23 June 2024 The Future is the Product of the Past

40 Skeletons in Giant Jars Found in the Corsica Necropolis

Archaeologists working on the French island of Corsica discovered around 40 ancient graves where persons were buried inside gigantic jars known as Amphora.

The place on the island of Corsica is known as a necropolis, which comes from the ancient Greek for “city of the dead.”

In the first millennium, Corsica was ruled by a number of distinct civilizations. While the objects discovered in the dig look to be Roman in origin, experts warn that they might have been reused by Visigoths or subsequent residents.

The find was uncovered near Ile-Rousse, a town on Corsica’s western coast, by archaeologists from the French National Institute of Preventive Archaeological Research (INRAP).

Ile-Rouse is a peaceful fishing hamlet that’s become something of a tourist draw,  but the excavation reveals more about the area’s ancient inhabitants.

It’s been occupied for at least 6,000 years, but ‘the archaeological indications of previous occupations were rare and fragmentary,’ INRAP said in a statement.

A dozen graves were discovered in the spring of 2019, but excavation in February and March unearthed dozens more with ‘considerable variation in architectural style,’ according to the institution.

Gianr Jars İNRAP
The jars and other materials are of Roman design, but its possible later inhabitants reused them

In the heart of town, researchers began excavating two 6,500-square-foot sites. Between the 4th and 7th centuries, they discovered amphorae, which were used to transport olive oil, wine, and other items across the Mediterranean from Carthage, now Tunisia.

The large vessels served a second purpose here, the institute said, as ‘receptacles for the deceased.’

Normally, an amphora was only used to bury children, but the researchers discovered that adults had also been entombed. In total, 40 people’s skeletons were discovered, buried between the third and sixth centuries.

City of dead corsica
Discovered at Île Rousse on the western coast of Corsica, all of the humans were buried with the deceased’s heads facing west.

During archaeological examinations done in advance of a planned building project, the necropolis was uncovered just behind Ile-parish Rousse’s church, the Church of the Immaculate Conception. Some of the graves were coated with terracotta materials similar to those used for roof tiling in ancient Roman construction, but more research is needed to understand more about the deceased’s identity.

The Romans did occupy Île-Rousse—then known as Agilla—during the era to which the jars have been dated, according to INRAP, although later inhabitants might have reused them after the Romans left.

Corsica, which served as a small but crucial outpost for anybody aiming to dominate Mediterranean sea channels, had a period of considerable instability in the first century. The island was ruled by the Carthaginians until 240 BC when the Romans took over. Agilla was called Rubico Rocega by the Visigoths around 410 AD it passed to the Visigoths.

It was thereafter ruled by the Vandals and Ostrogoths before being annexed by the Byzantine Empire in 536 AD.

‘While it was believed the area was largely deserted, the discovery of the impressively populated Corsica necropolis raises the possibility that population density in the area during the mid-first millennium was greater than had been imagined,’ the institute said.

Given that such necropolises were typically connected with buildings of worship, there might be a lot more to learn.

Source: 9News.com

Related Articles

First Human Traces Buried in an Ancient Gold Mine in Eastern Sahara

2 May 2021

2 May 2021

Some of the earliest signs of human life dating back 1.8 million years have been discovered in an old gold...

2,500-Year-Old Phoenician Shipwreck Being Rescued By Spanish Archaeologists

6 July 2023

6 July 2023

A 2,500-year-old Phoenician shipwreck has been found underwater in the southeastern Spanish region of Murcia. An extraordinary Phoenician shipwreck dating...

A Little-Known Civilization in the Americas Built Pyramids as Old as Ancient Egypt

26 June 2022

26 June 2022

Considered the cradle of civilization in the Americas, the Sacred City of Caral-Supe is a 5000-year-old archaeological site, situated on...

Swiss Scientists Identify Arrowhead Made from a Meteoritic Iron

1 August 2023

1 August 2023

In a recent study of archaeological collections in the Lake Biel region in Switzerland, an arrowhead from the Bronze Age,...

A 900-year-old Crusader sword was found by a diver off Israel’s Carmen coast

18 October 2021

18 October 2021

A meter-long sword dating back to the Crusader period was found by an amateur diver on the seabed off the...

In Peru, Archaeologists Discovered an Ancient Dance Floor that can Imitate Rumbling of Thunder

21 July 2023

21 July 2023

Archaeologists have discovered an ancient “sounding” dance floor in Peru that was designed to create a drum-like sound when stepped...

After 1,300 years, water to again flow from monumental fountain in the City of Gladiators in Turkey

30 December 2022

30 December 2022

The approximately 2,000-year-old monumental fountain in the ancient city of Kibyra in Golhisar, Burdur in southwestern Turkey will start flowing...

Analyses of a 2,900-year-old iron chisel from Portugal revealed surprisingly high-quality steel

22 September 2023

22 September 2023

Steel tools were believed to have only become widespread in Europe during the Roman Empire, but a recent study shows...

An archaeological dig at Govan Old Churchyard revealed a remarkable new find: an early medieval ‘Govan Warrior’ stone

19 September 2023

19 September 2023

An archaeological excavation in the churchyard at Govan Old Parish Church in Glasgow, a port city on the River Clyde...

A New Hypothesis Tries to Explain What Triggers People’s Big Brains

14 March 2021

14 March 2021

The big brain is the decisive feature of our species. Not only are they the most complex organs in the...

1419-year-old Islamic inscription found in Saudi Arabia

13 June 2022

13 June 2022

Saudi Arabia has announced a new archaeological discovery in Makkah. The Islamic inscription found dates back 1419 years to the...

Ancient reliefs become target of treasure hunters

7 January 2024

7 January 2024

An academic has cautioned that urgent protection is required for the historic Adamkayalar (Men of Rock) reliefs in the southern...

‘Australia’s silk road’: the quarries of Mithaka Country dating back 2100 years

4 April 2022

4 April 2022

In Queensland’s remote Channel Country of red dirt and gibber rock, traditional owners and archaeologists have unearthed what researchers have...

The 1,000-year-old Church found under a cornfield in Germany

2 July 2021

2 July 2021

The foundation walls of the large church of the rediscovered Royal Palace of Helfta in Eisleben in the German state...

In southern Turkey, the remains of a Roman villa whose floor was decorated with geometrically patterned mosaics were unearthed during construction

13 July 2022

13 July 2022

Workers working to lay the foundation of a new building in the Defne district of Hatay, southern Turkey, by accident...