Royal Mounds of A ali in Bahrain
446 pages
English

Royal Mounds of A'ali in Bahrain , livre ebook

-

Obtenez un accès à la bibliothèque pour le consulter en ligne
En savoir plus
446 pages
English
Obtenez un accès à la bibliothèque pour le consulter en ligne
En savoir plus

Description

The Royal Mounds of A'ali in Bahrain has long been shrouded in mystery and suspected to be the final resting place of the Bronze Age kings of Dilmun. Puzzled by their great size explorers and professional archaeologists have for hundreds of years attempted to penetrate their interior and wrestle secrets and treasures from the tombs. This book presents information from the early days of archaeological exploration at A'ali as well as new data from the joint Bahrain - Moesgaard Museum investigations 2010 -2016 directed by the author. The evidence from both old and new field explorations at A'ali are meticulously analyzed. The results are discussed with a strong focus on the royal cemetery as an institution, using a theoretical approach based on the anthropology and ethnography of death rituals. Emphasis is also placed on developing an architectural typology and a radio-carbon based chronology of the royal tombs at A'ali. In this study, vast quantities of hitherto unpublished data from excavations in the burial mounds of Bahrain is integrated to allow a more informed and diachronic picture of the evolution in tomb architecture, death rituals and social organization in the Early Dilmun period, c. 2200-1700 BC. Philological evidence is presented which demonstrates that the entombed kings were of Amorite ancestry. The study reveals that the Amorite Dynasty buried at A'ali emerged with the formation of huge monumental tombs in a royal cemetery proper around 2000-1900 BC and lost its grip on power c. 1700 BC.

Sujets

Informations

Publié par
Date de parution 21 décembre 2017
Nombre de lectures 0
EAN13 9788793423190
Langue English
Poids de l'ouvrage 76 Mo

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0145€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.

Exrait

Steffe Terp Laursen
The Royal Mounds of A’ali in Bahrain
The Royal Mounds
of A’ali in Bahrain
The Emergence of Kingship in Early Dilmun
Steffe Terp Laursen
Jutland Archaeological Society
Logo /
107642_cover_royal mounds_.indd 1 28/11/17 09:58The R ooyyal Mounds o f A ’al’i in Bahri, Bahraain
The Emergence of Kingship in Early Dilmun
by Stefen Terp Laursen
with cwith conontributribuions bions by y
Gianni Marchesi, Jesper Olsen & Thomas Van de Velde
Jutland Archaeological Society, Moesgaard Museum, Denmark
Bahrain Authority for Culture & Aniquiies
2 3
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 2 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_r1_.indd 3 30-11-2017 0:3:04The Royal Mounds of A’ali in Bahrain
The Emergence of Kingship in Early Dilmun
© Stefen Terp Laursen 2017 and individual authors
ISBN 978-87-93423-19-0
Jutland Archaeological Society Publica�ions vol. 100
Digiizing plans and secions: Jonatan Rose Andersen, Stefen Terp Laursen,
Karl Hjalte Maack Raun
Drawings: Jonatan Rose Andersen, Casper Skaaning Andersen, Peter Moe Astrup,
David Pretzel Bennetsen, Claus Feveile, Jakob Fink, Lene Behrmann Frandsen,
Andreas Nymark Jensen, Michael Vinter Jensen, Stefen Terp Laursen,
Ufe Lind Rasmussen, Karl Hjalte Maack Raun
English revision: Lisa Yeomans & Sharon Rhodes.
Graphic design: Jonatan Rose Andersen, Stefen Terp Laursen, Lars Foged Thomsen
Layout and cover: Louise Hilmar / Ea Rasmussen. Cover photo: P.V. Glob
Photos: Casper Skaaning Andersen, Peter Moe Astrup, David Pretzel Bennetsen, T.G. Bibby,
Claus Feveile, Jakob Fink, Lene Behrmann Frandsen, P.V. Glob, Flemming Højlund, Andreas
Nymark Jensen, Jens Vellev, Michael Vinter Jensen, Nanna Kirkeby, Stefen Terp Laursen,
Ufe Lind Rasmussen, Karl Hjalte Maack Raun, Juris Zarins, Bahrain Authority for Culture &
An�iqui ies, Car ier Heritage Department, CVMVS Museum Mumbai, Moesgaard Museum
E-book producion: Narayana Press
Published by: Jutland Archaeological Society in coopera�ion with Moesgaard Museum
and Bahrain Authority for Culture & An�iqui ies
Distributed by Aarhus University Press
Finlandsgade 29
DK-8200 Aarhus N
www.unipress.dk
Published with support of the Carlsberg Founda�ion
4
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_r1_.indd 4 30-11-2017 14:30:57The Royal Mounds of A’ali in Bahrain ContentThe Emergence of Kingship in Early Dilmun
© Stefen Terp Laursen 2017 and individual authors
Jutland Archaeological Society Publica�ions vol. 100
Digiizing plans and secions: Jonatan Rose Andersen, Stefen Terp Laursen,
Karl Hjalte Maack Raun
Drawings: Jonatan Rose Andersen, Casper Skaaning Andersen, Peter Moe Astrup,
David Pretzel Bennetsen, Claus Feveile, Jakob Fink, Lene Behrmann Frandsen,
Andreas Nymark Jensen, Michael Vinter Jensen, Stefen Terp Laursen,
Ufe Lind Rasmussen, Karl Hjalte Maack Raun 1. Introduction .................................................................................................................................................................................................9
English revision: Lisa Yeomans & Sharon Rhodes.
Graphic design: Jonatan Rose Andersen, Stefen Terp Laursen, Lars Foged Thomsen
2. The early explorers and exploration history of A’ali ............................................. 11
Layout and cover: Louise Hilmar / Ea Rasmussen. Cover photo: P.V. Glob An anonymous Englishman, before 1782 .............................................................................................................................. 11
Captain (later Sir) Edward Law Durand, 1878-79 .......................................................................................................... 11Photos: Casper Skaaning Andersen, Peter Moe Astrup, David Pretzel Bennetsen, T.G. Bibby,
Claus Feveile, Jakob Fink, Lene Behrmann Frandsen, P.V. Glob, Flemming Højlund, Andreas th Ofcers of HMS Sphinx after May 1886 and before February 8 1889 .........................................................12
Nymark Jensen, Jens Vellev, Michael Vinter Jensen, Nanna Kirkeby, Stefen Terp Laursen,
th th James Theodore and Mabel Bent, 8 -18 February 1889 ..........................................................................................12Ufe Lind Rasmussen, Karl Hjalte Maack Raun, Juris Zarins, Bahrain Authority for Culture &
An�iqui ies, Car ier Heritage Department, CVMVS Museum Mumbai, Moesgaard Museum André Jouannin, 1903 .............................................................................................................................................................................13
Lieutenant Colonel Francis Beville Prideaux, 1906-190814
Jacques Cartier, 1911 ................................................................................................................................................................................16
Published by: Jutland Archaeological Society in coopera�ion with Moesgaard Museum
Ernest John Henry Mackay, 1925 ..................................................................................................................................................16and Bahrain Authority for Culture & An�iqui ies
Ronald Sinclair’s unconrmed report of German archaeologists, 1929 ......................................................17
Charles Belgrave and the RAF, 1944 ..........................................................................................................................................18Distributed by Aarhus University Press
Finlandsgade 29
Danish Gulf Expedition, 1960-63 ..................................................................................................................................................18
DK-8200 Aarhus N
Abdul Aziz Suweileh, 1982 ................................................................................................................................................................19www.unipress.dk
Bahrain National Museum, c. 1987, c. 1998 and 2009-2012 ....................................................................................19
Extract from Nāṣir al-Khayrī 2003 ...............................................................................................................................................19
3. Gazetteer of elite burial mounds previously
investigated in A’ali ..................................................................................................................................................................21
4. Recent investigations .............................................................................................................................................................85
Introduction ........................................................................................................................................................................................................85
Research objectives and strategy...................................................................................................................................................85
Dates and participants ...........................................................................................................................................................................87
Excavation reports .....................................................................................................................................................................................88Mound A (Gazetteer no. 2) ....................................89
Mound D (Gazetteer no. 6) ....................................95Mound E (Gazetteer no. 7) ..............................................................................................................................................................99
Mound H (Gazetteer no. 10) ...................................................................................................................................................... 118Mound L (Gazetteer no. 14) ........................................................................................................................................................122
Mound M (Gazetteer no. 15) .....................................................................................................................................................130Mound N (Gazetteer no. 16) ......................................................................................................................................................130
Published with support of the Carlsberg Founda�ion
4 5
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_r1_.indd 4 30-11-2017 14:30:57 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 5 24/11/17 10:45 The central parts .......................................................................................................................................................................................147
The eastern area ........................................................................................................................................................................................157
Artefacts ..........................................................................................................................................................................................................160
Main results and reconstruction .................................................................................................................................................162
Mound O (Gazetteer no. 17) ......................................................................................................................................................167Mound P (Gazetteer no. 18) ........................................................................................................................................................188
Mackay Tomb 29 (Gazetteer no. 28) ................................................................................................................................195omb 30 (Gazetteer no. 29) 201
Mound OA 204 (Gazetteer no. 32) .....208Mound BBM no. 62.754 ....................................................................................................................................................................217
Royal Mound 8 (Gazetteer no. 40) .....220
External architecture .............................................................................................................................................................................220
Internal are ..............................................................................................................................................................................224
The central parts .......................................................................................................................................................................................229
Artefacts ..........................................................................................................................................................................................................232
Al Maqsha Royal Mound ..............................................................................................................................................................246Dating by artefactual evidence ....249
Survey of previously excavated A’ali mounds .................................................................................................255
5. Carbon sampling and radiocarbon-dating .............................................................................265
Mound A (Gazetteer no. 2) ..............................................................................................................................................................266
Mound E (Gazetteer no. 7) ............267
Mound L (Gazetteer no. 14) ............................................................................................................................................................267
Mound N (Gazetteer no. 16) ..........................................................................................................................................................268
Mound O (Gazetteer no. 17) ................269
Mackay Tomb 29 (Gazetteer no. 28) ........................................................................................................................................270
Mound OA 204 (Gazetteer no. 32) ............................................................................................................................................271
Royal Mound 8 (Gazetteer no. 40) 272
Bahrain Burial Mound no. 60.788 (Aziz Mound/Gazetteer no. 38) .............................................................272
Mound OA 208 (Gazetteer no. 33) 273
Additional radiocarbon dated burial mounds ...............................................................................................................273
Al Maqsha Royal Mound .................................................................................................................................................................273
Mound OA 514 (Janabiyah Chiey Cemetery) ..............................................................................................................274
Bahrain Burial Mound no. 6.370 (Mound 53 Janabiyah Chiey Cemetery) .........................................275
Mound OA 695 (Bahrain Burial Mound no. 20.907 Wadi as-Sail)..................................................................277
252 (Unknown BBM no., Dar Kulayb Mound Cemetery) ......................................................277
6. Burial and death rituals .................................................................................................................................................279
Burial and death ritual ......................................................................................................................................................................279
The intermediary period ...................................................................................................................................................................279
The nal ceremony .................................................................................................................................................................................281
Anthropology and politics of royal death ...............................................................................................................285
Politics of dynastic succession ......................................................................................................................................................285
The spatial logic of dynastic cemeteries...............................................................................................................................286
The royal remains ....................................................................................................................................................................................287
Royal burial monuments ..................................................................................................................................................................287
6
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 6 24/11/17 10:45 The central parts .......................................................................................................................................................................................147
Royal death in Babylonia and the Upper Euphrates ................................................................................288
The eastern area ........................................................................................................................................................................................157
Mourning rituals and the phase of separation ...............................................................................................................288
Artefacts ..........................................................................................................................................................................................................160
The mortuary chapel (ki-a-naĝ / bīt kispim) .......................................................................................................................290
Main results and reconstruction .................................................................................................................................................162
The burial ritual and rites of passage and incorporation ......................................................................................290
Mound O (Gazetteer no. 17) ......................................................................................................................................................167
The rites of succession .........................................................................................................................................................................291
Mound P (Gazetteer no. 18) ........................................................................................................................................................188
The ascension to heaven ritual .....................................................................................................................................................292
Mackay Tomb 29 (Gazetteer no. 28) ................................................................................................................................195 The cult of past kings ...........................................................................................................................................................................293
Mackay Tomb 30 (Gazetteer no. 29) ................................................................................................................................201 The afterlife ...................................................................................................................................................................................................294
Mound OA 204 (Gazetteer no. 32) .....................................................................................................................................208
7. The origins and evolution of the burial mounds .......................................................297 Mound BBM no. 62.754 ....................................................................................................................................................................217
Origin of Dilmun’s burial mound tradition..........................................................................................................297 Royal Mound 8 (Gazetteer no. 40) .....................................................................................................................................220
Saudi Arabian and Kuwaiti mainland sites ......................................................................................................................299 External architecture .............................................................................................................................................................................220
