LiDAR – or Light Detection And Ranging – is a form of laser-scanning, initially used in meteorology. Over the past decade or so, archaeologists have begun routinely to use the technology, drawn to its ability to capture extraordinarily accurate, high-resolution, 3D data. It works by using light sensors to measure the distance between the sensor […]

Saving Mes Aynak 2 featured

Saving Mes Aynak

Countdown to tragedy Tom St John Gray reviews Brent E Huffman’s award-winning documentary Saving Mes Aynak. Mes Aynak, a spectacular 2,000-year-old Buddhist city south of Kabul, Afghanistan, is facing total destruction. This sprawling 500,000m² complex of monasteries, temples, and hundreds of Buddha statues is hailed as one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of this century. […]

Travel: The petroglyphs of Bangudae, Korea - CWA 63

CWA travels to The Petroglyphs of Bangudae

How often do you visit a rock-art site armed only with binoculars? You do at Bangudae, on South Korea’s east coast, and with good reason, as Brian Fagan discovered on a recent trip to the region.


CWA travels to Mongolia

Anna Faherty goes in search of the wide open spaces and ancient markers of Mongolia’s remote hinterland.


A Tumultuous Decade

Prof Roger Matthews, Near Eastern Archaeology, University of Reading The study of the ancient Near East is inextricably linked with political developments in the modern Middle East. The past ten years have been a disruptive and difficult decade. CWA’s first issue appeared a few months after the US/UK-led invasion of Iraq, with the notorious looting […]


Japan’s Rich Heritage

Simon Kaner, Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures One of the biggest stories of the past decade continues to be our enhanced understanding of one of the greatest technological developments of the ancient world: the invention of pottery (CWA 11 & 38). Calibrated AMS dating on carbonised remains on sherds from […]


Facing the Future

John Sandy, GHF Regional Director for Asia Most of the 12th-century Khmer monuments in Angkor are partial ruins, hidden under dense jungle. Now the Global Heritage Fund, which is promoting its ‘Preservation by Design’, is developing a 3D radar-imaging system to record the unique bas-relief walls and face towers of the Banteay Chhmar Temple in […]


CWA travels to Beijing

Tom St John Gray goes in search of the Great Wall of China and the Forbidden City. With limited Chinese, I boarded a bus at a busy terminal in Beijing. My destination was one of the most celebrated and imposing of World Heritage Sites, the Great Wall. After being warned about the tourist trap of […]


World’s oldest primate skeleton found

A tiny skeleton dating back 55 million years is the oldest primate fossil ever found, shedding new light on human evolution, researchers say. Found in sedimentary rock from ancient lake bed in Hubei Province, central China, the fossil belongs to a previously unknown genus and species, dubbed Archicebus achilles by the international team who identified it. The bones […]

Palm reading

Before rice cultivation became prevalent in China, prehistoric inhabitants of its southern coast probably relied on sago palms as a staple food, according to new research published in PLOS ONE. Previously, little was known of this region’s ancient diet, as its acidic soils and humid climate hinder the preservation of plant remains. Now, however, Xiaoyan […]

Prehistoric food processors

A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has pushed back agriculture in China by 12,000 years. The roots of agriculture are traditionally traced to tools used to grind seeds in the Middle East around 23,000 year ago. Now research led by Li Liu, Stanford University’s professor of Chinese archaeology, has […]

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