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.
The practice of digging shaft tombs was a widespread phenomenon with prominent examples found in Mycenaean Greece (i.e. Grave Circle A and Grave Circle B) and in Bronze Age China.
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 Greece. 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. 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.
Bronze Age China
Shaft graves were utilized by elites from the Shang Dynasty (or Yin Dynasty) of northern China.
- ^ Pedley 2011, p. 86.
- ^ a b Kipfer 2000, "shaft grave", p. 508.
- ^ Dickinson 1999, pp. 103, 106–107.
- ^ Dickinson 1977, pp. 53, 107; Dickinson 1999, pp. 97–107; Anthony 2007, p. 48.
- ^ Komita 1982, pp. 59–60.
- Anthony, David W. (2007). The Horse, the Wheel, and Language: How Bronze-Age Riders from the Eurasian Steppes Shaped the Modern World. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-05887-3.
- Dickinson, Oliver (December 1999). Invasion, Migration and the Shaft Graves. Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies 43 (1). pp. 97–107. doi:10.1111/j.2041-5370.1999.tb00480.x.
- Dickinson, Oliver (1977). The Origins of Mycenaean Civilization. Götenberg: Paul Aströms Förlag.
- Kipfer, Barbara Ann (2000), Encyclopedic Dictionary of Archaeology, New York: Springer, ISBN 0-306-46158-7
- Komita, Nobuo (1982). "The Grave Circles at Mycenae and the Early Indo-Europeans" (PDF). Research Reports of Ikutoku Technical University (A-7): 59–70.
- Pedley, John Griffiths (2011). Greek Art and Archaeology. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. ISBN 978-0-20-500133-0.
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 ...
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 ...
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 ...
Fri, 27 Feb 2015 09:00:33 -0800
Very well off people might have had a shaft tomb, but for the most part Egyptian coffins were buried in a hole in the ground. Many coffins, like this one, didn't remain there for long. Tomb raiders would come along and dig up the coffins for gold ...
Fri, 13 Mar 2015 17:42:46 -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 ...
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 ...
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 ...
Fri, 14 Sep 2012 07:01:00 -0700
This cave, it was clear, was once a hidden shaft tomb, or mortuary cave, dug in the shape of a wine decanter. When it was excavated, only the very top of the shaft was visible. Bodies were lowered down the sewer-pipe-size shaft, and the hole was ...
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