Evolution of Dilmun’s burial mound tradition .............................................................................................................309 Internal architecture ..............................................................................................................................................................................224
The Early Type ...........................................................................................................................................................................................309 The central parts .......................................................................................................................................................................................229
The Late Type..............................................................324 Artefacts ..........................................................................................................................................................................................................232
Competing forms of burial ..............................................................................................................................................................335
Al Maqsha Royal Mound ..............................................................................................................................................................246
Dating by artefactual evidence ...............................................................................................................................................249
8 Social status typology and relative chronology ............................................................341
Survey of previously excavated A’ali mounds .................................................................................................255
Selected architectural features ......................341
Chamber and alcoves ...........................................................................................................................................................................341
5. Carbon sampling and radiocarbon-dating .............................................................................265
Access and doorway .............................................................................................................................................................................348
Mound A (Gazetteer no. 2) ..............................................................................................................................................................266
External features .......................................................................................................................................................................................349
Mound E (Gazetteer no. 7) ..............................................................................................................................................................267
Correspondence analysis ..................................................................................................................................................................350
Mound L (Gazetteer no. 14) ............................................................................................................................................................267
Chamber orientation .............................................................................................................................................................................353
Mound N (Gazetteer no. 16) ..........................................................................................................................................................268
Principal component analysis .......................................................................................................................................................355
Mound O (Gazetteer no. 17) ...........................................................................................................................................................269
Chronology of Royal Mound 8 and Mound N...............................................................................................................357
Mackay Tomb 29 (Gazetteer no. 28) ........................................................................................................................................270
Conclusions on social stratigraphy and typological chronology ...................................................................361
Mound OA 204 (Gazetteer no. 32) ............................................................................................................................................271
Horizontal stratigraphy and spatial analysis ..................................................................................................................363
Royal Mound 8 (Gazetteer no. 40) ............................................................................................................................................272
The relative typological chronology of radiocarbon dated Royal Mounds ..........................................370
Bahrain Burial Mound no. 60.788 (Aziz Mound/Gazetteer no. 38) .............................................................272
Mound OA 208 (Gazetteer no. 33) ............................................................................................................................................273
9. Radiocarbon chronology based on Bayesian modelling
Additional radiocarbon dated burial mounds ...............................................................................................................273
By Steffen Terp Laursen and Jesper Olsen .........................................................................................................................................371
Al Maqsha Royal Mound .................................................................................................................................................................273
Mound OA 514 (Janabiyah Chiey Cemetery) ..............................................................................................................274 The Bayesian model “Royal Sequence” .....................................................................................................................371
Bahrain Burial Mound no. 6.370 (Mound 53 Janabiyah Chiey Cemetery) .........................................275Results .....................................................................................................................................................................................................................374
Mound OA 695 (Bahrain Burial Mound no. 20.907 Wadi as-Sail)..................................................................277
Mound OA 252 (Unknown BBM no., Dar Kulayb Mound Cemetery) ......................................................277
10. Conclusion and discussion .....................................................................................................................................377
Historic developments – a sketch .......................................................................................................................................379
6. Burial and death rituals .................................................................................................................................................279
Discussion ..........................................................................................................................................................................................................390
Burial and death ritual ......................................................................................................................................................................279
The Amorite issue and social organization .......................................................................................................................390
The intermediary period ...................................................................................................................................................................279
Tomb building ............................................................................................................................................................................................392
The nal ceremony .................................................................................................................................................................................281
Burial rituals.......................................................................................................................393
Anthropology and politics of royal death ...............................................................................................................285 The institution of the Royal Cemetery ..................................................................................................................................394
Politics of dynastic succession ......................................................................................................................................................285
The spatial logic of dynastic cemeteries...............................................................................................................................286
The royal remains ....................................................................................................................................................................................287
Royal burial monuments ..................................................................................................................................................................287
6 7
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 6 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 7 24/11/17 10:45 Appendix 1. A’ali pottery in Mumbai
By Steffen Terp Laursen .................................................................................................................................................................................................397
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................401
Appendix 2. Analysis of bitumen from the Royal Mounds
By Thomas Van de Velde ...................................................................................................................................................................................... 403
Early Dilmun period bitumen ......................................................................................................................................................403
Analysis of the data ....................................405
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................410
Appendix 3. The stone building materials
By Steffen T erp Laursen ........................................................................................................................................................................................ 413
Stone types ....................................................................................................................................................................................................413
Sources ..............................................................................................................................................................................................................413
Samples ..........................................................416
Bibliography ..............................................419
Appendix 4. Ceremonial platform Mound OA 256
By Steffen Terp Laursen ......................................................421
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................422
Appendix 5. Inscriptions fr om the Royal Mounds
of A’ali (Bahrain) and Related Texts
By Gianni Marchesi ................................................................................................................................................................................................. 425
§ 1. The Inscriptions from A’ali ....................................................................................................................................................425
§ 2. Related texts .......................................................................................................................................................................................427
§ 4. Dilmun’s kings and Dilmunite kingship...................................................................................................................428
§ 5. The question of Ag/karum ................................430
Abbreviations .............................................................................................................................................................................................433
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................434
Acknowledgements ..............................................................................................................................................................................439
Bibliography ........................................................................................................................................................................................................441
8
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 8 24/11/17 10:45 Appendix 1. A’ali pottery in Mumbai 1. Introduction
By Steffen Terp Laursen .................................................................................................................................................................................................397
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................401
Appendix 2. Analysis of bitumen from the Royal Mounds
By Thomas V an de Velde ...................................................................................................................................................................................... 403
Early Dilmun period bitumen ......................................................................................................................................................403
Analysis of the data ...............................................................................................................................................................................405
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................410 After millennia with a low degree of social organiza- ideological and political process aimed at securing the
tion, several groups within the Near Eastern societies dynastic line of succession, cementing the royal family’s
Appendix 3. The stone building materials initiated the process of state formation. Within any hierarchical position and legitimizing the incumbent
given society and region particular attention should monarch’s right to rule. Located below palaces, royal By Steffen T erp Laursen ........................................................................................................................................................................................ 413
be paid to these rst attempts at state building because tombs were controlled and the cult of the dead royal
Stone types ....................................................................................................................................................................................................413 they took place without an existing plan to which one family was exclusive and private. In contrast the vis-
Sources ..............................................................................................................................................................................................................413 could turn for guidance. In setting up fundamental ually prominent dynastic cemeteries were more inte-
Samples ............................................................................................................................................................................................................416 institutions of statecraft such societies had to conceive grated institutions where extensive state rituals could be
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................419 their own solutions in provisioning the local require- performed in the public sphere. The makeup of the royal
ments, possibly with the aid of inspiration from neigh- cemetery as an institution has the potential to reveal
bouring states. Consequently, whilst we tend to focus many important aspects about an early state and the Appendix 4. Cer emonial platform Mound OA 256
on their similarities, the structure of early states must conception of its institution of kingship and political By Steffen T erp Laursen .................................................................................................................................................................................................421
have been rather diverse. When exploring ancient states power.
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................422 N. Yoffee has pointed to the advantages of using an The purpose of this study is to examine the Royal
analytical approach that focuses on individual institu- Cemetery and Kingship as institutions in Early Dilmun
tions (: -). It is possible to explore through society, c. - BC. The features of kingship under
Appendix 5. Inscriptions from the Royal Mounds
the lens of a carefully selected institution from which consideration are those pertaining to the ofce of, and
of A’ali (Bahrain) and Related Texts data can be made available the complexity and unique government by, a king. The absence of written sources
By Gianni Mar chesi ................................................................................................................................................................................................. 425 characteristics of an ancient society and the evolution of from Dilmun means that the institution of kingship has
its organization. Ideally, an institution-level approach to be indirectly addressed since the principle evidence § 1. The Inscriptions from A’ali ....................................................................................................................................................425
should be adopted without forcing the available data is archaeological, in the form of public architecture and
§ 2. Related texts .......................................................................................................................................................................................427
into a single theoretically predened template. royal tombs. The core of the current study is formed by
§ 4. Dilmun’s kings and Dilmunite kingship...................................................................................................................428
There are particular types of institutions, which in the results of a series of new excavations at the Royal
§ 5. The question of Ag/karum ...................................................................................................................................................430
one form or another, almost invariably seem to have Mounds of A’ali in Bahrain. This evidence alongside
Abbreviations .............................................................................................................................................................................................433 been present in state societies and the presence of a re-examination of previous data from the site and
Bibliography ................................................................................................................................................................................................434 these have become dening traits in the classication other burial mounds of Bahrain sets out to write a new
of early states. These individual institutions are not chapter in the archaeology of Early Dilmun society.
of primary concern here, but for established states the The site of the royal mounds at the village of A'ali in Acknowledgements ..............................................................................................................................................................................439
types of institutions into which resources were allo- the centre of Bahrain consists of a collection of
extraorcated depended on a combination of economy, politics, dinarily large burial mounds lying north of a compact Bibliography ........................................................................................................................................................................................................441
historic conditions and established traditions. In the cemetery of normal-sized burial mounds. In the course
rst attempts of early societies to construct states one of this study it will be argued that in the northern
distrispecic important institution recurrently seems to have bution of larger burial mounds there existed a distinct
developed in tandem with the emergence of the state, Royal Cemetery proper which consisted of the to
namely that of the royal cemetery. largest and northernmost burial mounds (cf. Fig.-
below).
