Monday, August 03, 2009

Archaeology is cool

A warrior from the 3rd millenium BC has been found at the beach at Nettuno, south of Rome,

The bones of a man were found with an arrow embedded in the ribs of the upper chest prompting speculation he had been killed in battle.

However adding to the mystery is the fact that he was found buried along with several ceramic jars and other flint arrow heads suggesting he was given a burial...

During the flight officials noted a hole in the ground which they believed could have been a tomb and they were proved right when colleagues sent to the area found the bones.

"It is also interesting as the skeleton was found with an arrow in the ribs suggesting he may have been killed maybe in combat or murdered but he was also found with six ceramic vases.

"Usually this would be associated with some form of official funeral ceremony but to be honest we just don't know and extensive tests will be carried out on the bones and we hope to build up a picture of what Nello's life was like 4,500 years ago."

Carabinieri art squad official Raffaele Mancino said Friday that the warrior was likely killed by an arrow that was found among his ribs. He says there was also a hole in the back of the skull.

The warrior is nicknamed "Nello" after the archaeologist who found him in May as art hunters were making a routine check of the region's archaeological areas. The bones were found along with six vases and two daggers.

And wait,

the "Carabinieri art squad"???

For those who don't live here, the Carabinieri are the military police. More or less analagous to the RCMP.

Only in Italy would the national military police have an "art squad" whose job it is to do archaeological excavations. I can see them running around catching people who try to pinch Caravaggios, but doing the actual archaeology work?

What a country.

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