Sunday, January 9, 2011

"Prehistoric" Finds in Northwestern Sudan

From polishmarket.com.pl
Polish archaeologists score another success
2011-01-07

Rock engravings, ancient burial sites and several dozen terracotta figurines were discovered by a group of Polish archaeologists in the north-eastern part of Sudan by the Red Sea, “Rzeczpospolita” reports.

The research was carried out by scientists from the Archaeology and Ethnology Institute of the Polish Academy of Science, Poznan branch.

Prehistoric settlement has never been researched in north-western Sudan, “Rzeczpospolita” notes. The first rock engravings were accidentally discovered by Krzysztof Pluskota in 1999. An expedition led by Doctor Przemys┼éaw Bobrowski has been researching the area. “During the December expedition we discovered lots of rock engravings. Most of them depict cattle but there are also portraits of people and African animals” says Prof. Michal Kobusiewicz, member of the team. “The engravings were concentrated around a solitary phallus-shaped mountain, which suggests that they were connected with fertility rites” Kobusiewicz adds.

According to archaeologists, the mountain was a symbol of fertility cult, which is supposedly proved by its miniature copies made in sandstone found near the engravings. The theory about the cult character of the site may be proved by the discovery of several dozen terracotta figurines of people and the miniature sandstone phallus-shaped mountains. Numerous traces of prehistoric settlement were also discovered near the engravings.

Archaeologists say that the age of the engravings is likely to be determined by radiocarbon dating method and geomorphic research. Research will be continued in 2011, “Rzeczpospolita” reports.

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