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January 2010 V 27 N 1

A monthly archaeological news journal keeping you in touch with the latest
finds in the Middle East and reviewing the great discoveries of the past.
The annual
The Archaeological Diggings Middle East Tour for 2010 departs on
April 13, 2010. The tour will include Egypt, Jordan, and Israel. Travel in
air-conditioned coaches and stay in first class hotels. The price includes
internal flights and return airfares with Singapore Airlines. Breakfast and
dinner at the hotel are also included each day.

King Tut’s tomb & treasures
Pyramids of Giza and Saqqara
Luxor Temple & Karnak Temple
The Valley of the Kings
Abu Simbel
Hatshepsut’s Mortuary Temple
The crocodile temple Kom Ombo
Abydos, Aswan & more!
Petra and the high place of sacrifice
Temple of El Khazneh
Jerash, a great city of the Decapolis
We ar a 9 Sea of Galilee, Tiberias, Capernaum
n in g Ancient boat from the time of Jesus
plan of Turkey
ur Bethlehem, Nazareth, & Megiddo
day to w our Middlet
to fo ll o ontac Walk the streets of Jerusalem
our. C
East T for more Wade through Hezekiah’s water tunnel
us . Swim in the Dead Sea
details The Fortress of Masada
Caesarea, Tiberius & more!

You also have the option of working on a dig

at our own dig site at Mareshah in Israel
Free tour brochure with full itinerary available now!
Write to us at: PO Box 196, Morisset NSW 2264
Free-call: 1800 240 543
or download the brochure at January 2010 


Published monthly by David Down

ABN 92 953 993 857
Editor-In-Chief David Down
Editorial Team Michael Browning

Carie Browning CONTENTS
Contributors David Down 2 Middle East Tour Information
Michael Browning
Carie Browning 4 Digging at the Western Wall
Marie Carter 5 Another Augustus Statue
Kendall Down 7 Alexandria Before Alexander
Daryn Graham 8 Tomb Fractures
SUBSCRIPTIONS 11 Hawass Ultimatum Pays Off
Australia AU$29.90 12 Hidden Treasure
Diggings Magazine 13 Assyrian Palace in Turkey
PO Box 196 14 Japanese Excavate in Egypt
Morisset, NSW 2264 16 Mummy Mania Revived
Free-call 1800 240 543
or +61 2 4013 4676 18 Persian Army Found At Last
19 Palace at Tel Kabri
New Zealand NZ$38.00 21 Another Saqqara Tunnel
Diggings Magazine
PO Box 82214 22 Tut’s Tomb to be Renovated
Highland Park, Auckland 2143 24 Cleopatra Premier in Philadelphia
United Kingdom £16 26 Diggings Shirts and Caps
Diggings Magazine 28 Classic Diggings Polo Sale
66 Ffordd Pennant 29 DVDs
Gallt Melyd, Denbighshire 30 Subscription Information
LL19 8PE 31 Club News
USA and Canada US$32.00 31 Newsflashes from
Diggings Magazine Archaeological Diggings
PO Box 738
Middletown CA 95461 USA Back Cover: Egypt & Jordan Tour
Toll-Free 888-573-8035 Information
All other countries AU$51.00 Front Cover: A replica of the Anubite
Diggings Magazine guardian found in the tomb of Tutankhamun.
PO Box 196 Tut’s tomb in the Valley of the Kings is to
Morisset, NSW 2264 Australia undergo substantial renovation in the
Ph: +61 2 4013 4676 next few years and will be closed until
For all enquiries please phone completed. Until then, the replica in the
Pharaonic Village is as close to the real
1800 240 543 thing that visitors to Egypt will get. Photo
© M Browning
 January 2010

