Archaeology Weekly Roundup! 12-7-12

Croesus brooch

The original, left, and the fake golden brooch in the shape of a winged seahorse

Since being illegally excavated in the 1960s, King Croesus’s golden brooch has been stolen, replaced by a fake, sold to pay off gambling debts and has allegedly brought down a curse on its plunderers.

As part of a repair job 3,300 years in the making, Harvard’s Semitic Museum is seeking to undo some of the destruction wrought when Assyrians smashed the ancient city of Nuzi in modern-day Iraq, looting the temple and destroying artifacts. They’re using 3-D modeling to restore a smashed lion statue.

A 200-year-long drought 4,200 years ago may have killed off the ancient Sumerian language, one geologist says.

Archaeologists have found the remains of an ancient imperial palace near the tomb of emperor Qin Shi Huang, home of the famous terracotta army, China’s state media reported on Sunday.

During routine excavations in Abusir South, 30km north of Giza plateau, Czech excavators from the Czech Institute of Egyptology of the Charles University in Prague, unearthed a collection of fifth dynasty ancient Egyptian statues.

Kingston University’s interior design, architecture and landscape architecture students are applying to get United Nations-protected World Heritage status for the London pub as a serial site of cultural importance.

Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula is dotted with thousands of caves that once housed prehistoric people and later became sacred to the Mayans. German archaeologists and filmmakers are currently involved in a project to explore with modern imaging technology and make a 3-D film of this underwater labyrinth.

An ancient rock picture near Egypt’s Nile River was first spotted by an explorer more than a century ago—and scientists who rediscovered it now think it’s the earliest known depiction of a pharaoh.

A team of archaeologists from the University of Rhode Island, the Israel Antiquities Authority, and the University of Louisville have discovered the remains of a fleet of early-19th century ships and ancient harbor structures from the Hellenistic period (third to first century B.C.) at the city of Akko, one of the major ancient ports of the eastern Mediterranean.

The tomb of the ancient Roman hero believed to have inspired the Russell Crowe blockbuster “Gladiator,” might be reburied because of a lack of funds to restore it.

Public “unwrappings” of mummified human remains performed by both showmen and scientists heightened the fascination, but also helped develop the growing science of Egyptology, argues Dr. Kathleen Sheppard in her latest article entitled “Between Spectacle and Science: Margaret Murray and the Tomb of the Two Brothers.”  

In a comparison of more than 300 contemporary strains of Yersinia pestis, the bacterium that causes bubonic plague, with ancient bacterial DNA isolated from victims of the Black Death (1347 – 1351), a team led by researchers at University of Tuebingen obtained evidence suggestive of a bubonic plague outbreak in the late antique period (8th to 10th centuries AD).

Skeletal remains in an island cave in Favignana, Italy, reveal that modern humans first settled in Sicily around the time of the last ice age and despite living on Mediterranean islands, ate little seafood.

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem library has a new exhibit which showcases early American travel to Palestine with a focus on famous Americans who visited in the 19th century.

A new study shows that the Maya may have cooked some foods using clay balls after finding the balls contained microscopic pieces of maize, beans, squash and other root crops.

Made shortly after Cyrus of Persia captured Babylon in 539BC, the Cyrus cylinder records how the ruler allowed deported peoples to return to their homelands and ushered in an era of religious tolerance in his new, multiethnic empire. It is seen by some as the first declaration of human rights and is now on its way to visit the US.

Çatalhöyük: Shrine of the Hunters from Artas Media on Vimeo.

One thought on “Archaeology Weekly Roundup! 12-7-12

  1. Pingback: Keep ‘em coming back with the December Biblical Studies Carnival | Words on the Word

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