the front and back of each train reserved for women only. Otto didn't know this and got on one once. He couldn't figure out why everyone kept staring at him.

I, of course, have no embarassing field stories, uh-uh, nooooooo sirree.

Yes, that would be a good idea Archaeologists urge museums to help curb looting of ancient art

The global debate over the black market in ancient art is heating up.

At issue is whether art museums encourage looting of ancient sites when they buy works without detailed ownership histories, such as the large bronze statue of "Apollo the Lizard Slayer," bought in 2004 by the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Tuesday, the Archaeological Institute of America criticized guidelines on collecting of antiquities issued by the Association of Art Museum Directors, of which the Cleveland museum is a member.

Pompeii Principle writ large Excavation reveals a village buried by 1815 volcanic blast

The remains of a village and its inhabitants, destroyed by a volcano nearly 200 years ago, have been uncovered under 10 feet of volcanic ash on the Indonesian island of Sumbawa.

The eruption of Mount Tambora in 1815 was the largest in recorded history, spewing enough dust into the atmosphere to cause "The Year without a Summer" across the world the next year as temperatures fell and crops died. The eruption buried perhaps 10,000 people, preserving their homes and remains, much like what happened to Italy's Pompeii, says volcanologist Haraldur Sigurdsson of the University of Rhode Island in Narragansett. Pompeii was destroyed by Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79.

Archaeology around Lesser Slave Lake

Ray Le Blanc spent parts of seven field seasons scouring the perimeter of Lesser Slave Lake for evidence of pre-historic human activity. He found plenty, and the results are all down on paper, in the University of Alberta professor’s 2004 book, ‘Archaeological Research in the Lesser Slave Lake Region; a Contribution to the Pre-Contact History of the Boreal Forest of Alberta.’

Between 1979 and 1990, Le Blanc and his crews excavated numerous sites - mostly around the west end of the lake, but also north shore, south shore and east end - and found an abundance of stone implements or stone flakes associated with tool-making. Additionally, he noted several fine local collections of stone implements around the lake.

Ministry of Silly Walks update Early Humans Walked Peculiarly?

At least two species of early humans were knock-kneed and walked rather uniquely, according to a new study on seven anklebones that belonged to various early human ancestors from eastern and southern Africa.

The study, which will be published in the April issue of the American Journal of Physical Anthropology, suggests that although the early humans walked on two feet, they did not always do so with our relatively smooth stride.

"This is hard to explain, but easy to demonstrate," said Dan Gebo, who co-authored the paper with Gary Schwartz, an Arizona State University anthropologist.

Boy, I dunno. The picture included doesn't seem to make a good case. The two hominid bones (left two) sure seem pretty similar: