A treasured-gem-studded “lotus flower” pendant equivalent to a single worn by historical Egypt’s Queen Nefertiti has been unearthed in a established of tombs in Cyprus.
The pendant is a single of hundreds of opulent grave goods from all around the Mediterranean location that have been uncovered at the web site, like gemstones, ceramics and jewelry.
Archaeologists from the New Swedish Cyprus Expedition 1st unearthed the two Bronze Age tombs, the two underground chambers, in the historical town of Hala Sultan Tekke in 2018.
A single hundred and fifty five human remains and 500 funerary items have been identified in the tombs, put in layers on top rated of a person a different, suggesting that the burial chambers were being utilized more than many generations.
“The finds reveal that these are loved ones tombs for the ruling elite in the city,” excavation leader Peter Fischer, professor emeritus of historical scientific tests at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, said in a statement.
“For case in point, we identified the skeleton of a 5-calendar year-old with a gold necklace, gold earrings and a gold tiara. This was possibly a kid of a effective and rich relatives.”
“We also observed a ceramic bull,” Fischer mentioned. “The entire body of this hollow bull has two openings: a person on the back to fill it with a liquid, likely wine, and one particular at the nose to consume from. Evidently, they experienced feasts in the chamber to honor their dead.”
Meanwhile, other grave products included a pink carnelian gemstone from India, a blue lapis lazuli gemstone from Afghanistan and amber from all-around the Baltic Sea – valuables indicating that Bronze Age persons in Cyprus took portion in a large trading network.
Archaeologists also located proof of trade with historical Egypt, like gold jewelry, scarabs (beetle-formed amulets sporting hieroglyphs) and the continues to be of fish imported from the Nile Valley, in accordance to the assertion.
The archaeological team dated the gold jewelry by comparing it with equivalent finds from Egypt. “The comparisons demonstrate that most of the objects are from the time of Nefertiti and her spouse Echnaton [also spelled Akhenaten, the father of King Tutankhamun]”, all-around 1350 BCE, Fischer stated.
“Like a gold pendant we observed: a lotus flower with inlaid gemstones. Nefertiti wore equivalent jewellery.”
The excavation workforce 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 textual content is made up of a few lines and mentions a few names. One particular is Amurru, a god worshiped in Mesopotamia. The other two are historic kings, father and son, who we not long ago succeeded in tracking down in other texts on clay tablets from the identical period of time, i.e., the 18th century BCE,” Fischer mentioned.
“We are at the moment hoping to determine why the seal ended up in Cyprus, extra than 1,000 kilometers [620 miles] from in which it was made.”
An examination of the ceramic wares in the tombs confirmed that the kinds in which they were crafted improved about time, which also assisted date the results, Fischer claimed.
Following, the archaeologists program to assess the DNA of the skeletons interred in the tombs. “This will expose how the different men and women are associated with every single other and if there are immigrants from other cultures, which just isn’t not likely thinking about the wide trade networks,” Fischer claimed.