Buku Archaeology From Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past by Sarah Parcak
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Archaeology From Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past by Sarah Parcak

Author:Sarah Parcak

Language: eng

Format: epub

Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.

Published: 2019-07-08T23:00:00+00:00

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Archaeology From Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past by Sarah Parcak

Upmarket Afterlife Property

Like other Middle Kingdom tombs that aimed high—even higher than the nomarchs of the Old Kingdom—this tomb had, when new, sought to imitate a pyramid’s front driveway. The wish list for the wealthy began with a mud-brick causeway marching up from the Nile floodwaters to the tomb.32 Brilliant white with paint or limestone, a chapel might await offerings outside the plastered entryway, before a wooden door presented the visitor with the image and name of the illustrious tomb owner.

Inside, a dim hall might be cut into the gebel, where six columns held up the roof, and the tomb owner frowned out of the shadowed wall decoration. Tomb shafts might open into the floor of the hall or the forecourt. At the back, three niches sank even further into the rock, housing statues of the deceased, surrounded by his carved biography. All this, so that his body, possessions, name, and achievements live forever. And this tomb owner had ordered everything in the ancient tomb catalogue.

 

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Archaeology From Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past by Sarah Parcak

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Archaeology From Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past by Sarah Parcak

 

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Archaeology From Space: How the Future Shapes Our Past by Sarah Parcak

Author:Sarah Parcak , Date: July 10, 2019

,Views: 69

Author:Sarah Parcak

Language: eng

Format: epub

Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.

Published: 2019-07-08T23:00:00+00:00
Upmarket Afterlife Property

Like other Middle Kingdom tombs that aimed high—even higher than the nomarchs of the Old Kingdom—this tomb had, when new, sought to imitate a pyramid’s front driveway. The wish list for the wealthy began with a mud-brick causeway marching up from the Nile floodwaters to the tomb.32 Brilliant white with paint or limestone, a chapel might await offerings outside the plastered entryway, before a wooden door presented the visitor with the image and name of the illustrious tomb owner.

Inside, a dim hall might be cut into the gebel, where six columns held up the roof, and the tomb owner frowned out of the shadowed wall decoration. Tomb shafts might open into the floor of the hall or the forecourt. At the back, three niches sank even further into the rock, housing statues of the deceased, surrounded by his carved biography. All this, so that his body, possessions, name, and achievements live forever. And this tomb owner had ordered everything in the ancient tomb catalogue.

But time doesn’t care too much for the aspirations of the wealthy. Only the door’s stone hinge socket remained, and the hall was open to the sky. Seemingly because of quarrying and earthquakes, the roof had collapsed. Nature, it seemed, had stripped the tomb owner’s name from the walls: maybe a natural catastrophe in antiquity explained the incredible destruction we realized we were seeing. Barely a hieroglyph of the rich decoration abutted another.

But modern sand filled the three niches, the hallway, and the causeway, strewn throughout with 21st-century rubbish. It seemed modern looters had also played their role in its damage.

Our Egyptian colleagues reported that they had recently chased some away and recovered inscribed limestone blocks. We suddenly had hope of some sort of identification … And then our colleagues showed us the photographs. The blocks provided the names of the tomb owner’s five sons, but not him—or her.

Excavated stone fragments we found had circular-saw marks, showing where the reliefs that would have given us answers had been stolen, and the meters of debris spoke of the ministry’s desperate backfilling to stop the thieves. We dug down, to sift facts from the chaos, and the biography of the tomb, if not the owner, took clearer shape.

At the back of the hall, the gebel had thwarted the architects’ grand plans: the builders had completed the center and right niches but apparently stopped work on the left when they ran into the same weak limestone that eventually brought down the roof. Then, on a wall of the central niche, where the tomb owner would have walked into the world of the living, we found that his image had been hacked out by hundreds of pick strokes, the shape of his kilt and legs a hatched scar in the artwork’s smooth surface. Earthquakes cause destruction, but not with a pick, and it is not a modern looter’s habit to ruin what can be sold.

In every shovelful we cleared, the beauty of what had been destroyed shone brighter. Gorgeous

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