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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Archaeology news updates
    Posted: 08-May-2012 at 14:05
"...In a major development for the archaeological excavations across Qatar, an unmarked grave has been discovered at Wadi Debayan, an important site with human occupation dating back to about 7,500 years ago.
The exploration of Wadi Debayan, situated on the northwestern side of Qatar to the south of the site of Al Zubara and the Rá’s ‘Ushayriq peninsula, is  part of the Remote Sensing and Qatar National Historical Environment Record (QNHER) Project.
“We have come across one burial, probably a full skeleton and though we cannot say that we have a cemetery there, it is a fair possibility,” project co-director Richard Cuttler told Gulf Times during a site visit.
QNHER is being developed as part of the Remote Sensing Project, a joint initiative between the Qatar Museums Authority under the guidance of Faisal al-Naimi (head of antiquities), and the University of Birmingham, where Cuttler is a research fellow.
“The grave was a very surprising find that came out of one of the several test pits. We have seen some pieces of the tibia, one of the two leg bones, which shows the skeleton is in a crouched position typical of Neolithic burials” he explained...."http://www.gulf-times.com/site/topics/article.asp?cu_no=2&item_no=503582&version=1&template_id=57&parent_id=56


Edited by Don Quixote - 08-May-2012 at 14:05
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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-May-2012 at 14:08
One more thing for me to see in Sozopol this simmer:
Divers Stumble upon Bronze Statue in Bulgarian Black Sea Waters: Divers Stumble upon Bronze Statue in Bulgarian Black Sea
A bronze statue portraying an elderly woman in a sit-down position has been found in Bulgarian Black Sea waters. Photo by BGNES
"...Two divers, father and son, from Bulgaria's Black Sea city of Burgas, found in the waters near the historical town of Sozopol an utterly intriguing statue.

The bronze statue, located at a depth of 2 meters, some 20 meters away from the shoreline, portrays an elderly woman in a sit-down position. It is 1.4-meter tall and believed to be modern, not ancient work.

The Director of the Archeological Museum in Sozopol, Dimitar Nedev, has been notified. Nedev, together with two other experts from the National Archeology Institute and Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, BAS, have already done an initial examination.

The statue is temporarily kept at the Sozopol museum until its origins are definitively established...." http://www.novinite.com/view_news.php?id=139143


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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-May-2012 at 16:56

Prison Makes Way for the Holy Land’s Oldest Church


"...Despite the great deal of fanfare surrounding its discovery, the third century C.E. Christian prayer hall discovered at Megiddo looks like anything but an archaeological tourist site. Likely the oldest church ever found in the Holy Land,* it is located under the Megiddo prison, leading the spectacular discovery to be covered up again until the site can be developed properly. Plans have been made to relocate the prison just over a mile to the west, but the construction of a tourist site around the church has not yet begun. An international tender seeking out an investor to construct and manage the tourist site is expected this week, and will serve as a major step in making the site available to the public. Project manager Gad Yaakov expects 500,000 tourists to visit the site in the first year alone, and expects the numbers to rise over the following years. Bids on developing the site for tourists must be submitted by June 5.

The structure featured mosaics with Christian symbols such as fish and a dedicatory inscription “to God Jesus Christ.” Dated to around 230 C.E., the find was considered important enough to Israel President Moshe Katsav that when he visited Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican in November 2005, he took pictures of the newly discovered mosaic floor with him to present to the pontiff.

Prison Makes Way for the Holy Lands Oldest Church

This mosaic from the Megiddo Prison Church is one step closer to the public eye. This week’s expected tender for development bids is a major step in creating what will surely become a major Biblical and archaeological tourist site...." http://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/news/prison-makes-way-for-the-holy-lands-oldest-church/

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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-May-2012 at 17:29

New light on enigmatic burial rituals in Cambodian mountains


"...Researchers from the University of Otago in New Zealand working in remote Cambodian mountains are shedding new light on the lost history of an unidentified people by studying their enigmatic burial rituals.The Otago researchers have now provided the first radiocarbon dates for unusual jar and log coffin interments on exposed ledges high in southern Cambodia's rugged Cardamom Mountains. Since 2003, they have been working to geo-locate and survey 10 interment sites and to date these using samples of coffin wood, tooth enamel and bone.

With colleagues from Cambodia, Australia, USA and Scotland, Drs Nancy Beavan and Sian Halcrow of the Department of Anatomy have just published the dating of four sites in the journal Radiocarbon. These reveal that the mysterious funerary rituals, which are unlike any other recorded in Cambodia, were practiced from at least 1395AD to 1650AD.Dr Beavan, who is currently in Cambodia, says that this period coincides with the decline and fall of the powerful Kingdom of Angkor, which was seated in the lowlands.

