Amara West project blog

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Investigating life in an Egyptian town

Amara West 2015: clarity (?) from above

Neal Spencer, Keeper, Department of Ancient Egypt and Sudan

Nearing the end of excavations in the western suburb – only two weeks to go, much of it involving recording rather than digging – the perfect weather today prompted a kite flight for more aerial photography. Mohamed Tawfiq is our designated pilot on these missions, aided by archaeologists sighting in where we want the camera to fly over.

M Tawfiq reels in kite

This image, showing the five houses being excavated for the first time this year (white labels), is fascinating in terms of seeong how a neighbourhood developed in the late New Kingdom, just over 3000 years ago:

Western suburb

We currently think D11.1 and D12.7 are the earliest houses here, with the others built later. Sometimes this means filling an empty space between two existing houses, or building up against a house, using its walls. House D12.8 is unusual – starting off as a small house, it was gradually extended outwards. The room or court with sandstone column base can be seen in the image. A number of excavators are visible in the photo as small coloured dots, and the shadow of the kite is visible at the left edge.

The recording – of architecture and deposits – will help us refine the chronology of this neighbourhood. And, in turn, make this apparently clear picture more complicated!

Alongside regular updates on the blog, follow the season on Twitter: @NealSpencer_BM and #amarawest

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Filed under: Amara West 2015, archaeology, Kite Aerial Photography #KAP, New Kingdom, settlement

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