In general, there is a very strong association between The burial mounds are generally assumed to date
the advent of state-building and the introduction of a from around - BC and for a long time there
political authority based on kingship. Royal cemeteries has been speculation about the association of the
largoften developed either in an intramural location, such est of these tombs with the rulers of Dilmun. In spite
as within a palace, or in full public view at a visually of almost years of sporadic research, the data on
prominent location. Both types appeared to be part of an A’ali, prior to this project, failed to provide conclusive
8 9Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 8 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_r1_.indd 30-11-2017 0:40:12evidence to support or reject this assertion. The gaps in sented, the following chapter has been dedicated to
our knowledge are not only related to the chronology burial and death rituals. Special focus is placed on
of the burial mounds but also to the social span of the important theoretical aspects, and additional
ethnohierarchy that is represented at the site. graphic, anthropologic and historic analogies which
are central to the analysis are put forth (Chapter ). In
The study presented in this book provides conclusive Chapter the origin of the burial mound tradition is
evidence in support of the A’ali cemetery’s function in explored through a brief survey of the Pan-Arabian
burDilmun as the royal cemetery of a dynasty of Amorite ial mound phenomenon and analysis of the evolution
ancestry. Furthermore, the absolute dating of the royal of Early Dilmun burial customs. Hereafter follows
analmounds is presented and based on a reliable sequence ysis of the architecture of the burial mounds aimed at
of archaeological data and radiocarbon dates. Targeted creating a typology of social status and relative
chronolinvestigations into the vast corpus of archaeological ogy of the royal mounds (Chapter ). The radiocarbon
data generated from the burial mounds of Bahrain dates from burial mounds positively identied in the
reveal new aspects of the ideology behind the Dilmu- social status analysis as royal tombs and the established
nite burial rituals opening up this aspect to a more relative chronology are subsequently used to determine
informed and detailed analysis. more accurate absolute dates of each royal tomb by
This volume begins with a brief introduction to the means of Bayesian modelling (Chapter co-authored
previous investigations at the Royal Mounds of A’ali with J. Olsen). The nal chapter presents the broader
and a few central events in the history of the archae- conclusions drawn from this study (Chapter ).
ological site (Chapter ). Following this overview of Five appendices follow. Appendix provides a
the research history of the royal mounds, a selected presentation of the Early Dilmun pottery from A’ali
corpus of data from the previous excavations including stored in India, Appendix presents the analysis of
photos and plans is presented in a comprehensive Gaz- the bitumen sampled from the royal mounds (by T.
etteer (Chapter ). A substantial part of this book is then Van der Velde), Appendix contains data on the main
devoted to the presentation of the data from the recent types of stone used as building material in the A’ali
investigations at A’ali by the Bahrain-Moesgaard team mounds, Appendix presents a platform mound from
(Chapter ). A short chapter presents the systematic the A’ali cemetery previously excavated by the Danish
sampling of ancient carbon from the chambers and the expedition, and the cuneiform inscriptions found in
resulting radiocarbon dates (Chapter ). the royal mounds are dealt with by G. Marchesi in
After the empirical foundations have been pre- Appendix .
10 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 10 24/11/17 10:45�



evidence to support or reject this assertion. The gaps in sented, the following chapter has been dedicated to 2. The early explorers and
our knowledge are not only related to the chronology burial and death rituals. Special focus is placed on
of the burial mounds but also to the social span of the important theoretical aspects, and additional
ethnohierarchy that is represented at the site. graphic, anthropologic and historic analogies which exploration history of A’ali
are central to the analysis are put forth (Chapter ). In
The study presented in this book provides conclusive Chapter the origin of the burial mound tradition is
evidence in support of the A’ali cemetery’s function in explored through a brief survey of the Pan-Arabian
burDilmun as the royal cemetery of a dynasty of Amorite ial mound phenomenon and analysis of the evolution
ancestry. Furthermore, the absolute dating of the royal of Early Dilmun burial customs. Hereafter follows
analmounds is presented and based on a reliable sequence ysis of the architecture of the burial mounds aimed at
of archaeological data and radiocarbon dates. Targeted creating a typology of social status and relative
chronolinvestigations into the vast corpus of archaeological ogy of the royal mounds (Chapter ). The radiocarbon
data generated from the burial mounds of Bahrain dates from burial mounds positively identied in the Amongst the populations of Bahrain and the adjacent tells" ([Khayr]: ..). Sheikh Nasr, who saw
reveal new aspects of the ideology behind the Dilmu- social status analysis as royal tombs and the established mainland there has obviously always been an awareness it as his obligation to exercize hospitality, received the
nite burial rituals opening up this aspect to a more relative chronology are subsequently used to determine of the visible traces of "the ancients" which surrounded Englishman as his guest in Bahrain. As part of this
cominformed and detailed analysis. more accurate absolute dates of each royal tomb by them. The arrangement of these relics in a linear histori- munication the Persian Vizier M. Astarabadi, who
repThis volume begins with a brief introduction to the means of Bayesian modelling (Chapter co-authored cal sequence did not evolve until the rise of archaeology. resented the de facto overlord of Sheikh Nasr, expressed
previous investigations at the Royal Mounds of A’ali with J. Olsen). The nal chapter presents the broader Because of the fact that during the Age of Enlightenment extreme discontent with the Sheikh for hosting this
and a few central events in the history of the archae- conclusions drawn from this study (Chapter ). modern historic and ultimately archaeological thought Englishman and for having agreed to his request to
ological site (Chapter ). Following this overview of Five appendices follow. Appendix provides a emerged in Europe, European agents have dominated wander around the island in order to observe its ancient
the research history of the royal mounds, a selected presentation of the Early Dilmun pottery from A’ali the early archaeological exploration of Arabia. ruins and dig in its lands and tells. It appears that the
corpus of data from the previous excavations including stored in India, Appendix presents the analysis of Persians felt certain that the Englishman’s interest in
photos and plans is presented in a comprehensive Gaz- the bitumen sampled from the royal mounds (by T. Bahrain’s ancient remains were merely a pretext for
An anonymous Englishman, before
etteer (Chapter ). A substantial part of this book is then Van der Velde), Appendix contains data on the main spying. He outright calls Sheikh Nasr naïve for
telldevoted to the presentation of the data from the recent types of stone used as building material in the A’ali ing the Christian Englishman about the conditions
investigations at A’ali by the Bahrain-Moesgaard team mounds, Appendix presents a platform mound from Less than years after Carsten Niebuhr, the last sur- in the Gulf and Bahrain. As an alternative to the
per(Chapter ). A short chapter presents the systematic the A’ali cemetery previously excavated by the Danish viving member of the Danish expedition to Arabia Felix haps not unjustied concern of the Persian vizier, it is
sampling of ancient carbon from the chambers and the expedition, and the cuneiform inscriptions found in had passed by Bahrain in without setting foot on equally possible that this Englishman was a pioneer
resulting radiocarbon dates (Chapter ). the royal mounds are dealt with by G. Marchesi in the islands (Hansen : -), another European antiquarian of the sort that appeared during the Age
After the empirical foundations have been pre- Appendix . apparently disembarked with the purpose of exploring of Enlightenment. Whether the Royal Mounds of A’ali
1the area. The unknown Englishman in question visited were explored on this visit remains entirely unknown,
Bahrain during the reign of Shaikh Nasr Al Madhkur (c. however, given their impressive appearance it appears
-) and his interest in the ancient monuments most likely that they were the focus of some attention.
of Bahrain is the earliest documented. Our knowledge
of this visit is exceedingly scarce and is only known to
Captain (later Sir) Edward Law
us through correspondence between the Qajar dynasty
Durand, -of Persia’s Minister for Internal Affairs (Vizier) Mirza
Mahdi Khaan Astarabadi and Sheikh Nasr. A transcript Captain Durand, who carried the title of First Assistant
of the relevant Arabic paragraphs in these letters is to the Political Resident in the Persian Gulf, arrived in
included at p. . Bahrain in with orders to survey the Island’s
antiqThe correspondence in question was reproduced uities (Rice : ). The background for Durand’s
in the manuscript of Nā ṣir bin Jawhar bin Mubarak visit and the impressive list of discoveries he made in
al-Khayr (-) who listed a paper published in Bahrain is treated elsewhere by Rice (: -) and
2India in as his source. The manuscript of al-Khayr of signicance here are the excavations he undertook
was published by A. al-Shuqair ([Khayr post hum]). in and around the Royal Cemetery of A’ali (Durand
According to the letters, the Englishman had requested a and b).
permission to start “investigating the hills of Bahrain (bur- It is from Captain Durand that we have the
earliial mounds) and digging [i.e., excavating] its lands and est account of the Royal Cemetery of A’ali, which he
1 I cordially thank Dr. Abdulla Al Sulai i for bringing this informa�ion to my a�ten�ion. Thanks are also due to
Dr. Waleed M. Al-Sadeqi for advice rela�ing to this ma�ter.
2 Al-Habl Al-Mateen no. 13. 1329 Hijri (1911).
10 11Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 10 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 11 24/11/17 10:45described as “a most singular group of mounds… they Persian Gulf only to return in May and stay until
3number about to … all being of a size to ensure notice.” March . We further know that the ofcers were
(Durand a: ). During a period from March to April active after Durand, but before the arrival of Mr. and
, , Durand excavated two burial mounds near the Mrs. Bent in (Bent a and below). In Mrs. Mabel
thA’ali village and he thus also became the rst ofcial Bent’s journal entry for February , she mentions
excavator of Bahrain’s burial mounds on record. that some mounds in A’ali had been opened by Durand
Durand commenced his work by excavating a burial and ofcers of the Sphinx and that: “they found very little”
thmound in the western periphery of the royal cemetery (Brisch : ; [Mrs. Bent ]). On February
where he encountered a stone built central chamber in Mrs. Mabel Bent further noted in her journal that
the shape of a capital Latin letter H (see Chapter : no. ofcers of the Sphinx had, on that day, paid a visit to
). The second mound he investigated – subsequently their excavation camp at Mound B (Brisch : ; [Mrs.
named Mound A by F.B. Prideaux (see below) – is one of Bent ]). The British Museum holds no information
the largest burial mounds in Bahrain and belongs to the about the Sphinx's activities in A’ali, but according to
exclusive group, which constitutes the royal cemetery Julian Reade the British Museum records reveal that
(see Chapter : no. ). Durand was assisted by a detach- two of the ship’s ofcers, by the names of Christian and
stment of the Native Infantry and Captain Pringle Henderson, corresponded with the British Museum
from HMS Vulture and thus had ample access to explo- on another matter (: ). The antiquarian interest
sives. In the internal version of his report he explicitly demonstrated by these two individuals may be taken
states that he repeatedly used gunpowder to blow his as an indication that they could have been involved in
way into the mound (a: ). Once Durand reached the alleged excavations at A’ali. Moreover, the presence
the central stone built chamber of Mound A he found in in Mound O (Chapter : no. ) of “…a cutting
that this, probably in part due to his harsh method of made horizontally across its summit in fairly recent times…”
entry, had caved in. Consequently, large fallen stones and signs of a similar intervention at Mound P
(Chapleft either by his series of gunpowder blasts or earlier ter : no. ) led Prideaux to propose that these two
tomb raiders prevented Durand from exploring the mounds likely were those which had been entered by
interior of the mound (Durand a: -). the unnamed ofcers of the Sphinx (Prideaux : ).
