A miniature display of a WWI trench scene found inside the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa, ON. Very well done, very high in detail
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Parts of a cabin of the pilot German airplane Ju-88 the victim in Leningrad region during WW2 (Russia). In this place the part of a cabin of the pilot has fallen only. After war the rests of a cabin have been taken away for to melt. That remains now, it pieces of aluminium and some details are fine.
The Archaeology of the First Farmer-Herders in Egypt explores how and why farming and herding started in a particular time period in a particular region of Egypt. The earliest Neolithic farming in combination with herding in Egypt is known in the Fayum, which is a large oasis with a permanent lake in the Egyptian Western Desert. Farming and herding started at the transition from the Epipalaeolithic to Neolithic in the 6th millennium cal.BC owing to the arrival of Levantine domesticates. The Neolithic farmer-herders in the Fayum relied heavily on hunting and fishing, which had been the major subsistence activities since the Epipalaeolithic period. There are no remains of substantial dwellings to indicate that these farmer-herders lived a sedentary way of life. Previous researchers have thus asserted that the Fayum people were nomadic and moved seasonally.
Noriyuki Shirai’s research on lithic artefacts used by the Epipalaeolithic hunter-fishers and Neolithic farmer-herders in the Fayum gives a clue as to the mobility and residential strategy of the Fayum people and their time and labour investments in tool production. Lithic evidence suggests that the Fayum people were not nomadic but were tethered to lakeshores. The introduction of farming and herding would not have taken place in the Fayum without a lakeshore-tethered if not fully sedentary way of life. But the success of a farming-herding way of life in the Fayum would not have been possible without the reorganisation of mobility, which led to decreased moves of residential bases and increased logistical moves of individuals. Lithic evidence also suggests that the Fayum People kept exerting special efforts to make farming and herding reliable subsistence and to maximise the yield. The introduction of farming and herding in the Fayum would have been a solution to mitigate growing population/resource imbalances when the climate became drier and more people had to aggregate around permanent water sources in the 6th millennium cal.BC.
The octagonal Tribuna is the pearl of the Uffizi symbolizing the four elements. The cupola with shells is the sea, the scarlet silk on the walls is the fire, while the lantern and the wind rose represent the air. The marble floor and the precious table standing in the center, are the earth of course. By the 1770s it was the most famous room in the world.
In the center of the Tribuna you can see the Medici Venus by a classical Greek sculptor. The painting on the walls are portraits of the members of the Medici family.
The grand-ducal collection of the Uffizi comprises thousands of paintings of all times. It is impossible to see all of them in one day. If you try to get the museum visit over in one day, the result is always a dead-tired tourist, who conceives a dislike for the museums forever.
You should be selective, and concentrate only to the art works you are most interested in. I would like to call your attention to one thing only: expect to spend some time in front of the magnificent Doni Tondo in its original frame, the only known preserved panel painting by Michelangelo. Some famous highlights, such as Birth of Venus and Primavera from Botticelli, Tiziano's Venus of Urbino, Leonardo's Annunciation, or Pope Leo X by Rafaello you should not pass by.
At the end of the visit, go up to the terrace bar at the top, and drinking a cool Campari you can admire the fantastic view of Piazza della Signoria.
Source from Great Site : http://members.virtualtourist.com
Join Archaeologist and Presenter James Balme as he takes part in the 1st archaeological excavation of the ancient settlement of Warburton at the end of 1999. This was an evaluation archaeology excavation revealing Roman Punic Military ditches. See the profile of the ditches as they were revealed including what is believed to this day to be the inclusion of 'Ankle Breakers. James continues to research into the ancient history of this small Cheshire village now and in the future.
At the archaeological site of Papinniemi in Uukuniemi, eastern Finland, a Greek Orthodox church, a cemetery and a village have been situated in the 15th-17th centuries. The settlement was completely deserted probably during a war between Sweden and Russia in the middle of the 17th century.
Papinniemi is one of the numerous Greek Orthodox settlements that existed in Karelia in historical times. These sites and their desertion are a proof of the competition of the Byzantine and Roman Christian churches. In certain areas of Finland this competition has continued until the 17th century and even after.
Papinniemi is an archaeological site protected by the Finnish law. Archaeological excavations at the site have begun in 1995 and are going to continue for many years. In charge of the archaeology excavations is the Archaeology Department of the University of Turku in cooperation with the National Board of Antiquities.
The exceptionally rich finds of Papinniemi make the site unique in eastern Finland, where the Orthodox culture or the historical period in general have not been archaeologically researched in any extent until recently.
Source From Great Site : http://users.utu.fi/vilaakso/Uuengl.htm
What was the first archaeological excavation in the Puget Sound?
Archaeologists at the Burke Museum respond in our fourth installment of Ask the Burke (got a question for next time?
Between 1897 and 1899, an archaeologist named Harlan Smith joined the Jessup North Pacific Expedition to conduct the first archaeological field work in Washington state. His research and interpretations were published and were widely referenced by archaeologists throughout the 20th century.
However, while archaeological field work was being conducted around the Puget Sound for many years following the Jessup North Pacific Expedition, the first modern, systematic archaeology excavation of a registered archaeological site in the Puget Sound region occurred in 1950 at a site known as "Old Man House."
Old Man House is situated at the northern entrance to Agate Pass, just south of the town of Suquamish, and is the site of a large longhouse that was once the home of Chief Sealth (for whom the City of Seattle was named). The longhouse was built in the late 18th-century, but the site was occupied for more than 1,700 years. The 1950 archaeology excavation revealed artifacts such as stone tools, harpoon barbs, grinding stones, antler wedges, and bone pendants, as well as an effigy pipe, and burials.
The ancient village site existed under the ownership of the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission for many years, but was returned to the Suquamish Tribe in 2004.
Source from Great site : http://blog.seattlepi.com/thebigblog/archives/191853.asp
Monday, August 30, 2010
British and French archaeologists are excavating the front-line trenches from the World War I Battle of the Somme.
Archaeologist Tony Pollard from Glasgow University shows some of the artefacts that have been found.
A new exhibition at the University of Chicagos Oriental Institute Museum chronicles an amazing and sometimes dangerous journey 90 years ago by James Henry Breasted, a famed archaeologist who brought back Egyptian artifacts to Chicago.
"Pioneers to the Past: American Archaeologists in the Middle East, 1919-1920," will be on display at the Oriental Institute from January 12 through August 31, 2010. The exhibit follows Illinois native James Henry Breasted's daring travels through Egypt and Mesopotamia in the unstable aftermath of World War I. Breasted, a leading Egyptologist, was the founder of the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago, and this journey was the first Oriental Institute project. This video previews the exhibit and gives a little background on Breasted the man and Egyptologist.
Digging through dirt and ruins to look for relics and records of eras past used to be the trade of treasure hunters and looters, but in the past few centuries, archaeology has evolved from its humble roots and become a field of serious scientific inquiry.
