view of Nemea Valley  

FROM THE DIRT TO THE MUSEUM

a website sponsored by
the National Endowment for the Humanities
and Bryn Mawr College

 

 

 
  

 
 
 

 
 
WEEK 6

 

We are in our 6th week of excavation, and there is only one more week

left.  We are focusing on digging the chamber and entrance of the tomb

right now.

In the entrance (dromos), we are digging out some soil that we left next

to the eastern wall (called a "baulk").  We also are planning to give

samples of soil from this area to a geologist.  Sarah and her team are

also clearing soil away from the stones, which blocking the entrance to the

chamber.  They have found some pottery, and even part of a goblet.

In the chamber, there have been some exciting developments.  The soil from

the pit with the figurine was water  sieved. The students found that the dirt contained small bones that might have belonged to a baby or small child.  The bone specialist, Sevi, will look at them later.  This makes sense, since we also found a feeding bottle (a small jug with a spout for drinking) in the same pit. 

We also have found some other pots (jugs and stirrup jars) throughout the chamber.  We hope that we are getting closer to the floor of the chamber because we only have one more week of excavation left.

The weather has been incredibly hot again.  There also has been a problem

of brush fires in the mountains.  Yesterday, ash was falling from

the sky because of a fire to the west of us in Greece.  This kind of

weather makes it hard for us to dig, but everyone has been trying to stay

healthy and keep working

 

DIGGING THE BAULK
Pinka, a conservator who works with our team, is digging out a sample of soil for the geologist.  A conservator is someone who knows how to take care of fragile artifacts.
JARS FROM THE CHAMBER
Here are 2 jars that we found in the chamber.  The larger one is called a stirrup jar, because of the kind of handle it has on top. The other is called an alabastron ("al-a-BAS-tron").  They both would have been used for holding oils or liquids.
EXCAVATING THE STIRRUP JAR
Dimitri is excavating the stirrup jar.  Sometimes the pots do not come out of the ground all together.  We collect all the pieces, and send them to the Museum to be put back together.
STIRRUP JAR HANDLE
This is a handle from a stirrup jar.  Can you see the paint that is still on it after more than 3000 years?
SPINDLE WHORL
This is a cone-shaped artifact made out of black stone.  Archaeologists call it a spindle whirl or loom weight.  We found it on the floor of the chamber.  It is about 1 inch tall.
strange weatherASH
This is the day that ash fell from the sky because of the all the brush fires in Greece.  This was taken in the middle of the afternoon. 

 

 
 
Copyright © 2007 Johanna Best