Giovedì, 18 Ottobre 2018

Italians uncover fortress at Pharaohs' Canal


Cairo, December 15 - The Italian archaeological
mission undertaken by the National Research Council (CNR) has
brought to light imposing walls from a fortress situated on
Egypt's Canal of the Pharaohs, in Tell el-Maskhuta.
That makes the site now one of the largest fortresses on the
Nile Delta and most likely the best preserved from the age
before that of ancient Rome.
The discovery was made public recently by the Egyptian
Ministry of Antiquities.
Tell el-Maskhuta is situated northeast of Cairo, along the
Ismailia Canal.
In the 1800s the existence of a large quadrangular walled
city was already known but had never been well-documented.
The wall was already partially visible "just for a brief
stretch" at the beginning of the excavation, according to
Giuseppina Capriotti Vittozzi, manager of the Italian
Archaeological Centre in Cairo.
The excavation, titled "Multidisciplinary Egyptological
Mission", is being conducted by CNR's Institute of Ancient
Mediterranean Studies, which has been working at the site for
some years with the cooperation of the Institute for Applied
Technologies in Cultural Heritage represented by Andrea
Vittozzi said in November "an enormous wall, 22 metres long
and eight metres high" was found.
"It connects to the square fortress with two 12-metre-long
walls," she said.
She said those walls were just discovered as well, and "they
constitute a different defensive structure of gigantic
The site is in "Wadi Tumilat", a valley that was "a very
ancient route connecting Egypt and the Levant, between the land
of the pharaohs and Palestine, Syria, up to Mesopotamia,"
Vittozzi said.
At the site there are also traces of a settlement of Hyksos,
foreigners who dominated part of Egypt more than 3,500 years
ago; this is the settlement upon which the successive fortress
is situated.
A study of ceramics found at the site, led by Maria Cristina
Guidotti who heads the Egypt section of Florence's
Archaeological Museum, suggests that the revealed structure was
added to the previous one in the Ptolemaic era (3rd-1st century

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