Before we begin nominating candidates for the exalted "Father of Archaeology" title, let's consider what exactly counts as archaeology. Modern archaeologists carefully sift through archaeology excavation sites and other locations crowded with the refuse and treasures of human societies, recording all the details with notes, photographs and sketches. In a field like prehistoric archaeology, this often means going through buried remains and documenting where each artifact is in relation to other artifacts, both in terms of distance and depth. The professional archaeologist also preserves any finds for future study, since archaeology is often an inherently destructive science. In the past, little concern was given to documentation and preservation; it was simply an issue of getting objects out of the ground and into the collections of the highest bidders.
But hold any thoughts of all modern archaeologists being Indiana Jones-style adventurers; today, archeology is a large scientific field that includes diverse specialties. There are urban archaeologists, industrial archaeologists, underwater archaeologists, biblical archaeologists, historical archaeologists, and on and on. As long as physical remains deposited by humans are involved, it can count as archaeology.
And while there are some accounts of ancient archaeological digs, for our purposes, the sparks that lit the original modern artifact-finding fires were inspired by the Renaissance hunt for ancient Greek and Roman ruins and remains. Since then, pioneers have slowly honed the practice of a careful and considered archaeological method. Instead of wildly shoveling and carelessly collecting anything with potential value from antiquity (discarding objects of scientific and historical interest with little monetary worth along the way), now archaeology excavations and surveys are typically conducted in a much more cautious and measured manner.
Some of those earlier adapters include Italians Flavio Biondo and Poggio Bracciolini. During the 1400s, they each canvassed Rome and created guides to the crumbling ruins. Then there's Cyriac of Ancona, who was also on the scene in the 1400s, studying Greek artifacts and subsequently publishing reports.
It would be a few more centuries before the idea of digging really came around -- remember that this was before people had caught on to just how old the Earth is, and by extension, the concept of stratification, meaning that the deeper you dig, the older the stuff you will find there. During the Age of Enlightenment, people started to come around to these concepts and the science really took off when archaeologists started to engage in active fieldwork -- digging in addition to surveying.
In the early 18th century, Scandinavians Christian Thomsen and Jens Worsaae worked to unearth materials that proved the classification of technological eras like the Stone, Bronze and Iron Ages. Digs continued to become increasingly well-planned and meticulous. Another potential candidate for the Father of Modern Archaeology is Flinders Petrie, a late 1880s British archaeologist and Egyptologist by trade. His reputation as a methodical digger -- no trowelful went unexamined -- and his development of a sequential dating method using potsherd comparison, earned the respect of many. His 1904 landmark book, "Methods and Aims in Archaeology," also went a long way toward popularizing the modern archaeological method.
These men, and many of their contemporaries and successors, contributed a variety of ideas to the blossoming field of archaeology, challenging beliefs that had been pervasive among people for centuries and opening up a world of understanding in regard to human history.
Source From Great Website: http://science.howstuffworks.com
Some 12,000 years ago in a small sunlit cave in northern Israel, mourners finished the last of the roasted tortoise meat and gathered up dozens of the blackened shells. Kneeling down beside an open grave in the cave floor, they paid their last respects to the elderly dead woman curled within, preparing her for a spiritual journey.
They tucked tortoise shells under her head and hips and arranged dozens of the shells on top and around her. Then they left her many rare and magical things—the wing of a golden eagle, the pelvis of a leopard, and the severed foot of a human being.
Now called Hilazon Tachtit, the small cave chosen as this woman's resting place is the subject of an intense investigation led by Leore Grosman, an archaeologist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel.
Already her research has revealed that the mystery woman—a member of the Natufian culture, which flourished between 15,000 and 11,600 years ago in what is now Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and possibly Syria—was the world's earliest known shaman. Considered a skilled sorcerer and healer, she was likely seen as a conduit to the spirit world, communicating with supernatural powers on behalf of her community, Grosman said.
(See "Oldest Shaman Grave Found; Includes Foot, Animal Parts.")
A study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Grosman and Natalie Munro, a zooarchaeologist at the University of Connecticut, reveals that the shaman's burial feast was just one chapter in the intense ritual life of the Natufians, the first known people on Earth to give up nomadic living and settle in villages.
In the years that followed the burial, many people repeatedly climbed the steep, 492-foot-high (150-meter-high) escarpment to the cave, carrying up other members of the community for burial as well as hauling large amounts of food. Next to the graves, the living dined lavishly on the meat of aurochs, the wild ancestors of cattle, during feasts conducted perhaps to memorialize the dead.
New evidence from Hilazon Tachtit, in northern Israel's Galilee region, suggests that mortuary feasting began at least 12,000 years ago, near the end of the Paleolithic era. These events set the stage for later and much more elaborate ceremonies to commemorate the dead among Neolithic farming communities.
In Britain, for example, Neolithic farmers slaughtered succulent young pigs 5,100 years ago at the site of Durrington Walls, near Stonehenge, for an annual midwinter feast. As part of the celebrations, participants are thought to have cast the ashes of compatriots who had died during the previous year into the nearby River Avon.
(See "Stonehenge Was Cemetery First and Foremost, Study Says.")
The Natufian findings give us our first clear look at the shadowy beginnings of such feasts, said Ofer Bar-Yosef, an archaeologist at Harvard University.
"The Natufians," Bar-Yosef said, "were like the founding fathers, and in this sense Hilazon Tachtit gives us some of the other roots of Neolithic society."
Study co-author Grosman agrees. "The Natufians," she said, "had one leg in the Paleolithic and one leg in the Neolithic."
Prehistoric Feast Focused on Disabled Shaman
Perched high above the Hilazon River in western Galilee, Hilazon Tachtit cave was long known only to local goatherds and their families. But in the early 1990s Harvard's Bar-Yosef spotted several Natufian flint artifacts scattered along the arid, shrubby slope below the cave and climbed up to investigate.
Impressed by the site's potential, the Harvard University archaeologist recruited Hebrew University's Grosman to take charge of the dig, and she and a small team began excavations there in 1995.
First Grosman and her team had to peel back an upper layer of goat dung, ash, and pottery sherds that had accumulated over the past 1,700 years. Below this layer they found five ancient pits filled with bones, distinctive Natufian stone tools, and pieces of charcoal that dated the pits to between 12,400 and 12,000 years ago.
At the bottom of one pit lay the 45-year-old shaman—quite elderly for Natufian times—buried with at least 70 tortoise shells [NM2] and parts of several rare animals.
Analyses showed that this woman had suffered from a deformed pelvis. She would have had a strikingly asymmetrical appearance and likely limped, dragging her foot.
Grosman examined historical accounts of shamans worldwide and found that in many cultures shamans often possessed physical handicaps or had suffered from some form of trauma.
According to Brian Hayden, an archaeologist at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, Canada, "It's not uncommon that people with disabilities, either mental or physical, are thought to have unusual supernatural powers."
[Read full article...]