Digging at the The platform that supported the

temple was left intact, so the wall
Western Wall supporting the platform on the western
side remained. This wall, being all that
The Western Wall in Jerusalem is remained of the temple, became the
one of the most politically sensitive most sacred site in the world for Jewish
spots in the world. A new Israeli plan worshipers.
will make it even more sensitive. This When Israel attained its
could lead to Arab Israeli confrontation independence as a nation in 1948,
on a grand scale. Jerusalem was divided in two, and the
When Jesus preached in the temple Western Wall was within the Jordanian
of Jerusalem it was a temple that had border. Jews were denied access to it
been rebuilt by Herod the Great. It and Arab houses were built to within a
was a magnificent structure. Even few metres of the wall.
his disciples came to Jesus to invite In 1967 the Six Day War erupted
him to admire the beautiful stones and Israel occupied the whole of
that belonged to the temple (Matthew Jerusalem. One of Israel’s first acts was
24:1). to demolish the Arab houses opposite
However, Jesus warned that there the Wall and create an open space for
would not be one stone left on another, worshipers and visitors. Women were
and that happened in 70 AD when denied access to most of the wall but a
the Roman General Titus conquered small section was allocated for female
Jerusalem, and his soldiers set fire to the worshipers.
temple and toppled all of its stones. But the present level of the open
The Western Wall in Jerusalem. There are plans to excavate the plaza in front of the
wall. It will become a platform beneath which visitors can see the lowest parts of the
wall. Photo © M Browning January 2010 
area is well above the level of the days the Western Wall to the area at present
of Jesus. In 1995 our Archaeological occupied by the Dome of the Rock.
Diggings tour group was invited by This of course would be very
the Israel Antiquities Authority to desirable for Israeli archaeologists
participate in a dig alongside the wall because it would give them access to
just south of the area allocated to the foundation area of the temple which
worshipers today. This area was below King Solomon built. The Israelis deny
the level of the present plaza. that they have any such intention, but
In the enclosed area just north of it is this possibility that could cause
the present plaza Orthodox Jews gather further friction in the area.
to read from the scriptures and pray —DKD
audibly. In this area there are some
deep shafts descending anything down
to ten metres to the foundations of
the wall. This may suggest that there Augustus Statue
could be occupational debris down to
this depth. Caesar Augustus was the emperor
No doubt the Israelis want to of Rome for a long time, 23 BC to 14
dig down to this level. It is then AD. It was he who issued a decree that
their intention to replace the present all the world should be enrolled, and
ground level with a platform on which that decree brought Joseph and Mary
worshipers can stand. The immediate to Bethlehem where Jesus was born
Arab reaction was apprehension that (Luke 2:1).
the excavations would extend under Many statues of Augustus have been
The Dome of the Rock. The Western Wall supports the platform on which the Dome
of the Rock stands. This was the site where the temple of Solomon once stood.
Photo © M Browning
 January 2010

Bust of Augustus in the Capitoline Museum, Rome January 2010 
found in different parts of the empire. hands. The life size head of the horse
Recently German archaeologists found was gilded with gold. In 9AD German
segments of a statue of Augustus in a troops ambushed and wiped out three
stream near Giessen. Roman legions, obliging the Roman
Not much of the statue of Augustus army to withdraw. These retreating
himself was been found, but the troops may have been responsible for
head of the bronze horse on which smashing the statue.
he was riding has come to light. The —DKD
archaeologists call it a sensational
find, and claim that “There has Alexandria Before
never been a find of such quality and
preservation in Germany.” The stream Alexander
in which the statue was found was
once in the Roman outpost Germania Alexandria today is the second
Magna. Some 20,000 artefacts have largest city in Egypt. It was thought to
been discovered in this area in recent have been called Alexandria because it
years. was founded by Alexander the Great
Obviously the statue has been who founded and named a number of
deliberately smashed, but rather than cities after himself. Now new evidence
attributing this act of vandalism to an is emerging that this city existed before
enemy of Rome, the archaeologists Alexander arrived and that he simply
suspect that it was smashed by the developed the city.
retreating Roman forces who did not Over the past few years scientists
want the statue to fall into German have found pieces of broken pottery
The Alexandria Harbour, famous for the ancient lighthouse that once stood on
the foreshore. Although Alexander the Great named the city after himself, there is
evidence to suggest that a city was there long before his arrival.
 January 2010
that they have dated to centuries before
Alexander arrived. They also found
traces of lead which they have dated Fractures
to earlier centuries.
It would indeed be surprising if The tombs in the Valley of the Kings
there had not been people living there in Egypt are awesome. They extend
before Alexander’s arrival in 331 BC. anything up to one hundred metres into
This is the only practical harbour along the side of the valley. The amount of
Egypt’s Mediterranean coast. Small manual work involved in cutting these
ships could have sailed up the Nile to tombs is daunting. Dumping the rock
cities along the banks of the river, but chips and debris in itself would have
obviously a sheltered harbour such as been a difficult task.
exists at Alexandria would have been One question that has recently been
an attraction to sailors in antiquity. addressed by archaeologists is how the
Alexandria also became a great original creators of these tombs decided
city because of the famous lighthouse where to cut them. There seems to be
that was erected on the foreshore, and no uniformity of choice. Some are
the huge library that accumulated more at ground level, some are higher up.
manuscripts than any other city of the Some are close together and some are
world at that time. The Alexandria far apart. So what governed the choice
Lighthouse was recognised as one about where to dig?
of the seven wonders of the ancient Katarin A Parizek, instructor in
world. digital photography in the department
—DKD of integrative arts, claims she has found
The Valley of the Kings in Luxor. Many of the tombs here have been cut into the valley
walls. It has now been suggested that some of these tombs have been cut where
geological faults existed which made cutting the rock easier. Photo © M Browning

