Saudi Red Crescent Implements First International Flight to Evacuate a Citizen from Georgia    "Disney on Ice" Characters Take Visitors to Boulevard Arena in Riyadh on an Extraordinary Journey    Wildfires Kill at Least 26 in Eastern Algeria    OIC Expresses Solidarity with Algeria over Forest Fires    16 Dead, 36 Missing in Flash Flood in Western China    Asian Stocks Fall    HRH Crown Prince Congratulates Jordanian Crown Prince on Engagement    Saudi Arabia Witnesses Launch of Strategic Partnership with Google for Startups to Support and Empower 100 Technology Startups    HRH Crown Prince Receives President of Uzbekistan    Crown Prince, Uzbek president hold talks in Jeddah    Heritage Commission to start surveying submerged antiquities in Red Sea    PIF buys stakes in Meta, Alphabet, Amazon, JPMorgan and other 13 companies    Sick Saudi baby airlifted to Riyadh from Istanbul    Bahrain's Two Indices Close Trading Higher    Saudi holdings of US treasury bonds rise by $4.5 billion in June    LuLu launches India Utsav    IMF lauds Saudi Arabia's economic and financial condition    Saudi security authorities foil attempt to smuggle huge quantity of narcotic pills    President of Uzbekistan Arrives in Madinah    65 Countries Receive Dates from Unaizah International Dates Season    India frees 11 men convicted of gang-raping pregnant Muslim woman    First grain shipment ends up in Russian-allied Syria    'I realized Afghan women were still fighting. And I chose to be one of them' First Person    Usyk, Joshua conduct open training ahead of the biggest boxing event in Saudi Arabia    Apple sets Sept 5 deadline for employees to return to office    Jeddah is 4 steps away from witnessing biggest boxing event I got my spirit in the right place here in Saudi Arabia: Joshua    Saudi bowling team wins gold in doubles in Arab Championships in Cairo    Fifa suspends Indian FA over undue influence from third parties    Oscars apologizes to actress Sacheen Littlefeather after 50 years    Harry and Meghan to visit UK in September for charity events    Saudi Volleyball National Team to Face Zamalek Egyptian Team    Saudi Bowling Team Wins Gold in Doubles in Arab Championships in Cairo    J&J talc powder sold in Saudi Arabia does not contain asbestos: SFDA    Vampire Esports Soar to PUBG MOBILE World Invitational Triumph at Gamers8    King Salman Urban Charter's typeface wins three international prizes    Ka'aba door bears witness to Saudi rulers' care for the House of God Kaaba' door, repentance' door contain more than 280 KG of pure gold    Saudi National Beach Soccer Team Arrives in Morocco to Participate in Casablanca Beach Soccer Cup 2022    How Aamir Khan adapted Forrest Gump to Bollywood Laal Singh Chaddha    Association of Culture and Arts in Dammam Announces Winners of "International Video Art Forum"    Slaughterhouses of MEWA received more than 600,000 sacrifices in 3 days of Eid    Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Delivers Speech to Pilgrims, Citizens, Residents and Muslims around the World    MoH Activates Sign Language to Communicate with Pilgrims with Deafness or Muteness During Hajj    Sheikh Al-Issa at Arafat sermon: Values of Islam foster harmony; eschew hatred and division    Sheikh Al-Issa in Arafah's Sermon: Allaah Blessed You by Making It Easy for You to Carry out This Obligation. Thus, Ensure Following the Guidance of Your Prophet    Red Sea Fund Opens Its Third Cycle for Production Funding    SFDA Warns Against Herbal Product "Montalin Jamu" Due to Containing Active Medicinal Ingredients    Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques addresses citizens and all Muslims on the occasion of the Holy month of Ramadan    Pilgrims Perform Dhuhr and Asr Prayers at Arafat Holy Site    

Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.