Source From Great Site : http://news.nationalgeographic.com
Mosts of us have seen a round coin. The Australian 50 cent coin, for example, has twelve flat sides. A twist on it is wavy edges, found in the two dollar and the twenty cent coins of Hong Kong and the 10 cent coins of Bahamas. Some other coins, like the British Fifty pence coin, have an odd number of sides, with the edges rounded off. This way the coin has a constant diameter, recognisable by vending machines whichever direction it is inserted. What about a triangle shape coin, complete with a sand from the famous Tutankhamun Tomb?
This worlds first pyramid shape coin containing sand mintage by Pobjoy Mint Ltd. A minting company based in Kingswood park, Southern England. The Company has been deeply involved in the development and manufacture of coins, medals and tokens for the past 100 years. The Pobjoy family have been associated with fine metalwork since the Middle Ages. The Company was recently granted permission to use the family Coat of Arms in which the Medieval Popinjay is the central motif. The Popinjay was a painted wooden parrot used in archery contests in the 14th century and the name Pobjoy is derived from this. The Latin motto 'OCULO CERTO' means 'with an unerring eye' and applies equally to the ancestor's prowess as a marksman, as to the Company's reputation for the high quality and precision of its products.
In 2008, to commemorate the the return of Tutankhamun exhibition in London, for the first time since 1972, the Isle of Man issued a stunning series of new commemorative coins – including the world’s first Pyramid coins that are triangular in imitation of the ancient pyramids. Each coin depicts a priceless artifact from the tomb, including Tutankhamun’s legendary Death Mask and Throne. Due to the difficulty of striking coins in such unusual shapes, they are being issued in strictly limited numbers.
This year in 2nd march 2009, Pobjoy mint once again release another triangle shape coin. Isle of Man 2009 Tutankhamun Sand Triangle Coin released at this date to commemorate 70th Anniversary of the Death of Howard Carter. Howard Carter is the man who discovered the Tutankhamun's intact tomb in 1922, for which Tutankhamun's burial mask remains the popular face. The coin is in a stunning pyramid shape. It shows a design from the wall of Tutankhamun’s tomb, with Tutankhamun himself in the centre. The sun disc at the top contains ancient sand that was collected from the entrance of Tutankhamun’s tomb. Due to the coin’s unusual shape and the small amount of sand that was collected, the edition limits are exceptionally small. Each coin is presented in a specially commissioned, beautifully crafted Pyramid presentation case.
Source From Great site: http://lunaticg.blogspot.com
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Archaeological excavations have been launched at the Damagou Tuopulukedun Buddhist Temple Site in China's Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region.
According to sources, a Xinjiang archaeological team from the Institute of Archaeology under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences is spearheading the clean-up drive at the site, which is located on the outskirts of Hetian City.
The People's Daily reported that there are over 20 important sites of Buddhist architecture spread over a range of nearly 100 kilometers from south to north along the Damagou river system.
So far, the Xinjiang archaeological team has excavated four temple sites in the Damagou Town between 2002 and 2010.
Experts believe Damagou holds the largest number and the largest scale of ancient sites in the best condition in the south region of the Taklimakan Desert.
"The discovery and archaeological excavations of the temple sites in the south region of Damagou began in 2002 and most sites we excavated were established during the period from the sixth century to the eighth century," said Dr. Wu Xinhua, leader of the Xinjiang archaeological team. (ANI)
Turkey's Council of Ministers has finally given permission for long-awaited excavations at Yoros castle, located in Anadolu Kavagı on Istanbul’s Asian side. An expert team from Istanbul University has started archaeology excavations under the leadership of Byzantium art history expert Professor Asnu Bilban Yalçın.
But a few days before the archaeology excavations started, a sad event happened: A huge Byzantium emblem on the outer façade of the castle was removed and stolen. Yalçın said that she was very sorry about the theft.
She said that the area surrounding the castle currently served as a picnic area and its inside was used as a toilet, adding that they had been forced to do detailed cleaning work before the archaeology excavations. Yalçın said that Turkish tourists sometimes reacted negatively to the archaeology excavation team. “They are not even aware of the historic importance of this place. They tell us that we’ve occupied their picnic area,” she added.
The base of the castle, which is 128 meters above sea level, is within the borders of military land. This is why there has been no excavation work at this level before now. The excavation team is preparing to present a project to the Defense Ministry. According to the information provided by the excavation team, on the first day of the excavations, which started on July 16 and is scheduled to continue six years, stoneware from the Ottoman and Byzantine periods was found, as well as a water pipe. The team has two big goals: One is to find a temple that is mentioned in ancient sources and the other is to determine when Greek colonies first arrived in the Black Sea.
Read more ... Source from Great site : http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=excavations-start-in-yoros-castle-2010-08-27
By the time he was a student at Chattooga High School in Summerville, Kevin Chapman knew he wanted to be an archaeologist.
He loved to visit historical sites, including the Civil War battlefield at Chickamauga, Ga.
Now, as a 36-year-old graduate student at Georgia Southern University, Chapman is instrumental in the meticulous uncovering of a nearly forgotten Civil War prisoner of war camp.
Camp Lawton was opened in October 1864 by Confederates looking to house Union prisoners moved from the notorious prison camp at Andersonville, Ga., which was being threatened by encroaching federal troops. Camp Lawton housed as many as 10,000 prisoners during the six weeks it operated before further federal advances forced its abandonment. Later, Union troops burned the camp.
After the war, the camp rarely was mentioned until earlier this year. A group of Georgia Southern students, led by Chapman, established the location of the pine-stockaded prison outside Millen, Ga., and began uncovering an array of relics.
Chapman, who graduated from Chattooga High in 1992, said archaeology was his passion from the beginning.
“As I kid I remember going to Chickamauga, the Etowah Indian Mounds and New Echota. Now I’ve been lucky enough to actually get to do it [practice the science],” he said.
Chapman worked for the Chattooga and Bulloch County sheriff’s offices and did a tour in Bosnia with his U.S. Army National Guard unit.
Back home, he took a job with a bonding company and started taking classes at Georgia Southern, pursuing a degree in archaeology that he completed in 2007.
He still is employed full time by the bonding company and is working on his master’s thesis. It is built around the work he is supervising at the Camp Lawton site, which is on government-owned land near Magnolia Springs State Park.
Finding the campsite was not easy. Chapman did careful researchr long before the first shovelful of dirt was moved.
“We started researching the camp in August of last year,” he said. “We looked at things like the prisoner accounts of their time in the camp, federal documents and historic maps, especially ones made by a cartographer who happened to be a prisoner in the camp.”
Excavation began early this year. Team members quickly began finding historic items.
“We didn’t really expect that to happen,” Chapman said. “Relic hunters knew there had been a prison camp somewhere in the area, and we thought they had probably gone over the area and found whatever there was to find.”
Chapman said an array of artifacts has been uncovered, some still in excellent condition.
“We found the kinds of things you would expect to find at a military camp … buttons and bullets,” he said. “But we also found more personal items that had been left behind.”
Among them were a bronze buckle used to hold tourniquets in place, a silver spoon, a picture frame and a homemade tobacco pipe with tooth marks.
