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A shaft tomb or shaft grave is a type of deep rectangular burial structure, similar in shape to the much shallower cist grave, containing a floor of pebbles, walls of rubble masonry, and a roof constructed of wooden planks.[1]

Practice[edit]

The practice of digging shaft tombs was a widespread phenomenon with prominent examples found in Mycenaean Greece; in Bronze Age China; and in Mesoamerican Western Mexico.[2]

Mycenaean Greece[edit]

Mycenaean shaft graves originated and evolved from rudimentary Middle Helladic cists, tumuli, and tholos tombs with features derived from Early Bronze Age traditions developed locally in mainland Bronze Age Greece.[3] Middle Helladic burials would ultimately serve as the basis for the royal Shaft Graves containing a variety of grave goods, which signified the elevation of a native Greek-speaking royal dynasty whose economic power depended on long-distance sea trade.[4]

The depth of Mycenaean shaft tombs would range from 1.0 m to 4.0 m with a mound constructed for each grave and stelae erected.[5] Archaeological examples include Grave Circle A and Grave Circle B.

Bronze Age China[edit]

Shaft graves were utilized by elites from the Shang Dynasty (or Yin Dynasty) during the Bronze Age of northern China.[2]

Mesoamerican Western Mexico[edit]

The Western Mexico shaft tomb tradition or shaft tomb culture refers to a set of interlocked cultural traits found in the present day western Mexican states of Jalisco, Nayarit, and, to a lesser extent, Colima to its south, roughly dating to the period between 300 BCE and 400 CE. An example is the La Campana archaeological site of the Capacha and subsequent cultures.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Pedley 2011, p. 86.
  2. ^ a b Kipfer 2000, "shaft grave", p. 508.
  3. ^ Dickinson 1999, pp. 103, 106–107.
  4. ^ Dickinson 1977, pp. 53, 107; Dickinson 1999, pp. 97–107; Anthony 2007, p. 48.
  5. ^ Komita 1982, pp. 59–60.

Sources[edit]

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaft_tomb — Please support Wikipedia.
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16 news items

Daily Mail

Daily Mail
Fri, 14 Mar 2014 10:51:52 -0700

The sculpture has a long face and holds a weapon - probably an axe - to guard the shaft tomb which was covered over by slabs of volcanic rock. It was uncovered by archaeologists at the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) who have ...
 
New Tang Dynasty Television
Tue, 04 Mar 2014 22:56:06 -0800

Archaeologists in Mexico found a sealed 1,500-year-old pre-Hispanic shaft tomb, a deep rectangular burial structure, with the sculpture of a long-faced shaman guarding it, in the state of Colima. The remains of children and small dogs were also found ...
 
Ahram Online
Fri, 12 Dec 2014 03:58:34 -0800

Karomama's shaft tomb. The first was at the Ramesseum temple on Luxor's west bank, where the tomb of a divine royal wife called Karomama was accidently discovered within the walls of temple. The ministry's head of Ancient Egyptian antiquities, Youssef ...

Gizmodo

Gizmodo
Fri, 02 Jan 2015 13:19:04 -0800

Archeologists have discovered an ancient tomb modeled after the mythical Tomb of Osiris as described by Egyptian lore in the necropolis of Sheikh Abd el-Qurna, on the West Bank at Thebes. The complex includes a shaft that connects to multiple chambers, ...

International Business Times UK

International Business Times UK
Wed, 17 Dec 2014 01:49:38 -0800

"We cannot determine whether the large number of burials in one shaft-tomb represented a family burial, opened repeatedly as different members of the family died (both children and adults were buried in the multiple-burial tombs), or whether some ...

Ancient Origins

Ancient Origins
Fri, 13 Mar 2015 17:33:45 -0700

An examination of two skeletons found in a mine shaft/tomb, one a female, showed the humerus bones of the upper arm were highly developed. Larger bones are a sign of robustness that anthropologists associate with repeated use of muscular force. In ...
 
Washington Post
Fri, 05 Sep 2014 10:25:19 -0700

Weeks later, when the pair met in person in Jordan and were assigned to be excavation partners on the same shaft tomb, things seemed to click. “She is just as smart and friendly as she was online,” Adam said, “plus she's even more beautiful than her ...

National Geographic

National Geographic
Tue, 03 Dec 2013 05:57:22 -0800

But amid the early stone structures, archaeologists uncovered a ten-foot-deep adobe shaft tomb dating to the 15th or 16th century A.D. At that time the Chimú were among the many conquered peoples who made up the vast Inca empire. "This is one of the ...
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