Damnatio Memoriae: The damnation of memory. An act that occurs throughout history over multiple rulers and other icons and temples. 

A history lesson on the damnatio memoria of Ancient Egypt’s Female Pharaoh, Hatshepsut by Kate Narev.

The pharaoh that wouldn’t be forgotten by Kate Narev- source ed.ted.com

Hatshepsut was a female pharaoh during the New Kingdom in Egypt. Twenty years after her death, somebody smashed her statues, took a chisel and attempted to erase the pharaoh’s name and image from history. But who did it? And why? Kate Narev investigates Hatshepsut’s history for clues to this ancient puzzle.



Honduras team unearths ceramics at “White City”

Source – phys.org  
This Feb. 21, 2015 handout photo provided by Benenson Productions, shows a very unusual stone, flat on top and bottom, which was wedged shaped, and with a white raised “arrow” carved into it, running above and apparently also below the bottom of the stone, in the jungle-covered Mosquito coastal region of Honduras. U.S. and Honduran archaeologists have begun excavations on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, at the mysterious site on Honduras’ Caribbean coast that may be the near-mythical “White City” ruins, also known as the “City of the Monkey God.” The dig is being carried out by archaeologists from Honduras’ Institute of Anthropology and Colorado State University. (Bill Benenson/Benenson Productions via AP)

Honduran officials said Friday that archaeologists have begun excavations at a mysterious site on Honduras’ Caribbean coast that may be the long-rumored “White City” ruins. Officials said excavation that began Wednesday have so far unearthed about five dozen stone and ceramic fragments and other artifacts.

Also known as the “City of the Monkey God,” the site is located in Honduras’ jungle-covered Mosquito coastal region.
The dig is being carried out by archaeologists from Honduras’ Institute of Anthropology and Colorado State University. Institute Director Virgilio Paredes said the site did not appear to be Mayan, the culture that dominated other sites in the region. “It is a new culture, or a different culture,” Paredes said. He said that jars and bowls had been discovered that bore decorations that appeared to represent humans, jaguars, buzzards, lizards and birds. The pieces appear to date to between 1,000 and 1,500 AD, Paredes said.

The most striking piece discovered appears to be a ceremonial seat or throne made of stone, carved with the figure of a jaguar. The city’s name is believed to be derived from the white limestone rock in the area, or a cult purported dedicated to a monkey god.
Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez visited the site and said in a statement “We are blessed to be alive at such a special time in Honduran history.” “This discovery has created a lot of excitement because of its significance for Honduras and the world,” Hernandez said. Honduras’ Minister of Science, Ramon Espinoza, said “there will be further research to gather more data, because there is no other site in central America with a lost civilization.”

The area is inhabited by the Pech and Payas indigenous groups, who long spoke of such a site. The first written reference came in 1544, in a document written by Spanish Bishop Cristobal de Pedraza. U.S. adventurer Theodore Morde claimed to have discovered “The Lost City of the Monkey God” in 1940, but didn’t reveal the location.

The rumored site had supposedly been located and lost between the 1500s and the 1800s. Researchers detected the current excavation site in 2012.

Archaeologists Begin Excavation of Honduran “Lost City”

Nearly a year after discovering mysterious artifacts, a new expedition seeks clues to the identity of the civilization that made them.

By Mark Strauss PUBLISHED JANUARY 12, 2016 – Source: News.NationalGeographic.com



Archaeologists believe that the remote Mosquitia region in eastern Honduras harbors not one, but many “lost cities.”    PHOTOGRAPH BY DAVE YODER, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE


For a century, explorers and prospectors in Honduras told tales of the white ramparts of a lost city glimpsed above jungle foliage. Indigenous stories speak of a “white house” where Indians took refuge from Spanish conquistadores.

While the notion of a fabulous White City or a “Lost City of the Monkey God” buried in the jungle remains the stuff of legend, Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez paid a visit Tuesday to a real and recently discovered lost city—complete with earthen pyramids, plazas, and a cache of stone artifacts—to participate in the excavation of the first artifact from the cache.


Archaeologists announced the discovery of the ancient community in the remote Mosquitia region in eastern Honduras last March. The stone objects, including an effigy of a “were-jaguar,” were left untouched under military protection until a second expedition could be mounted to return to conduct a carefully managed excavation. The archaeological team, led by Christopher Fisher of Colorado State University and supported by the Honduran government and a grant from the National Geographic Society, will spend a month recovering the artifacts.


“We’re hoping to find out what culture was here,” says Virgilio Paredes, Director of the Honduran Institute for Anthropology and History, who is accompanying President Hernandez to the site.


