Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Egyptian sea vessel artifacts discovered at pharaonic port of Mersa Gawasis along Red Sea coast

22.04.2005


When Kathryn Bard reached through the small hole that opened in a hillside along Egypt’s Red Sea coast, her hand touched nearly 4,000 years of history.



The opening that Bard, an associate professor of archaeology at Boston University, and her team’s co-leader Rodolfo Fattovich, a professor of archaeology at Italy’s University of Naples "L’Orientale," discovered was the entrance to a large, man-made cave. Two days later at a site about 30 meters beyond this cave, the team removed sand covering the entrance to a second cave, one that held the well-preserved cedar timbers of an ancient Egyptian sea-faring vessel.

The timbers, together with limestone block-anchors, curved cedar steering oars, rigging ropes, and other items, are from ancient Egyptian ships. In addition to the nautical items in the second cave, and the two antechambers discovered to branch from it, the archaeologists found limestone tablets with hieroglyphic inscriptions that detail long-ago trade expeditions to the Red Sea region known as Punt.


Bard and Fattovich will present their findings on the two caves -- and discuss the promise their discoveries hold -- to fellow archaeologists on April 23 during the 56th annual meeting of the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) in Cambridge, Mass.

Bard and Fattovich and their team made the dual discovery in late December while working at Wadi Gawasis, the site of the pharaonic port of Mersa Gawasis on the Red Sea coast of Egypt. The cave they unearthed not only contained artifacts that spoke of ancient Egypt’s sea-faring vessels, it also had been constructed from recycled items from such vessels. Limestone anchor blocks and cedar beams from a ship, along with mud-brick and plaster, had been used to stabilize the walls forming the cave’s entrance.

Inside the entrance were the two cedar steering oars found by the group. The scientists speculate that the oars may have been used on 70-foot-long ships from a 15th -century naval expedition launched by Egypt’s Queen Hatshepsut to the southern Red Sea trade center, Punt. Well-preserved and intact, the oars are the first complete parts from a sea-faring ship to have been found in Egypt. Near the oars were found pieces of pottery dating from 1500 – 1400 B.C.

The cave also held hints of use as a temple. Near its entrance, the research team found small carved niches, four of which still held limestone tablets, known as stelae. One stela, the best preserved, bore hieroglyphic inscriptions describing expeditions to Punt and to Bia-Punt, the location of which is unknown. It also told of two officials, Nebsu and Amenhotep, who led the expeditions. Other inscriptions on the stela include an offering scene to the god Min, the god of the Eastern Desert also associated with fertility, and a cartouche of King Amenemhat III, who ruled Egypt around 1800 B.C. The stela’s text provides new information about King Amenemhat III, suggesting he ordered the previously unknown expeditions to the Punt and Bia-Punt regions.

The team of archaeologists plans to return to the excavation site at year’s end, this time with a researcher who will use ground-penetrating radar to determine if there are additional caves in the area and, if so, what their configurations are.

Ann Marie Menting | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.bu.edu

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Devils Hole: Ancient Traces of Climate History
24.05.2017 | Universität Innsbruck

nachricht Supercomputing helps researchers understand Earth's interior
23.05.2017 | University of Illinois College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

Im Focus: Using graphene to create quantum bits

In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.

In pursuit of this goal, researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements LPQM (STI/SB), have investigated a nonlinear graphene-based...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Physicists discover mechanism behind granular capillary effect

24.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Measured for the first time: Direction of light waves changed by quantum effect

24.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>