Tombs were cut in unusual places

and then covered over in the hope
the grave robbers would not be able
to find them but very few of them
escaped the ravages of the tomb
robbers. Photo © M Browning
10 January 2010
a partial answer. She has examined from the surface can seep down into
thirty three of the tombs in the valley the tombs and this has caused enormous
and has concluded that thirty of them damage to the wall and ceiling paintings
were cut into the valley wall where there in the tombs.
was a geological fault line. The rock Luxor can go without rain for six or
being looser in such fractures would seven years but when it does rain there
mean easier working for the men who is a deluge and this would have filled
chiselled the shafts of the tombs. That the tombs that had been chiselled along
was clever thinking on the part of the fracture lines.
Egyptian planners. What worries Katarin (pictured
Unfortunately the idea was not so below) is the possibility that there
good in the long term because water are still more tombs in the valley

Photo © Katarin Parizek, Penn State 2009 January 2010 11
waiting to be discovered, and in the Egypt, claimed that they had been
mean time water may be pouring into illegally taken out of Egypt and should
them, irreparably damaging the tomb be returned.
paintings. Initially the Louvre refused the
That is not very likely. All the demand, so Egypt suspended the
kings of dynasty 18 and 19 are known Louvre’s excavations in the Saqqara
to archaeologists and all their tombs necropolis and cancelled a lecture due to
have been found. True, KV63 opposite be given in Egypt by Christiane Ziegler,
Tutankhamun’s tomb was discovered a former curator of the Louvre.
recently, but that turned out to be a store The incident sets an interesting
room rather than a royal tomb. precedent. Many antiquities were
—DKD taken out of Egypt during the period of
Ottoman occupation. It could probably
Hawass Ultimatum be claimed that the existing government
had sold them, or given permission for
Pays Off them to be taken out of Egypt.
Obelisks were taken to France,
Twenty years ago some thieves England and America. It is not likely
chiselled four coloured reliefs from Egypt will demand their return. But the
the wall of the tomb of the noble Rosetta Stone was forcefully acquired
Tetaki in the Valley of the Kings in by war. A French army officer found
Luxor. They sold them to the Louvre it at Rashid, a town now referred to as
Museum in Paris. Recently Dr Zahi Rosetta, then the British took it from
Hawass, Director of Antiquities in the French.
A sphinx of Amenemhet in the Louvre Museum in Paris. After Zahi Hawass’
successful demand for the return of stolen reliefs, many museums may have cause
for concern regarding their Egyptian antiquities collections. Photo © Arch. Diggings
12 January 2010
But there could be even wider He quickly found that the stone was
implications. Museums all over the not the only odd one in the area. He
world contain items from Greece, spotted others nearby. Excited, the two
Italy, Turkey and Iraq. There could be told their father Charles Le Quesne,
no stopping place. Museums could be who just happens to be a professional
emptied of their exhibits. Time will tell archaeologist, about their find and he
on how aggressive Egypt becomes in went with snorkel in hand to investigate
its demands. his children’s discovery.
—DKD Sure enough, there they were
– columns 90cm (3 feet) in diameter
Hidden that once formed part of an ancient
Greek or Roman temple that had
Treasure remained untouched for thousands
of years. Charles recalls that his vast
Recently, Michael Le Quesne, a 16 archaeological experience meant that
year old on a holiday in Montenegro, he knew exactly what his family had
was swimming just off-shore with his 10 found, “I’ve been dragged around a lot
year old sister Teodora, when he spotted of ancient ruins, so if it hadn’t been for
a stone on the sea bed that looked a bit that I wouldn’t have looked twice.” As
out of place because it appeared to have for the temple itself, Charles believes
once been fashioned by human hands. it once stood in an important coastal
Intrigued, he went in for a closer look. trading post town. “The area was an January 2010 13
important, ancient trading route, so it coastline to divers. Unfortunately, since
may have been a port,” he says. As to Yugoslavia’s collapse in the 1990’s,
how the columns got there, it appears there are now many instances where
that they were thrown into the water such sites are pillaged by looters who
by an earthquake, where they have pass on the relics for a quick profit
remained to this day. before any archaeologist is able to
This type of discovery is actually arrive on the scene. Even crime gangs
becoming more and more common in the region take part in this free-for-
along Montenegro’s coast, where many all under the waters. Let’s hope that as
undocumented ancient ruins are dotted. more discoveries like these come to
As for this one, Charles will soon begin light there will be more archaeologists
excavation work there as part of a team like Charles, and perhaps just as
from the University of Southampton’s importantly children like his, to lend
Department of Maritime Archaeology. experts a helping hand.
For the moment though, Charles, while —DG
excited, is still a little bit puzzled by
his children’s underwater discovery. Assyrian Palace
“If it is a monumental building it is not
going to be part of a small hamlet, but in Turkey
