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Hidden tunnel complex from Bar Kokhba Revolt found near Sea of Galilee

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In a press statement issued by the Israel Antiquities Authority, IAA archaeologists, working with soldiers and civilians, have uncovered a hidden tunnel complex from the Bar Kokhba Revolt period at Huqoq, Israel.

The Bar Kokhba Revolt was a large-scale uprising by the Jews of Judea against the Roman Empire in AD 132. The revolt was led by Simon bar Kokhbam, which was the last of three major Jewish–Roman wars.

The tunnel complex was found at Huqoq near the Sea of Galilee and was revealed to originally be a water cistern from the Second Temple. During the Bar Kokhba Revolt, the inhabitants of Huqoq dug a series of tunnels from the cistern that connected to eight underground chambers and a mikveh.

According to the researchers, the tunnel system was likely used by rebel forces to escape the Roman army, as several narrow tunnels are located beneath ancient homesteads at Huqoq.

The team also found hundreds of broken clay and glass dishes, an impressive ring with a mount for a precious stone, and numerous fragments of ceramics.

“The tunnel complex provides a glance at a difficult period for the Jewish population in Huqoq and the Galilee region in general,” say excavation directors Uri Berger of the Israel Antiquities Authority and Prof. Yinon Shivtiel of the Zefat Academic College.

Image Credit : IAA

“It is a story of residents who, even after losing their freedom, and after many hard years of revolts, came out of hiding in the tunnels and established a thriving village with one of the most impressive synagogues in the area.”

“It is not certain that the complex was used for hiding and escaping during the Second Revolt, but it does appear to have been prepared for this purpose. We hope future excavations will bring us closer to the answer.”

Header Image Credit : IAA

Sources : IAA

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

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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.

Header Image Credit : Shutterstock

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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