"Funeral practices in the Angkor Kingdom and its successors involved cremation rather than anything remotely like those found at sites we are studying. This stark difference suggests that, in cultural terms, these unidentified mountain dwellers were a 'world apart' from their lowland contemporaries."To date, the bulk of research that makes up what is known about cultural history of the Khmer regions has focused on the lowlands, she says.

"Through our work we hope to broaden the understanding of this history beyond the legacies of the great Khmer Kingdom alone to those who lived within its margins," she says.Dr Sian Halcrow says that archaeological findings from another of the 10 sites, which she and Dr Beavan are currently preparing for publication, will offer important new clues about who these mysterious people were, their culture, trade connections and biological adaptation to the environment.

Given the rugged and remote locations of the sites, the fieldwork has not been without its challenges, Dr Beavan says."In 2010 one of our campsites was invaded by a wild elephant in the dead of night and it had to be driven off by our camp crew banging on cooking pots. It turns out we had pitched camp between two tempting stands of wild banana. We packed up and headed off soon after that."..." http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-05/uoo-nlo050812.php

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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-May-2012 at 17:53

Agents discover archaeological artifacts west of Tucson


"...Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents have discovered two sets of archaeological artifacts in the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument since February, U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced Tuesday.

In late February, Ajo Station agents patrolling on foot came across what they believed to be an ancient bowl hidden in a shady outcropping of rock, the Border Patrol said.

Officials from the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument were notified and identified the clay vessel as an olla, an ancient pot that was used to hold water and was stored in shade to keep the water cool,..."http://www.tucsonsentinel.com/local/report/050812_borderpatrol_artifacts/agents-discover-archaeological-artifacts-west-tucson/
Several ancient bowls were discovered beneath a rock ledge by Border Patrol agents in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

Several ancient bowls were discovered beneath a rock ledge by Border Patrol agents in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.


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  Quote Nick1986 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-May-2012 at 19:23

Happy birthday Howard Carter, wherever you are
Me Grimlock not nice Dino! Me bash brains!
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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-May-2012 at 21:04

6,000-year-old settlement poses tsunami mystery

"...Archeologists have uncovered evidence of pre-farming people living in the Burren more than 6,000 years ago — one of the oldest habitations ever unearthed in Ireland.Radiocarbon dating of a shellfish midden on Fanore Beach in north Clare have revealed it to be at least 6,000 years old — hundreds of years older than the nearby Poulnabrone dolmen.

The midden — a cooking area where nomad hunter-gatherers boiled or roasted shellfish — contained Stone Age implements, including two axes and a number of smaller stone tools.
Excavation of the site revealed a mysterious black layer of organic material, which archeologists believe may be the results of a Stone Age tsunami which hit the Clare coast, possibly wiping out the people who used the midden.
The midden was discovered by local woman Elaine O’Malley in 2009 and a major excavation of the site is being led by Michael Lynch, field monument adviser for Co Clare. ..."


Read more: http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/6000-year-old-settlement-poses-tsunami-mystery-193230.html#ixzz1uQNFLMi9
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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09-May-2012 at 21:43
A cool long article about Tel Kedesh, in Upper Galilee:
"...Tel Kedesh is enormous—more than half a mile north to south. It is a double mound, with an upper tell occupied since the Early Bronze Age (3150–2300 B.C.) and a plateau-like lower tell likely constructed in the Middle Bronze Age (2300–1550 B.C.). Since our research interests focused on a relatively short period in the site’s long history, we hoped to devise a strategy that would allow us to reach those levels rapidly. In 1997, we began by surveying the entirety of the lower tell along two broad north-south and east-west transects. Next we excavated two small test trenches to discover the site’s uppermost geological profile, as well as the depth and preservation of Hellenistic remains. The nature of what we found—which we expected to be largely soil or a random array of rocks—would help determine which type of remote sensing technique would be most effective..." http://www.archaeology.org/1205/features/tel_kedesh_mound_upper_galilee_israel.html
An aerial view shows the immense administrative building

An aerial view shows the immense administrative building constructed around 500 B.C. and used until the 2nd century B.C. as it appeared after more than 10 years of excavation. (Courtesy Pascal Partouche, Skyview Photography, Ltd.)

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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-May-2012 at 19:05

Ancient language discovered on clay tablets found amid ruins of 2800 year old Middle Eastern palace


"...Archaeologists have discovered evidence for a previously unknown ancient language – buried in the ruins of a 2800 year old Middle Eastern palace.

