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The Italian son of a barber. A failed hydraulic engineer. A giant who performed feats of strength and agility in the circus. Giovanni Belzoni (1778-1824) was all of these before going on to become one of the most controversial figures in the history of Egyptian archaeology. A man of exceptional size with an ego of comparable proportions, he procured for the British Museum some of its largest and still awe-inspiring treasures. Today, however, the typical museum visitor knows nothing of Belzoni, and many modern archaeologists dismiss him as an ignorant vandal. In this captivating new biography, Ivor Noel Hume re-creates an early nineteenth century in which there was no established archaeological profession, only enormous opportunity. Belzoni landed in Egypt, where he was unsuccessful in selling a hydraulic machine of his own invention, and came under the patronage of diplomat Henry Salt, who convinced him to travel to Thebes in search of artifacts. Among the many treasures Belzoni would bring back was the seven-ton stone head of Ramesses II, the "Young Memnon". The book includes gripping accounts of Belzoni's wildly productive, and physically brutal, expeditions, as well as an unforgettable portrait of his wife, Sarah, who suffered the hardships of the Egyptian deserts and later bore the brunt of the disillusionment that came with the declining popular perception of her husband. Including numerous illustrations, many in colour, this volume brings one of archaeology's most fascinating figures vividly to life.
The Chewa are the largest ethnic group in Malawi, representing a third of the population of approximately 19 million, and their language, Chichewa, is Malawi's national language. Yet the last book on the history of this group was published in 1944, and was based on oral history, or tradition. As with much African history, it started to be recorded only in the late 19th century. This is the first book to use not only oral history, but also documents written by early Portuguese explorers, traders and government officials, as well as archaeology, to piece together the early history of the Chewa. The author is an archaeologist, who discovered the first major Chewa settlement, Mankhamba, near the southern part of Lake Malawi. His excavations have enabled a more scientific chronology of the migrations of the Chewa into what is today Malawi and have provided physical proof of their early history as well as their material and spiritual culture and way of life. There are several historians and archaeologists working in the area of early Malawian history, but their work remains largely in the domain of academia and is inaccessible to the general public. Professor Yusuf Juwayeyi has written and documented a very readable history of the Chewa as revealed by archaeology, and demonstrates the value of combining oral tradition together with archaeology to arrive at a more accurate picture of the history of a pre-literate society. With many illustrations, this book will be appealing not only to historians, archaeologists and anthropologists, but also the general reader interested in African history and in Malawi's history in particular.
Taking an archaeological perspective on the past, Jeffrey S. Girard traces native human habitation in northwest Louisiana from the end of the last Ice Age, through the formation of the Caddo culture in the tenth century BCE, to the early nineteenth century. Employing the results of recent scientific investigations, The Caddos and Their Ancestors depicts a distinct and dynamic population spanning from precolonial times to the dawn of the modern era. Girard grounds his research in the material evidence that defined Caddo culture long before the appearance of Europeans in the late seventeenth century. Reliance solely on documented observations by explorers and missionaries- which often reflect a Native American population with a static past- propagates an incomplete account of history. By using specific archaeological techniques, Girard reveals how the Caddos altered their lives to cope with ever-changing physical and social environments across thousands of years. This illuminating approach contextualizes the remnants of houses, mounds, burials, tools, ornaments, and food found at Native American sites in northwest Louisiana. Through ample descriptions and illustrations of these archaeological finds, Girard deepens understanding of the social organization, technology, settlement, art, and worldviews of this resilient society. This long-overdue examination of an often-overlooked cultural force provides a thorough yet concise history of the 14,000 years the Caddo people and their predecessors survived and thrived in what is now Louisiana.
Why did the Vikings sail to England? Were they indiscriminate raiders, motivated solely by bloodlust and plunder? One narrative, the stereotypical one, might have it so. But locked away in the buried history of the British Isles are other, far richer and more nuanced, stories; and these hidden tales paint a picture very different from the ferocious pillagers of popular repute. In this book, Eleanor Parker unlocks secrets that point to more complex motivations within the marauding army that in the late-9th century voyaged to the shores of eastern England in its sleek, dragon-prowed longships. Exploring legends from forgotten medieval texts, and across the varied Anglo-Saxon regions, she depicts Vikings who came not just to raid but also to settle personal feuds, intervene in English politics and find a place to call home. Native tales reveal the links to famous Vikings like Ragnar Lothbrok and his sons, Cnut, and Havelok the Dane. Each myth shows how the legacy of the newcomers can still be traced in landscape, place-names and local history. Meticulously researched and elegantly argued, Dragon Lords uncovers the remarkable degree to which England is Viking to its core.
The Mediterranean's Iron Age period was one of its most dynamic eras. Stimulated by the movement of individuals and groups on an unprecedented scale, the first half of the first millennium BCE witnesses the development of Mediterranean-wide practices, including related writing systems, common features of urbanism, and shared artistic styles and techniques, alongside the evolution of wide-scale trade. Together, these created an engaged, interlinked and interactive Mediterranean. We can recognise this as the Mediterranean's first truly globalising era. This volume introduces students and scholars to contemporary evidence and theories surrounding the Mediterranean from the eleventh century until the end of the seventh century BCE to enable an integrated understanding of the multicultural and socially complex nature of this incredibly vibrant period.
This is a scientific expoe that will shatter our knowledge of ancient human history. Scholars have told us that the first civilisation on Earth emerged in a land called Sumer some 6000 years ago. New archaeological and scientific discoveries made by Michael Tellinger, Johan Heine and a team of leading scientists, show that the Sumerians and even the Egyptians inherited all their knowledge from an earlier civilisation that lived at the southern tip of Africa more than 200,000 years ago...mining gold.
These were also the people who carved the first Horus bird, the first Sphinx, built the first pyramids and built an accurate stone calendar right in the heart of it all. "Adam's Calendar" is the flagship among millions of circular stone ruins, ancient roads, agricultural terraces and thousands of ancient mines, left behind by a vanished civilisation which we now call the First People. They carved detailed images into the hardest rock, worshipped the sun, and are the first to carve an image of the Egyptian Ankh - key of life and universal knowledge, 200,000 years before the Egyptians came to light.
This book graphically exposes these discoveries and will be the catalyst for rewriting our ancient human history. The book is a continuation of Tellinger's previous books Slave Species of God and Adam's Calendar which have become favourites with readers in over 20 countries.
An Ice Age cannibal's skull cup, a hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold, a seventeenth century witch bottle... anthropologist Mary-Ann Ochota unearths more than 70 of Britain's most intriguing ancient places and artefacts and explores the mysteries behind them. Britain is full of ancient wonders: not grand like the Egyptian pyramids, but small, strange places and objects that hint at a deep and enduring relationship with the mystic. Secret Britain offers an expertly guided tour of Britain's most fascinating mysteries: archaeological sites and artefacts that take us deep into the lives of the many different peoples who have inhabited the island over the millennia. Illustrated with beautiful photographs, the wonders include buried treasure, stone circles and geoglyphs, outdoor places of worship, caves filled with medieval carvings, and enigmatic tools to divine the future. Explore famous sites such as Stonehenge and Glastonbury, but also discover: The Lindow Man bog body, showing neatly trimmed hair and manicured fingernails despite having been killed 2,000 years ago The Uffington White Horse, a horse-shaped geoglyph maintained by an unbroken chain of people for 3,000 years A roman baby's bronze cockerel, an underworld companion for a two-year-old who died sometime between AD 100-200 St Leonard's Ossuary, home to 1,200 skulls and a vast stack of human bones made up of around 2,000 people who died from the 1200s to the 1500s The Wenhaston Doom painting, an extraordinary medieval depiction of the Last Judgement painted on a chancel arch Explore Britain's secret history and discover why these places still resonate today.
If you drive through Mpumalanga with an eye on the landscape flashing by, you may see, near the sides of the road and further away on the hills above and in the valleys below, fragments of building in stone as well as sections of stone-walling breaking the grass cover. Endless stone circles, set in bewildering mazes and linked by long stone passages, cover the landscape stretching from Ohrigstad to Carolina, connecting over 10 000 square kilometres of the escarpment into a complex web of stone-walled homesteads, terraced fields and linking roads. Oral traditions recorded in the early twentieth century named the area Bokoni - the country of the Koni people. Few South Africans or visitors to the country know much about these settlements, and why today they are deserted and largely ignored. A long tradition of archaeological work which might provide some of the answers remains cloistered in universities and the knowledge vacuum has been filled by a variety of exotic explanations - invoking ancient settlers from India or even visitors from outer space - that share a common assumption that Africans were too primitive to have created such elaborate stone structures. Forgotten World defies the usual stereotypes about backward African farming methods and shows that these settlements were at their peak between 1500 and 1820, that they housed a substantial population, organised vast amounts of labour for infrastructural development, and displayed extraordinary levels of agricultural innovation and productivity. The Koni were part of a trading system linked to the coast of Mozambique and the wider world of Indian Ocean trade beyond. Forgotten World tells the story of Bokoni through rigorous historical and archaeological research, and lavishly illustrates it with stunning photographic images.
A new narrative history of the Viking Age, interwoven with exploration of the physical remains and landscapes that the Vikings fashioned and walked: their rune-stones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields. To many, the word 'Viking' brings to mind red scenes of rape and pillage, of marauders from beyond the sea rampaging around the British coastline in the last gloomy centuries before the Norman Conquest. It is true that Britain in the Viking Age was a turbulent, violent place. The kings and warlords who have impressed their memories on the period revel in names that fire the blood and stir the imagination: Svein Forkbeard and Edmund Ironside, Ivar the Boneless and Alfred the Great, Erik Bloodaxe and Edgar the Pacifier amongst many others. Evidence for their brutality, their dominance, their avarice and their pride is still unearthed from British soil with stunning regularity. But this is not the whole story. In Viking Britain, Thomas Williams has drawn on his experience as project curator of the British Museum exhibition of Vikings: Life and Legend to show how the people we call Vikings came not just to raid and plunder, but to settle, to colonize and to rule. The impact on these islands was profound and enduring, shaping British social, cultural and political development for hundreds of years. Indeed, in language, literature, place-names and folklore, the presence of Scandinavian settlers can still be felt, and their memory - filtered and refashioned through the writings of people like J.R.R. Tolkien, William Morris and G.K.Chesterton - has transformed the western imagination. This remarkable book makes use of new academic research and first-hand experience, drawing deeply from the relics and landscapes that the Vikings and their contemporaries fashioned and walked: their runestones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields, poems and chronicles. The book offers a vital evocation of a forgotten world, its echoes in later history and its implications for the present.
The past few years have seen a revolution in our ability to map whole genome DNA from ancient humans. With the ancient DNA revolution, combined with rapid genome mapping of present human populations, has come remarkable insights into our past. This important new data has clarified and added to our knowledge from archaeology and anthropology, helped resolve long-existing controversies, challenged long-held views, and thrown up some remarkable surprises. The emerging picture is one of many waves of ancient human migrations, so that all populations existing today are mixes of ancient ones, as well as in many cases carrying a genetic component from Neanderthals, and, in some populations, Denisovans. David Reich, whose team has been at the forefront of these discoveries, explains what the genetics is telling us about ourselves and our complex and often surprising ancestry. Gone are old ideas of any kind of racial 'purity', or even deep and ancient divides between peoples. Instead, we are finding a rich variety of mixtures. Reich describes the cutting-edge findings from the past few years, and also considers the sensitivities involved in tracing ancestry, with science sometimes jostling with politics and tradition. He brings an important wider message: that we should celebrate our rich diversity, and recognize that every one of us is the result of a long history of migration and intermixing of ancient peoples, which we carry as ghosts in our DNA. What will we discover next?