Secret chamber beneath a Turkish home reveals Iron Age mysteries
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 11 - 05 - 2022

An unexpected discovery has revealed ancient artwork that was once part of an Iron Age complex beneath a house in southeastern Turkey. The unfinished work shows a procession of deities that depicts how different cultures came together.
Looters initially broke into the subterranean complex in 2017 by creating an opening in the ground floor of a two-story home in the village of Başbük. The chamber, carved into limestone bedrock, stretches for 98 feet (30 meters) beneath the house.
When the looters were caught by authorities, a team of archaeologists did an abbreviated rescue excavation to study the significance of the underground complex and the art on the rock panel in the fall of 2018 before erosion could further damage the site. What the researchers found has been shared in a study published Tuesday by the journal Antiquity.
The artwork was created in the 9th century BC during the Neo-Assyrian Empire, which began in Mesopotamia and expanded to become the largest superpower at the time.
This expansion included Anatolia, a large peninsula in Western Asia that includes much of modern-day Turkey, between 600 and 900 BC.
"When the Assyrian Empire exercised political power in south-eastern Anatolia, Assyrian governors expressed their power through art in Assyrian courtly style," said study author Selim Ferruh Adali, associate professor of history at the Social Sciences University of Ankara in Turkey, in a statement.
An example of this style was carved monumental rock reliefs, but Neo-Assyrian examples have been rare, the study authors wrote.
Combining cultures
The artwork reflects an integration of cultures instead of outright conquest. The deities have their names written in the local Aramaic language. The imagery depicts religious themes from Syria and Anatolia and were created in the Assyrian style.
"It shows how in the early phase of Neo-Assyrian control of the region there was a local cohabitation and symbiosis of the Assyrians and the Arameans in a region," Adali said. "The Başbük panel gives scholars studying the nature of empires a striking example of how regional traditions can remain vocal and vital in the exercise of imperial power expressed through monumental art."
The artwork shows eight deities, all unfinished. The largest is 3.6 feet (1.1 meters) in height. The local deities in the artwork include the moon god Sîn, the storm god Hadad and the goddess Atargatis. Behind them, the researchers could identify a sun god and other divinities. The depictions combine symbols of Syro-Anatolian religious significance with elements of Assyrian representation, Adali said.
"The inclusion of Syro-Anatolian religious themes (illustrates) an adaptation of Neo-Assyrian elements in ways that one did not expect from earlier finds," Adali said. "They reflect an earlier phase of Assyrian presence in the region when local elements were more emphasized."
Upon discovering this artwork, study author Mehmet Önal, a professor of archaeology at Harran University in Turkey, said, "As the dim light of the lamp revealed the deities, I trembled with awe as I realized I was confronted with the very expressive eyes and majestic face of the storm god Hadad."
Mysteries remain
The team also identified an inscription that may show the name of Mukīn-abūa, a Neo-Assyrian official who served during the reign of Adad-nirari III between 783 and 811 BC. The archaeologists suspect that he had been assigned to this region at the time and was using the complex as a way to win over the appeal of the local population.
But the structure is incomplete and has remained unfinished for all this time, suggesting that something caused the builders and artists to abandon it -- perhaps even a revolt.
"The panel was made by local artists serving Assyrian authorities who adapted Neo-Assyrian art in a provincial context," Adali said. "It was used to carry out rituals overseen by provincial authorities. It may have been abandoned due to a change in provincial authorities and practices or due to an arising political-military conflict."
Adali was the epigraphist of the team who read and translated the Aramaic inscriptions in 2019 using photos captured by the research team, who had to work quickly to study the site.
"I was shocked to see Aramaic inscriptions on such artwork, and a sense of great excitement overtook me as I read the names of the deities," Adali said.
The site was closed after the 2018 excavations because it is unstable and could collapse. It is now under the legal protection of Turkey's Ministry of Culture and Tourism. The archaeologists are eager to continue their work when excavations can safely resume and capture new images of the artwork and inscriptions and possibly uncover more artwork and artifacts. — CNN

Clic here to read the story from its source.