Author: Current World Archaeology

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Aphrodite at Amantia

High on a hilltop near the village of Ploçe, Albania, lie the ruins of the ancient polis of Amantia. The city was founded in the 5th century BC and is first mentioned in ancient sources around the middle of the 4th century. It experienced an economic and cultural boom during the Hellenistic period, and from 230 BC started to mint its own coins.

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Secrets of Saqqara

Discover how a chance detail on a 19th-century map set in train a longstanding archaeological expedition at this elite necropolis, which is providing a fresh appreciation of how ancient Egyptians interacted with their past.

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CWA 103 – now on sale

The Ancient Egyptian cemetery at Saqqara received burials for thousands of years. One consequence of this is a remarkable concentration of funerary monuments, including Pharaoh Djoser’s magnificent step pyramid, and an array of impressive tombs. A connection between one of these edifices and objects in the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden, sparked a long-running fieldwork programme, […]

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Travel: Through the Iron Gates

Oliver Gilkes tours the Danube, in the first of a two-part exploration of Serbia’s archaeology. The mighty Danube runs for almost 2,000km from southern Germany to the Black Sea. It forms the backbone of central-southern Europe and was for millennia not only a trade and communications artery, but also a frontier and barrier. Last year, […]

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Richard Hodges: A New Year’s Day Hike

No matter how many years I have spent in the Mediterranean in wintertime, I cannot get it into my head that it rains a lot. This New Year in western Crete the rain was biblical save for one magical sunlit day. Chania, in western Crete, seemed to be the vengeful target of black brooding skies […]

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Braving Armageddon

Behind the scenes of a great excavation It is an open secret that archaeological expeditions are not always entirely harmonious operations, but does understanding a digging team aid appreciation of the archaeology they uncovered? Eric H Cline guides Matthew Symonds through the highs and lows of the remarkable 1920s and 1930s excavations at Megiddo. There […]

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Plain of Jars

Clusters of massive stone jars in Laos have inspired considerable curiosity. Little is known about the people who fashioned them, while even the date they were created has not been conclusively resolved. What does new research reveal about these mysterious megaliths?

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CWA 102

The megalithic jars of Laos have been entrancing visitors since the 19th century. These remarkable stone receptacles can occur individually, or in groups running to several hundred. While the most-famous set was arranged on a plain, most jars can be found perched on ridges and hills, with some still shrouded by forest. All the signs […]

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Richard Hodges: Lascaux IV

It is a country of enchantment which poets have staked out and which they alone may lay claim to. It is nearest thing to Paradise this side of Greece… I believe that the Cro-Magnon man settled here because he was extremely intelligent and had a highly developed sense of beauty. Henry Miller, The Colossus of […]

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Into the daylight: a new rock art discovery

Portugal’s Côa Valley contains Europe’s greatest collection of open-air Ice Age images. Across 17km, there are currently more than 530 known panels bearing several thousand figures. A major new discovery there is of particular importance, as Thierry Aubry, António Fernando Barbosa, Luís Luís, André Santos, and Marcelo Silvestre explain. The discovery of paintings in the […]

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Tambo Viejo

Excavating remarkable Inca rituals After the Acari Valley was absorbed by the Inca Empire, Tambo Viejo was founded to oversee its inhabitants. This imperial imposition seemingly resembled many others in the region, but excavation has exposed architectural and ritual oddities. Lidio M Valdez reveals what makes the site unique. The fully fledged Inca Empire controlled […]

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