Roman altar stones unearthed at
Scottish cricket ground
Roman altar stones dating back almost 2000 years have been found at a cricket pavilion in Musselburgh, East Lothian.
The stones have been described as the most significant find of their kind in the past 100 years.
Renovations were planned at the pavilion but archaeologists had to survey the protected building before work could begin.
Their unearthing of the stones and other artefacts has postponed the planned developments on the pavilion.
George Findlater, senior inspector of ancient monuments at Historic Scotland, said: “The stones have carvings and quite possibly inscriptions which can have a wealth of information on them, a lot of data about the people and their religion at that time.”
At least one of the altars is from the 2nd Century and is dedicated to the Roman God Jupiter.
Councillor Paul McLennan, cabinet member for community wellbeing at East Lothian Council, said: “The discovery of these remains is particularly exciting as it is not often that Roman altar stones are discovered during an archaeological excavation in Scotland.
“This helps with the emerging picture of life in and around the Roman fort at Inveresk during the second century.”
In honor of ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’, which is easily one of the worst films that has even been made, I have compiled a short list of skills that one does not necessarily learn in field school (or school in general) that we see in this “film”.
But wait! There’s more!
Hundreds of rare Roman pots discovered by accident off Italy’s coast by British research ship
A British underwater research team has discovered hundreds of rare Roman pots by accident, while trawling the wreckages of ships on the sea bed.
The team had been using remote operated vehicles (ROVs) to scour modern wrecks for radioactive materials.
They were amazed to come across the remains of a Roman galley which sank off the coast of Italy thousands of years ago.
One of the Roman pots that were found lying on the sea bed off the coast of Italy by a British research team. Experts believe they held oils
The crew from energy company Hallin Marine International, based in Aberdeen, found a number of ancient pots lying in the mud 1,640ft below the waves.
After the first sighting the crew worked around the clock for two days to bring them to the surface without damaging them.
Supervisor Dougie Combe said the team managed to recover five of the 2,000 year-old vessels intact. They cleared debris off them using water jets.
They were then handed over to an archaeology museum in the historic Graeco-Roman city of Paestum, in northern Italy.
Mr Combe, from Speyside, Scotland, said: ‘They would have probably been loaded on some kind of merchant ship which sank all those years ago.’
An underwater research team brought up five pots from the seabed, but said there were hundreds still down there
He added: ‘It was a big surprise when we came across the pots as we were looking for modern wrecks from the last 20 years or so.
‘It’s certainly the oldest thing we’ve come across on the seabed.
‘We managed to get five up altogether, but there must have been hundreds of them there.’
The Mare Oceano was searching for low-grade radioactive material alongside Italian company GeoLab when they made the discovery.
They were trawling off the coast of Capo Palinuro, near Policastro, Italy.
The jars that were found are believed to be ancient Greek or Roman and are thought to date back at least 2,000 years.
Better late than never!
Mummy of a ‘tiny, wide-eyed woman’ discovered in Egyptian oasis
Antiquity: A 3 ft tall intricately carved plaster sarcophagus portraying a wide-eyed woman dressed in a tunic
Egyptian archaeologists discovered an intricately carved plaster sarcophagus portraying a tiny, wide-eyed woman dressed in a tunic in a newly uncovered complex of tombs at a remote desert oasis.
It is the first Roman-style mummy found in Bahariya Oasis some 186 miles southwest of Cairo, said archaeologist Mahmoud Afifi, who led the dig.
The find was part of a cemetery dating back to the Greco-Roman period containing 14 tombs.
‘It is a unique find,’ he said, confirming that initial examinations indicate a mummy is inside the coffin.
The carved plaster sarcophagus is only 3 feet long and shows a woman wearing a long tunic, a headscarf, bracelet and shoes, as well as a beaded necklace.
Coloured stones in the sarcophagus’ eyes gave the appearance she is awake.
Afifi said they had not dated the new find yet, but the burial style indicated she belonged to Egypt’s long period of Roman rule lasting a few hundred years and starting 31BC.
He said his team first thought they had stumbled across a child’s tomb because of its diminutive stature, but the decorations and features indicated it was a woman.
Afifi said it was still unclear who the woman was but said it was most likely she was a wealthy and influential member of her society, judging by the effort taken on the sarcophagus.
Mummies of people of diminutive stature have been unearthed in other parts of Egypt, where they appeared to have importance in local religions at the time, he added.
The archaeologists also found a gold relief showing the four sons of the Egyptian god Horus, other plaster masks of women’s faces, several glass and clay utensils and some metal coins.
The metal coins are being checked to see whether they can date the era of the tomb more precisely.
Afifi said the find suggested the presence of a larger tomb complex, but said humid weather in the area may have destroyed similar sites.
He said none of the other 13 graves were as complete as that of the woman.
Archaeologist Mahmoud Afifi, who led the dig, said the new find had not been dated but the burial style indicated the sarcophagus belonged to Egypt’s long period of Roman rule, from 31BC
Archaeologists work around the intricately carved plaster sarcophagus at the remote Bahariya desert oasis area some 186 miles south-west of Cairo
The find was made after archaeologists had made a series of exploratory digs ahead of a local council plan to build a youth center on the land. The area is known for its relics from the Greco-Roman period.
Bahariya Oasis rocketed to fame a decade ago with the discovery of the ‘Valley of the Golden Mummies,’ a vast cemetery that has yielded up hundreds of mummies, many covered in gold leaf, from the Greco-Roman period.
Those sarcophagi were decorated in a more traditional ancient Egyptian style, rather than the Roman style of the current find.
The discoveries from this period indicate the comparative wealth and prosperity of the oases at the time due to their location on major desert trading routes.
A gold relief representing the four sons of the Egyptian god Horus, in a newly uncovered complex of tombs
A gypsum mask unearthed alongside a sarcophagus recently discovered in Bahariya
Greetings gentle readers! In honor of yet another Greek mythology-themed film that will be coming to a theater near you, here’s a brief look at another popular hero, Theseus, and how he had nothing to do with a looming war between the Olympians and the Titans!
In honor of the new ‘Clash of the Titans’ reboot opening in a theater near you today, here’s a brief look at the mythology of said titans and our good friend Perseus.