First Published: 2006-10-05

 
Archaeologists find millennia-old building in Syria
 

Remarkable discovery of site dates back to 8,800 BC, retains oldest painted decorations known in Middle East.

 

Middle East Online

'Bucrania', on the banks of the Euphrates

DAMASCUS - Archaeologists said Tuesday that they have discovered an 11-millennium-old building on the banks of the Euphrates River in northern Syria.

"A remarkable discovery has just been uncovered of a large circular building dating back to 8,800 BC near [the locality of] Ja'de," the head of the French archaeological team that made the find said.

The building, much larger than normal houses, "had a collective use, probably for all of the village or a group," Eric Coqueugniot said. "A part of this community building takes the shape of the head of a bull and retains painted decorations, the oldest known in the Middle East," he said.

"The multi-colored geometrical paintings" that decorate the building would be displayed at the museum of Aleppo, in northern Syria, he added. "Many hunting weapons, domestic tools ... were discovered at this level. The majority of these tools are made of flint and very few are of obsidian [volcanic stone]," he said.

Coqueugniot heads the team of the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), France's largest scientific establishment, which has led the excavation work at the site for the past 15 years.

 

UN Syria peace talks begin in Geneva

Israel to deny Human Rights Watch visas for being ‘biased’

Iraqi forces enter IS-held west Mosul

Suicide bomb attack on rebels kills 51 near Al-Bab

Marrakesh clinches top ranking of African urban life

UN considers Syria sanctions over chemical attacks

Saudi Comic-Con slammed as ‘sin’ in online backlash

Jordanians protest government price hikes

Baghdad coordinated anti-IS airstrikes with Damascus says source

New Hamas Gaza leader makes first public appearance

Palestinian protestors clash with Israeli soldiers in West Bank

Jordanian F-16 crashes in Saudi, pilot survives

Iraqi PM says air force strikes IS targets in Syria

UN slams light sentence for Israeli soldier

Saudi king seeks investment on rare Asia tour

Saudi minister discusses hajj with Iran

136 Turkish diplomats, soldiers seek German asylum since coup

New Hamas ‘strongman’ could spell fresh Israeli conflict

Suicide car bomb kills eight outside Yemen army base

Fired Turkish academics protest ‘unjust’ dismissals

Iraqi forces jovial after Mosul airport entry

Syrian rebels announce capture of flashpoint town from IS

Iraqi forces enter IS-held Mosul airport

Swedish citizen jailed for IS Facebook post

Somalia names new prime minister

Netanyahu backs pardon for Israel soldier who shot Palestinian

UN envoy meets Syrian rivals, hopes of breakthrough slim

Yemeni government forces pin back rebels on coast

Israeli Supreme Court appoints deeply right-wing judges

Hundreds of Australians protest Netanyahu

Yemen rebel fire kills policeman on Saudi border

UN condemns Israel's new West Bank demolition plans

UN envoy says Russia asked Syria to halt bombing during talks

Bahrain arrests 20, approves military trials for civilians

Israel blocks EU lawmakers from Gaza entry

Syrian migrant on trial in Austria over 20 murders

UN says rapes, killings still blight Darfur

Yemen president says Saudi saving $10 bn for reconstruction

Top Yemen commander killed in missile strike

New Somali president says ability to deal with nation's problems 'limited'

Israel lifts ban on basketball team playing in Turkey

Arab League condemns Israeli soldier’s lenient sentence

Turkey lifts ban on Islamic headscarves in army

Israeli ministry orders removal of Haifa ammonia tank

Iraqi forces ready for assault on Mosul airport