it is not a missing Atlantis, as we would
already know about it. It remains a bit Thirteen is a lucky number for
of a mystery.” Doctor Timothy Matney who has
The discovery is definitely a directed excavations at Ziyaret Tepe in
highpoint in the recent opening of the south east Turkey for the past 13 years.
The peaceful waters off the coast of Montenegro. A family holidaying in the area
recently discovered the remains of a Greek temple on the sea bed and there are
now plans to excavate the ruins further.
14 January 2010
In his thirteenth year his team found area they found some cremation burials
the remains of an Assyrian palace at which contained vessels made of stone
Ziyaret Tepe, along the banks of the and bronze. They also found bronze and
Tigris River, which flourished from the stone furniture fittings.
ninth to the eleventh centuries BC, the They recovered seals made of stone
period of Assyrian domination of the which would have been used to seal
Middle East. documents. The cremations had been
In the palace they found some clay cut into the palace courtyard at a later
tablets written in the cuneiform script, period.
which they dated to about 1000 BC, —DKD
and stored in the palace archives. The
names listed in the tablets are of female Japanese Excavate
workers who were apparently employed
in the region. in Egypt
They did not bear Assyrian names,
indicating that they had been imported Japan is a long way from Egypt,
from elsewhere. That is not surprising and its culture is very different, but
as the Bible records how the Assyrians tourists visiting Egypt recently would
conquered Israel and then exiled them have noticed an increasing number of
to Assyria to work there. Japanese tourists doing the rounds of
The archaeologists on this project the pyramids, temples and tombs. The
found the remains of an important room Japanese are very polite people and
which they consider could have been quietly go about their sight-seeing,
the governor’s throne room. In another taking a huge number of photos on
The Step Pyramid of Saqqara is the dominant burial place in the Saqqara
Necropolis. Archaeologists from Tokyo University have done a lot of excavating in
this area. Photo © M Browning January 2010 15
their latest Japanese-made cameras. Amenhotep III of dynasty 18. It is best
This interest has no doubt been known for the two huge statues, known
nurtured by the work of Japanese as the Colossi of Memnon which stand
a r c h a e o l o g i s t s w h o h av e b e e n at the entrance of the complex.
excavating at several sites in Egypt. The Japanese have been one of
Waseda and Tokyo Universities have the foremost nations in developing
provided skilled archaeologists and sophisticated technology and they
students to explore these places. have brought this expertise into their
Recently the Egyptian Supreme archaeological work. Thirty years ago
Council of Antiquities honoured the they started using geophysical sensing
archaeological work the Japanese instruments, originally used to resolve
have done over the last twenty years Earth’s physical elements. It enabled
by displaying a special exhibition in them to locate the pit of Khufu’s
the Egyptian Museum of artefacts second solar boat at Giza.
that have been found by the Japanese King Seneferu was the first king of
expeditions. the powerful dynasty four. He was the
The three major sites at which greatest pyramid builder of all time,
the Japanese have been digging are erecting three huge pyramids. Two of
Saqqara, the cemetery of the early them were built at Dahshur between
dynasties of Egypt and scene of the Saqqara and Meidum. Two kilometres
Step Pyramid built by King Djoser, north of Seneferu’s Red Pyramid is a
Dahshur where the pyramids of dynasty cemetery dating to the New Kingdom.
four pharaoh Seneferu are found, and Using computer analysis of satellite
Malkata, the temple and palace of imaging data they found a large, free-
The Colossi of Memnon in Luxor stood at the entrance to the temple and palace
of Amenhotep III. Japanese archaeologists have also excavated in this area.
Photo © M Browning
16 January 2010
standing tomb-chapel comparable in hundreds of mummies and had taken
size to the Horemhab’s at Saqqara. them to their hideouts to strip them
Some stamped mud bricks which of their treasures. No doubt they had
they found suggested that the tomb- stolen the valuables but they left the
chapel was built for Ipay, a royal butler mummies and many human bones and
and scribe. the Japanese were delighted to be able
In the underground chambers they to find them.
found some nice funerary objects —DKD
including some faience rings with
the names of Tutankhamun and
Ankhesenamun, and two scarabs
Mummy Mania
bearing the name of Rameses II. In Revived
the innermost chamber they found a
granite sarcophagus on which was an Nearly two hundred years ago
inscription indicating it belonged to Mummy Mania swept over Europe.
Mes, a royal scribe and steward during Some enterprising travellers had
the reign of Rameses II. purchased mummies in Egypt and
Usually archaeologists deplore brought them back to Europe to the
the ravages caused by tomb robbers, wondering gaze of the public. They
but the Japanese had a different were in demand from museums, private
experience. Qurna is a village near collectors wanted a mummy to add to
Luxor in the south. Here known tomb their displays, and some pharmacists
robbers had their homes. Apparently even advertised the curative properties
