Archaeology News Update for 8 February 2009

Each sunday we compile the best news on the net and post the stories here for your eyes.  Here’s what’s happening this week.


So not sexy… Archaeologists lose their jobs as recession bites

Archaeology in Britain is in “serious crisis” because of the recession-hit building industry, according to those in the profession.

By the end of the year around one in five of the country’s 7,000 archaeologists are expected to have lost their jobs, experts believe.

The profession has expanded rapidly in recent years thanks to legislation that forced developers to pay for digs.

But now jobs are going because so many construction projects are being put on hold.

In the last quarter of 2008, 345 lost their jobs, according to to the Institute for Archaeologists.

This year another thousand are likely to go, according to Mike Pitts, editor of British Archaeology magazine. (Read more…)

You heard it kids, the recession now officially sucks!

Next, exciting news for all you Egyptologists and the half dozen people that thought the third Mummy movie was good.

30 mummies found in newly discovered tomb in Egypt

CAIRO (AP) — A storehouse of 30 Egyptians mummies has been unearthed inside a 2,600-year-old tomb, in a new round of excavations at the vast necropolis of Saqqara outside Cairo, archeologists said Monday.

The tomb was located at the bottom of a 36 foot (11-meter) deep shaft, announced Egypt’s top archaeologist Zahi Hawass and eight of the mummies were in sarcophagi, while the rest had been placed in niches along the wall.

Hawass described the discovery as a “storeroom for mummies,” dating to 640 B.C. and the 26th Dynasty, which was Egypt’s last independent kingdom before it were overthrown by a succession of foreign conquerors beginning with the Persians.

The tomb was discovered at an even more ancient site dating back to 4,300-year-old 6th Dynasty.  (Read more…)

I’m starting to think Zahi Hawass is Egypt’s only archaeologist.

And finally…

Mythic Birthplace of Zeus Said Found

The Greek god of thunder and lightning had Earthly beginnings, and scientists think they finally know where.

Ancient Greeks first worshipped the omnipotent Zeus at a remote altar on Mount Lykaion, a team of Greek and American archaeologists now think. During a recent dig at the site, the researchers found ceremonial goods commonly used in cult activity and dated at over three millennia old, making them the earliest known “appearance” of Zeus in Greece. (Read more…)

That’s all for now.  If anything breaks during the week, you’ll see it here.  Otherwise, more news next Sunday!

Got a hot tip?  Workign on something sexy cool in the world of archaeology and want to tell the world?  Contact and tell us what you’ve got!


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