Georgia state archaeologist David Crass told The Associated Press that the finds were surprising.
“What makes Camp Lawton so unique is it’s one of those little frozen moments in time, and you don’t get those very often,” he said.
“Most professional archaeologists who ever thought about Camp Lawton came to the implicit conclusion that, because people weren’t there very long, there wouldn’t be much to find.”
Source From Great Site : http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/2010/aug/30/chattooga-native-digs-civil-war-history/
Bird calls ring from the forest, echoing amid the crumbling ruins whose darkened doorways have long beckoned explorers and scholars.
The Maya ancients who built the ruins of Kiuic (kee-week) here fled those doorways in a hurry, an international archaeology team now realizes. Left behind may be frozen-in-time clues to the fabled collapse of their civilization.
"Why did they leave? That's the question," says archaeologist George Bey of Millsaps College in Jackson, Miss. The ancient Maya fled Kiuic, nestled in the Puuc (pook) foothills of the Yucatan, around 880. "Things were going full-bore, construction was underway. And things stopped," Bey says.
Archaeologists have explored Kiuic's ruins for more than a century, but working since 2000, Bey and colleagues are now reporting the first evidence of this rapid abandonment. USA TODAY was invited to the site to see what has been uncovered in the latest excavations.
The "classic" Maya peopled the lowland forests of Central America during Europe's Dark Ages, building a civilization of pyramids, palaces and slash-and-burn "milpa" farms made by burning trees and planting seeds in the ash. Maya rulers oversaw city-states that warred with one another, created elaborate calendars and lasted centuries. The abandonment of those monument-strewn centers stands as one of archaeology's most-debated mysteries. The "collapse" was underway in modern-day Guatemala by 800, but didn't take place at Kiuic until almost a century later.
Source From Great Site: http://www.usatoday.com/tech/science/2010-08-25-maya-pompeii_N.htm
Saturday, August 28, 2010
An archaeologist said: 400-year-old letter have revealed a previously unknown language once spoken by indigenous peoples of northern Peru.
Penned by an unknown Spanish author and lost for four centuries, the tattered piece of paper was pulled from the remains of an ancient Spanish colonial church in 2008. But a team of scientists has only recently exposed the importance of the words written on the flip side of the letter.
The early 17th-century author had translated Spanish numbers uno, dos, tres into a mysterious language never seen by modern scholars.
Quilter said: The newfound native language may have borrowed from Quechua, a language still spoken by indigenous peoples of Peru. Some of the scholars suggest the two languages are in fact the same tongue that had been misidentified as distinct languages by early Spanish scribes.
The letter was found during archaeology excavations of the Magdalena de Cao Viejo church at the El Brujo Archaeological Complex in northern Peru. Quilter also stated that Archaeologists live on other people's misfortunes.
Language Hints at variety of Cultures:
Finding the new language helps to strengthen the rich diversity of cultures found in early colonial Americas, Quilter said.
Every location, from Massachusetts to Peru, it was a confrontation of a much more diverse group of people. In case, colonialists from many parts of Europe were grouped into the Spanish and in the Americas there were many people who spoke different languages and had different customs, he also noted.
"It truly shows how rich and varied that world was."
Thursday, August 26, 2010
A new theory revealed by archaeologists on Thursday: Oetzi, the 5,300-year-old "Iceman", may not have died at the site in the Italian Alps where he was found 19 years ago, but was only ceremonially buried there.
Up till now, archaeologists thought Oetzi, whose mummified corpse was exposed in a high mountain pass in the Oetztal Alps in 1991, died at that spot from wounds he had continued in a fight.
But an archaeologist Alessandro Vanzetti from Rome University told the Austrian daily Die Presse he believes the Bronze Age warrior actually died much nearer sea-level, but was then buried months later with full ceremonial honours high up in the mountains.
Alessandro Vanzetti and his archaeology excavation team have been investigating the site at 3,210 metre above sea-level for the past five years.
Vanzetti told the newspaper: The new theory would explain why some of the weapons discovered next to the mummy were not ready for use and why so many objects were found next to the corpse.
The archaeology also stated that some of the objects were valuable and would surely have been looted by his murderer if Oetzi had died in a fight at the spot where he was found.
Moreover, an analysis of his stomach had shown that the man died in April, while pollen found at the spot indicated the body was buried in August or September. The ice would have melted, making a rise to such a height possible.
This famous mummy will remain the subject of intense theory and become a new research for decades to come.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Do you want to earn university credits by undertaking archaeological fieldwork and archaeology excavation at beautiful Irish historic sites under the tuition of leading experts?
Would you like to experience life as an archaeologist while immersing yourself in the richness of the Irish life?
If the answer to one of more of these questions is YES, then the Irish Archaeological Field School is for you.
We are Irelands leading provider of university accredited, site based archaeological research and training. The ethos of the school is to provide an opportunity for students and enthusiasts of archaeology and anthropology to experience at first hand the excitement of archaeological excavation within an established research framework.
Excavations are undertaken in a research environment led by a team of highly qualified and experienced archaeologists using the most sophisticated technologies, including GPS topographical survey, geophysics, photo-planning and more.
In addition to the archaeological excavations, an extensive programme of cultural activities is on offer, including tours of historic sites, folklore, reconstructions, re-enactments, language, music, food and more.
Shot by a tourist, this is a view from the east, looking west from Namık Kemal Cd. over the Yenikapı excavations. Over 35 shipwrecks have uncovered in the former Theodosian Harbor of Constantinople from the 7th through 11th centuries, including several galleys. Other remains include a Christian Basilica and the oldest occupation yet discovered in Istanbul dating to the Chalcolithic.
THE industrial heritage of Yorkshire is renowned throughout the world, although the focus has often been on the boom in manufacturing and trade during the Victorian era.
However, archaeologists have discovered what they believe is one of the earliest examples of an "industrial estate" in the region, which dates back to the Roman period and provides a glimpse into how the needs of military garrisons were served 2,000 years ago.
Archaeology Excavations carried out as part of a £318m motorway upgrade of the A1 in North Yorkshire have given experts a rare opportunity to investigate a Roman site devoted to industrial activity.
The site is linked to a known imperial fort at Healam Bridge, near Dishforth, which was built about 2,000 years ago.
A major feature of the industrial complex was a water-powered flour mill used to grind grain and produce food for the garrison and other units travelling along the Roman road of Dere Street, the modern A1.
The adjacent buildings, which are thought to have been occupied up until the 4th century AD, may also have been a supply centre for a wider area.
English Heritage's inspector of ancient monuments in North Yorkshire, Neil Redfern, said: "The Roman remains at Healam Bridge have illustrated the importance of this site on Dere Street and given us an insight into industrial processes which had not previously been recognised or understood at the site.
"The time span of the remains uncovered illustrates how the site developed from a frontier fort and settlement to a more settled site with strong local economic role relating to the presence of mills along the banks of the beck.
"The complexity and depth of deposits were unexpected and the archaeology excavation team has dealt with them very professionally."
