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More Pre-Historical Graves Found in Burnt City


News Category: Prehistory (from 8000 - 3400 BCE)

 19 December 2005



A team of archeologists conducting excavations in Burnt City (Shahr-e Sukhtah), Sistan-Baluchestan province, has identified additional graves at the ancient site dating back to 4,500 years ago.

Anthropologist Farzad Foruzanfar told CHN that during the ninth round of excavations, his team managed to unearth 80 graves. “Of course, all of them are totally destroyed and only one of them was in good shape. It belonged to a young man who was buried 4,500 years ago.“

The Burnt City has a large cemetery with several thousand graves. In earlier rounds of excavation, the graves which were uncovered were in good shape, but, this series of graves are badly damaged.

Foruzanfar said that the skeleton of hands and feet of the young man were well preserved, which is unprecedented.

He said that the remains of bones of the young man are in good shape to enable the anthropologists to conduct examinations on them.

He said that surprisingly in the latest round of excavations which were carried out in the central part of the cemetery, the majority of the graves were those of children. The exact number of graves of children is not clear yet due to continued excavations in the area.

Meanwhile, head of excavation team in Burnt City, Mansour Sajjadi said that the skeletons from 80 graves were completed disintegrated except for that of a young man whose hands and feet bones were unearthed in good shape.

He said the skeletons were totally crumbled, but, several antiques were unearthed including two beautiful and colorful casks, two baskets and leather pieces.

Sajjadi said that the graves uncovered in the ninth round of excavations mainly belong to children placed in shallow graves.

He said that the graves date back to the second and third periods of the Burnt City or 2700-2300 BC.

He noted that only powders of the bones were found in the 4,500-year-old graves.

More than 400 graves have been uncovered in the past eight years of excavations in the Burnt City.

“Out of the 80 graves uncovered recently, one grave belonged to newborn twins which is also unprecedented.“

Archeologists are planning to embark on 10-year excavations in the site.

Burnt City which dates back to 5,000 years ago came to the attention of archeologists since 1979.

Excavations by both Iranian and Italian archeologists in the 1980s have established that the city was once a center of civilization and trade.





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