Africa

Ethiopia Feat

Forgotten kingdom: Searching for lost royalty from the days of the Aksumite Empire

In 2015, CWA reported on the discovery by Louise Schofield of the remarkable grave of a young woman she nicknamed ‘Sleeping Beauty’. Now further excavation in in Ethiopia’s Tigray Province has revealed that ‘Beauty’ was not alone – and nearby remains, assumed to be a fort, are looking suspiciously like those of a royal residence. […]

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Neil Faulkner considers the Pyramids and alternative facts

Apparently, we now live in a ‘post-fact’ world. The new American president denounces the truth as ‘fake news’. A leading White House spokesperson rejects the truth in favour of ‘alternative facts’. Veteran Middle East journalist Robert Fisk has argued that there is nothing new here: what is happening is called ‘lying’, and politicians have always […]

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NEWS: The Exotic Libations of Ancient Ghana

Forensic analyses of the hollow cavities inside pre-colonial terracotta figurines from Koma Land, northern Ghana have revealed the exotic contents of libations poured inside them during traditional West African rituals. Researchers from University of Manchester tested the biological contents of a series of terracotta forms which date to the 6th-14th centuries AD. Using swabs and a magnetic extraction […]

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Travel: Tunisia with Mr. Mosaic

Richard Hodges looks at the life and work of renowned conservator Roberto Nardi, en route to the Bardo Museum.   Speaking in Oslo’s City Hall after his election as winner of the EU and Europa Nostra prize for cultural heritage for 2015, Roberto Nardi explained that he was amazed to be paid for doing what […]

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Scanning the Pharaohs

The results of cutting-edge CT imaging on Ramesses III, Hatshepsut, Tutankhamen, and a host of other New Kingdom mummies are revealed in a gripping new book by Zahi Hawass and Sahar Saleem.   Scanning the Pharaohs: CT Imaging of the New Kingdom Royal Mummies is the latest page-turner from Zahi Hawass, former Egyptian minister of […]

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Before Aksum: Excavating Ethiopia’s Earliest Civilisation

In the 1st millennium AD, Ethiopia was home to the great civilisation of Aksum, one of the world’s first Christian kingdoms. But what came before Aksum? A joint Ethiopian-German project near Wuqro in the Tigray highlands is uncovering unprecedented finds and revealing a fascinating picture, as Steven Matthews and Saskia Büchner explain. The mighty civilisation of Aksum, […]

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Richard Hodges travels to… Morocco

At Christmas time, the sky in Morocco appears infinite and unchangingly serene, a natural partner of this expansive landscape. Sheltered by this sky, the Moroccans are gentle and surprisingly calm. Worlds away from the rhythm of the Mediterranean, this north-west corner of Africa, once the ancient Roman province of Mauretania, boasts three great Classical sites, […]

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The mystery of Naukratis

Revealing Egypt’s international port From the late 7th century BC, the Nile Delta port of Naukratis was the world’s gateway to Egypt. Yet, despite early archaeological research at the site, it has languished in the shadows. Who lived there, how did the port operate, and what (sometimes salacious) secrets remained hidden? Alexandra Villing and Ross […]

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Brutal Stone Age Massacre

Evidence for the brutal massacre of a hunter-gatherer group is shattering long-held beliefs that pre-farming societies were essentially peaceful. The remains of more than 27 individuals uncovered at Nataruk, 30km west of Lake Turkana in Kenya, include at least eight women – one in the final stages of pregnancy – and six young children. Radiocarbon […]

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Wonders of Egypt

Ancient World Tours  While, within the last ten years, many important historical sites have become off-limits in countries like Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Libya, people still travel to Egypt. Despite the Arab Spring and subsequent turmoil, archaeologists keep working – often in difficult circumstances. A prime example is the excellent work by the Supreme Council […]

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Learning from Mummies

Prof Rosalie David, University of Manchester & former Director of the KNH Centre for Biomedical Egyptology  Biomedical Egyptology, a multidisciplinary study based on analytical investigation of mummies and associated material, has added a new dimension to the study of Ancient Egypt, bridging the gap between arts and sciences. The University of Manchester (UK) has developed an Ancient […]

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Unlocking Egyptian Secrets

Joyce Tyldesley, Manchester University Egyptology is a relatively new and fast-moving science: it is not yet 200 years since Champollion decoded the hieroglyphic script (1822) and revealed Egypt’s dynastic history. Increasingly, we are able to tie that long history into Egypt’s archaeological remains. The past decade has seen major changes in our understanding of mummification, and in […]

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