Artefacts uncovered on the A1 include animal bones, pottery, coins, metalwork and brooches, while 14 human cremations were found in individual pits, along with the well-preserved skeleton of a horse underneath a building.
The animal is thought to have been slaughtered as a sacrifice to the gods to bring the building good luck.
The cultural heritage team leader for contractors Carillion Morgan Sindall, Blaise Vyner, said: "We know a lot about Roman forts, which have been extensively studied, but to excavate an industrial area with a mill is really exciting.
"We hope it can tell us more about how such military outposts catered for their needs, as self-sufficiency would have been important. The findings show how the route has served people throughout the different periods."
The industrial area which has been discovered during the year-long archaeological dig comprised a series of large timber buildings, mostly on the north side of a beck, which powered the mill.
It is thought the site would have supplied the fort with goods and provisions – probably processing meat and other food, as well as flour, and could have developed into a settlement in its own right.
Very little is known about the Roman fort itself, which is now a scheduled monument and only came to light as a result of geophysical surveys carried out in the 1990s ahead of the A1's planned upgrading.
The line of the new road was adjusted to avoid the main site.
The Highways Agency's project manager, Gary Frost, said: "With the A1, we knew we were delivering this essential road improvement scheme in an area rich with history, but even so, the findings made were far more than expected.
"They uncovered a hidden world, showing how the Romans sustained the fort and the surrounding area."
The archaeological excavations started in July last year and were completed this summer as part of the multi-million-pound scheme to upgrade the A1 to a three-lane motorway between Dishforth and Leeming.
The smell of freshly baked bread wafted through Egypt’s western desert more than 3,500 years ago, according to new findings at the El-Kharga Oasis announced on Wednesday.
During archaeology excavation work for the Theban Desert Road Survey, a project to map the ancient desert routes in the Western desert, a team of Egyptian and US archaeologists from Yale University stumbled upon the remains of what appears to be an ancient bakery town.
About 1 km (0.6 miles) long from north to south and 250 meters (820 feet) wide from east to west, the settlement dates to the Second Intermediate Period (about 1650-1550 B.C.).
According to John Coleman Darnell, who led the Yale mission, archaeological evidence indicates that the site was an administrative center along the bustling caravan routes which connected the Nile Valley and the western oasis with points as far as Darfur in western Sudan.
Indeed, the archaeologists unearthed large mudbrick structures similar to administrative buildings previously found in several sites in the Nile Valley.
But the most interesting features were the remains of a bakery. Making bread on a massive scale was the main occupation for the majority of the inhabitants, said Zahi Hawass, the head of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities.
The archaeologists unearthed two ovens and a potter’s wheel. This was used to make the ceramic bread molds in which the bread was baked.
The large debris dumps outside the bakery suggests that the settlement produced bread in such large quantities that it may have even been feeding an army, Hawass said in a statement.
Early studies on the site revealed that the settlement had quite a long life. It began during the Middle Kingdom (2134-1569 B.C.) and lasted to the beginning of the New Kingdom (1569-1081 B.C.).
However the site was at its peak from the late Middle Kingdom (1786-1665 B.C.) to the Second Intermediate Period (1600-1569 B.C.).
Source from great site: http://news.discovery.com
The archaeology digs is taking place where this house, razed in 1929 to make way for the Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge, once stood. It was the home of Samuel Blunston, an influential settler, and was some 200 years old when demolished. The land now is known as Rotary Park in Columbia.
An archaeological dig in Lancaster County uncovering an ancient past from our area. Led by the Von Hess Foundation-- the dig is focusing around Rotary Park in Columbia. Archaeologists say they have uncovered many unexpected artifacts... from spears to arrow heads and other relics-- which may be evidence of an early American Indian community. "We're in the process right now of just cleaning these objects, but the next several months we will be doing a detailed inventory and looking for patterns of information that were on the site" says Stephen Warfel, director of Archaeology with the project.
Archaeologists will be working on the artifacts in the Wright's Ferry Mansion on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Visitors can watch and ask questions as they work.
An archeological dig in Columbia has turned up some ancient artifacts.
Source From Great Site : http://www.fox4kc.com
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
The false toe worn by a 3,000-year-old mummy has always been regarded as a simple ornament, added after death as part of burial rites.
But British scientists who have studied it believe the reality is that it is the world's first working artificial body part, centuries older than anything previously found.
A false toe made of out of wood and leather was found on a 3,000-year-old mummified body of an Egyptian noblewoman
* Obese and ruthless, the pharoah who was King AND Queen of Egypt
Now they are looking for volunteers who are missing the big toe on their right foot to wear a replica and try out their theory.
The original prosthetic, made out of wood and leather, is strapped to the foot of the mummified body of an Egyptian noblewoman currently on display at a museum in Cairo.
A similar false toe is worn by another mummy at the British Museum, but it has always been thought they were fitted after death as part of burial rites, perhaps to help them get about in the afterlife.
But a British Egyptologist who has examined both believes they were actually expertly fashioned to help their wearers get about and overcome their missing digit while they were still alive.
Both show what she believes are signs of wear and tear, and the Cairo toe is also jointed in the same way as a real one.
The appendage can bend in three places - just like a real toe - and scientists are now certain that it is a prosthetic
Now the team from Manchester University are to produce replicas which will be worn by volunteers to help them establish whether their theory is correct.
If true, the Cairo toe will be the world's oldest artificial body part, beating a leg forged from bronze by the Romans in around 300BC.
"We will use state-of-the-art technology to test whether the replicas of the artificial toes benefit the wearer and could therefore be deemed functional," said researcher Jacky Finch.
"The toes date from between 600 and 1,000BC, so if we can prove that one or both were functional then we will have pushed back prosthetic medicine by as much as 700 years."
The Cairo toe is articulated, just like the real thing, and is attached by a leather strap to the right foot of the woman, aged between 50 and 60. Her big toe had been amputated, and examination of her mummified body shows the site to have healed well.
The team has also examined a second false big toe found in an Egyptian sarcophagus and now held at the British Museum.
Known as the Greville Chester Great Toe, it is made from a papier mache-like substance and also shows signs of wear-and-tear, but it does not bend and is thought to have been a cosmetic replacement.
Now the researchers plan to recreate the articulated false toe and are looking for volunteers whose right foot is missing a big toe to trial it.
They will be examined under laboratory conditions to establish whether the device works well enough to have served as an artificial toe aiding walking and balance as much as 3,000 years ago.
The oldest known functional prosthesis was the Roman Capua Leg, made out of bronze and dating from about 300BC.
It was held at the Royal College of Surgeons in London but was destroyed by Luftwaffe bombs during the Second World War.
Source From Great News site : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-471203/Worlds-prosthetic-limb-3-000-year-old-Egyptian-mummy.html
Walking, cycling and map reading may be some of the most obvious activities to enjoy at Exmoor National Park, but archaeology has emerged as a more surprising choice for many.
Some 450 people attended an event held recently to coincide with the Festival of British Archaeology to recognise the history of the area.
