Audio News for March 1st to March 7th.
Welcome to the Audio News from Archaeologica! I’m
Laura Pettigrew and these are the headlines in
archaeological and historical news from March 1st to
Ancient Viking harbor works found
Our first story is from western Norway, where
archaeologists have found the remains of a harbor
complex built 1,000 years ago by the Vikings. This
is the first of its kind discovered in the country.
The ancient harbor, located near the west coast city
of Trondheim and some 250 miles north of Oslo, was
discovered when a local landowner started work on a
small boat dock and found it to be the same spot
chosen a millennium earlier. The Vikings werelegendary for bold voyages as far as North America
in open longboats. Those longboats were also
essential transportation along Norway's long coast,
and the reason for the construction of port
facilities. Local history buffs noticed the stumps
of at least 10 pilings sticking out from the water
but believed they were dated as recently as the
1880s. However, they took a sample of the wood for
laboratory for dating and it turned out to be 1,000
years old. Experts suspect that one reason the
Vikings had a major harbor at this location is
because it is only a short distance from Frostating,
a site where Vikings gathered for huge
decision-making assemblies and festivals.
Archaeologists will study the area before it is
covered over as part of modern harbor developments.
Original Headline: Dozens of Inca mummies found
In Peru, following on the discovery of the two
mummies last week, archaeologists have uncovered an
Inca burial site intact outside Lima dating back to
the 15th Century. A team has been working on the
site, located on a barren hill outside the capital.
So far, 26 tombs have been found, containing an
unknown number of mummies and funereal artifacts.
The researchers were allowed to search the area,
which is part of a huge ancient cemetery complex,
ahead of the construction of a new road. The graves
have been described as belonging to middle class
Inca who lived in this locality during the Inca
Empire, between 1472 and 1532. In 1533, the Incas
were defeated at the hands of the Spanish
conquistadors. The cemetery area, called
WAH-care-OH-naze), was the largest Inca cemetery in
Peru and the largest excavated cemetery in the
Western Hemisphere. But observers say the new find
is a rare piece of luck for archaeologists. It is
believed those buried in the recently found tombs
were all textile makers. Ninety-nine percent of the
tools in the tombs are those used in some aspect of
textile production, from cloth dying to dressmaking,
needles to looms. The discovery is intact and thearea showed evidence of funeral offerings such as
corn, beans, coca leaves and pots.
Major dig begins in ancient Jewish city of Tiberias
In Israel, a dig to uncover the ancient city of
Tiberias has begun as part of a project to
reconstruct the old city and create an
archaeological park on the site. The excavations on
the site of Talmudic Tiberias, which existed in the
Roman period some 1,800 years ago, are expected to
take 10 to 15 years. Some 35 students have started
cleaning up the large compound close to the southern
shore of Lake Kinneret (KIN-ner-ET), which is now
covered with mounds of garbage and a sewage plant.
Dozens of European and American students are to join
them next week, as well as students from a school in
Be'er Sheva (ber SHE-ba). Professor Yizhar
(yi-ZHARR) Hirschfeld, the archaeologist in charge,
said that the excavations will focus on the bath
house, the cardo and the marketplace of the ancient
city. Later, the diggers will advance to the eastern
part of the old city, toward the Kinneret
(KIN-ner-ET). That is the site of the Basilica,
where the Sanhedrin (san-HED-ren), the Supreme Court
of the time, is believed to have sat. They hope to
find evidence of the activities of the Sanhedrin
(san-HED-ren)at the site. Tiberias was founded in AD
20 and its community survived until the 11th century.
New Egyptian inscription names unknown
Our final story is from Egypt, where an American
archaeological expedition working with the Supreme
Council of Antiquities discovered a rocky
inscription with a royal name dating back to the
pre-dynastic era. Found in the Al-Kharga (al KAR-ga)
oasis region, the royal name from the 32nd century
BC is unknown. The inscription showed a new royal
name, which read Hoor within a shape representing
the old pharaonic palace topped with the bird of
Horus, common during the 1st and 2nd dynasties. The
chairman of the US archaeological expedition, Dr.Solima Al-Harram (al HAR-em) pointed out that the
discovery would reveal new information about the
Egyptian royal presence in the western desert in the
pre-dynastic era. She theorized that the inscription
indicated trade activities with Africa through the
western desert, possibly to find different natural
raw materials for buildings and industries during
that early period of the Egyptian history preceding
the era of the unified country.
That wraps up the news for this week!
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I’m Laura Pettigrew and I’ll see you next week!