some of these thieves had found of powdered mummy flesh.
The Red Pyramid, as seen from the Bent Pyramid at Dahshur. King Seneferu , the
first king of dynasty 4 built these two pyramids and Japanese archaeologists have
done a lot of excavating at this site. Photo © M Browning January 2010 17
One enterprising surgeon cashed and the first doctor’s observation was
in on the public fever by announcing spot on. Irtyersenu did have an ovarian
he was going to unwrap and dissect cancer, but the latest investigators have
a mummy, and sold tickets to the decided that this was not the cause of
favoured few who could sit and watch death.
the unprecedented performance. In The cancer was dormant and
1825 Doctor Augustus Granville went unlikely to cause death, but forensic
to work on the coffin and mummy of analysis of tissues taken from the 2,600
a fifty year old woman by the name year old mummy revealed evidence of
of Irtyersenu, which means “Lady of tuberculosis, a very common ailment
the House.” in ancient Egypt. They concluded
It was a good show. To provide the that this was the cause of Irtyersenu’s
right atmosphere the operating room death.
was lit with candles which were made Actually, all this investigation was
from fat from the mummy. Everything made possible by an unusual procedure
went according to schedule and even in the mummification process. Usually
the autopsy was correct. The woman the brain was decimated and washed
had an ovarian cancer about the size out through the nostrils. Then most of
of an orange, which the learned doctor the internal organs were removed and
saw as the cause of her death. stored in canopic jars. This was done
Now there has been another to reduce decomposition of the entire
autopsy done in London. Not now mummy, but in this case the embalmers
before an excited audience, but with took a short cut. They left most of these
all the expertise of modern medicine, organs in the corpse.
This mummy is located in the Louvre Museum in Paris. In the 1800’s many
mummies were privately owned and people paid money to see them unwrapped, as
was the case with Granville’s mummy. Photo © Archaeological Diggings
18 January 2010
Whether this was a labour saving was supposed to be able to answer
device by the embalmers or whether questions put to it. Alexander the Great
Irtyersenu had opted for a more visited Siwa to find out if his military
economical embalming we have no campaign against the Persian Empire
way of knowing, but it was this that would be successful.
enabled the analysts to examine all Cambyses, the son and successor
her organs to be able to determine the of Cyrus the Great, invaded Egypt and
cause of death. occupied it, but it was reported to him
Well, no insurance claims are that the oracle at Siwa had predicted
dependent on the outcome, but it is his doom. He determined to destroy
only proper that we should get the the oracle for predicting such a fate
facts right. for him.
—DKD According to the Greek historian
Herodotus, who wrote about 5245 BC,
Persian army Cambyses sent out an army of 50,000
soldiers from Luxor to traverse the
found at last desert and destroy Siwa, but a fierce
sand storm hit the army in the desert,
The Siwa Oasis is a fascinating and it was never heard of again. Several
place to visit. It is surrounded by desert claims have been made that traces of
but has plenty of water, and is green the buried army had been found, but
with many varieties of date palms. their claims were not substantiated.
But it has always been best noted for Now a team of Italian archaeologists
the oracle in the temple of Amun that claim they have found traces of the
The Siwa Oasis in Egypt. According to Herodotus, Cambyses the Persian sent an army
of 50,000 soldiers into the desert to destroy Siwa. They were caught in a sand storm and
never seen again. The Castiglioni brothers believe they may have found their remains. January 2010 19
lost army. Twin brothers, Angelo this information comes from a TV
and Alfredo Castiglioni, have been programme which does not have
researching the mystery for the last a particularly good reputation for
thirteen years and have made five archaeological accuracy.
expeditions into the Sahara Desert. At —DKD
last they have a clue. First they found
a half buried pot and some human Palace at
remains. Then a bronze dagger and
several arrow tips came to light and Tel Kabri
the search was on.
The brothers speculated that the Archaeologists from Haifa
Persian army may not have followed University have found the remains of
the usual route from Luxor to Siwa. a large palace at Tel Kabri in the region
They started looking along a southerly of western Galilee. The palace covers
approach to the oasis and that is when an area of some 1.5 acres and would
the evidence began to come to light. have been the administrative quarters
They found an earring, which was of for the region at that time.
the style worn 2500 years ago, the There is an interesting contrast
period the army was on the march. between this palace and the palace
Then they found Bronze weapons, found at Hazor in Northern Galilee.
a silver bracelet, and hundreds of The latter displayed styles derived
blanched bones. from Syria and the Levant. The palace
Whether this turns out to be the at Tel Kabri reveals influences from the
real thing remains to be seen. All Mediterranean area, especially a fresco
The temple and palace at Hazor, which displays architectural styles from Syria and
