Connect with us

Archaeology

Groundbreaking study reveals new insights into chosen locations of pyramids’ sites

Published

on

A groundbreaking study, published in the journal Communications Earth & Environment, has revealed why the largest concentration of pyramids in Egypt were built along a narrow desert strip.

Since the beginning of the Pharaonic era, the Nile River has played a fundamental role in the rapid growth and expansion of the Egyptian civilisation.

The Nile provided sustenance and functioned as the primary mode of transportation for goods and building materials, which explains why most of the main cities of the Egyptian civilisation were built in close proximity to the banks of the Nile and its peripheral branches.

Over the centuries, the primary channel of the Nile shifted laterally, causing these peripheral branches to silt up. As a result, population centres were cut off from the vital resources the river provided.

Image Credit : Eman Ghoneim et al

This is apparent with the pyramids along the Western Desert Plateau, where a majority of the pyramids are concentrated along a narrow desert strip several kilometres from the current primary channel of the Nile.

Using a combination of radar satellite imagery, geophysical data, and deep soil coring, the study has investigated the subsurface structure and sedimentology in the Nile Valley adjacent to the pyramid clusters.

This has revealed an extinct branch of the primary channel called the Ahramat Branch, which was connected to the pyramids of the Old and Middle Kingdoms via causeways and their Valley Temples.

According to the study authors: “The Ahramat Branch played a role in the monuments’ construction and was simultaneously active and used as a transportation waterway for workmen and building materials to the pyramids’ sites.”

The eastward migration and abandonment of the Ahramat Branch could be attributed to gradual movement of the river to the lower-lying adjacent floodplain or tilting of the Nile floodplain toward the northeast as a result of tectonic activity, as well as windblown sand incursion due to the branch’s proximity to the Western Desert Plateau.

Header Image Credit : Eman Ghoneim et al

Sources : Ghoneim, E., Ralph, T.J., Onstine, S. et al. The Egyptian pyramid chain was built along the now abandoned Ahramat Nile Branch. Commun Earth Environ 5, 233 (2024). https://doi.org/10.1038/s43247-024-01379-7

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

Continue Reading

Archaeology

Study reveals new insights into life at “German Stonehenge”

Published

on

By

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

Continue Reading

Archaeology

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

Published

on

By

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

Continue Reading

Trending

Generated by Feedzy