A person always tries to learn more about his ancestors, and about the past civilizations. Such an opportunity is provided by archaeologists who discover different artifacts. These findings allow us to take a very different look at the events of old times. Let’s talk about the most famous historical finds in the history of mankind.
Terracotta Army Qin Shihuandi.
Farmer Yan near the town of Xi’an in 1947 drilled an artesian well, when suddenly came across an ancient burial. In the 3rd century BC, the construction of the tomb for the emperor Shihuandi began. The complex was built by 700 thousand peasants, the same work lasted for 38 years. A great but despotic emperor who united the country and linked all the parts of the Chinese wall together was buried here along with many jewels, 48 concubines and an entire terracotta army of 8,000 sculptures. Archaeologists were able to gather together all the parts of this unique burial. Scientists on dust samples came to the conclusion that warriors and horses were created in different parts of the country. At the same time, horses were made near the necropolis, apparently to make it easier to transport 200 kilogram sculptures. The weight of human figures is about 135 kilograms. Each sculpture is unique in its appearance. As early as the 21st century statues of officials, acrobats and musicians were also discovered. Despite such impressive discoveries, the tomb of the emperor himself was never found. The terracotta army helped the scientists understand how the real army functioned under the Qin dynasty. Looking at the soldiers you can determine their kind of troops, what weapons they used. In the graves near Sian were perfectly preserved bronze swords, halberds, axes, arrowheads and other weapons. Scrolls of the Dead Sea.
These documents are ancient collections of Jewish manuscripts found in several places in the northwest of the Dead Sea. The story began in 1947, when shepherds accidentally discovered eight earthen vessels with scrolls in one of the caves. As a result, scientists until 1956 were able to detect such finds in 10 more caves, in the hands of researchers there were more than 800 scrolls. It turned out that they belong to 167 BC. – 237 AD. and contain the fragments of the Old Testament, as well as previously unknown books and psalms. It is believed that in this way there was hidden a whole library of the Jewish sect of the Essenes. This discovery is considered the greatest discovery of manuscripts of all time. The fact is that these records of the Old Testament are older by almost 1000 years of those that were found earlier. It became possible to confirm the authenticity of the later Jewish texts, to prove that the roots of Christianity lie in Judaism. It is noteworthy that no items were found in the caves. But the scrolls were able to give a clear idea of the life of the Jews at that time.
Royal library of Ashurbanipal.
In the middle of the 19th century, during the excavations in the city of Nineveh in Mesopotamia, the remains of the library of the great king of Assyria were found. Ashurbanipal was the last great king of this country, a skilled diplomat and manager. His passion was collecting texts, from the whole country in his library came written monuments. At one time it was one of the largest storages, in which there were tens of thousands of texts on clay tablets. These were the royal decrees, historical chronicles, mythology and religion, contracts and decrees, letters and conspiracies, hymns to the gods, texts on medicine, astrology and just literature. Some parts of the literary find contain the Epic of Gilgamesh, the myth of Adap and other literary creations of that time. In 612 BC. Nineveh was destroyed by the alliance of the Babylonians, Scythians and Medes, the palace was burnt, and some of the clay tablets were simply caked. For several centuries these lands were under the occupation of the invaders. But the royal library was not lost, she was able to tell scientists a lot of useful information about the ancient inhabitants of the Middle East.The most important text was “The Epic of Gilgamesh” – a document created 4,000 years ago and telling about almost all the rulers of the ancient East.
Tomb of Tutankhamun.
In November 1922, the British Egyptologist Howard Carter, who conducted excavations in the Egyptian Valley of the Kings, discovered a tomb virtually untouched by robbers. The search for the burial of Pharaoh Tut began as early as 1907, when Lord Carnarvon discovered with Theodore Davis several funeral artifacts with the name of the pharaoh. It is believed that the tomb was originally intended for someone else and was forced to become the place of rest of Tutankhamun because of his death in his youth. The tomb itself consists of a burial chamber, a treasury and a hallway, to which one can walk along the stairs and the corridor. Researchers have found here many treasures of Ancient Egypt – samples of art, clothing, statues, models of ships, chariots and even two mummified fetuses. This, apparently, was the stillborn children of the ruler. The tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun was not the greatest of all tombs, in fact it is generally one of the smallest in the Valley of the Kings. And the ruler himself in the history of Egypt left a small mark, unlike most others. But the tomb of the young Pharaoh turned out to be the most untouched found in the Valley of the Kings. Through the study of the tomb Egyptologists were able to study the things of the time that were transferred to the king in his afterlife. Also, scientists were able to compile a list of items that should be in such tombs and which disappeared in other places of burial of Egypt.
This ancient city was founded in the 6th century BC. by the lace. Pompeii alternately were under the control of the Greeks, the Etruscans and finally Rome. As a Roman colony, the city developed as a port and a resort. There are many proofs to this – plenty of villas, temples, theaters and baths, created throughout the city. Pompeii possessed its amphitheater, forum and basilica, there were permanently about 20 thousand people. But in 62 AD. there was a misfortune – the strongest earthquake crushed the city, almost all the buildings were destroyed. Residents attempted to rebuild the city, but on August 24, 79, the eruption of the volcano Vesuvius, located nearby. A wave of ash and ash buried the city almost instantly, about 2000 people were buried alive. The remains of the city wall were discovered for the first time in 1592 by the architect Domenico Fontana, when he laid the canal. However, full excavations began only in 1748 under the leadership of the Spanish military engineer Alcubierre. The significance of this finding is that before the scientists there was a picture of the city, in the same state in which it was abandoned by people. Archaeologists on the basis of buildings, the remaining things in them, were able to assess life in the country and the city at that time. Viewers were given a picture of the city at the time of the crisis – even families saved ashes, in fear, hid in the corner. The criminals remained in chains, the animals in their places, and on the walls – perfectly preserved frescoes.