the Levant. Archaeologists have found the remains of a large palace at Tel Kabri
which has Mediterranean influence.Photo © M Browning
20 January 2010
found on the island of Santorini. seems good to you, I will give you its
The archaeologists dated the palace worth in money.” But Naboth said to
to the Middle Bronze II period which Ahab, “The Lord forbid that I should
was traditionally the Canaanite period. give the inheritance of my fathers to
By a reduced chronology this would you!”
have been during the Israelite period. So Ahab went into his house sullen
It is rather intriguing that they found and displeased because of the word
evidence that “the rulers confiscated which Naboth the Jezreelite had spoken
privately owned lands in order to to him; for he had said, “I will not give
build both the palace and a ceremonial you the inheritance of my fathers.” And
path encircling the palace.” A similar he lay down on his bed, and turned
incident occurred during the reign of away his face, and would eat no food.
King Ahab of Israel. The story in 1 But Jezebel his wife came to him,
Kings 21 proves nothing but it makes and said to him, “Why is your spirit so
interesting reading. sullen that you eat no food?”
And it came to pass after these He said to her, “Because I spoke
things that Naboth the Jezreelite had a to Naboth the Jezreelite, and said
vineyard which was in Jezreel, next to to him, ‘Give me your vineyard for
the palace of Ahab king of Samaria. So money; or else, if it pleases you, I will
Ahab spoke to Naboth, saying, “Give give you another vineyard for it.’ And
me your vineyard, that I may have it for he answered, ‘I will not give you my
a vegetable garden, because it is near, vineyard.’”
next to my house; and for it I will give Then Jezebel his wife said to him,
you a vineyard better than it. Or, if it “You now exercise authority over
Jezreel Valley in Israel. This was the area where the vineyard of Naboth the
Jezreelite was located. The Bible records that he was murdered because he would
not sell his land to King Ahab. Photo J Freeman CC-BY-SA-2.5 January 2010 21
Israel! Arise, eat food, and let your get a complete picture of political and
heart be cheerful; I will give you the social life in the Canaanite period.
vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite.” And We can reveal whether or not it had a
she wrote letters in Ahab’s name, sealed central government, whether taxes were
them with his seal, and sent the letters levied, what sort of agriculture there
to the elders and the nobles who were was and how politics were conducted
dwelling in the city with Naboth. at the time.”
She wrote in the letters, saying, He should have been even more
Proclaim a fast, and seat Naboth with excited to think he was excavating a
high honor among the people; and seat complete city of ancient Israel.
two men, scoundrels, before him to bear —DKD
witness against him, saying, “You have
blasphemed God and the king.” Then
take him out, and stone him, that he
may die.
So the men of his city, the elders Saqqara Tunnel
and nobles who were inhabitants of
his city, did as Jezebel had sent to The Step Pyramid of Saqqara was
them, as it was written in the letters built for King Djoser of dynasty 3
which she had sent to them. They and was the first pyramid ever built.
proclaimed a fast, and seated Naboth It was not the true pyramid form
with high honor among the people. of later pyramids, but ascended in
And two men, scoundrels, came in and six stages, hence the name ‘Step
sat before him; and the scoundrels Pyramid’. Beneath this pyramid was an
witnessed against him, against Naboth, extensive maze of passages and a tomb
in the presence of the people, saying, for the king. The passages seem to
“Naboth has blasphemed God and the extend aimlessly in all directions, and
king!” Then they took him outside the archaeologists do not know why, but
city and stoned him with stones, so they are still searching for answers.
that he died. Recently exploratory work was
Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, being done beneath the south side
“Naboth has been stoned and is dead.” of the pyramid when the workmen
And it came to pass, when Jezebel stumbled on a deep hole not previously
heard that Naboth had been stoned recorded. It had a plaster floor and
and was dead, that Jezebel said to contained the mummified remains of
Ahab, “Arise, take possession of the many animals and birds. Such tombs
vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, are not uncommon in Saqqara where
which he refused to give you for money; tombs containing mummified ibis
for Naboth is not alive, but dead.” So birds, monkeys and cats have been
it was, when Ahab heard that Naboth found.
was dead, that Ahab got up and went The workmen also discovered
down to take possession of the vineyard some fragments of gold and thirty
of Naboth the Jezreelite. granite blocks of stone, each weighing
That was confiscation at its worst. about five tons. They also found
Presumably the confiscation at Tel some limestone blocks on which
Kabri was of a peaceful nature. were written the names of the king’s
The archaeologists find this site daughters. There were also wooden
exciting because it was never built on instruments, portions of wooden
after it was abandoned. This makes statues, the remains of a mummy,
the whole ancient city available for and some bone fragments of different
excavation. Dr Yasur-Landau said, sizes.
“The city’s preservation enables us to —DKD
22 January 2010