The celebration kicked off with a forum followed by a number of guided tours on local walking trails.
Each of the routes devised by park bosses allowed visitors to learn a little more about Exmoor.
Others stayed behind and learnt how to make a mosaic at the National Park centre in Dunster, while a pair of open days at Timberscombe hill fort were well attended.
These days led on from a two-week archaeology excavation of an Iron Age settlement at the fort, which was carried out by staff and volunteers.
Exmoor is one of England's oldest National Parks, having been awarded the status in 1954.
Source from great site: http://magazine.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/magazine/tscontent/editorial/walkingandcycling/2010/archaeologycelebrationoffersexmoorwalkingopportunities082.html
Read more about Exmoor National Park http://www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/
If you had a dinner invitation in Utah's Escalante Valley almost 10,000 years ago, you would have come just in time to try a new menu item: mush cooked from the flour of milled sage brush seeds.
After five summers of meticulous archaeology excavation, Brigham Young University archaeologists are beginning to publish what they've learned from the "North Creek Shelter." It's the oldest known site occupied by humans in the southern half of Utah and one of only three such archaeological sites state-wide that date so far back in time.
BYU anthropologist Joel Janetski led a group of students that earned a National Science Foundation grant to "get to the bottom" of a site occupied on and off for the past 11,000 years, according to multiple radiocarbon estimates.
"The student excavators worked morning till night in their bare feet," Janetski said. "They knew it was really important and took their shoes off to avoid contaminating the old dirt with the new."
In the upcoming issue of the journal Kiva, Janetski and his former students describe the stone tools used to grind sage, salt bush and grass seeds into flour. Because those seeds are so tiny, a single serving would have required quite a bit of seed gathering. But that doesn't mean whoever inhabited North Creek Shelter had no other choice.
Prior to the appearance of grinding stones, the menu contained duck, beaver and turkey. Sheep became more common later on. And deer was a staple at all levels of the dig.
"Ten thousand years ago, there was a change in the technology with grinding stones appearing for the first time," Janetski said. "People started to use these tools to process small seeds into flour."
Provided by Brigham Young University
A recent archaeological dig at Rotary Park has set Columbia Borough's historical clock back a few thousand years, revealing an American Indian community dating to a time when pharaohs ruled Egypt and Stonehenge was under construction.
"We've found spear points dating back to 3000 B.C. and pottery that goes back to the 1300s," said Meg Schaefer, curator with the Wright's Ferry Mansion in Columbia, said Aug. 10. "We've even found evidence of what Natives were eating, including carbonized nut hulls and fish scales, which we can carbon date."
Started in May with the help of a $25,000 grant from the Philadelphia-based Wright-Cook Foundation, the dig was run by the Columbia-based nonprofit The Von Hess Foundation. It was overseen by Stephen Warfel, an archaeologist who retired from the State Museum of Pennsylvania in 2007 and whose work includes archaeology excavations at the Ephrata Cloister.
"Whenever you're digging close to the Susquehanna River, you'd expect to find a concentration of native artifacts, but what we found in Rotary Park is exciting and unanticipated," Warfel said Aug. 10.
"We don't know if there was a settlement here. It could have been a seasonal encampment. But I think, clearly, more work needs to be done, since we now have evidence that there were people living in what is now Columbia all the way back to around 3500 B.C.," he said.
The reason for the dig, Schaefer said, has to do with an excavation on the former 1728 home of Samuel Blunston, an early settler in the area when Columbia was still part of Chester County and known as Shawanah Town.
"Samuel Blunston was instrumental in the area's history because he issued land patents for what is now York County. He also helped to establish Lancaster County, and he served in the Provincial Assembly," she said. "William Wright was also raised in that house, a man who is best remembered for helping establish the Underground Railroad."
Though the home was one of Columbia's most historic, Warfel said, it was demolished in 1929 in order to make way for the Wrightsville-Columbia Bridge across the Susquehanna River. This summer's archaeology excavation, he said, aimed to recover and learn as much as possible about the site of the former homestead, which now serves as the borough's Rotary Park.
Some of the artifacts discovered in the dig include tin-glazed earthenware, English salt-glazed wares, English slipware (a kind of clay pottery), cufflinks, buttons, fragments of smoking pipes, thimbles and straight pins.
Also discovered, Warfel said, were the remains of a five-foot cellar wall that retained its original whitewash.
Warfel said the objects found from the house are being identified, cleaned and catalogued while American Indian relics are being carbon-dated to determine their age.
Eventually, Schaefer said, the finds will be put on public display at Wright's Ferry Mansion, Second and Cherry streets.
Mansion hours are from 10 to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
For more information, call 684-4325.
Source from Great Site : http://articles.lancasteronline.com/local/4/280924
The archaeology excavations undertaken at the ancient city of Amheida (known as Trimithis in the Roman period) are a unique combination of archaeological fieldwork and educational program. Although primarily a modern, multidisciplinary archaeology excavation, the project also offers undergraduate students the opportunity for a study-abroad semester in Egypt that combines fieldwork with classroom study and visits to archaeological sites and museums. We make our ongoing work on site available internationally to both scholarly and public audiences via the web as well as through printed work.
The Amheida project was started at Columbia University in 2001. Since 2008, New York University is the primary sponsoring institution, with Columbia University continuing as a partner in the project.
The archaeology excavations at Amheida collaborate with other participating groups in the Dakhleh Oasis Project, an international venture now three decades old dedicated to studying the interaction between human settlement and the environment over the long span from the earliest human presence in the oasis to modern times. Amheida itself has remains spanning nearly three millennia, and paleolithic material is found along its fringes.
The first five years of archaeology excavation have focused on three areas of this very large site: an upper-class fourth-century AD house with wall paintings, an adjoining school, and underlying remains of a Roman bath complex; a more modest house of the third century; and the temple hill, with remains of the Temple of Thoth built in the first century AD and of earlier structures. Architectural conservation has protected and partly restored two standing funerary monuments, a mud-brick pyramid and a tower tomb, both of the Roman period.
Inquiries about the associated undergraduate Spring semester abroad program, "Archaeology and History in Egypt," offered through NYU, should be directed to its Director, Ellen Morris (email@example.com). Administrative questions should be addressed to the Program Coordinator, Elizabeth Bulls (firstname.lastname@example.org). Click on the "Student Information" button for more information on this program. The deadline for student applications for the 2010 season is May 8, 2009.
The project director, Roger Bagnall, can be reached at:
Institute for the Study of the Ancient World
New York University
15 East 84th Street
New York, NY 10028
Source from great site : http://www.amheida.org/
Monday, August 23, 2010
A group of undergraduates at the University of Chicago has come in touch with the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, launching the first archaeological dig of the famed Chicago fair site in Jackson Park.
"When I came to Chicago, I didn't know much about the fair, but this has been a really interesting way to find out more about it," said John Mullen, a fourth-year student and part of a 20-member class on urban archaeology. "The fair had a huge impact, not only on Chicago, but also on the world, with all the new things that were introduced.
