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 Archaeology and War

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ferval
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PostSubject: Archaeology and War   Mon 05 Oct 2015, 16:48

There are reports today that the famous Palmyra Arch has been blown up, just the latest in the long litany of remains destroyed in war and conflict, but war has also been implicated in the discovery and recovery of the past. The most famous example is Napoleon's Egyptian campaign but there are others.

This little film refers to the Salonika Campaign during WW I and the archaeology done by the Allied troops at the time.



Are there other examples of archaeology in time of war?
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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Mon 05 Oct 2015, 23:47

It is unlikely that anyone honed into searching the bomb sites during the war - but possibly note was taken of revelations that came to light in the depths. An interesting topic, I hope someone has some leads.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Tue 06 Oct 2015, 09:51

@Priscilla wrote:
It is unlikely that anyone honed into searching the bomb sites during the war

The Museum of London appointed a team to do just that which was active throughout the war and, if I recall, even up to the mid-50s. Mortimer Wheeler, amongst others, did a lot of voluntary stuff for them. I was at an exhibition there a few years ago which was dedicated to their excellent (and much unheralded) work during the period, especially in the Cripplegate Ward.
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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Tue 06 Oct 2015, 13:01

I had wondered about that because stuff is labelled in the London Museum as having been found on such sites. Perhaps they now mention more.......it's a great museum and rarely mentioned..... (thinks........ I must go again. soon)
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Tue 06 Oct 2015, 13:15

One doesn't have to stray too far from the museum to see probably the most striking examples of archaeology recovered after bombing.

December 29th 1940 was the single worst night of the Blitz. Noble Street, near where the Museum of London now stands, was completely destroyed and we have this to thank for the magnificent section of London's Roman wall that now stands in the museum's grounds. No one prior to the street's destruction knew that such a large remnant of the Roman defences had been incorporated into the foundation of what I believe was a Methodist church. A 13th century bastion also emerged from the same rubble that night.
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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Tue 06 Oct 2015, 15:42

There is also the 'modern archaeology' of the blitz that comes to mind. I am blessed with a very good memory and although very young  at the time, I recall always moving to the left of trains to see the results of blitz as  we moved closer to Liverpool Street Station. There exposed were the standing walls of peoples' homes,; sad places with dreary attempts to brighten with lurid paint and sometimes fittings and furniture hung there after recent raids. This was by way of getting into a rural retreat away from it all three times a year. ...... and once, just before D day on a 'Yank' bearing train leaving the station pdf during a raid. The men covered us children until clear in case the bombs hit. It's strange about bombs - a friend's house abroad took a direct hit and they only recovered from it one bent spoon. It was a big one - they were elsewhere at the time - and the explosion caused all sorts of other damage over a large area. Later we all went to look at the crater......one does, you know. I guess this must have happened all over UK and knowing people would have seen interesting things in the depths. We children were merely shrapnel and 'window' gatherers. not only silver foil but rubber washers and other stuff rained down over our area to block radar. Not that we knew why. My mother said the tap washers were useful,  even if they were German. Sorry, ferv, my mind has gone down the wrong thread route.... don't say a word, nordmann. Not a word.


Last edited by Priscilla on Wed 07 Oct 2015, 11:09; edited 1 time in total
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Triceratops
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Wed 07 Oct 2015, 10:18

I don't know if this counts or not, Sulaymaniyah Museum have been engaged in backroom dealings to recover artefacts looted after the Iraq invasion and have recovered some clay tablets on the Epic of Gilgamesh, including a previously unknown verse;

http://www.livescience.com/52372-new-tablet-gilgamesh-epic.html
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Fri 13 Nov 2015, 16:33

An interesting article on the 'new monument men'. An organisation, using people on the ground in war zones, who will be digitally reconstructing those monuments destroyed. They will also be pinpointing other sites considered most in danger of destruction for whatever reason and building an archive of documentation for future reference. At least this way, these wonderul cultural heritages will not be lost to us forever.

http://www.newsweek.com/2015/11/20/institute-digital-archaeology-preserves-cultural-heritage-middle-east-392732.html
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PostSubject: Re: Archaeology and War   Mon 14 Dec 2015, 12:15

Roman battlefield from De Bello Gallico discovered in Brabant;

Caesarian Battlefield
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