Tut’s Tomb to be been installed in an air conditioned

glass box in the ante chamber.
Renovated At the end of the ante room a
doorway opens onto the small tomb
In 1922 Howard Carter discovered chamber. From this chamber a small
the tomb of the boy King Tutankhamun doorway opens onto another store
in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt. It room which is empty and also not
was one of the greatest archaeological available to tourists.
discoveries of all time. Most of the The tomb chamber is of major
more than 2000 fabulous treasures attraction to visitors. In it is Tut’s
which had been interred in the tomb at stone sarcophagus, and on the walls are
the time of his burial were intact. nice pictures illustrating the passage
The majority of the treasures have of the king into the afterlife. There
been removed to museums, but since is depicted the opening of the mouth
its discovery the tomb has attracted ceremony symbolising the soul of
millions of tourists. The tomb is the the king leaving his body, and at the
smallest in the Valley of the Kings. It end of the tomb are twelve baboons
only consists of a descending passage representing the twelve hours of the
leading into an ante room which is very night.
plain with no pictures on the walls. Even when it was first opened
From the side of this ante chamber these pictures had some strange spots
a small doorway leads to a store on them. Since then the vapour-laden
room which is empty and not open to breaths of the millions of tourists
tourists. Recently Tut’s mummy has visiting the tomb have exacerbated
A diagram of the tomb of Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings. Steps are being
taken to repair and preserve the pictures on the walls of the tomb chamber in the
lower part of this picture where his coffin was found. Photo © M Browning
Tutankhamun’s tomb was filled with
more than 2000 fabulous treasures. 23
Most of them were removed to the Cairo
Museum. They have been reproduced
and put on display in the Pharaonic
Village in Cairo. Photo © M Browning
24 January 2010
these spots and no doubt caused will be closed to tourists during much
deterioration to the pictures. The of this five year period. Work on the
tomb has never been satisfactorily project has already begun.
air-conditioned and further exposure —DKD
to the body heat of tourists is bound
to have an adverse effect on the tomb Cleopatra Premier
To restore the tomb to its original in Philadelphia
beauty and prevent any further erosion
the Supreme Council of Antiquities The Franklin Institute in
has appealed to the Los Angeles based Philadelphia is set to host a new
Getty Foundation for expertise and exhibition, Cleopatra, The Search for
funding to make these changes. The the Last Queen of Egypt which will
project is expected to cost more than begin in June 2010, and continue until
US$1.5 million. The Getty Foundation the new year of 2011.
has experienced expertise in such The exhibition will feature artefacts
matters and did a similar job on from the excavations of Zahi Hawass,
the tomb of Nefertari, the queen of and others recovered from the Bay of
Rameses the Great of dynasty 19. Alexandria by Frank Goddio.
It will take two years to thoroughly The focus will be on the search
assess the damage and decide on the for Cleopatra’s tomb, which despite
most effective method of restoration, ex t e n s ive e ff o r t s , s t i l l r e m a i n s
and then three years to carry out the undiscovered.
work. The bad news is that the tomb —CB
The head of a statue found in the Bay of Alexandria. A new exhibition at the Franklin
Institute will feature other underwater discoveries from this bay as part of Cleopatra,
The Search for the Last Queen of Egypt. Photo © M Browning
David Down’s book on the history of Egypt.
Co-authored with John Ashton, the book includes a
detailed explanation of David’s revised chronology.
Hardcover, with 240 pages and hundreds of colour
