A valuable-gem-studded “lotus flower” pendant similar to a single worn by historic Egypt’s Queen Nefertiti has been unearthed in a set of tombs in Cyprus.
The pendant is 1 of hundreds of opulent grave items from close to the Mediterranean location that have been uncovered at the web-site, including gemstones, ceramics and jewellery.
Archaeologists from the New Swedish Cyprus Expedition very first unearthed the two Bronze Age tombs, each underground chambers, in the ancient city of Hala Sultan Tekke in 2018.
1 hundred and fifty five human stays and 500 funerary products ended up found in the tombs, placed in layers on major of 1 a different, suggesting that the burial chambers were used more than a number of generations.
“The finds reveal that these are loved ones tombs for the ruling elite in the metropolis,” excavation leader Peter Fischer, professor emeritus of historic reports at the College of Gothenburg in Sweden, claimed in a assertion.
“For illustration, we found the skeleton of a 5-calendar year-previous with a gold necklace, gold earrings and a gold tiara. This was most likely a baby of a potent and wealthy loved ones.”
“We also located a ceramic bull,” Fischer explained. “The overall body of this hollow bull has two openings: just one on the back again to fill it with a liquid, most likely wine, and a single at the nose to consume from. Seemingly, they experienced feasts in the chamber to honor their lifeless.”
In the meantime, other grave products provided a purple carnelian gemstone from India, a blue lapis lazuli gemstone from Afghanistan and amber from close to the Baltic Sea – valuables indicating that Bronze Age persons in Cyprus took aspect in a huge trading community.
Archaeologists also found evidence of trade with ancient Egypt, which include gold jewellery, scarabs (beetle-formed amulets sporting hieroglyphs) and the remains of fish imported from the Nile Valley, in accordance to the statement.
The archaeological staff dated the gold jewellery by comparing it with identical finds from Egypt. “The comparisons exhibit that most of the objects are from the time of Nefertiti and her partner Echnaton [also spelled Akhenaten, the father of King Tutankhamun]”, around 1350 BCE, Fischer explained.
“Like a gold pendant we discovered: a lotus flower with inlaid gemstones. Nefertiti wore related jewellery.”
The excavation group also uncovered a cylinder-shaped seal crafted from hematite, a mineral with a metallic hue. The seal bears a cuneiform inscription from Mesopotamia (modern-day-day Iraq) that archaeologists deciphered.
“The text consists of a few strains and mentions 3 names. One particular is Amurru, a god worshiped in Mesopotamia. The other two are historic kings, father and son, who we lately succeeded in monitoring down in other texts on clay tablets from the exact time period, i.e., the 18th century BCE,” Fischer claimed.
“We are currently attempting to establish why the seal ended up in Cyprus, much more than 1,000 kilometers [620 miles] from exactly where it was manufactured.”
An assessment of the ceramic wares in the tombs showed that the kinds in which they were being crafted transformed above time, which also helped date the conclusions, Fischer explained.
Future, the archaeologists system to analyze the DNA of the skeletons interred in the tombs. “This will expose how the different individuals are related with every other and if there are immigrants from other cultures, which is not not likely taking into consideration the extensive trade networks,” Fischer mentioned.