The discovery is important because it may help reveal the ethnic and cultural origins of some of history’s first ‘barbarians’ – mountain tribes which had, in previous millennia, preyed on the world’s first great civilizations,  the cultures of early Mesopotamia in what is now Iraq.

Evidence of the long-lost language - probably spoken by a hitherto unknown people from the Zagros Mountains of western Iran – was found by a Cambridge University archaeologist as he deciphered an ancient clay writing tablet unearthed by an international archaeological team excavating an Assyrian imperial governors’ palace in the ancient city of Tushan, south-east Turkey.

The tablet revealed the names of  60 women – probably prisoners-of-war  or victims of an Assyrian forced population transfer programme. But when the Cambridge archaeologist – Dr. John MacGinnis - began to examine the names in detail, he realized that 45 of them bore no resemblance to any of the thousands of ancient Middle Eastern names already known to scholars...."  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/archaeology/ancient-language-discovered-on-clay-tablets-found-amid-ruins-of-2800-year-old-middle-eastern-palace-7728894.html
A detail from the 8th century BC Assyrian clay tablet bearing the 45 mystery names written in cuneiform script which have now been deciphered at Cambridge University.


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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-May-2012 at 19:09
Earliest Known Painting of Maya Astronomical Calendar Discovered.
"...F
or the first time, archaeologists excavating at the large, monumental Maya center of Xultún in Guatemala have uncovered a structure featuring 9th century wall paintings with numbers and calculations related to the Maya calendars, including numerical records of lunar and possibly planetary cycles. The finding predates by several hundred years the heretofore oldest known record of calendars, which were found in the famous Maya bark-paper Codices...."
http://popular-archaeology.com/issue/march-2012/article/earliest-known-painting-of-maya-astronomical-calendar-discovered
Earliest Known Painting of Maya Astronomical Calendar Discovered

Also here:
"...Perhaps most intriguing among the finds were several finds related to astronomical tables, including four long numbers on the east wall that represent a cycle lasting up to 2.5 million days.The east wall is mostly covered by tabulations of black symbols or "glyphs" that map out various astronomical cycles: that of Mars and Venus and the lunar eclipses.

The wall also features red marks that appear to be notes and corrections to the calculations; Dr Saturno said that the scribes "seem to be using it like a blackboard".The Xultun find is the first place that all of the cycles have been found tied mathematically together in one place, representing a calendar that stretches more than 7,000 years into the future.

The Mayan numbering system for dates is a complex one in base-18 and base-20 numbers that, in modern-day terms, would "turn over" at the end of 2012.But Dr Saturno points out that the new finds serve to further undermine the fallacy that this is tantamount to a prediction of the end of the world."The ancient Maya predicted the world would continue, that 7,000 years from now, things would be exactly like this," he said...."http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-18018343


Wall of the Xultun find The preservation of the artwork surprised archaeologists, given the dwelling's shallow depth



Edited by Don Quixote - 10-May-2012 at 19:57
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  Quote tjadams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-May-2012 at 03:33

Largest Known Crocodile Likely Ate Early Man

By Jennifer Viegas|Published May 08, 2012|Discovery News



The largest known crocodile was big enough to swallow a human being and likely terrorized our ancestors two to four million years ago.

Remains of the enormous horned croc, named Crocodylus thorbjarnarsoni, were unearthed in East Africa. The impressive aquatic reptile exceeded 27 feet long and is described in the latest Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.

The croc was the dominant predator of its ecosystem, so there is little doubt that it preyed upon our distant ancestors, especially since remains of Australopithecus(a now-extinct genus of hominids) were found nearby.



Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/05/08/largest-known-crocodile-likely-ate-early-man/#ixzz1ujUYdxYg
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  Quote Centrix Vigilis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-May-2012 at 08:58

Archaeologists in an Uproar Over David-and-Goliath-Era Finds at the Contested Edge of Jerusalem

 

"Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence"

S. T. Friedman


Pilger's law: 'If it's been officially denied, then it's probably true'

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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-May-2012 at 14:36
From "Archeology" online journal:
"...Engravings at the French rock shelter site of Abri Castanet have been dated to 37,000 years ago, making them at least as old as the paintings of the Grotte Chauvet. The Abri Castanet engravings were carved in the limestone ceiling of the shelter, which was probably used by reindeer hunters. “But unlike the Chauvet paintings and engravings, which are deep underground and away from living areas, the engravings and paintings at Castanet are directly associated with everyday life, given their proximity to tools, fireplaces, bone and antler tool production, and ornament workshops,” explained Randall White of New York University...."