The few nds which Durand recovered in A’ali
were presumably kept along with his other artefacts James Theodore and Mabel Bent,
from Bahrain including the famous foot shaped stone
th th - February fragment with the cuneiform inscription “Palace of
Ri’mum, Servant of Inzak, of Akarum” (see Appendix In the self-proclaimed globetrotters and excavators
). The latter stone is known to have been destroyed Theodore and Mabel Bent made a brief stop in
Bahduring the Blitz bombing of London in World War II rain and obtained permission from the ruler of Bahrain
(Reade and Burleigh : ) and it is almost certain Sheikh Isa ibn Ali Al Khalifa to excavate two mounds at
that Durand’s other nds from the A’ali mounds shared A’ali (Fig. ) (Bent b). The purpose of their
investithe same fate. gation was to ascertain the date and cultural afnity of
the burial mounds (Bent a: ) and was inspired by
Durand’s earlier report. The Bents excavated a mound Ofcers of HMS Sphinx after May
in the periphery of the Royal Cemetery proper
(Chapth and before February ter : no. ) and a very large mound – subsequently
The next activity at A’ali on record is loosely assigned named Mound B by Prideaux – which should probably
to ‘ofcers of HMS Sphinx’. The exact time and circum- be assigned to the Royal Cemetery proper (Chapter
stances of this operation still evade us, but it is possi- : no. ). In Mound B, which was dug rst, the Bents
ble to extract some basic information from the scanty found a large H-shaped chamber superimposed over
evidence available. The Sphinx was commissioned for a chamber of a corresponding layout and thus became
service in October and from this time contempo- the rst to document a classic two-tiered Dilmun burial
rary newspaper reports place her outside the Persian chamber. Importantly, in her diary Mabel Bent stated
Gulf until May . In February the ship left the about their smaller mound that it “…turned out to be of
3 Thanks are due to anonymous member of the ‘World Naval Ships Forums’ Navalis for help in loca�ing the relevant records
with informa�ion about the whereabouts of HMS Sphinx.
12 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 12 24/11/17 10:45described as “a most singular group of mounds… they Persian Gulf only to return in May and stay until
3number about to … all being of a size to ensure notice.” March . We further know that the ofcers were
(Durand a: ). During a period from March to April active after Durand, but before the arrival of Mr. and
, , Durand excavated two burial mounds near the Mrs. Bent in (Bent a and below). In Mrs. Mabel
thA’ali village and he thus also became the rst ofcial Bent’s journal entry for February , she mentions
excavator of Bahrain’s burial mounds on record. that some mounds in A’ali had been opened by Durand
Durand commenced his work by excavating a burial and ofcers of the Sphinx and that: “they found very little”
thmound in the western periphery of the royal cemetery (Brisch : ; [Mrs. Bent ]). On February
where he encountered a stone built central chamber in Mrs. Mabel Bent further noted in her journal that
the shape of a capital Latin letter H (see Chapter : no. ofcers of the Sphinx had, on that day, paid a visit to
). The second mound he investigated – subsequently their excavation camp at Mound B (Brisch : ; [Mrs.
named Mound A by F.B. Prideaux (see below) – is one of Bent ]). The British Museum holds no information
the largest burial mounds in Bahrain and belongs to the about the Sphinx's activities in A’ali, but according to
exclusive group, which constitutes the royal cemetery Julian Reade the British Museum records reveal that
(see Chapter : no. ). Durand was assisted by a detach- two of the ship’s ofcers, by the names of Christian and
stment of the Native Infantry and Captain Pringle Henderson, corresponded with the British Museum
from HMS Vulture and thus had ample access to explo- on another matter (: ). The antiquarian interest
sives. In the internal version of his report he explicitly demonstrated by these two individuals may be taken
states that he repeatedly used gunpowder to blow his as an indication that they could have been involved in
way into the mound (a: ). Once Durand reached the alleged excavations at A’ali. Moreover, the presence
the central stone built chamber of Mound A he found in in Mound O (Chapter : no. ) of “…a cutting
that this, probably in part due to his harsh method of made horizontally across its summit in fairly recent times…”
entry, had caved in. Consequently, large fallen stones and signs of a similar intervention at Mound P
(Chapleft either by his series of gunpowder blasts or earlier ter : no. ) led Prideaux to propose that these two
tomb raiders prevented Durand from exploring the mounds likely were those which had been entered by
interior of the mound (Durand a: -). the unnamed ofcers of the Sphinx (Prideaux : ).
Fig. 1. Theodore Bent and local dignitaries at A’ali. Photograph was taken by Mrs. Mabel Bent in (reproduced after Bent & Bent The few nds which Durand recovered in A’ali
: ).were presumably kept along with his other artefacts James Theodore and Mabel Bent,
from Bahrain including the famous foot shaped stone
th th - February fragment with the cuneiform inscription “Palace of
Ri’mum, Servant of Inzak, of Akarum” (see Appendix In the self-proclaimed globetrotters and excavators the same plan [as their larger mound] on a smaller scale.” in A’ali she made two charming sketches in the margin
4). The latter stone is known to have been destroyed Theodore and Mabel Bent made a brief stop in Bah- (Brisch : ; [Mrs. Bent ] brackets are mine). of her journal (Figs. and ). Most of the nds made by
during the Blitz bombing of London in World War II rain and obtained permission from the ruler of Bahrain T. Bent proposed that ivories found in the cham- the Bents including the copper and ivory fragments are
(Reade and Burleigh : ) and it is almost certain Sheikh Isa ibn Ali Al Khalifa to excavate two mounds at bers of Mound B showed a Phoenician origin (Bent now with the British Museum (Reade & Burleigh ).
that Durand’s other nds from the A’ali mounds shared A’ali (Fig. ) (Bent b). The purpose of their investi- a: ); a suggestion for which he had probably After having read his obligatory paper at the Royal
the same fate. gation was to ascertain the date and cultural afnity of been inspired by a comparable statement proffered Geographical Society at the Evening Meeting,
Novemththe burial mounds (Bent a: ) and was inspired by previously by Durand (a: ). Be that as it may, ber , Mr. Bent deposited glass plate negatives
Durand’s earlier report. The Bents excavated a mound the idea never really became accepted by the scholarly of their Bahrain photos with the Society. Regrettably, Ofcers of HMS Sphinx after May
in the periphery of the Royal Cemetery proper (Chap- community and was soon disputed (Hogarth : ) they were discarded around due to their poor
th and before February 5ter : no. ) and a very large mound – subsequently and what eventually became known as Bent’s ‘Phoeni- condition (pers. comm. Gerald Brisch).
The next activity at A’ali on record is loosely assigned named Mound B by Prideaux – which should probably cian Hypothesis’ was by the ’s considered entirely
to ‘ofcers of HMS Sphinx’. The exact time and circum- be assigned to the Royal Cemetery proper (Chapter disproven (Bowen : ). As had been the case with
André Jouannin, stances of this operation still evade us, but it is possi- : no. ). In Mound B, which was dug rst, the Bents the excavations of Durand those of the Bents did not in
ble to extract some basic information from the scanty found a large H-shaped chamber superimposed over any satisfactory way resolve the question of the origin In a French or Belgian national by the name of
evidence available. The Sphinx was commissioned for a chamber of a corresponding layout and thus became of the burial mounds. As alluded to above, Mrs. Mabel André Jouannin arrived in Bahrain on his way to
Baghservice in October and from this time contempo- the rst to document a classic two-tiered Dilmun burial Bent was a keen journal writer (Brisch ; ; ) dad and Mosul and conducted a small excavation in
rary newspaper reports place her outside the Persian chamber. Importantly, in her diary Mabel Bent stated and she wrote a short but vivid account of their stay in A’ali. Even though his A’ali work was subsequently
Gulf until May . In February the ship left the about their smaller mound that it “…turned out to be of Bahrain. In connection with the excavation of Mound B published in the Mémoires de la Délègation en Perse, he
4 Whether Mabel Bent here meant that the chamber of the smaller mound also was of the two-�iered type is less clear.
3 Thanks are due to anonymous member of the ‘World Naval Ships Forums’ Navalis for help in loca�ing the relevant records 5 Gerald Brisch has also kindly informed me that no original documenta�ion from the Bents’ Bahrain excava�ion is deposited
with informa�ion about the whereabouts of HMS Sphinx. with the Hellenic Society in London.
12 13Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 12 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 13 24/11/17 10:45Fig. 2. Sketch drawing in Mrs. Bent’s diary (Joint Library Diary Fig. 3. Sketch drawing in Mrs. Bent’s diary (Joint Library
Number ()) dated th of February showing Mr. T. Bent Diary Number ()) dated th of February showing the
and the “diggers” commencing work on their larger mound. © workman Murad working on the larger mound. © Gerald Brisch,
Gerald Brisch, reproduced by permission of the Joint Library of reproduced by permission of the Joint Library of the Hellenic and
the Hellenic and Roman Societies. Roman Societies.
was not ofcially associated with the French Delega- In the letter L.W. King refers to a visit of “…a certain
tion as one would expect. Conversely, Jouannin was Monsieur André Jouannin...[who]…stopped at Bahrein and
associated with the Comité de l’Asie Fran ҫaise where did some digging for a week or two in a mound near the town.
he held the position of Secrétaire General. Jouannin He says he found two well-built stone chambers one over the
states that he had become intrigued by the burial other full of human and animal bones – evidently it was a
mounds of Bahrain after reading the Bents’ report in big mausoleum but he found nothing to show their date or
”Southern Arabia” (Bent & Bent ) and later by that was worth bringing away.” (after D’Andrea: a-b
thpersonal inspection of the mounds on September [bracket is mine]).
(Jouannin : ).
