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Circular shaped Iron Age village found in the Côtes d’Armor

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A team of archaeologists have uncovered a circular shaped Iron Age village in the Côtes d’Armor using advanced satellite imaging technology.

The discovery was made using light detection and ranging (LiDAR), a method of remote sensing with light in the form of a pulsed lasers to measure ranges (variable distances) to the Earth.

The differences in the laser return times and wavelength measurements can be used to compile a 3D digital map of the landscape and remove obscuring features.

Using a LiDAR system developed by INRAE ​​(National Institute for e-realistic Archaeological Research), archaeologists have discovered traces of a Gallic village at Cap d’Erquy on the coast of the Côtes d’Armor, France.

The village was inhabited by the Gauls, an Iron Age people that emerged around the 5th century BC in Gallia (encompassing present-day France). The Gauls comprised numerous tribes (known as toutās), many of which constructed extensive fortified settlements called oppida (such as Bibracte) and issued their own coinage.

Gaul never experienced unity under a sole ruler or centralized government. However, the Gallic tribes demonstrated the ability to unite their forces for large-scale military campaigns. The Romans conquered Gaul under the command of Julius Caesar during the Gallic Wars (58–50 BC).

According to a press statement by the Côtes d’Armor Departmental Council, archaeologists have found traces of around twenty roundhouses which were surrounded by a circular defensive rampart. Initial estimates suggest that the village was inhabited between the 8th and 5th centuries BC.

“This is an exceptional discovery which allows us to better understand the daily life of the Gauls during the Iron Age. This technology opens the way to major new discoveries and makes it possible to explore archaeological sites inaccessible through traditional excavations,” said Jean-Yves Peskebrel, archaeologist at INRAE.

Header Image Credit : INRAE

Sources : Côtes d’Armor Departmental Council

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

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Archaeology

Trove of Roman objects linked to feasting found at Ostia antica

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Archaeologists have uncovered a trove of Roman objects linked to ritual feasting at Ostia antica.

Ostia Antica is an ancient harbour town located at the mouth of the Tiber River. The harbour served as the main port for Rome, transporting goods and people from the coast along the Via Ostiensis.

Archaeologists recently excavated the area of Regio I – Insula XV, a “sacred area” or precinct housing several temples and sanctuaries. At the centre is the temple of Hercules,  a 31 x 16 metre monument which dates from the Republican Era.

Excavations have revealed a substantial well situated at the base of the temple of Hercules. Upon draining the well, it was discovered to hold a significant collection of objects dating from the 1st to 2nd century AD.

Among the objects are various ceramics, miniatures, lamps, glass containers, fragments of marble, and burnt animal bones (pigs and cattle). According to the archaeologists, the trove corresponds with ritual feasting associated with cult at the temple.

In a press statement by the Ministry of Culture: “The discovery of burnt bones confirms that animal sacrifices were carried out in the sanctuary, while the common ceramics, also bearing traces of fire, indicate that the meat was cooked and consumed during banquets in honour of divinity. The remains of one or more ritual meals were thrown into the well, the last ones probably when their function had ceased.”

Header Image Credit : Ministry of Culture

Sources : Ministry of Culture

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

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Archaeology

Labyrinthine structure discovered from the Minoan civilisation

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Archaeologists have discovered a monumental labyrinthine structure on the summit of Papoura Hill in Crete.

The discovery was made during the installation of a radar system in preparation for the construction of a new airport in the area.

According to experts, the structure dates from between 2000 to 1700 BC shortly before or at the start of the palaeopalatial Minoan period.

The Minoan civilisation was a Bronze Age culture that emerged on the island of Crete around 3100 BC. The culture is known for the monumental architecture and energetic art, and is often regarded as the first civilisation in Europe.

Image Credit : Greek Ministry of Culture

The chronology of the Minoans is characterised into three distinct phases – Early Minoan (EM), Middle Minoan (MM), and Late Minoan (LM).

The palaeopalatial structure is part of the MMI – II grouping in the Middle Minoan, a period in which the first palaces were built and saw the development of the Minoan writing systems, Cretan hieroglyphic and Linear A.

The structure comprises of 8 concentric stone rings that converge on a central circular building. The entire diameter of the complex measures 48 metres and covers an area of approximately 1800 square metres.

Within the central structure are four designated zones in which radial walls intersect vertically and form a labyrinthine structure. Zones A and B appear to be have the main concentration of human activity, evidenced by the presence of large amounts of animals bones.

According to the experts, this residential area likely had a truncated cone or vaulted appearance and is the first monument of this type excavated in Crete. It can perhaps be paralleled with the elliptical MM building of the Chamezi Archaeological Site, as well as with the so-called circular proto-Hellenic cyclopean building of Tiryns.

The Minister of Culture, said: “This is a unique and highly significant find. Solutions are in place to ensure the completion of the archaeological research and the protection of the monument.”

Header Image Credit : Greek Ministry of Culture

Sources : Greek Ministry of Culture

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

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