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Structure at Edzná suggests long distant links with Chichén Itzá

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Archaeological works of a structure at Edzná suggest that the city had cultural links spanning over 300 km’s with the Maya city of Chichén Itzá.

Edzná, Meaning “House of the Itzaes”, is a Maya city located in the Mexican state of Campeche. Archaeological evidence suggests that the region was already inhabited during the 5th century BC, emerging into a major population centre around AD 200.

The city was deserted around AD 1500, however, the reason for this decline and eventual abandonment remains a mystery.

Archaeological works conducted by specialists from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) of Structure 512 in the Edzná Archaeological Zone have revealed a building with a quadrangular plan. Structure 512 dates from the Early Postclassic period (AD 900 to 1200), however, it was constructed on an earlier building that dates from the Classic period (AD 200 to 600).

Image Credit : INAH

The works also identified a porticoed entrance with two bays, two columns that supported a roof, and a man-made cavity excavated in the bedrock which likely functioned as a burial tomb.

According to the researchers, Structure 512 has architectural similarities with the courtyard-gallery type buildings of Chichén Itzá, used for the performance of religious ceremonies and the deposit of offerings.

Chichén Itzá was one of the largest cities from the Maya world, is located in Mexico’s Yucatan State, approximately 307 kilometres from Edzná.

Dr Benavides from INAH, said: “In addition to the scope of the architectural styles of Chichén Itzá, its presence in Edzná indicates the links sustained by both cities in the Early Postclassic.”

Previous studies have identified that Edzná has architectural signs of the Puuc style, even though it is far from the Puuc Hills sites. This already suggested contact far to the west, however, the new revelation at Structure 512 now indicates that this level of contact stretched much further.

INAH

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Archaeology

Study reveals new insights into life at “German Stonehenge”

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Excavations of the Ringheiligtum Pömmelte, nicknamed the “German Stonehenge”, has revealed new insights into domestic life from prehistory.

Ringheiligtum Pömmelte is a late Neolithic/Early Bronze Age henge from the late third millennium BC. The monument features seven concentric rings made of palisades, ditches, and raised banks, each containing a series of wooden posts.

The site was discovered in 1991 through aerial photography near the present-day village of Pömmelte in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany.

From 2018 to 2022, archaeologists have excavated nearly 140 ancient dwellings dating from 2,800 BC to 2,200 BC. The older dwellings are linked to the Corded Ware and the Bell Beaker culture, while the more recent ones are associated with the Únětice Culture.

In a recent study conducted by the State Office for Monument Preservation and Archaeology (LDA) of Saxony-Anhalt, archaeologists are employing various scientific methods to offer new insights into the site’s ritual and settlement landscape.

The study has identified house locations of the Corded Ware culture (26th to 23rd century BC), and an associated settlement pit containing ceramic sherds, an axe head and flint blades. Until now, Corded Ware settlement could only be attributed to individual finds that had been relocated, and not to actual structures on the site.

Also associated with the Corded Ware culture is a storage area with 78 grain silo pits that held various types of gain, including wheat, barley, and spelt. Archaeologists already know that Corded Ware people lived on a balanced diet with animal products, further indicated by drinking vessels from burials at Ringheiligtum Pömmelte that contained traces of dairy products.

While the scientific analyses and the interpretation of the results with various specialists continue, excavations at Pömmelte will last until mid-July 2024.

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Sources : State Office for Monument Preservation and Archaeology Saxony-Anhalt

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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3,400-year-old shipwreck found with cargo mostly intact

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Archaeologists from the Israel Antiquities Authority Marine Unit have discovered a 3,400-year-old shipwreck with the cargo mostly intact.

The site was first identified during an underwater survey by Energean, an energy company searching for natural gas deposits beneath the Mediterranean Sea Floor.

This led to the discovery of the shipwreck and its cargo at a depth of 1.8 kilometers, along with its cargo that consists of Late Bronze Age Canaanite storage vessels.

IAA archaeologists, in collaboration with Energean, have used the deep sea exploratory vessel, “Energean Star” to conduct a visual inspection of the wreck site. This has revealed hundreds of ceramic vessels on the seabed, and a muddy layer which likely conceals a second layer and the wooden beams of the ship.

Jacob Sharvit, Head of the Israel Antiquities Authority Marine Unit, explains, “The ship seems to have sunk in crisis, either due to a storm or to an attempted piracy attack – a well-known occurrence in the Late Bronze Age. This is both the first and the oldest ship found in the Eastern Mediterranean deep sea, ninety kilometres from the nearest shore.”

Image Credit : IAA

Only two other ships from this period have been found – the boat from Cape Gelidonya and the Uluburun boat; both found off the Turkish coast. Both ships were found near the shore, suggesting that shipping routes followed the coastline between ports. However, this new discovery changes the understanding of ancient marine trade, demonstrating that ancient shipping also extended into deep waters.

“The ship is preserved at such a great depth that time has frozen since the moment of disaster – its body and contexts have not been disturbed by human hand (divers, fishermen, etc.); nor affected by waves and currents which do impact shipwrecks in shallower waters,” added Sharvit.

Header Image Credit : IAA

Sources : Israel Antiquities Authority

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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