Infrared Archeology

I should have been an Egyptologist. (That assumes, of course, that I could have made it past Zahi Hawass.) The BBC has a program out spotlighting some really interesting research:

> It is possible that only one percent of the wonders of Ancient Egypt have been discovered, but now, thanks to a pioneering approach to archaeology, that is about to change. Dr Sarah Parcak uses satellites to probe beneath the sands, where she has found cities, temples and pyramids. Now, with Dallas Campbell and Liz Bonnin, she heads to Egypt to discover if these magnificent buildings are really there.

(I wonder what I could learn from infrared images of the Louisiana landscape.)

Medieval Warfare … Yup, It Was Bad

[The Economist has a nice write-up]( of the work of archeologists to piece together the Battle of Towton. Trolling through Towton’s mass graves — contemporary accounts estimated the death toll at 28,000, they have pieced together the ages of the men in the battle — from 17 to 50 — and how they died — nastily.

> The soldier now known as Towton 25 had survived battle before. A healed skull fracture points to previous engagements. He was old enough—somewhere between 36 and 45 when he died—to have gained plenty of experience of fighting. But on March 29th 1461, his luck ran out.

Stone Age Teaching

Don Troop reports in the Chronicle on an experimental archeology course taught by Washington College’s Bill Schindler in which students not only manufacture their own stone blades but then learn how to use them to skin a deer. (One wonders if “experiential archeology” isn’t the word wanted here.)

What I find particularly interesting is that the man in the photo below is named Tom Pitre — Pitre is a common name here in South Louisiana.