"...Anthropologist Pat Shipman of Pen State University thinks that modern humans may have had an advantage over Neanderthals in Europe through the assistance of domesticated dogs. A 27,000-year-old dog burial has been unearthed in the Czech Republic, along with dog teeth that may have been worn as jewelry. Also, dogs are rarely depicted in cave art, suggesting that Paleolithic people viewed them as fellow hunters, rather than game animals. It has been shown that modern humans and dogs are able to communicate with eye contact. Shipman suggests that people may have evolved expressive eyes with highly visible sclera for silent communication while hunting in groups with dogs. “No genetic study has yet confirmed the prevalence or absence of white sclera in Paleolithic modern humans or in Neanderthals. But if the white sclera mutation occurred more often among the former – perhaps by chance – this feature could have enhanced human-dog communication and promoted domestication,” she said...." http://www.archaeology.org/news/



Edited by Don Quixote - 15-May-2012 at 14:37
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  Quote tjadams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 00:52

Complete Tyrannosaurus skeleton to be auctioned

By Wynne Parry|Published May 15, 2012|LiveScience

Tyrannosaurus-bataar-ed

A nearly complete skeleton of a towering Tyrannosaurus bataar is set to go on auction on Sunday (May 20). The skeleton measures some 8-feet (2.4-meters) tall and 24-feet (7.3-meters) long.

This is the first full Tyrannosaurus specimen to go on auction since "Sue," a Tyrannosaurus rex, sold for $8.3 million in 1997, said David Herskowitz, director of Natural History at Heritage Auctions, the auction house conducting the sale.



Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/05/15/rare-tyrannosaurus-skeleton-to-be-auctioned/#ixzz1v0Nynfs9

 



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  Quote tjadams Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 00:53

Female genitalia carvings are Europe's oldest rock art

By Stephanie Pappas|Published May 15, 2012|LiveScience

Bloc-K-vulve-120514

The oldest rock art ever found in Europe reveals an interest in the female form — and the type of décor that the first Europeans preferred for their living spaces.

The new discovery, uncovered at a site called Abri Castanet in France, consists mainly of circular carvings most likely meant to represent the vulva. The carvings were etched into the ceiling of a now-collapsed rock shelter about 37,000 years ago, researchers reported Monday (May 14) in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"It's quotidian art, it's everyday art," study researcher Randall White, an anthropologist at New York University, told LiveScience. "It's over their heads as they're doing everyday, banal sorts of things.



Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/05/14/female-genitalia-carvings-are-europe-oldest-rock-art/#ixzz1v0ONhZuP

 



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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 03:18
Makes sense, since fertility cults are the oldest religion knows to man so far.

Two trepanned skulls from the Middles Ages found in Spain


"...Two skulls with perforations have been exhumed in the area of Gormaz in Soria, Spain by researchers from the universities of Oviedo and Leon. They have been dated to the 13th and 14th centuries – a period in which trepanation was not commonly practised.

Trepanation, an ancient practice

...Trepanation has been around for a very long time. The earliest examples found go back to the beginning of the Neolithic Period some 10,000 years ago. There are even authors who suggest that such iatrogenic practices (induced by physicians) began at the end of both the Palaeolithic Period and the Mesolithic Period some 12,000 years ago.

Nonetheless, little evidence exists for later periods, such as the Middle Ages. The two skulls in Soria trepanned for medical purposes between the 13th and 14th centuries are therefore a surprising finding. They were discovered in the area surrounding the San Miguel hermitage in the area of Gormaz by researchers from the universities of Oviedo and Leon...." http://www.pasthorizonspr.com/index.php/archives/05/2012/two-trepanned-skulls-from-the-middles-ages-found-in-spain

Drawing of the two skulls and their trepanation (above is the female and below is the male). Image: Esther Gómez López

Drawing of the two skulls and their trepanation (above is the female and below is the male). Image: Esther Gómez López

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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 03:21
"...Archaeologists Excavate a Lost Kingdom Buried Beneath Volcanic Ash

In 1980, people began to take notice when workers from a commercial logging company began dredging up pottery fragments and bones in an area near the little village of Pancasila on the island of Sumbawa, Indonesia. Other locals began finding coins, brassware and charred timber in the same region, all buried beneath a thick layer of volcanic deposits. The finds were not far from the foot of the Tambora volcano, a volcano that, in April of 1815, produced the largest eruption in recorded history. In fact, so intense was the eruption, it's atmospheric effects influenced weather patterns across faraway Europe and North America. And in one evening alone, it destroyed at least one entire village kingdom near its feet. 