"Now, with Chicago vying for the Olympics, it's like Chicago is trying again to get that kind of prominence," he said as he sifted small clods of dirt through a wire-mesh screen while looking for artifacts.
Some interesting items have quickly appeared through the careful eyes of the student archaeologists and their teachers. As Mullen sifted through the dirt reclaimed from a nearby pit, or archaeology excavation unit, he found pieces of white plaster that may have covered the walls of the Michigan or Ohio state buildings, one of the structures that probably sat where he and a student team were digging.
The plaster could be evidence of the White City, whose memory largely remains otherwise preserved in photographs and chronicles. A highly corroded nail is among the other debris found so far in the excavation.
Students in the College of the University of Chicago are conducting the dig, which began in early April as part of the new Chicago Studies Program in the College. They are taking a class from Rebecca Graff, a graduate student specializing in American urban archaeology who is writing her dissertation on 19th-century American habits of tourism and consumption based on the Columbian Exposition.
Although it probably won’t uncover any spectacular artifacts as it probes the grounds, the class is uncovering material that could provide new clues about life in late 19th-century Chicago. Besides nails and plaster, students have found bricks, pieces of ceramic and shards of glass that could have been from soda or beer bottles.
“The glass pieces are really thick,” said Mullen. “It was probably because carbonation had just been invented and bottlers weren’t sure how much pressure the process would create.”
At the site of the Wisconsin building, another piece of evidence is emerging and may show how the state pavilions were built. In the sandy subsoil, about 3 feet deep, a team found an intriguing streak of black soil running directly east and west.
“This could have been the base of a foundation for the building. We know they would put down a plank and then build the foundation on top of it. Over time, the plank may have decayed and turned into black organic matter,” said teaching assistant Mary Leighton.
The artifacts have been taken to a lab at the University, where they will be further examined, along with field notes and measurements from the dig. Graff will try to determine what actually may have been from the fair and what debris was left at other times.
The work will add another layer of information to the record of the fair. “We have the plans for the fair, for instance, but we don’t have a map that shows exactly where the buildings were, Graff said. “This will give us some idea where they were actually built.
“Many of the more mundane, everyday aspects of the fair were not included in any of the other accounts of the fair. This is a way to fill in some information about the visitors,” she said.
Graff has a personal connection with the fair, as her great-grandfather, Morris Graff, also stirred dirt for the fair. He was on a crew that dug ditches for the exposition.
“He was an immigrant and an Orthodox Jew. Most of the other jobs he could find required that he work on Saturday. He took the job at the fair because there were different shifts and not all required he work on the Sabbath,” she said.
“It’s funny to have found out about this family connection. I was interested in the fair before I knew this, but it is certainly adds to the experience for me,” she said. “Although my father’s family is from Chicago, I grew up in Los Angeles, so learning about my great-grandfather’s job at the World’s Columbian Exposition has made me feel more connected to the site.”
The College of the University of Chicago has funded the course through the new Chicago Studies Program. Shannon Dawdy, Assistant Professor in Anthropology, won a grant from the University of Chicago's Women's Board that provided seed money for the “Chicago Archaeology Program,” which has as its first project the archaeology of the World's Columbian Exposition.
Source From Great Site : http://news.uchicago.edu/news.php?asset_id=1373
At first glance, the fox on the surface of the limestone pillar appears to be a trick of the bright sunlight. But as I move closer to the large, T-shaped megalith, I find it is carved with an improbable menagerie. A bull and a crane join the fox in an animal parade etched across the surface of the pillar, one of dozens erected by early Neolithic people at Göbekli Tepe in southeastern Turkey. The press here is fond of calling the site "the Turkish Stonehenge," but the comparison hardly does justice to this 25-acre arrangement of at least seven stone circles. The first structures at Göbekli Tepe were built as early as 10,000 B.C., predating their famous British counterpart by about 7,000 years
The oldest man-made place of worship yet discovered, Göbekli Tepe is "one of the most important monuments in the world," says Hassan Karabulut, associate curator of the nearby Urfa Museum. He and archaeologist Zerrin Ekdogan of the Turkish Ministry of Culture guide me around the site. Their enthusiasm for the ancient temple is palpable.
Archaeology Excavations have revealed that Göbekli Tepe was constructed in two stages. The oldest structures belong to what archaeologists call the early Pre-Pottery Neolithic A period, which ended around 9000 B.C. Strangely enough, the later remains, which date to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B period, or about 8000 B.C., are less elaborate. The earliest levels contain most of the T-shaped pillars and animal sculptures.
Archaeologist Klaus Schmidt downplays extravagant spiritual interpretations of Göbekli Tepe, such as the idea, made popular in the press, that the site is the inspiration for the Biblical Garden of Eden. But he does agree that it was a sanctuary of profound significance in the Neolithic world. He sees it as a key site in understanding the transition from hunting and gathering to agriculture, and from tribal to regional religion.
Source From Great Source: http://www.archaeology.org/0811/abstracts/turkey.html
The roots of archaeology – “the study of human history and prehistory through the archaeology excavation of sites and the analysis of physical remains,” to quote the Oxford English Dictionary – can be traced back in their most basic form as late as the age of the last emperor of Babylon, Nabonidus, in the 6th century BC, and perhaps even further, to the ancient Egyptians.
In the thousands of years that have passed since, the discipline has become a highly professionalised pursuit, with a broad and firmly-established range of techniques and practices, a complex theoretical framework and a strong ethical code. But it hasn’t taken a direct route to get there.
The origins of archaeology as an actual science were only really established after the Enlightenment in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, when the likes of Englishmen John Aubrey (1627-1697) and William Stukeley (1687-1765), Italian Count Marcello Venuti (circa 1738) and German Johann Joachim Winckelmann (1717-1768), started conducting systematic, recorded studies of sites and artefacts using techniques recognisable to modern antiquarians.
These were the Founding Fathers of archaeology, who first broke ground in the discipline as we know it today.
Source from Great site : http://heritage-key.com/world/worlds-first-archaeologists-and-their-role-defining-history
1. Egyptian Treasures in the Grand Canyon
The April 5, 1909 edition of the Arizona Gazette featured an article entitled "Explorations in Grand Canyon: Remarkable finds indicate ancient people migrated from Orient." According to the article, the expedition was financed by the Smithsonian Institute and discovered artifacts that would, if verified, stand conventional history on its ear.
Inside a cavern "hewn in solid rock by human hands" were found tablets bearing hieroglyphics, copper weapons, statues of Egyptian deities and mummies. Although highly intriguing, the truth of this story is in doubt simply because the site has never been re-found. The Smithsonian disavows all knowledge of the discovery, and several expeditions searching for the cavern have come up empty-handed. Was the article just a hoax? "While it cannot be discounted that the entire story is an elaborate newspaper hoax," writes researcher/explorer David Hatcher Childress, "the fact that it was on the front page, named the prestigious Smithsonian Institution, and gave a highly detailed story that went on for several pages, lends a great deal to its credibility. It is hard to believe such a story could have come out of thin air."