Jouannin obtained permission to excavate a mound Lieutenant Colonel Francis Beville
from HH Sheikh Isa and began his work by
re-investiPrideaux, - gating the chambers of Mound B which years earlier
had been excavated by the Bents (see Chapter : no. ). The Political Agent to Bahrain, F.B. Prideaux became
Jouannin then proceeded to dig a tunnel into a mound the rst major excavator of the burial mounds of
located immediately south of the Royal Cemetery Bahrain and the most active at the Royal Cemetery
proper which later was named Mound D by Prideaux proper. In he began excavation in A’ali on behalf
(see Chapter : no. ). Inside Mound D he succeeded of the Archeological Department of the Government
in locating the upper chamber of a two-tiered chamber of India. As with those who preceded him, the
invesstructure which contained the ried remains of a burial tigation of Prideaux was ofcially motivated by “…
and various grave goods (Jouannin : -). the question of the origin of the necropolis” (: ) and
It has, until now, been unclear if some of Jouannin’s “…if any inscriptions existed within these mounds…”
discoveries from Mound D had survived and J. Reade (: ).
stinquired about their whereabouts in both the Musées During the cold season from October to the
stRoyaux d’Art et d’Histoire in Brussels and in the Lou- of March a total of eight mounds (Chapter
vre in Paris (Reade & Burleigh : ). However, on : nos. and to ) were excavated in and around
the basis of a letter by Cambridge Assyriologist Leon- the Royal Cemetery proper. In addition to these,
thard W. King sent from Mosul on the of October smaller mounds were opened in the compact mound
addressed to British Museum Philologist E.A.W. Budge cemetery to the south, but the exact location of these
it can now be concluded with sufcient condence that are unknown. In the spring of Mounds L and
6Jouannin did not bring anything with him from A’ali. M (Chapter : nos. and ) were excavated in the
6 I cordially thank Dr. Julian Reade for bringing a copy of this le�ter to my a�ten�ion.
14 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 14 24/11/17 10:45Fig. 2. Sketch drawing in Mrs. Bent’s diary (Joint Library Diary Fig. 3. Sketch drawing in Mrs. Bent’s diary (Joint Library
Number ()) dated th of February showing Mr. T. Bent Diary Number ()) dated th of February showing the
and the “diggers” commencing work on their larger mound. © workman Murad working on the larger mound. © Gerald Brisch,
Gerald Brisch, reproduced by permission of the Joint Library of reproduced by permission of the Joint Library of the Hellenic and
the Hellenic and Roman Societies. Roman Societies.
was not ofcially associated with the French Delega- In the letter L.W. King refers to a visit of “…a certain
tion as one would expect. Conversely, Jouannin was Monsieur André Jouannin...[who]…stopped at Bahrein and
associated with the Comité de l’Asie Fran ҫaise where did some digging for a week or two in a mound near the town.
he held the position of Secrétaire General. Jouannin He says he found two well-built stone chambers one over the
states that he had become intrigued by the burial other full of human and animal bones – evidently it was a
mounds of Bahrain after reading the Bents’ report in big mausoleum but he found nothing to show their date or
”Southern Arabia” (Bent & Bent ) and later by that was worth bringing away.” (after D’Andrea: a-b
thpersonal inspection of the mounds on September [bracket is mine]).
Fig. 4. map of the Royal Cemetery of A’ali by Commander Walter Hose (after Prideaux : Pl. XVI).
(Jouannin : ).
Jouannin obtained permission to excavate a mound Lieutenant Colonel Francis Beville
from HH Sheikh Isa and began his work by
re-investiPrideaux, - gating the chambers of Mound B which years earlier
had been excavated by the Bents (see Chapter : no. ). The Political Agent to Bahrain, F.B. Prideaux became periphery of the royal cemetery on Prideaux’s own more objects of intrinsic value expressed dissatisfaction
Jouannin then proceeded to dig a tunnel into a mound the rst major excavator of the burial mounds of initiative and at his expense. He is responsible for intro- with the outcome of his excavations and concludes his
located immediately south of the Royal Cemetery Bahrain and the most active at the Royal Cemetery ducing the current alphabetic lettering system of the report to the Archaeological Survey of India by stating
proper which later was named Mound D by Prideaux proper. In he began excavation in A’ali on behalf A’ali mounds which names them in order from A to P that his results had been “meagre” (: ).
(see Chapter : no. ). Inside Mound D he succeeded of the Archeological Department of the Government according to the time of their excavation. Prideaux was Until now the only existing documentation of the
in locating the upper chamber of a two-tiered chamber of India. As with those who preceded him, the inves- aided in matters of surveying by Commander Walter grave goods recovered in the mounds excavated
structure which contained the ried remains of a burial tigation of Prideaux was ofcially motivated by “… Hose of HMS Redbreast who prepared the rst map of by Prideaux is a photo which shows an arrangement
and various grave goods (Jouannin : -). the question of the origin of the necropolis” (: ) and the Royal Cemetery (Fig. ). Unfortunately, no exca- of complete and fragmented pottery vessels on a table
It has, until now, been unclear if some of Jouannin’s “…if any inscriptions existed within these mounds…” vation plans made it into the publication even (Fig. ) as well as a photo of two beads and a gold
discoveries from Mound D had survived and J. Reade (: ). though Prideaux explicitly refers to “plan-making” ring (Chapter : no. ). A preface to Prideaux’s report
stinquired about their whereabouts in both the Musées During the cold season from October to the in his report (: ). Although this makes it likely mentions that the artefacts were to be deposited in the
stRoyaux d’Art et d’Histoire in Brussels and in the Lou- of March a total of eight mounds (Chapter that excavation plans were drawn up in the course of Prince of Wales Museum in Bombay (Vogel : ).
vre in Paris (Reade & Burleigh : ). However, on : nos. and to ) were excavated in and around excavation, and perhaps excluded in the last stages of For a long time all the artefacts appeared to have been
the basis of a letter by Cambridge Assyriologist Leon- the Royal Cemetery proper. In addition to these, production, the present author has been unsuccess- lost, but in J. Reade found conrmation in an old
th 7ard W. King sent from Mosul on the of October smaller mounds were opened in the compact mound ful in tracking down any such unpublished material. museum guide (Gyani ) that the Prince of Wales
addressed to British Museum Philologist E.A.W. Budge cemetery to the south, but the exact location of these Prideaux, who presumably had anticipated nding Museum of Western India had, by all appearance,
amalit can now be concluded with sufcient condence that are unknown. In the spring of Mounds L and
6Jouannin did not bring anything with him from A’ali. M (Chapter : nos. and ) were excavated in the
7 Searches in pursuit of Prideaux’s materials have been made at a number of ins�itu ions including: The Bri ish Library,
Department of Asian and African Studies and the India Oice Map catalogues, The Bri ish Museum, The Na�ional Archives
6 I cordially thank Dr. Julian Reade for bringing a copy of this le�ter to my a�ten�ion. (UK), the Na�ional Archives of India and the Archaeological Survey of India.
14 15Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 14 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 15 24/11/17 10:45(BBM no. .) can be seen in the background. To the
right the excavated remains of both Mound G
(Chapter : no. ) and Mound F (Chapter : no. ) appear in
the distance with the trenches made years earlier by
Prideaux still visible.
Ernest John Henry Mackay,
Sir Flinders Petrie, one of the founding gures of
Egyptology, also developed an interest in Bahrain and
particularly in understanding what role the island could
have played in ancient Egyptian trade. After a failed
attempt to recruit T.E. Lawrence (later to earn the
epithet “of Arabia” in (Rice : -), Petrie in Fig. 5. Pottery from the A’ali Mounds (after Prideaux : g. ).
seized the opportunity of his former student Ernest
J.H. Mackay being in the region and directed him to
work out "the nature of the tombs and their contents" (Rice
gamated the objects with another collection (Reade & : -).
Burleigh ). In connection with the study at hand the In a brief bibliography Gregory Possehl described
present author made further inquiries into the matter Mackay as: “… a solid journeyman archaeologist [and] a
and subsequently succeeded in verifying that at least very good excavator for his times” (: ). Early in his
pottery vessels from Prideaux’s A’ali excavations have career Mackay had for several years (-) been
survived in the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu San- occupied with the photography and documentation
grahalaya Museum, Mumbai (formerly Prince of Wales of the Theban tombs in Egypt (Possehl : ) and
Museum of Western India). The re-located pottery from this valuable experience must have contributed to the
A’ali is presented separately in Appendix . quality of his later work in Bahrain.
Mackay excavated mounds in what he described
as “a very brief season’s work at Bahrein” (Mackay :
Jacques Cartier, ) and all things considered he managed to
docuThe next notable character to enter the scene was cel- ment his work reasonably well. Among those mounds
ebrated French jeweller Jacques Cartier who, during a which he excavated, were located in and around the
business trip to the Gulf in spring of , paid a visit to Royal Cemetery proper (Chapter : nos. -), while
the Royal Mounds of A'ali. Sheikh Khalifa bin Ahmed the remaining excavations were directed towards
al Ghatam hosted a banquet for J. Cartier in a hunting smaller mounds in the large compact mound cemetery
camp that was set up in the southern periphery of the to the south.
Royal Cemetery of A’ali. On this occasion the Sheikh Mackay concluded, incorrectly as it eventually
instructed his sons to provide Cartier and his compan- turned out, that “the people who were buried in Bahrein
ions with a tour of the burial mounds. Although he did were nomads” and that they had been “brought from some
not conduct excavations he is mentioned here since part of the mainland” (: ). This unfounded
hypothhe brought a photographer who recorded a number esis of "an island for the dead" or "international burial
of important photos. Aside from taking a photo of the ground" was to persist for a long time
(Lamberg-Karentrance to Mound B (see Chapter : no. ), which was lovsky ; During-Caspers ) but is now
considththe favoured motif of most century visitors, he also ered utterly disproven. However, it must be granted
recorded informative photos of and from Mound E that Mackay was able to more accurately date the burial
which add to our understanding of this and the sur- mounds than any of his predecessors. By comparing the
rounding monuments (see Chapter : no. ). In one Babylonian vessels he had encountered in the chambers
photo Cartier, Mugbil Al Thukair and probably Carti- with examples from Tello (ancient Girsu) and Kish as
er’s sales assistant Maurice Richard can be seen posing well as socketed bronze spearheads he found in
Mesoon the edge of Prideaux’s excavation trench on Mound potamia with those he found in Bahrain (Mackay :
E (Fig. ). The end of the upper chamber’s north-east- ), Mackay proposed an approximate date of
ern alcove can be seen in the lower left corner. The BC (: ). The majority of the artefacts found
large anonymous and still unexcavated royal mound by Mackay were donated to the British Museum by
16 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 16 24/11/17 10:45(BBM no. .) can be seen in the background. To the
right the excavated remains of both Mound G
(Chapter : no. ) and Mound F (Chapter : no. ) appear in
the distance with the trenches made years earlier by
Prideaux still visible.
Ernest John Henry Mackay,
Sir Flinders Petrie, one of the founding gures of
Egyptology, also developed an interest in Bahrain and
particularly in understanding what role the island could
have played in ancient Egyptian trade. After a failed
attempt to recruit T.E. Lawrence (later to earn the
epithet “of Arabia” in (Rice : -), Petrie in Fig. 5. Pottery from the A’ali Mounds (after Prideaux : g. ).
seized the opportunity of his former student Ernest
J.H. Mackay being in the region and directed him to
work out "the nature of the tombs and their contents" (Rice
gamated the objects with another collection (Reade & : -).
Burleigh ). In connection with the study at hand the In a brief bibliography Gregory Possehl described
present author made further inquiries into the matter Mackay as: “… a solid journeyman archaeologist [and] a
and subsequently succeeded in verifying that at least very good excavator for his times” (: ). Early in his
pottery vessels from Prideaux’s A’ali excavations have career Mackay had for several years (-) been
survived in the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu San- occupied with the photography and documentation
grahalaya Museum, Mumbai (formerly Prince of Wales of the Theban tombs in Egypt (Possehl : ) and
Museum of Western India). The re-located pottery from this valuable experience must have contributed to the Fig. 6. Jacques Cartier (right) and two companions posing on Mound E in . The anonymous Royal Mound BBM no. is
visible in the background. Published by courtesy of the Cartier Heritage Department. © Cartier Heritage Department. A’ali is presented separately in Appendix . quality of his later work in Bahrain.
