The 5,500 years old clay figurines found at community excavations in Vantaa, Finland in summer 2014, were recently scanned with SPECIM’s hyperspectral camera. The imaging revealed that clay in the figurines was similar to clay on the ground at the excavation site. The figurines were scanned with Fenix, the full-spectral sensor installed in the SisuROCK scanner. It is similar to the AisaFENIX, the full-spectral sensor for remote sensing.
Archaeologists’ theory that the bigger of the two figurines would have been used as an oil lamp could not be verified. Spectral signatures of seal blubber, which is still used in oil lamps by indigenous peoples inhabiting the Arctic regions, were absent from the spectral profile of the figurine. Read more.
Specialists from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) in Mexico, have identified eight new sites where figurines, greenstone axes, jadeite, white ceramic bowls and gourds have been found. These sites are located in the Grande and Chica districts of the Guerrero coast (southwestern Mexico), and confirm an Olmec influence in that region.
There is ongoing debate as to whether the earliest peoples in this area were actual Olmec who had migrated, or an indigenous group who were heavily influenced by that culture, especially in the Mexcala River area. Olmec influence can certainly be seen in their cave paintings such as those found in Juxtlahuaca as well as stone tools and jade jewellery. Read more.
MEXICO CITY.- In the southern parts of Sinaloa, a burial of unusual characteristics was discovered, made up of elements from old Occidental Mexico and rich offerings deposited around bone remains.
As the excavation advanced, never seen before archaeological traces surged; informed archaeologist Victor Joel Santos Ramírez, director of the project.
First, there were dozens of miniature figurines. “In no other excavation in Chametla have we found figurines in such numbers and with such rare characteristics, which made us believe that this was an important offering, to wit, we decided to begin a systematic investigation,” he said. Read more.
Following comprehensive investigations carried out by the Tourism and Antiquities Police, members of a gang specialising in illegal excavation work and the looting of antiquities have been caught red-handed.
The gang leader was arrested in his home in Giza’s Abu Sir village, where a collection of 17 authentic Islamic coins, 12 Ancient Egyptian ushabti figurines and a replica statue were found hidden inside an oven.
According to the police report, this collection emerged from illegal excavations carried out by the gang members and a number of villagers in a remote archaeological area in Abu Sir. (source)
Secrets of sixty remarkable clay figurines - up to 1,400-years-old and excavated by archaeologists from The Universities of Ghana and Manchester, and the Ghana Museums and Monuments Board (GMMB)– are to be revealed at an exhibition starting this week (October 25).
The beautiful objects - up to 31cm in height - will take pride of place at the Manchester Museum, part of the University, the first time they will be seen publicly outside Ghana.
The figurines, including two-headed humans, a chameleon, a crocodile and a man on horseback, are thought by the team to have been used to invoke the help of ancestors to cure illnesses. Read more.
LONDON—About 35,000 years ago, prehistoric artists across Europe suddenly discovered the female form—and the art world has never been the same. The explosion of voluptuous female figurines sculpted out of limestone, ivory, and clay directly inspired Picasso and Matisse. Researchers have debated the figurines’ meaning for decades. Now, two scientists think they have the answer. Presenting their work here last week at the European Palaeolithic Conference, they claimed that the objects started off as celebrations of the female form, then later became symbols that tied together a growing human society.
The talk, part of a special exhibition on Ice Age art at London’s British Museum, surveyed the more than 20,000 year-history of female figurines, which are found at dozens of archaeological sites from Russia to France. Read more.
JERUSALEM — Israel’s Antiquities Authority says archeologists have unearthed two 9,500-year-old figurines near Jerusalem that help shed light on religion and society during the stone age.
It says archaeologists unearthed the two rare figurines last week in Tel Motza between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv during a dig ahead of the expansion of a major highway in the area.
One of the objects is shaped like a ram and made of limestone. The other depicts an ox and is made of dolomite. Both are 15 centimeters (5.9 inches) long.
Wednesday’s statement says the figurines could have been either good luck hunting icons or a representation of the animal’s domestication. (source)
The archaeological research team working at Marcahuamachuco, Peru, has announced what it calls the “first important finding” in determining the site’s historical process: a collection of 10 metal figurines and many other ornamental objects, believed to be part of an offering made during the construction of the site.
Jesus Holguin, director of the archaeological team, said that the figurines represent males dressed in hats, earmuffs and clothing. The figurines, some are which are sitting cross-legged, would have been manufactured by applying a thin sheet of metal to a solid cast of stone or wood, then tapping and shaping as required. Among the ornamental objects discovered are earrings, necklaces, tupus (needles), and beads that could have been attached to canvases or banners. Read more.