Acting on the discovery of these finds in 2004, Volcanologist Haraldur Sigurdsson of the University of Rhode Island began investigating the jungle-shrouded area by using Ground Penetrating Radar. He identified a complete house buried under 2-3 metres of pyroclastic flow and surge deposits. Although it was entirely charred, its form was well preserved, making it possible to distinguish beams and bamboo floors. Artifacts found inside the structure included Chinese porcelain, iron tools and copper bowls. Two victims were also discovered; one complete skeleton was found by the hearth in the kitchen area and the second, which was very badly damaged, identifiable only by the leg and a vertebra, was found on the porch. ..."http://popular-archaeology.com/issue/march-2012/article/archaeologists-excavate-a-lost-kingdom-buried-beneath-volcanic-ash

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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 03:25
Archeologists unearth Achaemenid city in northeast Iran

"...“The remains belong to an Achaemenid city spanning an area of more than 110 hectares,” IRNA quoted Mohamad-Javad Jafari of the North Khorasan cultural heritage office as saying.
“Archeological evidence shows that the site had been a residential area from the Iron Age until the Islamic era,” he added saying that the most flourishing time in the history of the site was during the Achaemenid period.

The Riba Mound, where the new discovery was made, also yielded remains of a Parthian castle which was built when Parthia was a political entity in Achaemenid lists of governorates.
Jafari warned about vandalisms and destructions in the area blaming three brick kilns for causing damage to more than 30 percent of the historical site.
The Riba Mound is located three kilometers west of Ashkhaneh in Iran’s North Khorasan Province and will host archeologists until May 20, 2012. ..."http://www.presstv.com/detail/2012/05/14/241162/archeologist-achaemenid-city-northeast-iran/
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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 20:57

The oldest farming village in the Mediterranean islands is discovered in Cyprus


"...The oldest agricultural settlement ever found on a Mediterranean island has been discovered in Cyprus by a team of French archaeologists involving CNRS, the National Museum of Natural History, INRAP, EHESS and the University of Toulouse. Previously it was believed that, due to the island's geographic isolation, the first Neolithic farming societies did not reach Cyprus until a thousand years after the birth of agriculture in the Middle East (ca. 9500 to 9400 BCE). However, the discovery of Klimonas, a village that dates from nearly 9000 years before Christ, proves that early cultivators migrated to Cyprus from the Middle Eastern continent shortly after the emergence of agriculture there, bringing with them wheat as well as dogs and cats...." http://phys.org/news/2012-05-oldest-farming-village-mediterranean-islands.html
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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-May-2012 at 23:01
http://www.stonepages.com/news/archives/004776.html
The Dolmen at Monticello
"...The village of Monticello - near Finale Ligure, in the west of Italy, is located along the western slopes of Gottaro. The dolmen is located in Valeggia, 199 metres above sea level along the northern slopes of Bric delle Pernici.
     The dolmen is made of limestone, about 250 centimetres high, with a horizontal cap stone supported on one side by a single stone, and on the other side by two large stones and a sort of dry wall. The chamber has a maximum height of 1 metre. The cap stone has a transverse V-shaped crack, and the top is eroded, but some erosion could be interpreted as a petroglyph and even as cup marks. A larger depression is similar to those found on the Stone-Altar above Arma Strapatente, and might have had the function of collecting liquid, and therefore a ritual significance. The floor of the chamber has not been probed, since the complex has been considered the result of a landslide, but the arrangement is not typical of a landslide.
     Dolmens and menhirs are not strangers to the Finalese and Subalpine cultural zones, as thought until a few decades ago, when it was believed that the megalithic culture had been arrested without crossing the Alps. The only exception was Puglia, in southern Italy. There the dolmens and other megaliths were attributed to the influx of populations from the Balkan Peninsula, across the Adriatic.
     In the late 1980s, two circular burial mounds were identified near Sanremo, Imperia province, one of which was attributed to the final phase of the Bronze Age. Accordingly, other Ligurian artefacts - especially in the Finalese (the menhir and dolmen of Verezzi, for example) - acquired new importance, and the lack of megalithic remains in Italy could be explained by the change of civilisation over time, resulting in the loss of many sites.
     The creation of megalithic structures, such as menhirs and dolmens, is placed in a period between the end of the fifth millennium at the end of the third millennium BCE, roughly between the Neolithic and the Bronze Ages, and corresponding with that of other megaliths already described by experts and by the author, in the vicinity of Monticello - such as the rudimentary anthropomorphic Stele of 'Pila delle Penne', Plateau of St Bernardino (including the so-called Observatory of Bric Pianarella) - but also other megaliths of Finalese...."
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