2. Age of the Pyramids and Sphinx
Most Egyptologists believe the Great Sphinx on the Giza plateau is about 4,500 years old. But that number is just that - a belief, a theory, not a fact. As Robert Bauval says in "The Age of the Sphinx," "there was no inscriptions - not a single one - either carved on a wall or a stela or written on the throngs of papyri" that associates the Sphinx with this time period. So when was it built? John Anthony West challenged the accepted age of the monument when he noted the vertical weathering on its base, which could only have been caused by long exposure to water in the form of heavy rains. In the middle of the desert? Where did the water come from? It so happens that this area of the world experienced such rains - about 10,500 years ago! This would make the Sphinx more than twice its currently accepted age. Bauval and Graham Hancock have calculated that the Great Pyramid likewise dates back to about 10,500 B.C. - predating the Egyptian civilization. This raises the questions: Who built them and why?
3. Nazca Lines
The famous Nazca lines can be found in a desert about 200 miles south of Lima, Peru. On a plain measuring approximately 37 miles long and one mile wide are etched lines and figures that have puzzled the scientific world since their discovery in the 1930s. The lines run perfectly straight, some parallel to one another, many intersecting, making the lines look from the air like ancient airport runways. This prompted Erich von Daniken in his book Chariots of the Gods to suggest (ludicrously, we think) that they actually were runways for extraterrestrial craft... as if they would need runways. More intriguing are the gigantic figures of 70-some animals carved into the ground - a monkey, a spider, a hummingbird among others. The puzzle is that these lines and figures are of such a scale that they can only be recognized from a high altitude. (They were rediscovered by accident in the 1930s by an overflying airplane.) So what is their significance? Some believe they have an astronomical purpose, while others think they served in religious ceremonies. A recent theory suggests the lines lead to sources of precious water. The truth is, no one really knows.
4. Location of Atlantis
There are as many theories as to the true location of Atlantis as there are SPAM in your e-mail box. We get the legend of Atlantis from Plato who wrote about the beautiful, technologically advanced continent-sized island back in 370 B.C., but his description of its location was limited and vague. Many, of course, conclude that Atlantis never really existed, but was merely a fable. Those who think it did exist have sought evidence or at least clues in almost every corner of the globe. Edgar Cayce's famous prophecies said remnants of Atlantis would be found around Bermuda, and in 1969, geometric stone formations were found near Bimini that believers said confirmed Cayce's prediction. Other proposed locations for Atlantis include Antarctica, Mexico, off the coast of England, possibly even off the coast of Cuba (see below).
5. Mayan Calendar
There's been a lot of hand-wringing over the supposed prophecies of the Mayan calendar. More people fear it, perhaps, than feared the ominous predicted catastrophes of the year 2000. All the fretting is based on the finding that the Mayan "Long Count" calendar ends on a date that corresponds to our December 21, 2012. What does this mean? The end of the world through some global cataclysm or war? The beginning of a new era, a new Age for mankind? Such prophecies have a long tradition of not coming to pass. But the only way we'll find out for sure is to wait and see. Just in case, however, in 2012 you might want to do your Christmas shopping early.
6. Japan's Underwater Ruins
Off the southern shore of Okinawa, Japan, under 20 to 100 feet of water lie enigmatic structures that may have been built by some ancient, lost civilization. Skeptics say the large, tiered formations are probably natural in origin. "Then, in late summer of the following year," writes Frank Joseph in an article for Atlantis Rising, "another diver in Okinawa waters was shocked to see a massive arch or gateway of huge stone blocks beautifully fitted together in the manner of prehistoric masonry found among the Inca cities on the other side of the Pacific Ocean, in the Andes Mountains of South America." This seems to confirm that these are manmade ruins. The architecture includes what appear to be paved streets and crossroads, large altar-like formations, staircases leading to broad plazas and processional ways surmounted by pairs of towering features resembling pylons. If it is a sunken city, it is huge. It's been suggested that it might be the lost civilization of Mu or Lemuria (see below).
7. Voyages to the Americas
We were all taught that Columbus discovered America; what they meant to teach us, however, was that Columbus began the official European invasion of the Americas. People had "discovered" the continent long before Columbus, of course. What are known as Native Americans arrived here many centuries before Columbus, and there is good evidence that explorers from other civilizations beat Columbus here, too. It is widely accepted that Leif Ericsson successfully sailed to North America in the year 1000. Far stranger, artifacts have been found suggesting that ancient cultures explored the continent. Greek and Roman coins and pottery have been found in the U.S. and Mexico; Egyptian statues of Isis and Osiris were found in Mexico, to say nothing of the Grand Canyon discovery, see above; ancient Hebrew and Asian artifacts have also been found. The truth is, we know very little about early, far-traveling cultures.
8. Sunken City off Cuba
In May 2001, an exciting discovery was made by Advanced Digital Communications (ADC), a Canadian company that was mapping the ocean bottom of Cuba's territorial waters. Sonar readings revealed something unexpected and quite amazing 2,200 feet down: stones laid out in a geometric pattern that looked very much like the ruins of a city. "What we have here is a mystery," said Paul Weinzweig, of ADC. "Nature couldn't have built anything so symmetrical. This isn't natural, but we don't know what it is." A great sunken city? It must be Atlantis, was the immediate suggestion of many enthusiasts. National Geographic showed a great deal of interest in the site and was involved in subsequent investigations. In 2003, a minisub dove down to explore the structures.
Paulina Zelitsky of ADC said they saw a structure that "looks like it could have been a large urban center. However, it would be totally irresponsible to say what it was before we have evidence." Further explorations are forthcoming.
9. Mu or Lemuria
Nearly as famous as Atlantis is the legendary lost world of Mu, sometimes call Lemuria. According to tradition among many Pacific islands, Mu was an Eden-like tropical paradise located somewhere in the Pacific that sunk, along with all of its beautiful inhabitants, thousands of years ago. Like Atlantis, there is ongoing debate as to whether it really existed and, if so, where. Madame Elena Petrovna Blavatsky, the founder of the Theosophy movement in the 1800s, believed it was in the Indian Ocean. The ancient residents of Mu have become a favorite of channelers who bring their enlightened messages to present
10. Caribbean Underwater Pyramids
One of the most intriguing tales of the discovery of ruins of a lost civilization is the story of Dr. Ray Brown. In 1970, while diving near the Bari Islands in the Bahamas, Dr. Brown claimed to have come across a pyramid "shining like a mirror" that he estimated was 120 feet tall, although he could see only the top 90 feet. The pyramid had a colored capstone and was surrounded by the ruins of other buildings. Swimming into a chamber he found a crystal held by two metallic hands. Over the crystal hung a brass rod from the center of the ceiling, at the end of which was a red multifaceted gem of some kind. Brown said he took the crystal, which allegedly has strange, mystical powers.
Source From Great Site : http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1fbPSz/meta-religion.com/Archaeology/Other/10_mysteries_archaoelogy.htm