The Art and Archeology of Ancient Greece is an introductory-level textbook for students with little or no background in ancient art. Arranged chronologically in broad swathes of time, from the Bronze and Iron Ages through the Geometric, Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic periods, and concluding with the Roman conquest of the Greek world, the textbook focuses on Greek art but also incorporates Near Eastern, Etruscan, and Roman objects. Judith M. Barringer examines a variety of media, analyzing marble and bronze sculpture, public architecture, and vase painting, as well as coins, domestic architecture, mosaics, terracotta figurines and reliefs, jewelry, and wall painting. This book adopts an approach that considers objects and monuments within their cultural contexts. * More than 500 illustrations, with over 400 in color and 13 maps, including specially commissioned photographs, maps, plans, and reconstructions * Includes text boxes, chapter summaries and timelines, and detailed glossary * Looks at Greek art from perspectives of both art history and archaeology, giving students an understanding of the historical and everyday context of art objects
From Maes Howe in Orkney to Stonehenge and souther England, an astonishing theme recurs in Britain's neolitihc landscapes. 'The Silbury Revelation' explains how Britain's most mysterious monument was dedicated to the same theme, and why Silbuty Hill is emlematic of an overthrown stone age religion.
Viking Britain author Thomas Williams returns with a brief history of the interaction between the Vikings and the British to tell the story of the occupation of London. The Vikings remoulded the world, changed the language, and upended the dynamics of power and trade. Monasteries and settlements burned, ancient dynasties were extinguished. And nowhere in these islands saw more aggression than London. Between 842 and 1016, the city was subjected repeatedly to serious assault. In this short history, bestselling historian Thomas Williams recounts the profound impact Viking raiders from the North had on London. Delving into London's darkest age, he charts how the city was transformed in this period by immigrants and natives, kings and commoners, into the fulcrum of national power and identity. London emerged as a hub of trade, production and international exchange, a financial centre, a political prize, a fiercely independent and often intractable cauldron of spirited and rowdy townsfolk: a place that, a thousand years ago, already embodied much of what London was to become and still remains. This remarkable book takes the reader into a city of spectres, to its ancient past, to timeworn street names hidden beneath concrete underpasses, to the crypts of old churches, to a stretch of the old river bank, or the depths of museum collections. Nothing is lost in the city. And memories of the Vikings hover like a miasma in these places, blowing across the mud and shingle on the Thames foreshore - ghosts of Viking London.
Walk into any European museum today and you will see the curated spoils of Empire. They sit behind plate glass: dignified, tastefully lit. Accompanying pieces of card offer a name, date and place of origin. They do not mention that the objects are all stolen. Few artefacts embody this history of rapacious and extractive colonialism better than the Benin Bronzes - a collection of thousands of metal plaques and sculptures depicting the history of the Royal Court of the Obas of Benin City, Nigeria. Pillaged during a British naval attack in 1897, the loot was passed on to Queen Victoria, the British Museum and countless private collections. The story of the Benin Bronzes sits at the heart of a heated debate about cultural restitution, repatriation and the decolonisation of museums. In The Brutish Museum, Dan Hicks makes a powerful case for the urgent return of such objects, as part of a wider project of addressing the outstanding debt of colonialism.
This unique book provides the student of Roman history with an accessible and detailed introduction to Roman and provincial coinage in the late Republic and early Empire in the context of current historical themes and debates. Almost two hundred different coins are illustrated at double life size, with each described in detail, and technical Latin and numismatic terms are explained. Chapters are arranged chronologically, allowing students to quickly identify material relevant to Julius Caesar, the second triumvirate, the relationship between Antony and Cleopatra, and the Principate of Augustus. Iconography, archaeological contexts, and the economy are clearly presented. A diverse array of material is brought together in a single volume to challenge and enhance our understanding of the transition from Republic to Empire.
The Levant - modern Lebanon, southern Syria, Jordan, Israel and Palestine - is one of the most intensively excavated regions of the world. This richly documented and illustrated survey offers a state-of-the-art description of the formative phase of Levantine societies, as they perfected the Mediterranean village economy and began to interact with neighboring civilizations in Egypt and Syria, on the way to establishing their first towns and city-state polities. Citing numerous finds and interpretive approaches, Greenberg offers a new narrative of social and cultural development, emulation, resistance and change, illustrating how Levantine communities translated broader movements of the Near Eastern and Mediterranean Bronze Age - the emergence of states, international trade, elite networks and imperial ambitions - into a uniquely Levantine idiom.
