January 8, 2011

Archaeonews: South Iran and South China Neolithic findings, London's oldest artificial structure

Some interesting snippets from Stone Pages' Archaeo News section:

Southern Iran's findings from 5000 years ago

Teheran Times reports the finding of a a site related to Jiroft culture.

The site, Kajeh Askar, near Bam (Kerman province) was discovered during emergency digs because of a road construction. Part of the site was damaged while excavating. 

Among the findings are pottery and two burials, one in fetal position and another in extended face up position.  These bodies had been interred with diverse artifacts, including a seashell apparently used to store cosmetics. 

New Neolithic culture from Jiangxi, China

A new Neolithic culture has been named in South China as Terracotta and Painted Pottery Culture. The site is known as Lahodun and is near Gaohu (Jiangxi). 

The finding includes stone walls and tools (hatchets, adzes, ploughs) as well as pottery and are preliminarily dated to c. 6000 years ago. Archaeologists also report a large sacrificial table made of high purity yellow clay (3000 m², up to 80 cm thick), 114 so-called sacrificial tombs and a structure made of red scorched earth.

London's top secret

The nickname comes because the newly found wooden structure is right in front of the headquarters of the infamous British secret service MI6. The archaeologists even had some trouble when the wannabe James Bonds suspected that they were planning some sort of attack.

Fortunately the dig and topographical measures could proceed normally after the misunderstanding, revealing a wooden structure, which is neither straight nor round but could well have served to support a platform on what was then a small island within the Thames river. 

The site is dated to c. 7000 years ago, in the Epipaleolithic period and is the oldest known structure in the English capital.

As always you can discuss these news and more at Archaeo Forums.

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