Skip to comments.Violence and climate change in prehistoric Egypt and Sudan
Posted on 07/21/2014 10:50:52 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
Among the most exciting of the new acquisitions are the materials from the site of Jebel Sahaba, now in northern Sudan, which were donated to the Museum by Dr Fred Wendorf in 2002. Excavating here in 196566, as part of the UNESCO-funded campaign to salvage sites destined to be flooded by the construction of the Aswan High Dam, Dr Wendorf found a cemetery (site 117) containing at least 61 individuals dating back to about 13,000 years ago. This discovery was of great significance for two reasons. First, as a designated graveyard, evidently used over several generations, it is one of the earliest formal cemeteries in the world. Prior to this discovery, only isolated graves, or clusters of up to three bodies had been known within the Nile Valley. But perhaps even more significant, of the 61 men, women and children buried at Jebel Sahaba, at least 45% of them died of inflicted wounds, making this the earliest evidence for inter-communal violence in the archaeological record. Chips and flakes of chert, the remnants of arrows or other weapons, were found mixed with and in some cases still embedded in the bones of 26 individuals, while cut marks were found on the bones of others.
A special case displays two of the unfortunate victims (Burials 20 and 21) and the remains of the actual weapons that killed them, recreating the burials as they were found... A total of 19 weapon fragments were found in and among the bones of Burial 21 by the original excavators, including one still lodged in his pelvis... Clearly, the conflict was brutal and seems to have been fairly constant, as healed injuries have also been observed.
(Excerpt) Read more at blog.britishmuseum.org ...
Excavation photo of the two victims of violence featured in Room 64 (burials 20 and 21). The pencils point to weapon fragments mixed with the bones. (photo: Wendorf Archive, British Museum)
Couldn’t use this one:
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How did this happen? I’ve been assured that before the advent of the “patriarchy” prehistoric man just sat around the campfire singing Kum Bye Yah?
;’) A site about this same age was excavated and RC dated back in the 1970s. It was also in the Sahel somewhere I think. It had been a good-sized town, but made of flammable materials of course, so the remains consisted of carbonized wreckage and post holes — and many thousands of arrowheads and spearheads from the attack.
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