3,400-Year-Old Iraqi Palace Unearthed After Drought

Via Fox News.

A recent drought that dried up the water in Iraq’s Mosul Dam reservoir exposed the ruins of a bronze age palace and city dating back 3,400 years.

Archaeologists found the well-preserved palace walls at a height of seven meters, while the inner chambers had remanents of painted murals that once decorated the interior of the palace.

The site, named Kemune, dates to the time of the Mittani Empire, a Mesopotamian kingdom that had dominion over Syria and northern Iraq from the 15th to the 14th centuris B.C. Only three other sites from that time period have survived, and all of them were discovered on the outskirts of the kingdom. Kemune is the only archaeological finding that gives insight into the center of the kingdom.

Via International Business Times.

In 2010, the low water levels of the Mosul dam revealed glimpses of the structure, but according to Hasan Ahmed Qasim, co-leader of the excavation and an archaeologist with the Kurdistan Archaeology Organization (KAO) in Duhok, Iraq, it was not until now that the excavation became possible.

At the height of the Mittani Empire, the palace stood at an elevated position 20 meters from the Tigris river, while to the north ruins of the city laid.

The archaeological mission excavated eight rooms, some of which were paved with slabs of fired brick. As for the paintings on the palace walls, a few retained traces of vivid hues of red and blue.

Via Washington Post.

“Important structures built by the Mittani Empire — such as this palace — were likely commonly decorated with colorful murals, but few examples have survived to the present, making the discovery at Kemune an archaeological sensation,” said Ivana Puljiz, excavation co-leader and an archaeologist with the University of Tübingen in Germany.

Additional ten clay tablets inscribed with Mittani cuneiform, one of the earliest forms of writing, were flown to Germany, where experts at the University of Heidelberg are attempting to decode them.

The discovery of Kemune has made a great contribution in reconstructing the historical timeline of this great civilization. Indeed, it is believed to be one of the most important regional discoveries of this decade.

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