In the past, an excavated musket ball might simply have been catalogued as either a ""spherical lead bullet"" or an ""impacted bullet."" But each recovered ball, far from being a mere lump of lead, is a part of history and has a story to tell. With the help of new equipment and research techniques, and an increase in the number of discoveries, these narratives can finally contribute exacting detail to the historical record. Battlefield archaeologist Daniel M. Sivilich provides readers with the tools and techniques to unlock the stories of small shot in this book, the first definitive guide to identifying musket balls, from the oldest formed to those fired in the early nineteenth century. Musket Ball and Small Shot Identification: A Guide traces the history of musket balls and small shot, and explores their uses as lethal projectiles and in nonlethal alterations. Sivilich asks - and answers - a variety of questions to demonstrate how a musket ball found in a military context can help to interpret the site: Was it fired? What did it hit? What type of gun is it associated with? Has it been chewed, and if so, by whom or what? Was it hammered into gaming pieces? By equipping historians and archaeologists with the information necessary for answering these questions, Sivilich's accessible work opens new views into firing lines, casualty areas, and military camps. It dispels long-held misperceptions about lead shot having been bitten by humans, offers examples of shot altered to improve lethality, and discusses balls made of materials other than lead, such as pewter. Coupling detailed analysis with more than 300 color and black-and-white illustrations for comparison and identification, this guide will prove indispensable to historians, battlefield archeologists, and collectors. It is a critical resource for understanding the full story of firepower.
Almost as soon as the last shot was fired in the Battle of the Little Bighorn, the battlefield became an archaeological site. For many years afterward, as fascination with the famed 1876 fight intensified, visitors to the area scavenged the many relics left behind. It took decades, however, before researchers began to tease information from the battle's debris--and the new field of battlefield archaeology began to emerge. In "Uncovering History," renowned archaeologist Douglas D. Scott offers a comprehensive account of investigations at the Little Bighorn, from the earliest collecting efforts to early-twentieth-century findings.
Artifacts found on a field of battle and removed without context or care are just relics, curiosities that arouse romantic imagination. When investigators recover these artifacts in a systematic manner, though, these items become a valuable source of clues for reconstructing battle events. Here Scott describes how detailed analysis of specific detritus at the Little Bighorn--such as cartridge cases, fragments of camping equipment and clothing, and skeletal remains--have allowed researchers to reconstruct and reinterpret the history of the conflict. In the process, he demonstrates how major advances in technology, such as metal detection and GPS, have expanded the capabilities of battlefield archaeologists to uncover new evidence and analyze it with greater accuracy.
Through his broad survey of Little Bighorn archaeology across a span of 130 years, Scott expands our understanding of the battle, its protagonists, and the enduring legacy of the battlefield as a national memorial.
Hong Kong was first captured on camera when the British arrived to lay claim to its 'fragrant harbour' in 1841. Its fascinating history has been documented through photography ever since - from its rapid expansion as a Crown Colony to its handover to China in 1997 and its present status as one of the world's leading international financial centres. Pairing rare and previously unpublished photographs with contemporary views taken from the same location, Hong Kong Then and Now highlights the rich and varied history of this constantly evolving metropolis, from Victoria Harbour, the Hong Kong Club and the Star Ferry to Kowloon Walled CIty, Chek Lap Kok Airport and the gleaming skyscrapers of its central banking district. Sites include: Victoria Harbour, the Peak, the Star Ferry Pier, Man Ho Temple, Ladder Street, Queen's Road Central, Hong Kong Club, Prince's Building, HSBC, Noonday Gun, Happy Valley Racecourse, Tiger Balm Garden, Peninsula Hotel, Kai Tak Airport, Kowloon Walled City, Shenzhen, Repulse Bay, Chek Lap Kok Airport, St. Paul's (Macau).
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