According to Ancient Egyptian mythology, the world was created at Heliopolis. This significance was reflected in a temple complex that boasted the largest enclosure known in Egypt. Today, acts of creation at the site mostly concern new buildings springing up in the Cairo suburbs, while rescue excavations tease out traces of the temple before they are lost. Our cover feature examines exciting recent discoveries that expose how pharaohs expressed their power and ambitions at Heliopolis.

The 8th-century settlement at Ribe, Denmark, was singularly lacking in the ostentatious displays of power traditionally found in towns. Despite the absence of great public buildings or imposing defences, the community that developed at Ribe still left a lasting mark: advances in writing and crafts, coupled with expanding trade links, heralded the dawn of the Viking period.

An absence of obvious public buildings where the Roman town of Interamna Lirenas once stood in Italy raised questions about whether it had truly ever held this urban status. Now ground-penetrating radar (GPR) survey of the site, and another town at Falerii Novi, has revealed startlingly clear images of the ruins buried within the soil, and put the claim of Interamna Lirenas to be a town beyond doubt.

New technology is also digitally restoring the faded traces of Chilean rock art to their former glory. Software originally designed for NASA is allowing the images that once accompanied the change from a hunter-gatherer to a farming lifestyle to be appreciated once more.

In our travel section, Richard Hodges is drawn to Kefalonia by the possibility that a rare type of Byzantine site crowns one of its hilltops, while in Mexico the ancient Maya towns around Mérida offer travellers plenty of opportunities to explore spectacular ruins.

Finally, CWA celebrates its 15th anniversary with this issue. You’ll find a few nods to this milestone within.

FEATURES

A northern emporium Unearthing the beginning of the Viking Age in Ribe

Hidden histories of Roman towns Seeing beneath the surface of Falerii Novi and Interamna Lirenas

Heliopolis Rescuing Ancient Egypt’s temple of the sun

Spotlight: Rock art in a changing world Understanding the San Pedro Viejo de Pichasca rock shelter

NEWS

  • Power and pilgrimage at Pachacamac
  • Corinthian helmet discovered beyond the Black Sea
  • Hunting with Neumark-Nord’s Neanderthals
  • American Civil War soldiers found in field-hospital pit
  • Inside Ötzi’s toolkit
  • No hidden chambers in Tutankhamun’s tomb
  • Lady Xia’s gibbon identified
  • Dragon designs

NEWS FOCUS
The latest excavations at Pompeii

CHARLES HIGHAM
News on the Neanderthals

HORIZON
Conserving the world’s oldest bridge in ancient Sumeria

TRAVEL

GREECE: Richard Hodges revisits Byzantine Kefalonia

MEXICO: Heading off the beaten track in Maya Yucatán

CULTURE

MUSEUM
Cantabria’s Museum of Prehistory and Archaeology

REVIEWS
The Donkey in Human History; The Science of Roman History; Infancy and Earliest Childhood in the Roman World; Rock Art and the Wild Mind; Scribbling through History

SPECIAL REPORT
Ancient art and modern values

CHRIS CATLING
New insights into ancient islands and bog-body myths

CWA PHOTO OF THE YEAR 2019
Find out how to enter as we announce this year’s competition

FORUM
Letters, crossword, cartoon

THINKING ALOUD
Are we entering a new Dark Age?

OBJECT LESSON
The Trojan horse in ancient art

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