News and Notes


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AIA Talk: Uncorking the Past 10 November 2011

Dr. Patrick McGovern, author of Uncorking the Past:  The quest for Wine, Beer, and Other Alcoholic Beverages, is going to talk about the history of beer, wine, and extreme fermented beverages.  Dr. McGovern, a biomolecular archaeologist, will be giving a beautifully illustrated synopsis of the findings in his book.Copies of the book will be available for purchase and the author's signature. 

Huntsville Times Built with Beer

As always, the event is free and open to the public.  Please bring a friend!

Chan Auditorium, Administrative Science Building, UAH Campus

7:30 PM Thursday November 10


AIA Talk: European Iron Age -- 22 September

Dr. Bettina Arnold of the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee will discuss the European Iron Age.  The human body in many prehistoric societies was a kind of walking billboard. Thanks to new technology, many elements of dress and ornament can be reconstructed. You could tell whether someone was male, female, a child, was married, occupied a certain role in society and much more from what they were wearing. Iron Age Celtic populations in central Europe are described by Greek and Roman authors as being especially fond of flashy ornament and brightly striped and checked fabrics. Unfortunately, until recently archaeological confirmation of this claim was hard to come by because the evidence consists mainly of perishable material like cloth or leather. The "Landscape of Ancestors" excavation project focuses on mound burials of the early Iron Age in an area of southwest Germany known as Swabia. Two burial mounds contained 23 burials, including six women wearing elaborate bronze decorated leather belts and head ornaments and three men with daggers, swords, and spears. These fascinating objects and their re-constuction are the focus of Dr. Arnold's talk.

When:   22 September 7:30 pm
Where:  UAH Chan Auditorium 

Free public talk!  Please bring a friend!


AIA TALKS: Ramesses and Egyptian Gold -- September 8 & 9

Many of you will remember Peter Brand from our wine tasting last November where he gave an engaging talk on the Egyptian evidence for the early Israelites. Dr. Brand, who has appeared in numerous documentaries  sponsored by the History Channel and National Geographic, continues his fieldwork at the great temple in Karnak with the aid of a $200,000 NEH grant. In particular Dr. Brand has been working on the inscriptions in the Hypostyle Hall, Ramesses II’s grand addition to the Egypt's most important temple complex.
Drawing on the latest research for his first talk, Dr. Peter brand reveals Ramesses the Great as a gifted politician, canny elder statesman, and tenacious warrior. He built vast temples and colossal statues throughout his Empire, more than any other Pharaoh. 

Thursday, Sept. 8
"Ramesses II: Egypt's Ultimate Pharaoh"
Chan Auditorium, 7:30 PM
In his second talk, Dr. Brand will discuss Egyptian gold. Like all peoples, the ancient Egyptians were mesmerized by gold, which they called "the flesh of the gods." Pharaohs jealously guarded the means and rights to extract gold from mines in the eastern deserts and from Nubia. The kings used gold to enhance their power and splendor. This illustrated lecture explores the spectacular golden objects the pharaohs used to impress their subjects, foreign peoples, and even the gods themselves.

Friday, Sept. 9
"Power Tool: Political Uses of Gold in the New Kingdom"
Wilson Hall 168, 2:00 PM

Excavate! Our latest newsletter

Thanks to Tim and Lillian, here is the 23rd edition of our newsletter


Archaeologists uncover 3,000-year-old lion adorning citadel gate complex in Turkey

Archaeologists uncover 3,000-year-old lion adorning citadel gate complex in Turkey

ScienceDaily (2011-08-09) -- Archaeologists in southeastern Turkey have unearthed the remains of a monumental gate complex adorned with stone sculptures, including a magnificently carved lion. The gate complex provided access to the citadel of Kunulua, capital of the Neo-Hittite Kingdom of Patina (ca. 950-725 BCE), and is reminiscent of the citadel gate excavated by British archaeologist Sir Leonard Woolley in 1911 at the royal Hittite city of Carchemish.

Marco Polo 'never reached China' and picked up tales of the Orient from others, Italians claim

Marco Polo 'never reached China' and picked up tales of the Orient from others, Italians claim: "
One of history's greatest explorers, may in fact have been a conman, it was claimed yesterday.


Heavy metal hardens battle

The French may have had a better chance at the Battle of Agincourt had they not been weighed down by heavy body armour, say researchers.

Heavy metal hardens battle