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Newsflashes from
The next club meeting will be held on
February 21, 2010 at 3:00pm at the Archaeological Diggings is Australia’s
Wesley Centre, 220 Pitt St, Sydney (near top magazine of history & archaeology.
Town Hall Station). Admission is $4.00, Below are just a few excerpts from the
concessions $3:00. All are welcome. current issue.
For all enquiries please phone (02)
Gaza was one of the five major cities
9477 3595. of the Philistines. Received wisdom
BRISBANE claims that the Philistines did not arrive
The club meets on the second Sunday on the scene until the 12th century
of each month at 1pm at the Central BC when the ‘Peoples of the Sea’ are
City Library, 266 George St, Brisbane. thought to have migrated from Cyprus
and Greece and swarmed over Anatolia,
The club also publishes a monthly
ending the Hittite power, and surging
newsletter. For information about the down into Egypt, to be repulsed by
next meeting, please phone Veronica Rameses III whose inscriptions referred
Mason on (07) 3219 3097. to them as the Peleset.
GOLD COAST Few people will get excited by seeing
The Pharos Club meets in Southport on an image of an ancient relief, but Dina
the first Saturday of each month at 1pm. Avshalom-Gorni had good reason to
For information phone Maureen Hughes rejoice. The image she had received was
(07) 5531 1394. of a one-of-a-kind stone relief depicting
a menorah which her colleague, Arfan
ADELAIDE Najar, had just found on a floor of a first
The Ancient Egypt Study Group century AD synagogue at the site of
meets on the first Tuesday of each Magdala. Such a find would be a dream
month at 7:30pm in Clarence Gardens, for many archaeologists. For Dina and
Adelaide. Activities include visiting Arfan this dream became true.
speakers, illustrated talks, slide & video There are a few temples from the
presentations, an annual quiz night & a Late Period of Egyptian history that
Christmas feast. The hieroglyphs study still have their original roof intact.
group meets on the third Tuesday of each For most temples, the fierceness of
month. There is a monthly newsletter the Egyptian sun, combined with sand
and library. For more information phone storms, has meant little of the original
Valerie Walden on (08) 8276 7945. colour remains.

The Dec/Jan 2010 issue of Archaeological Diggings is

now available at your local newsagent. The price is
just $7.20 in Australia or $8.20 in New Zealand.

Why not take out a subscription? See the previous

page for our special offer on subscribing for more
than one year, or to both publications!
Join us for 21 exciting days touring the ancient wonders of Egypt and Jordan


14 September - 6 October 2010
W e are planning a 13 day tour of Egypt with an optional 7
day tour of Jordan. Travel in air-conditioned coaches and
stay in first class hotels. Our tours include air and land
travel costs, accommodation, breakfasts and dinners,
site fees, tips, porterage, and visas associated with
the itinerary. Sites include:
Egypt - Pharaonic Village, Cairo Museum,
Tutankhamun’s treasures and tomb, Pyramids of
Saqqara and Giza, The Sphinx, Faiyyum Oasis,
Pyramid of Hawarra, ancient remains of Kahun,
Temples of Karnak and Luxor, Valley of the Kings
and royal tombs, Medinet Habu and Deir el Bahari,
Temples of Abu Simbel and Philae, Sound and
Light Show at the Pyramids
Jordan - The citadel Ummayed Palace, Hercules
Temple and Roman Theatre, Madaba, Mt Nebo
and Kerak Castle, Petra, Wadi Rum, Aqaba and the
Red Sea, The Dead Sea, Jerash and The Forum,
Cardo and Hadrian’s Arch
Lic Travel Agent: Harvey World Travel (Toronto) 64 The
Boulevarde, Toronto NSW 2283 Lic No: 2TA

To receive a free brochure outlining the itinerary and costs, send us your details, or phone:

1800 240 543

You can also email or download the 2009 brochure at

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