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Stones Forum >> Rocks, Wrecks and Relevance: Values and Benefits in Maritime and Underwater Cultural Heritage
||Rocks, Wrecks and Relevance: Values and Benefits in Maritime and Underwater Cultural Heritage
from Surrey, UK
| Posted 19-12-2011 at 23:09  |
Asia-Pacific Regional Conference on Underwater Cultural Heritage Proceedings
Some interesting papers from the proceedings of the first inaugural Asia-Pacific Regional Conference on Underwater Cultural Heritage conference.
Rocks, Wrecks and Relevance: Values and Benefits in Maritime and Underwater Cultural Heritage
A small limestone outcrop is located on part of Tanzania’s coastline on the island of Kilwa Kisiwani (now a World Heritage Site). Local folklore depicts this as an Arab dhow, turned to rock following prayers offered by the local residents, fearful that the crew of the dhow were coming to harm them. This folklore was recorded during some oral history work in a maritime and underwater cultural heritage (MUCH) project at Kilwa Kisiwani.
A Place to Learn: the Underwater Cultural Heritage in American Samoa
The five inhabited islands (Tutuila, Aunu’u, Ofu, Olosega, and Ta’u) and two distant coral atolls (Swains Atoll and Rose Atoll) of American Samoa have a diverse maritime past. Consequently, maritime heritage properties reflect different aspects of history in Samoa, such as historic shipwrecks, World War II naval aircraft, fortifications and coastal pillboxes, and archaeological sites associated with the ancient past. Importantly, specific coastal and marine locations, geological features usually categorized as “natural,” clearly have cultural significance in Samoa, being familiar “landmarks” of legend and myth, critical to maintaining cultural identity. This is challenging to the familiar management emphasis solely on historic properties.
Maritime Archaeology of Gujarat: Northwest coast of India
The evidence of maritime activity in India may be traced back to the Bronze Age (early 3rd millennium BC to mid- 2nd millennium BC). The excavation of several Harappan sites including Lothal, Kuntasi, Padri, Nageshwar, Bagasra and many others have conclusively demonstrated an advance maritime culture during the third millennium Before Christ (BC). During the historical period several coastal towns had international trade and commerce including Bet Dwarka, Somnath, Hathab, Vallabhi, and Bharuch. Maritime activity reached it’s zenith in Gujarat during the Medieval period (8th to 14th century AD) when Arab traders dominated the Indian Ocean for over a millennia. Underwater investigations have been carried out at various places along the Saurashtra coast and a large number of stone anchors were found.
Traditional island Southeast Asian watercraft in Philippine archaeological sites
The seas of island South East Asia have long been an aid rather than a hindrance to movements within the region and among close neighbours. Many shared cultural traits show evidence of maritime connections within the region. As has been revealed by archaeology, historical accounts and ethnography, a boatbuilding tradition likewise emerged out of island Southeast Asia. At least three examples of such watercraft have been identified in Philippine archaeological sites, all of which predate Spanish colonization. While the remains of these sites were documented and recorded, little comprehensive research has so far been done from these sites to form a cohesive study on the ancient maritime culture in the Philippines and interactions with its Southeast Asian neighbours. This paper seeks to present the known examples of Southeast Asian boats in the archaeological record, ethnographic and regional parallels, and discuss the potential of future inquiries into revealing more of the Philippines’ maritime past.
Literary & Archaeological Evidence of Early Seafaring & Navigation Technologies in India
India is situated at the central point of the ocean that washes on its coast on three sides, seemed destined very early for a maritime future in the region. Both literature and archaeological works of the region are providing ample evidence about the early sea routes and maritime trade activities of the region. Vedic literature, one of the early existed texts, has provided copious references about the early seafaring. There was a time in the past when Indians were the masters of the long distance seaborne trade. They built ships, navigated the sea, and held in their hands all the threads of international commerce, whether carried overland or via sea. The archaeological excavations of several Indo-Saraswathi, the first civilization in the region, sites and many others have also conclusively demonstrated advance maritime activities right from the third millennium Before Christ (BCE).
The “Stone Four Legged Quern” (Bench) recovered in the oldest Maritime Archaeological Site at Godawaya (Ambalantota) in Sri Lanka
The stone bench that was recovered at the oldest Maritime Archaeological site at Godawaya (Ambalantota) in Sri Lanka is an unusual archaeological artifact which has become instrumental in turning the history of Maritime Archaeology in Sri Lanka in a new direction It has been recovered for the first time in the area of Godawaya (Ambalantota) in the Hambantota District in Sri Lanka. The particular object is a Stone Bench with four legs where the whole thing is carved out of a single stone. The main purpose of this article is to describe this stone bench and to discuss the symbols it carries with its making. Also an attempt will be made to look into the site where the object was found and other certain related aspects as well.
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