Mackay excavated mounds in what he described
as “a very brief season’s work at Bahrein” (Mackay :
Jacques Cartier, ) and all things considered he managed to
docuThe next notable character to enter the scene was cel- ment his work reasonably well. Among those mounds Flinders Petrie while the fate of the rest of the nds, his rama of the Royal Cemetery proper seen from the south
ebrated French jeweller Jacques Cartier who, during a which he excavated, were located in and around the drawings and photos remain unaccounted for (Reade (Fig. ). Most interestingly R. Sinclair goes on to speak
8business trip to the Gulf in spring of , paid a visit to Royal Cemetery proper (Chapter : nos. -), while : ). of hitherto unknown German archaeologists:
the Royal Mounds of A'ali. Sheikh Khalifa bin Ahmed the remaining excavations were directed towards “According to recent reports a party of German
archæoloal Ghatam hosted a banquet for J. Cartier in a hunting smaller mounds in the large compact mound cemetery gists who have been working in Bahrein during the past cold Ronald Sinclair’s unconrmed report
camp that was set up in the southern periphery of the to the south. weather have made a number of further discoveries. They
of German archaeologists, Royal Cemetery of A’ali. On this occasion the Sheikh Mackay concluded, incorrectly as it eventually appear to have been fortunate in nding some unried tombs,
instructed his sons to provide Cartier and his compan- turned out, that “the people who were buried in Bahrein In G. Bibby purchased a copy of the book in which one, at least, of which comprised four separate chambers, each
ions with a tour of the burial mounds. Although he did were nomads” and that they had been “brought from some Mackay’s report was printed in preparation for the above the other. In them they found the bones, not only of the
not conduct excavations he is mentioned here since part of the mainland” (: ). This unfounded hypoth- Danish Bahrain expedition (Bibby : ). The vol- dead man, but of his wife, slaves, and domesticated animals,
he brought a photographer who recorded a number esis of "an island for the dead" or "international burial ume, which incidentally turned out to be Mackay’s all of whom, it is supposed, were sacriced when he died. On
of important photos. Aside from taking a photo of the ground" was to persist for a long time (Lamberg-Kar- personal signed copy, contained an article in the form the ground oor the bones of animals, on the rst oor those
entrance to Mound B (see Chapter : no. ), which was lovsky ; During-Caspers ) but is now consid- of a newspaper clipping from the "Illustrated Weekly of the slaves; the man himself was interred in solitary state
ththe favoured motif of most century visitors, he also ered utterly disproven. However, it must be granted of India" dated October , . The newspaper article on the third oor, while the top oor were the skeletons of his
recorded informative photos of and from Mound E that Mackay was able to more accurately date the burial which presumably had been enclosed in the book by wives.” (Sinclair : ).
which add to our understanding of this and the sur- mounds than any of his predecessors. By comparing the Mackay himself was written by Ronald Sinclair and It has not been possible to obtain any independent
rounding monuments (see Chapter : no. ). In one Babylonian vessels he had encountered in the chambers mentions in brief the recent work of Mackay. The article verication of this report. The description of the
discovphoto Cartier, Mugbil Al Thukair and probably Carti- with examples from Tello (ancient Girsu) and Kish as was accompanied by a unique photo showing a pano- eries allegedly made by German archaeologists seem
er’s sales assistant Maurice Richard can be seen posing well as socketed bronze spearheads he found in
Mesoon the edge of Prideaux’s excavation trench on Mound potamia with those he found in Bahrain (Mackay :
8 Professor McGuire Gibson, Chicago, kindly informs me that he did not come across Mackay’s Bahrain materials during his own
E (Fig. ). The end of the upper chamber’s north-east- ), Mackay proposed an approximate date of - extensive but also unsuccessful search for Mackay’s records on the excava�ions at Kish. According to Dr. Joanna Kyin of the
Egypt Explora�ion Society there are no records on Mackay in their Archive catalogue. According to Curator Dr. Alice Stevenson ern alcove can be seen in the lower left corner. The BC (: ). The majority of the artefacts found
the Petrie Museum of Egyp�ian Archaeology also does not hold any of Mackay’s records from Bahrain. Dr. Laurie McNamee of
large anonymous and still unexcavated royal mound by Mackay were donated to the British Museum by the University College London Special Collec�ions has also informed that none of Mackay’s materials are housed there either.
16 17Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 16 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 17 24/11/17 10:45Fig. 7. The Royal Mounds of A’ali (after Sinclair ).
Danish Gulf Expedition, -more tting to the Royal Cemetery of Ur excavated by
Sir Leonard Woolley between and (Woolley Under the directorship of P.V. Glob, members of the
). However, since Sinclair also mentions Woolley’s Danish Gulf expedition excavated a number of mounds
Ur excavation in passing in his introduction, a con- in A’ali during the cold seasons of - and -
fusion of "German archaeologists" with the ongoing (Bibby : ). The Danish excavations in A’ali were
excavations at Ur can probably be ruled out. a combined research and salvage operation (Højlund
: ). In and around the Royal Cemetery proper
the expedition investigated the mounds OA , OA
Charles Belgrave and the RAF, and OA (Chapter : nos. -) and
re-excaA piece of correspondence between C. Belgrave, advi- vated Mound A (Chapter : no. ). In the large compact
sor to the Government of Bahrain and Major T. Hick- mound cemetery to the south and south-east of the
inbotham, the British Political Agent in Bahrain dis- Royal Cemetery, smaller mounds were excavated
closes an unfortunate episode of systematic removal in "Group-A" and "Group-B" (Bibby : ; Frifelt
of stones from the royal mounds. In the years after the : -; Højlund : -).
major excavation campaigns of Prideaux and Mackay In Mound OA the chamber was found to have
the Royal Mounds of A’ali probably suffered some been recently opened (Højlund : -) and in
minor damage due to the stone plundering activi- Mound A the very same fallen capstones which had
ties of locals in need of limestone for house construc- prevented Durand from penetrating the chamber in
tion and lime burning. However, in C. Belgrave also deterred the Danish expedition from entering
learned, to his dismay, that the RAF had set up an “… (Bibby : ). Similarly, in Mound OA the
Danelaborate stone crushing machine and various other appa- ish team encountered a collapsed chamber which could
ratus…on one of the larger mounds…” (Belgrave unpub- not be further explored (Bibby : ). OA
proth lished letter [May ]). Belgrave subsequently duced a full chamber plan and yielded one of the most
found that the stones were intended to be used for the diverse collections of pottery (Højlund : -).
construction of an air base on Muharraq island. In a The mounds examined in "Group-A" and "Group-B"
letter to Major Hickinbotham, C. Belgrave urged that of the compact mound cemetery represented tombs
he should contact the RAF and insist that stones were of two different classes. A population of ’commoners’
instead taken from the smaller burial mounds on the was associated with the Group-B mounds whilst the
hills of Riffa where such materials had previously been mounds in the A-group reected the slightly wealthier
procured. According to an answer from the RAF six segment of society (Bibby : ).
days later, an instruction to cease stone quarrying at A set of painted drinking goblets and three ne ware
A’ali was given immediately. Furthermore, the British bowls found broken in the dromos passage of Mound
Liaison Ofcer regretted the incident and stated that A/OA (see Chapter : no. ) and a small ornamental
although permission from the Government of Bahrain gold spiral ("A-Group" Mound OA ) are currently
had been obtained, it was the lack of historical knowl- on display in the National Museum of Bahrain while
edge on the part of the Air Ministry Works Directorate bone, pottery and artefacts from the remaining mounds
that caused them to think that “…one heap of stones are housed at Moesgaard Museum.
rdwas as good as another…” (Parker [May ]).
18 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 18 24/11/17 10:45Abdul Aziz Suweileh, Extract from N ā ṣir al-Khayr ī
Qalā’id An-Nahrain tareekh Al-BahrainArchaeological superintendent Abdul Aziz Suweileh
Page of the Bahrain National Museum excavated what is
Wa sulimat ri’asat albilād ila Ashaykh Ghayth wa akhihi Ashaykh popularly referred to as the Aziz Mound located to the
Nasr min āal Madhkhoo thuma maāta Ashaykh Ghayth fasaāra
Ashsouth of the Royal Cemetery proper (Chapter : no. ). aykh Nasr huwa alhaākim almutlaq atasruf fee al-Bahrain tahta
ri’aāyat ad-dawlah al-eeraāniyah al-‘afshāariyah.The mound is a rare example of a multiple chambered
Wa dhakara ana fee ayaām Ashaykh Nasr jaā’ ila jazā’ir al-Bahrain tomb with multiple shaft entrances. The excavation
sayāhan afranjee mina al-inkileez wa nazala dayfan ‘ala Ashaykh
plan of the mound was misplaced in the archives of Nasr fa’akrama ashaykh wa fadathu fatalaba hatha mina
Nasr al-idhin lahu bi-siyāaha daākhliyat al-jazāa’ir lil-tafaruj ‘ala the National Museum of Bahrain, but a series of
drawāathāriha al-qadeema fa’adhina lahu bidhalika wa lamma balaghat
ings of pottery from the mound is available to verify al-akhbaār limasaāmi’ ad-dawlah al-eeraāniyah saā’aha dhālik
that the mound originally was constructed in the Early al’amal min Ashaykh Nasr wa kataba lahu wazeer daākhiliyatiha
Fig. 7. The Royal Mounds of A’ali (after Sinclair ). Mirza Mahdi Khāan yalumahu wa yuabikhahu ‘ala ma fa’ala mina Dilmun period.
as-samaāhi lil-inkilizi’ bil-jawlaān fee daākhliyat al-jazaā’ir – fee
kitaāb haātha nasuh:
“Laqad balaghani anaka ijtama’ta birajulin masihii wa kalamtahu fee Bahrain National Museum, c. , c. Danish Gulf Expedition, - shu’un al-jazaā’ir wa al-khaleej wa taz’aum annahu sayaāhan fasar-more tting to the Royal Cemetery of Ur excavated by
raka bimanqulaāti khitaābihi wa maqoolaāt iyaābihi wa thahaābihi and -Sir Leonard Woolley between and (Woolley Under the directorship of P.V. Glob, members of the hata basata lahu bisātan manee’an.
). However, since Sinclair also mentions Woolley’s Danish Gulf expedition excavated a number of mounds Around the National Museum of Bahrain con- Page
Ur excavation in passing in his introduction, a con- in A’ali during the cold seasons of - and - ducted a brief investigation of a very large mound in Wa shadata azraka lahu saree’an, ama qara’ta qawlahu ta’alaā: “Wa
lan tarda ‘anka al-yahudu wa la an-nasaraā hatta tatabi’a milata-fusion of "German archaeologists" with the ongoing (Bibby : ). The Danish excavations in A’ali were the Royal Cemetery proper (Chapter : no. ). The
hum” fa’ini itab’ata hawāahu ba’da an fahimta hawaāhu fa anta
excavations at Ur can probably be ruled out. a combined research and salvage operation (Højlund mound was subsequently removed in order to extend idhan min al-halikeen. Wa la takhd janaāhka ila lil-mutaqeen wa
as-salaāmu ‘ala man ita’dh bimawaā’idh allah wa rahmatu allahi wa : ). In and around the Royal Cemetery proper a modern cemetery. There is no report about what
barakaātuhu”. Al-imdaā’ – Mahdi.
the expedition investigated the mounds OA , OA was done or found during the investigation and it is
Fakaāna jawaābu ashaykh nasr ‘ala dhalika ma ya’ti: Charles Belgrave and the RAF, and OA (Chapter : nos. -) and re-exca- unknown who was responsible.
