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Archaeologists discover ancient Arabian highways

A keyhole-shaped tomb adjacent to the funeral street of Alheit Oasis.Credit: University of Western Australia

Archaeologists at the University of Western Australia said that people who lived in northwestern Arabia in the early to mid-Bronze Age were “funerals”, a long-distance corridor connecting the oasis and pastures, adjacent to thousands of elaborate burial monuments. I discovered that I built the “Road of the Road”.


Dr. Matthew Dalton of the UWA School of Humanities is the lead author of the findings published in the journal. Holocene..

“Funeraly Avenue was the main highway network of the time, and people living on the Arabian Peninsula 4,500 years ago were much more socially and economically interconnected than we thought earlier. “It shows,” said Dr. Dalton.

The UWA team, working under AlUla’s Royal Commission, used satellite imagery, helicopter-based aerial photography, ground surveys, and archaeological surveys to find and analyze funeral paths.

The team has a boulevard on an area of ​​160,000 square kilometers, with more than 17,800 tailed “pendant” tombs recorded in major research areas in Alura and Kyber counties in Saudi Arabia, of which about 11,000 form part of the funeral street. Did.

They find that funeral monuments are most concentrated on these boulevards near permanent water sources, and the boulevard direction is where the population moves between major oases such as Kyber, Alura, and Timer. Indicates that they have been used for.

The small road disappears into the landscape surrounding the oasis. This suggests that this route was also used to move herds of livestock to nearby pastures during the rainy season.

“These oases, especially Kyber, show some of the most dense concentrations of funeral monuments known around the world,” said Dr. Dalton.

“The vast number of Bronze Age tombs built around them suggests that the population had already begun to settle more permanently in these advantageous locations at this point.”

Dr. Hugh Thomas, also a project director at UWA’s School of Humanities, said the study would be a tremendous year for the project.

“A paper published in 2021 helped demonstrate that in ancient times Alura and Haibal were characterized by a rich and dynamic professional landscape,” said Dr. Thomas.

“Archaeological discoveries from these regions have the potential to significantly change our understanding of the early history of the Middle East.”


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For more information:
Matthew Dalton et al, Mid-Holocene “Funeral Street” in Northwestern Arabia, Holocene (2021). DOI: 10.1177 / 09596836211060497

Quote: Archaeologist discovers an ancient highway in Arabia (January 14, 2022) January 14, 2022 https://phys.org/news/2022-01-archaeologists-ancient-highways-arabia.html Get

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Archaeologists discover ancient Arabian highways

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