At the end of the month, says Paredes, the team of investigators will begin developing a “strategic plan” to widen their search. The site visited by the initial expedition last March is just one of three in the region revealed by an aerial survey in 2012 using an imaging technique called lidar. In fact, the archaeologists believe that La Mosquitia harbors not one, but many “lost cities,” which taken together represent something far more important—a lost civilization.

Tomb of Queen Khentakawess III discovered in Egypt

Tomb of Queen Khentakawess III discovered in Egypt -source: redorbit.com
A team of Czech archaeologists have discovered the tomb of a previously unknown Egyptian queen in the Pharaoh Neferefre’s funeral complex at Abu-Sir, a necropolis southwest of Cairo that’s home to several pyramids dedicated to pharaohs from the Fifth Dynasty.
According to BBC News and AFP reports, the queen’s name, Khentakawess (also spelled Khentkaus) was discovered on a wall in the necropolis. This would make her Khentakawess III, Egyptian Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty said, and it is believed she was Neferefre’s wife and the mother of Pharoah Menkahur.
Pharaoh Neferefre ruled 4,500 years ago, and his wife’s name had not previously been known, al-Damaty told reporters. Based on the location of the tomb, it is believed that Khentakawess III was probably his spouse, noted Miroslav Barta of the Czech Institute of Egyptology.

Discovery could shed new light on the Fifth Dynasty
Barta’s team also discovered approximately 30 utensils, including two dozen made out of copper and limestone. Officials at the antiquities ministry said the tomb had been dated to the middle of the Fifth Dynasty, which lasted from 2994 BC to 2345 BC, the AFP noted.
The discovery “will help us shed light on certain unknown aspects of the Fifth Dynasty, which along with the Fourth Dynasty, witnessed the construction of the first pyramids,” el-Damaty said, adding that this marked the “first time we have discovered the name of this queen who had been unknown before the discovery of her tomb.”
“The unearthed tomb is a part of a small cemetery to the south east of the pyramid complex of King Neferefre (Raneferef) which led the team to think that Queen Khentkaus could be the wife of Neferefre hence she was buried close to his funerary complex,” Barta told the Luxor Times.
“The tomb is very similar to the rest of the burial in the cemetery which was unearthed by the Czech mission in the ’90s,” added Giza Antiquities director Kamal Wahid. “The upper part is a mastaba [a rectangular tomb with sloping sides and a flat roof] and a small offerings chapel and the burial chamber in the lower part which is reached through a shaft.”

Read more at http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1113411919/tomb-of-queen-khentakawess-iii-discovered-in-egypt-010816/#h7Dd7Qo80RDgBmVP.99

Sir Mortimer Wheeler’s Mohenjo-daro excavation photos of 1950

Sir Mortimer Wheeler’s personal excavation photos Mohenjo-daro in 1950. -source Harappa.com
A hitherto unknown box of 63 images in Sir Mortimer Wheeler’s personal collection from excavations he led at Mohenjo-daro in 1950. With new captions by Jonathan Mark Kenoyer. Restored with diagrams, maps, the original caption sheets found with the images and ancillary material from Wheeler’s published works.
Table of Contents

ACC Citadel Gateway Southeast

Aerial View


Museum Campus

REM Granary

Stupa Area

Areas not known

Numbered List found with photographs

Additional Images from Wheeler’s The Indus Civilization (1963).

To view all 63 images, click on link below title of post. 



The cave of Tuc Audoubert was discovered by the three sons of Count Henri three Bégouën on 20 July and 10 October 1912.
Modeled out of clay from the walls of the cave, the bisons stand next to each, propped up against a small boulder in the darkness. Although they stand at a diminutive 18 inches tall by 24 inches long, their craftsmanship and durability is remarkable. Until they were discovered in the early 20th century, the bison stood alone in the damp French cave for thousands of years.
 The marks of the artist’s hand and the tools used to draw the details of the face and mane are still clearly visible. Objects such as these clearly show that man was using clay for artistic expression long before the actual firing of clay was discovered. The walls of these caves also are covered with drawings of bison and other game animals, marked in carbon from the fires, as well as the earth minerals such as iron oxide and manganese, showing that these ceramic coloring materials that we still use today were known to our earliest ancestors.
The bisons’ shaggy mane and beard appear to be carved with a tool, but the jaws are traced by the sculptor’s fingernail. The impression given is one of immense naturalistic beauty. The female bison is ready to mate, while the Bull is sniffing the air. Both animals are supported by a central rock, and are unbelievably well preserved (proving perhaps that there was never a passage connecting the Tuc d’Audoubert cave with the Trois Freres), although they have suffered some drying out, which has caused some cracks to appear across their bodies. Also in the chamber are two other bison figures, both engraved on the ground. Prehistorians have theorized that the a small group of people (including a child) remained in the Tuc d’Audoubert cave with the sole reason of participating in certain ceremonies associated with the cave art. The remote location of the clay bison – beneath a low ceiling at the very end of the upper gallery, roughly 650 metres from the entrance, is consistent with their involvement in some type of ritualistic or shamanistic process.

