Mycenean Finds from Bodrum

From Hurriyet:

New artifacts have been found during excavations in Bodrum’s Ortakent and Gümüşlük neighborhoods. The artifacts will shed light on the history of Bodrum Peninsula, according to officials.

The Bodrum Underwater Archaeology Museum Director Emel Özkan said that they had discovered 49 artifacts from the Mycenean era.

“The number of Mycenean artifacts increased to 248 with these ones. This made our museum the richest one in terms of Mycenean artifacts among the Turkish museums,” she said.

Özkan said that the artifacts, which date back to 3,500 years ago, were very important for Anatolian history, adding, “The amphora and gifts found in this excavation show us that the necropolis area dates back to early bronze age. It was one the early era settlements in the western Anatolian.”

Özkan said skeletons found in the excavations were being examined by anthropologists and the artifacts would be displayed.

The photo that accompanies the piece … I can’t decide if that thing in the middle is a hedgehog or a boar:

 

Hurriyet Photo
Hurriyet Photo

Mycenean Palace found Near Sparta

From Greek Reporter:

A new excavation in the Xirokambi area of Aghios Vassilios west of Sparta, in the Peloponnese, Greece, has revealed a richness of Mycenean artefacts in the area, including the remains of a palace, Linear B tablets, fragments of wall paintings, and several bronze swords.
The excavation, led by emeritus ephor of antiquities Adamantia Vassilogrambrou, was presented publicly at the biennial Shanghai Archaeology Forum at the end of August as one of 11 sites showcased from different parts of the world.

The Aghios Vassilios excavation began in 2010, after Linear B tablets were found in the area in 2008, pointing to the existence of a powerful central authority and distribution system. The deciphered texts were devoted to perfume and cloth production, the trade of which was controlled by a palace administration in the Mycenean era.

Evidence of a central palace administration was confirmed also by the architecture, which is dated to the 14th century BC, while contact with Crete was confirmed by the finding of a double axe, a feature of the island’s palace culture.

Artefacts found include seals, a multitude of ceramic and bronze vessels, and 21 bronze swords. According to the evidence, a sudden fire that broke out either at the end of the 14th century or the beginning of the 13th destroyed the three buildings on the site which were never rebuilt at the same location.

All the press coverage seems to have the same overhead shot of foundations … ANAMPA has a photo, however, of what is presumably a cup from the site (Mycenean palace and Linear B tablets discovered in Sparta area)

Mycenean Rock-cut Tombs from Bodrum

Interesting item from Hurriyet:

Rock tombs dating back to 3,500 years ago have been uncovered in Bodrum’s Ortakent district, which form part of the necropolis area.

Bodrum Underwater Archeology Museum manager Emel Özkan and archeologists Banu Mete Özler and Ece Benli Bağcı are leading the excavations. The experts are still not sure if there was a settlement or not.

The tombs are believed to belong to the early “Mycenaean Greece III A” era, which was a cultural period of Bronze Age Greece taking its name from the archaeological site of Mycenae in northeastern Argolis, in the Peloponnese of southern Greece. The tombs also revealed human and animal bones, bronze containers and many different kinds of pieces. The necropolis area has been taken under protection. The findings of the excavation may belong to the bronze age and also to the Akha Hellenistic era.

The tombs also reveal the culture and the lifestyle of the early Mycenaean Greek era, as well as the period’s artistic approach, according to experts.

Hurriyet has another version at Mycenaean artifacts found in Bodrum which has a different photo … there’s also some added detail from the Today’s Zaman coverage (inter alia):

[…] Speaking to the press, Professor Yusuf Boysal, the supervisor of the excavations, said his team so far has found the remains of several tombs, a canteen, a three-handled cup, a jug, a bronze razor, animals’ bones, many pieces of glass and beads with different shapes.

Boysal added: “Along with these new discoveries, now we will have more information regarding this ancient era. These tombs and other historical ruins are very important and they will give us information about the culture of the people who lived in that era.” […]

Earthquakes and the Myceneans?

An excerpt in medias res from Live Science (with one of those annoying, all-too-general headlines):

[…] Tiryns was one of the great Mycenaean cities. Atop a limestone hill, the city-state’s king built a palace with walls so thick they were called Cyclopean, because only the one-eyed monster could have carried the massive limestone blocks. The walls were about 30 feet (10 meters) high and 26 feet (8 m) wide, with blocks weighing 13 tons, said Klaus-G. Hinzen, a seismologist at the University of Cologne in Germany and project leader. He presented his team’s preliminary results April 19 at the Seismological Society of America’s annual meeting in Salt Lake City.

Hinzen and his colleagues have created a 3D model of Tiryns based on laser scans of the remaining structures. Their goal is to determine if the walls’ collapse could only have been caused by an earthquake. Geophysical scanning of the sediment and rock layers beneath the surface will provide information for engineering studies on how the ground would shake in a temblor.

The work is complex, because many blocks were moved by amateur archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann in 1884 and later 20th-century restorations, Hinzen said. By combing through historic photos, the team found unaltered wall sections to test. They also hope to use a technique called optical luminescence dating on soil under the blocks, which could reveal whether the walls toppled all at the same time, as during an earthquake.

“This is really a challenge because of the alterations. We want to take a careful look at the original conditions,” Hinzen told OurAmazingPlanet.

Another hurdle: finding the killer quake. There are no written records from the Mycenaean decline that describe a major earthquake, nor oral folklore. Hinzen also said compared with other areas of Greece, the region has relatively few active faults nearby. “There is no evidence for an earthquake at this time, but there was strong activity at the subduction zone nearby,” he said. […]

Hinzen (et al) are the folks behind that study of earthquake effects on a Roman mausoleum in Pinara a month or so ago (Earthquakes and a Roman Mausoleum) … by the way, I’m sure the line between ‘pioneer’ and ‘amateur’ is fuzzy, but I’m not sure I’d call Schliemann an “amateur”.