The Egyptian foreign ministry handed over “samples stolen in the Cheops pyramid” to the antiquities ministry, said the state news agency MENA.
The fragments had been in Germany before being returned to Egypt. They were handed over to Egyptian authorities at the country’s embassy in Berlin.
Former antiquities minister Mohamed Ibrahim said in December “German researchers, helped by an Egyptian guide had taken samples of stone, as well as fragments of a tablet bearing the name of the Pharaoh Cheops” in the pyramid. The tablet was the only one in the pyramid showing the Pharaoh’s name. Read more.
Archaeologists studying Mayan ruins have taken inspiration from nocturnal bats flying above, using drones to scan the ancient temples from an entirely new viewpoint. The remote-controlled quadcopters have proven so useful, in fact, that researchers have assembled enough footage to create a 3D model of the site hidden deep in the jungle.
Researchers from the University of California San Diego’s Qualcomm Institute coordinated with a team of archaeologists and drone experts to document the Mayan archaeological site of El Zotz in northern Guatemala. Remnants from the pre-Columbian civilization are still largely unexcavated in part because the best way to view the large stone structures in humid, forested jungle is by air. Read more.
Excavators carrying out an archaeological survey on the foothills south of Beit Shemesh recently stumbled upon an impressive finding which sheds light on a previously unknown, prosperous settlement in the region some 1,000 years ago.
The Israeli Antiquities Authority (IAA) said it “uncovered a large and impressive compound dating to the Byzantine period in Ramat Bet Shemesh,” which included near-perfectly preserved artifacts offering a rare glimpse into the daily lives of the ancient inhabitants.
During the survey blocked cisterns, a cave opening and the tops of several walls were fond visible on the surface. The subsequent excavations, funded by the Ministry of Construction and Housing revealed a vast compound surrounded by an outer wall and divided on the inside into two areas: an industrial area and an activity and residential area. Read more.
A team of scientists from Norway, France and China revise the view that the Sahara desert has existed for only the last 2-3million years.
The Sahara is the earth’s largest subtropical desert. During the last decades, multiple scientific studies have probed its geological and archaeological archives seeking to reveal its history. Despite some crucial breakthroughs, there are still basic questions that lack satisfactory answers.
An example being, how old is the Sahara desert? It is believed by many that the Sahara desert first appeared during the last 2 to 3 million years, however, recent discoveries such as ancient sand dunes and dust records in marine cores push the possible onset of Saharan aridity back in time by several million years. Until now, however, there have been no good explanations for such an early Sahara onset. Read more.
This year’s archaeological excavations in the ancient city of Patara, located in the southern province of Antalya’s Kaş, have ended. Among the findings this year were the statuette of the goddess Asteria and a seal owned by the Egyptian king Ptolemares and his wife Arsinoe.
The excavations in the ancient city of Patara, one of the six big cities of the Lycia Union, have been continuing for 26 years. This year 30 academics, five archaeologists, 14 archaeology students and 20 laborers worked for 2.5 months in the ancient city.
In addition to the goddess statuette and the seal, a Lydian coin dating back to 610-570 B.C. and a figurine from 3,000 B.C. were unearthed this year in the area. Read more.
A trove of gold coins, bracelets, buckles and brooches are among the precious treasures retrieved from a 157-year-old shipwreck off the coast of South Carolina.
The “Ship of Gold,” known in its sailing days as the SS Central America, was loaded down with 30,000 lbs. (13,600 kilograms) of gold when a hurricane sent it to the watery depths 160 miles (260 kilometers) from the coast of South Carolina on Sept. 12, 1857. In 1988, the shipwreck site was discovered, and recovery efforts pulled large amounts of gold from the bottom. But only about 5 percent of the site was excavated.
Now, deep-sea exploration company Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc., is re-excavating the site. Divers first pulled up five gold bars and two gold coins from the wreck in April 2014. Now, the recovery ship, the Odyssey Explorer, is benched for repairs, and archaeologists are quite literally counting the booty. Read more.