Otzi the Iceman

Otzi the Iceman’s Ancient Tattoos




Perhaps the most famous tattooed ancient man is Ötzi the Iceman, who died high in the Italian Alps more than 5,000 years ago. Ötzi’s clothing, tools, and weapons are a remarkable window into the life of a herder or perhaps a chieftain in Copper Age Europe. But it is Ötzi’s body itself, almost perfectly preserved by the snow and ice that covered him shortly after his death, that provides unique evidence of early medicine. Ötzi is covered with more than 50 tattoos in the form of lines and crosses made up of small incisions in his skin into which charcoal was rubbed. Because they are all found on parts of the body that show evidence of a lifetime of wear and tear—the ankles, wrists, knees, Achilles tendon, and lower back, for example—it’s thought that Ötzi’s tattoos were therapeutic, not decorative or symbolic. When Ötzi was first studied, archaeologists were shocked because they had never before seen Copper Age tattoos, and because acupuncture as a treatment for joint distress, rheumatism, and arthritis was thought to have originated in Asia more than 2,000 years later.



Otzi the Iceman Carried Ulcer-Causing Bacteria

BOLZANO, ITALY—Paleopathologist Albert Zink and microbiologist Frank Maixner of the European Academy in Bozen/Bolzano have identified the presence of Helicobacter pylori in the stomach contents of Ötzi, the frozen human remains discovered in the Alps in 1991. As many as half of people today are infected with Helicobacter pylori, which can cause gastritis or stomach ulcers. Ötzi’s stomach mucosa is no longer present, so scientists did not expect to be able to recover any traces of the bacterium. “We were able to solve the problem once we hit upon the idea of extracting the entire DNA of the stomach contents. After this was successfully done, we were able to tease out the individual Helicobacter sequences and reconstruct a 5,300-year-old Helicobacter pylori genome,” Maixner explained in a press release. And Ötzi’s immune system had reacted to the potentially virulent strain of bacteria. “We showed the presence of marker proteins which we see today in patients infected with Helicobacter,” Maixner addedThe genetic makeup of the bacteria has raised more questions, however, and further research is being planned. The study of bacteria living inside the human body may eventually be able to help us understand how humans developed.


Traces of ancient life at Hatay Archaeology Museum

Traces of ancient life at Hatay Archaeology Museumn_93382_1

The Hatay Archaeology Museum, which opened in its new location nearly a year ago, takes its visitors on a journey with its interesting atmosphere and avant-garde technological systems.

One of the world’s largest museums, the Hatay Archaeology Museum is home to a total of 36,858 artworks, including 18,818 archaeological pieces, 989 ethnographical pieces, 15,044 coins, 1,509 seals, 423 tablets, two archive documents and 73 codices.

On a land of 56,000 square meters on the Antakya-Reyhanlı highway in southern Hatay province, the museum itself covers an area of 33,000 square meters. The museum’s first stage is currently open to guests, while the second stage is still under construction.

The museum’s display area follows a chronological order. Mythological events begin with a display of the Üçağızlı Inn before the Christian era features scenes from daily and natural life …

Bronze Age Citadel Discovered in Northern Israel

Bronze Age Citadel Discoveredin Northern IsraelIsrael-Canaanite-fortress

NAHARIYA, ISRAEL—A 3,400-year-old Canaanite fortress that had been destroyed at least four times by fire has been discovered at a construction site in northern Israel. The Bronze Age citadel contained ceramic figurines in human and animal forms, bronze weapons, and imported pottery. The artifacts indicate that there had been trade ties with Cyprus and the rest of the Mediterranean basin, Israel Antiquities Authority archaeologists Nimrod Getzov, Yair Amitsur, and Ron Be’eri told Haaretz. The fires also preserved remains of cereals, legumes, and grape seeds. Other Canaanite sites have yielded vessels bearing wine residues, but it is not clear if these grape seeds were left behind by wine makers. The site will be incorporated into the basement of the new residential structure. To read in-depth about another excavation in northern Israel, go to “Excavating Tel Kedesh.”