“Ina ma dhakartum min mukaālamti ma’ al-maseehii wa
mawaA piece of correspondence between C. Belgrave, advi- vated Mound A (Chapter : no. ). In the large compact Plans to build houses prompted the excavation of datii lahu faman ballaghkum ghayr baāligh fa’antum ta’alamoon
muwadabati fee al-thughoor wa diqati al-umoor mashhoor wa sor to the Government of Bahrain and Major T. Hick- mound cemetery to the south and south-east of the Mound N around (Chapter : no. ). After the
ghayra mankoor. Wa amma basta al-feraāsh wa it’aām an-naās famin
inbotham, the British Political Agent in Bahrain dis- Royal Cemetery, smaller mounds were excavated uniqueness of the monument became apparent plans shiyam al-anbiyaā’ al-salateen wa ameeruna lam yuhsin tarkaha wa
closes an unfortunate episode of systematic removal in "Group-A" and "Group-B" (Bibby : ; Frifelt to remove the mound were cancelled and the archaeo- as-salaām” - Al-imdaā’ ‘abdukum Nasr.
Fajaābahu al-wazeer biqawlihi: “Laqad wasalana kitabaka kal-of stones from the royal mounds. In the years after the : -; Højlund : -). logical investigation stopped. Several of the
archaeolkhateeb al-saqi’ lahu ‘ibaraāt wa isharaāt wa tasreehaāt wa talwee-major excavation campaigns of Prideaux and Mackay In Mound OA the chamber was found to have ogists and excavators of the Bahrain National Museum
haāt la yanf’ana wa la la yanfa’ak, idh laysa lana kalām al-it’aām
the Royal Mounds of A’ali probably suffered some been recently opened (Højlund : -) and in participated in the partial investigation of Mound N. min haythu al-halaāl wa al-haraām falihatha mawdi’ ākhar min qh
al-ahkaām wa ’inama kalaāmuna ’ilm as-siyasaāsah wa mawdu’aāt minor damage due to the stone plundering activi- Mound A the very same fallen capstones which had Before the excavation was halted the rst two
northar-riyaāsah fa ma ashbah halana ma’ak bihāal man qaāl ‘ureehi
as-saties of locals in need of limestone for house construc- prevented Durand from penetrating the chamber in ern alcoves were completely exposed and the outline har wa yureeni al-qamar, wa qad balaghani ana ar-rajul al-maseehi
istajaāzaka fee kash jubaylaāt al-Bahrain wa hafri araādeeha wa tion and lime burning. However, in C. Belgrave also deterred the Danish expedition from entering of the corresponding southern alcoves identied. The
tilaāliha wa inama aghdayt tar
learned, to his dismay, that the RAF had set up an “… (Bibby : ). Similarly, in Mound OA the Dan- upper walls of the shaft and the upper portions of the
Page
elaborate stone crushing machine and various other appa- ish team encountered a collapsed chamber which could main chamber were also identied. The top of a colossal
‘an thālik wa hamaltuka ‘ala ahsan al-masāalik li’ilmina bihusni
ratus…on one of the larger mounds…” (Belgrave unpub- not be further explored (Bibby : ). OA pro- dressed stone door was found protruding from the ll seeratik wa daā’ sareeratik, fa’malu lim tarawana lakum salāah wa
th ta’taqidoonahu injaādit al-falaāh wa assalamu aleikum.” – Imdāa’ lished letter [May ]). Belgrave subsequently duced a full chamber plan and yielded one of the most of the access shaft. There is no report about what was
Mahdi.
found that the stones were intended to be used for the diverse collections of pottery (Højlund : -). found during the investigation but the excavation site
Fatra min hadha ana wazeer eerān lam yastahsin dukhul hathā
construction of an air base on Muharraq island. In a The mounds examined in "Group-A" and "Group-B" was roughly surveyed (see Chapter : Fig. ). al’ifranji ilā dakhiliyāt aljazā’ir wa lahu dhalika nadharāt wa
mulāhadhāt siyasya s’ab idrakaha wa fahmaha ‘ala al-ameer al’arabi’ letter to Major Hickinbotham, C. Belgrave urged that of the compact mound cemetery represented tombs From to the Directorate of Archaeology
Wa lilahi fee khalqihi shu’un.he should contact the RAF and insist that stones were of two different classes. A population of ’commoners’ excavated A’ali Mound no. season , later formally
Wa hijri, hamala Ashaykh Nasr biquwa bahriya kabira ‘ala
instead taken from the smaller burial mounds on the was associated with the Group-B mounds whilst the named Royal Mound (see Chapter : no. ). Run- al-‘arab khalifa, sukāan az-Zubarah Qatar yaqsud tādebuhum wa
hills of Riffa where such materials had previously been mounds in the A-group reected the slightly wealthier ning parallel to this excavation was the joint Bahrain alintiqaām minhum bisabab ma ajraohu min alta’diyaāt ‘ala ba’d
atraaf al-Bahrain “Satrah” wa lama wasalat himayatuhu ila az-Zuba-procured. According to an answer from the RAF six segment of society (Bibby : ). – Moesgaard A’ali excavation project which launched
rah “’areen alasad” …
days later, an instruction to cease stone quarrying at A set of painted drinking goblets and three ne ware in October and during this work the majority of
A’ali was given immediately. Furthermore, the British bowls found broken in the dromos passage of Mound the excavated Royal mounds were reinvestigated over
Liaison Ofcer regretted the incident and stated that A/OA (see Chapter : no. ) and a small ornamental three eld seasons (see Chapter ).
although permission from the Government of Bahrain gold spiral ("A-Group" Mound OA ) are currently
had been obtained, it was the lack of historical knowl- on display in the National Museum of Bahrain while
9 Mafaāteeh Al-adab.edge on the part of the Air Ministry Works Directorate bone, pottery and artefacts from the remaining mounds
that caused them to think that “…one heap of stones are housed at Moesgaard Museum. 10 Naqlan ’an jareedat Al-Habl Al-Mateen al�i tasdur bil-hind, Rajab – 1329.
rdwas as good as another…” (Parker [May ]).
18 19Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 18 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 19 24/11/17 10:4520
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 20 24/11/17 10:453. Gazetteer of elite burial mounds
previously investigated in A’ali
This gazetteer introduces, in a summarized form, infor- the early s by the Danish Gulf Expedition (Frifelt
mation on of the most important burial mounds ) and recently published (Højlund : -).
investigated in the Royal Cemetery proper and the adja- The burial mounds R- and R- excavated by the
Japacent compact mound cemetery of A’ali. The intention of nese Archaeological Mission in in the
south-eastthe gazetteer is to provide access to data that can other- ern segment of the A’ali Mound Cemetery (Konishi et
wise only be pieced together by consulting numerous al. ) are not covered. While the gazetteer includes
unpublished reports or older and largely inaccessible all burial mounds known to have been excavated in
publications. Background information including the the Royal Cemetery Proper, it must be stressed that
history of exploration, graphic documentation, illus- this does not represent an exhaustive list of all burial
trations of relevant artefacts and selected numeric data mounds excavated in the compact A’ali Mound
Cemis provided for all the monuments. Fourteen of the etery to date.
burial mounds included in the gazetteer are among Artefacts believed to have originated from primary
those which were re-investigated during the recent interments are briey mentioned and discussed with
Bahrain-Moesgaard excavation campaign (see Chapter emphasis on their chronological dating and the
pres) and the remaining burial mounds all represent ence of imported materials. To the extent it has been
A’ali tombs that can be associated with members of the possible, previously published or unpublished
drawsocial elite in the Early Dilmun period. ings and photos of relevant objects accompany each
As will become apparent in other sections of this entry in the Gazetteer.
volume, the Early Dilmun burial ritual was part of an The types of data listed for each burial mound in the
extremely formalized system in which the architectural Gazetteer are mostly self-explanatory but the denitions
layout of the chamber varied according to the social of a few entries listed under "Basic data" need to be
clarrank or class of the entombed individual (see Chapter ied. Mound height refers to the highest recorded height
). Generally the burial mounds included are also the and does not in any case reect the original height of
largest known examples to have contained H-shaped the monument. Mound diameter describes the mound
chambers and/or comprised of two-tiered cham- and the measurement includes the erosion skirt at the
ber construction. Burial mounds with single-tiered foot of the mound. Ring wall diameter refers to the ring
T-shaped chambers and a few burial mounds with wall proper which represented the original perimeter
exceptional chambers have also been included when of the monument (Fig. : a). Outer ring wall refers to a
the particular monument contributes signicantly to low circular wall that originally surrounded some of
our overall understanding of the Royal Cemetery. the largest monuments placed a considerable distance
Excluded from this Gazetteer are the hundreds of from the foot of the ring wall proper constituting a sort
burial mounds of the Early Dilmun ‘common’ popula- of Temenos wall (Fig. : b). Inner ring wall refers to the
cirtion excavated by the Bahrain Directorate for Archae- cular wall (or walls) that were occasionally constructed
ology and the Tunisian expedition in the southern part several meters up on the mound at the level where the
1of the A’ali Mound Cemetery. Also omitted are the ring wall proper ends and is connected by the means
so-called A- and B-Group burial mounds excavated in of a horizontal terrace (Fig. : c). Presence/absence is
1 Unpublished excava�ions in the A’ali Mound Cemetery known to us are: Area: A’ali South, Seasons 1987-89; Area: A’ali South,
Tunisian Expedi ion, Seasons 1986-88; A’ali Pipeline, Seasons 1987-88; Jary Al Sheikh, Seasons 2000, 2005-08. These
campaigns involved the excava�ion and removal of as much as 500 burial mounds.
20 21Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 20 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 21 24/11/17 10:45produced a highly representative and accurate vector
map of the more than , burial mounds that were
c
known in (Laursen and Johansen ; Laursen
b ), but in the case of the A’ali Mound Cemetery (Fig. a
) excavated burial mounds had not been individually
identied in the project’s GIS.
In order to shed new light on the older excavations
and facilitate spatial analysis, considerable effort was
put into the re-identication of the excavated A’ali
d mounds. The process of re-identication and mapping
of the excavated burial mounds was severely impeded Chamber azimuth = X˚
by the fact that more than % of the mounds in and
b
around the Royal Cemetery have disappeared since
(Fig. ). As a consequence re-identication had
Entrance to be based on the combined information from historic
aerial photos, maps, photos, published descriptions and
eld observations.
