Yemen

I want to consider the two extremes of endangered archaeology. On the one hand, we have the headline-grabbing destruction of part of a World Heritage Site, whilst on the other there is natural erosion and people going about their everyday lives, oblivious to what lies right under their feet (or, in this case tyres).

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Survey Gazetteer Digitisation

One of the principal aims of EAMENA is the survey of archaeological sites for threat or disturbance through the use of satellite imagery and aerial photographs. The compilation of what archaeology or heritage is there to begin with, before we can access how it has been impacted over time, is a many-faceted process. One of my tasks at the moment is scanning for potential sites in Yemen using satellite imagery available through Google Earth. This process is complemented by knowledge of previous archaeological surveys in the region.

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Symposiums, Stories & the EAMENA Project

On behalf of the EAMENA project, I recently attended a symposium at UCL on the site of Jericho (Digging up Jericho: Past, Present & Future, 29th – 30th June 2015, http://npaph.com/symposium/). Research at this site has been carried out since the late 19th century, under the auspices of the Palestine Exploration Fund from the 1860s-70s and then later by individuals such as Ernst Sellin and Carl Watzinger, John Garstang and possibly most famously Kathleen Kenyon in the mid-20th century. More recently excavations at the site have been carried out by a joint Italian-Palestinian team.

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What’s in a Word: Terminology and the Database

The purpose of the EAMENA project is not only to identify and record damage to archaeological sites but also, ultimately, to make that information available through an open-access database. With that in mind, the construction of the database has been a primary concern since the project started, and over the past few weeks in particular, the team has had several discussions, both formal and informal, about our vision for it.

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EAMENA’s collaboration with regional partners in the MENA region

The two previous blog entries have looked at ways in which we at EAMENA are mapping archaeological sites, whether extant or now destroyed, by analysing satellite imagery and historical aerial photographs. With tens of thousands of sites already recorded in the span of four months across Libya, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, these techniques are proving incredibly successful in documenting the cultural landscape of the MENA region.

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Sites at risk in the deserts of Egypt

Welcome to the first blog of the Endangered Archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa project. To begin with we thought we would offer a quick summary of the way in which the project will be collecting the bulk of its data through the analysis of satellite imagery. In this, the first year of the project, we will be focusing on countries such as Saudia Arabia and Egypt.

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