This cave complex is located in the south-west of France. This place is quite famous for its numerous rock paintings from the Paleolithic times. The cave is also called the “Sistine Chapel of Primitive Painting”, local drawings of 17-20 thousand years. This place was found by four teenagers on September 12, 1940. The boys found a break formed after the fall of the pine, and informed their teacher about it. The first excavations were carried out here in 1940 and continued in 1949. In total, about 1900 drawings of animals, people, and abstract signs were found in the cave. Among the animals reindeer, cattle, bison, cats, rhinoceroses and bears, as well as birds, appeared. It is believed that in the cave permanently no one lived, it was visited exclusively for the purposes of painting.Since 1948, the cave was accessible to tourists, but their flow was so great that the atmosphere inside was changed and the drawings began to deteriorate. As a result, since 1963, the visitors’ wide access to it has been discontinued. After 20 years, an exact copy of the part of the cave, which was named Lasko II, was discovered. Now the cave is in a state of shaky ecological balance, employees are constantly fighting with fungi and bacteria that have appeared here in abundance with tourists. Scientists are doing everything possible to conserve this pattern of prehistoric art. The significance of the Lask cave is great – it’s not only the largest prehistoric cave in France, but also the most preserved. One of the paintings is called “Crossed Bison”, it demonstrates all the skill of the artist, who was able to convey the realism of what is happening as much as possible. The art of displaying objects in the future people already owned, in modern history it came to him only in the 15th century. The paintings also give an idea of what types of animals were available to artists and are important.
This previously unknown type of prehistoric man was discovered by the Canadian anatomist Davidson Black in the Zhoukoudian cave in 1923. Further excavation was sponsored by Rockefeller, thanks to this, in the area were found the remains of about 40 individuals who lived here 400-600 thousand years ago during the glaciers. However, all the discovered material disappeared during the transfer to the United States during the Second World War. Extensive research conducted by Black and his colleague Franz Weidenreich showed that the “Beijing man” had already become a straight-legged, used stone tools, he had a heavy forehead and powerful teeth. In addition to plant life, a man named Sinanthropus used meat, perhaps he could use fire. Although the find is questioned, similar fossils were discovered later in other places in China. Before the finding of Black, akin to a Beijing man from Java was considered just a deformed monkey. The use of tools and ash in the use of the Beijing model made it possible to connect the links into one chain of human evolution, significantly replenishing the overall picture.
This stone is a black basalt slab with letters that refer to 196 BC. The texts are a thankful inscription that the priests sent to Pharaoh Ptolemy V. The writings are cut out in three languages at once, repeating each other in meaning, in ancient Greek, Egyptian hieroglyphics and Egyptian demotic. The stone was part of a large stele, the remains of which were not found. Over time, the temple was destroyed, and the basalt plate migrated to the village of Rosetta (now Rashid), being used there as a building material. There it was discovered in 1799 by the French captain Pierre-François Bouchard during the construction of the fort in this area. Stone height of 114 cm, a width of 72 and a thickness of 28 cm weighs about 760 kg. For the first time, Thomas Jung, who could translate the demotic part of the inscription, tried to decipher the letters. The breakthrough came in 1822, when French Egyptologist Jean-Francois Champollion was able to create a method that became key in deciphering Egyptian inscriptions. The scientist used the Coptic language to understand that hieroglyphics are not just symbols, but also a spoken language. The significance of this discovery is enormous. Scientists have at their disposal a stone written in three languages, which made it possible to obtain the key to the ancient language. It became possible to look deep into the ancient civilization, which for a long time remained a mystery. As a result, the whole ancient Egyptian language was deciphered.
Opened this monument of antiquity in 1598 by an Englishman Robert Shirley, who was in Persia on a diplomatic mission. In the rock at an altitude of 105 meters from the road are carved figures and inscriptions. The width of the object is about 22 meters, and the height is 7.Cuneiform text on the rock refers to the times and is beaten by the order of Darius I in memory of the events of 523-521 BC. The text is the autobiography of the tsar, the inscriptions tell of the events after the death of Cyrus the Great and the campaign of Cambyses to Egypt. It is curious that the history set forth on the Behistun rock is significantly at variance with the earlier known version of those events of Herodotus. Like the rosetta stone, Behistun is also written in three languages - Old Persian, Elam and Babylonian. Builders at the end of their work destroyed the stone steps leading to the rock, so that no one could correct what was written. The inscriptions give an opportunity to understand Darius the Great’s thinking, and the discovery played a big role in the discovery of cuneiform writing. Archaeologists after the deciphering received a lot of information about the civilizations of Mesopotamia, Sumer, Persia and Assyria.
In the north of Tanzania is the gorge, which gave archaeologists the opportunity to make the greatest discovery. Here were found the remains of more than 60 hominids, as well as two early stone tools. This area was discovered by the German entomologist Wilhelm Cattwinkel in 1911, when he fell there, chasing a butterfly. The study began in 1913 under the guidance of archaeologist Hans Reka, but the studies were prevented by the First World War. In 1931 the excavations were continued by the family of archaeologists Lika. They were able to find here several species of hominids, including Australopithecus. Especially notable is the discovery of Homo habilis, a creature resembling an Australopithecus, but already a man of skilful and upright and lived more than 2 million years ago. In this area were found the remains of large antelopes, elephants, hares, giraffes and extinct later hipparions. Olduvai Gorge contains a large number of remains, which could strengthen the argument that humanity originated in Africa. The findings provided an opportunity to understand how the hominids lived. So, in 1975, Mary Leakey found traces that showed that the ancestors were walking on two legs. This discovery was one of the most important in the paleontology of the last century.