With the exception of Prideaux who published a map
in of A’ali naming mounds including those
excavated by Durand, the Bents and Jouannin (see Fig. ) no
other A’ali excavators produced location plans. Among
the investigators whose excavations were most
important to relocate were those of Ernest Mackay who did not
publish any map of the burial mounds he examined
Fig. 8. Cardinal measures indicated on an idealized royal burial
in . Fortunately, Dr. Julian Reade had noticed that in mound.
Mackay’s personal copy of Prideaux’s report in the
"Archaeological Survey of India" now held by the British
recorded for these features and the diameter is stated Museum, pencil marks had been added by Mackay to
when available. Chamber azimuth gives the number of the printed A’ali map to indicate the location of some of
degrees which the longitudinal axis of the central cham- his own excavations. The annotations of Mackay
ber is orientated east of Geographical North (Fig. : were presented by Reade in a map that accompanied
d). Chamber access to the tombs in the Royal Cemetery his paper and which is reproduced here (Fig. ).
mounds is typically either by means of a horizontal Out of the total of burial mounds which Mackay
dromos passage or a vertical shaft. In other cases, in par- excavated he marked the names of his Tomb , , ,
ticular for the vast majority of smaller mounds, there , , , and in pencil. In addition to the eight
was no formally constructed chamber access. identied by number, three mounds were marked by
All measurements are given in the metric system; an "X" suggesting that these were also excavated by him
those collated from original publications and reports but that Mackay failed to recall their exact number at
using Imperial measurements have been converted. the time of writing (Reade & Burleigh ).
Although some data has been incorporated from recent Further conrmation that the numbered mounds are
investigations, the entries in the Gazetteer generally identical to those excavated by Mackay can be found
represent the state of research before this study. For the on the aerial photos taken approximately years later
recently investigated monuments Chapter should be (Fig. ). In the aerial photos it is possible to observe
consulted for additional and sometimes more up-to- the trenches Mackay excavated into the mounds and
date data. occasionally the resulting spoil left by the base of these
mounds. The location of the spoil as they appear in the
aerial photos can in some cases be conrmed when
such are present in Mackay’s own published photos. Spatial information
By comparing the anonymous mounds which Mackay
To begin with there was only limited spatial informa- marked with an "X" against the photographic evidence
tion available to locate the burial mounds that had been it has been possible to relocate the two larger burial
excavated in A’ali. The Bahrain Burial Mound Project mounds Mackay’s Tomb and Tomb , with some
22 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 22 24/11/17 10:45produced a highly representative and accurate vector
Amap of the more than , burial mounds that were N
c
known in (Laursen and Johansen ; Laursen
b ), but in the case of the A’ali Mound Cemetery (Fig. a
) excavated burial mounds had not been individually
identied in the project’s GIS.
In order to shed new light on the older excavations
and facilitate spatial analysis, considerable effort was
put into the re-identication of the excavated A’ali
d mounds. The process of re-identication and mapping
of the excavated burial mounds was severely impeded Chamber azimuth = X˚
by the fact that more than % of the mounds in and
b
around the Royal Cemetery have disappeared since
(Fig. ). As a consequence re-identication had
Entrance to be based on the combined information from historic
aerial photos, maps, photos, published descriptions and
eld observations.
With the exception of Prideaux who published a map
in of A’ali naming mounds including those
excavated by Durand, the Bents and Jouannin (see Fig. ) no
Cother A’ali excavators produced location plans. Among
the investigators whose excavations were most impor- B
tant to relocate were those of Ernest Mackay who did not
publish any map of the burial mounds he examined
Fig. 8. Cardinal measures indicated on an idealized royal burial
in . Fortunately, Dr. Julian Reade had noticed that in mound.
Mackay’s personal copy of Prideaux’s report in the
"Archaeological Survey of India" now held by the British
recorded for these features and the diameter is stated Museum, pencil marks had been added by Mackay to
when available. Chamber azimuth gives the number of the printed A’ali map to indicate the location of some of
degrees which the longitudinal axis of the central cham- his own excavations. The annotations of Mackay
D
ber is orientated east of Geographical North (Fig. : were presented by Reade in a map that accompanied
d). Chamber access to the tombs in the Royal Cemetery his paper and which is reproduced here (Fig. ).
mounds is typically either by means of a horizontal Out of the total of burial mounds which Mackay
dromos passage or a vertical shaft. In other cases, in par- excavated he marked the names of his Tomb , , ,
ticular for the vast majority of smaller mounds, there , , , and in pencil. In addition to the eight
was no formally constructed chamber access. identied by number, three mounds were marked by
0 500All measurements are given in the metric system; an "X" suggesting that these were also excavated by him
m
those collated from original publications and reports but that Mackay failed to recall their exact number at
using Imperial measurements have been converted. the time of writing (Reade & Burleigh ).
Fig. 9. Map of the A’ali Mound Cemetery. Boxes A to D mark the location of detailed maps mentioned in the text. The compact mound
Although some data has been incorporated from recent Further conrmation that the numbered mounds are cemetery is comprised by the smaller, densely packed burial mounds. The larger mounds in box A are traditionally called the Royal
investigations, the entries in the Gazetteer generally identical to those excavated by Mackay can be found Mounds of A’ali. The overall largest mounds to the north represent the Royal Cemetery proper.
represent the state of research before this study. For the on the aerial photos taken approximately years later
recently investigated monuments Chapter should be (Fig. ). In the aerial photos it is possible to observe condence. For the larger mounds Tomb , Tomb and for each entry in the Gazetteer. In total excavation
consulted for additional and sometimes more up-to- the trenches Mackay excavated into the mounds and Tomb , a number of potential candidates have been sites were identied to a particular burial mound, but
date data. occasionally the resulting spoil left by the base of these identied but the available information does not sufce in six cases the identication is uncertain to a varying
mounds. The location of the spoil as they appear in the to make a nal identication. The exact location of the degree (Fig. ). The three burial mounds included in
aerial photos can in some cases be conrmed when smaller burial mounds which Prideaux and Mackay this gazetteer as nos. - are located approximately
such are present in Mackay’s own published photos. both reported as having been excavated in the compact . km south of the Royal Cemetery in the opposite end Spatial information
By comparing the anonymous mounds which Mackay mound cemetery must be considered lost. of the A’ali Mound Cemetery (Fig. ). A few burial
To begin with there was only limited spatial informa- marked with an "X" against the photographic evidence Several other larger burial mounds have been suc- mounds not included in the Gazetteer but surveyed
tion available to locate the burial mounds that had been it has been possible to relocate the two larger burial cessfully relocated and the evidence on which the indi- during the recent investigations (see below) are also
excavated in A’ali. The Bahrain Burial Mound Project mounds Mackay’s Tomb and Tomb , with some vidual re-identication was based is briey mentioned located in the south of the cemetery (Fig. :c).
22 23Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 22 24/11/17 10:45 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 23 24/11/17 10:45N
0 200
m
Fig. 10. Map of the Royal Cemetery of A'ali with currently preserved () burial mounds accentuated in dark blue. The depicted area
corresponds to box Fig. :A.
Fig. 11. Sketch map of the Royal Cemetery of A'ali with Mackay’s annotations highlighted in red (adapted after Reade and Burleigh
: : g. ).
24 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 24 24/11/17 10:46N
0 200
m
Fig. 12. Aerial photo of the Royal Cemetery of A'ali, Nov. (Courtesy of the Bahrain Survey Directorate). The depicted area Fig. 10. Map of the Royal Cemetery of A'ali with currently preserved () burial mounds accentuated in dark blue. The depicted area
corresponds to box Fig. :A.corresponds to box Fig. :A.
N
39
40
28
16
8
7 9
17
10 18
29
2 5 4
25 31
33
14 3215 3
1112
24
371 BBM no.
62.754
20
23
6
26 27
BBM no.
62.048 13
22 BBM no.
61.373
61.279
BBM no.
0 200 m60.743BBM no.
38 60.836
Fig. 13. Map of the Royal Cemetery of A'ali. Numbers designate the individual burial mounds listed in the gazetteer. Bahrain Burial Fig. 11. Sketch map of the Royal Cemetery of A'ali with Mackay’s annotations highlighted in red (adapted after Reade and Burleigh
Mound numbers (BBM no.) are indicated for additional burial mounds mentioned in this volume. : : g. ).
24 25Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 24 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 25 24/11/17 10:46N
34
35
36
0 200
m
Fig. 14. Map showing location of gazetteer nos. - in the Fig. 15. Plan of Durand’s Smaller Mound (after Durand a:
far south of the A’ali Mound Cemetery. The depicted area ).
corresponds to box Fig. :B.
Gazetteer number: 1
Mound Name: Durand’s Smaller Mound.
Excavator: Edward L. Durand.
Time of investigations: During March and April 1879.
BBM number: 62905 (Uncertain).
Location: See map Fig. 13 for uncertain location. Durand mentions that the mound was located
“...to the westward of the large group” and that it was “…one of many hundred that lie
grouped together.” (1880b: 12). The location of BBM no. 62905, which is marked as
“collapsed” on Prideaux’s map from 1906 (Fig. 4), ts this general description and this
may suggest that it was the one investigated by Durand.
General remarks: This is the rst of the two mounds which Durand reports that he opened in A’ali.
Durand provided a chamber plan (Fig. 15) and a stylized section of this mound (Fig.
16). The mound has since been removed.
Artefacts: In the chamber Durand found the bones of what he believed was either a gazelle or
sheep (the latter more likely) as well as pieces of “a rather delicate clay drinking
vessel…oxidized metal, brass or copper…fragments of a vessel of coarse red earthenware” and
fragments of “ivory or wood.” He also found a skull and other human bones in “…
the rst compartment to the right (and north)” [i.e., the alcoves] and concluded from the
position of these bones that the entombed individual had been buried in a “sitting
posture” (1880a: 13). The latter inference is probably incorrect and as suggested by
the uncharacteristic location of the human skeletal remains in the alcove, it appears
almost certain that the human bones had been subjected to some post-depositional
disturbance either by animals or grave robbers.
Mound height: 2.74 to 3.04 m (between 9 and 10 ft).
Mound diameter: 13.72 m (57 paces in circumference).
26 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 26 24/11/17 10:46N
34
35
Fig. 16. Section of Durand’s Smaller Mound (after Durand
a: ).
Fig. 18. Drawing of the large mound (A) (after Durand
a: )
36
0 200
m
Fig. 14. Map showing location of gazetteer nos. - in the Fig. 15. Plan of Durand’s Smaller Mound (after Durand a:
far south of the A’ali Mound Cemetery. The depicted area ).
corresponds to box Fig. :B.
Fig. 19. Durand’s schematic representation of his large mound
(A) in reconstructed and extant () state (after Durand
a: ).Fig. 17. Drawing of the large mound (A) showing its steep cone
and an erosion channel running down the surface (after Durand Gazetteer number: 1
a: ).
Mound Name: Durand’s Smaller Mound.
Excavator: Edward L. Durand.
Ring wall diameter: 12 m (estimated).
Time of investigations: During March and April 1879.
Outer ring wall: No.
BBM number: 62905 (Uncertain).
Inner ring walls: -
Location: See map Fig. 13 for uncertain location. Durand mentions that the mound was located
Chamber azimuth: C. 90°. Based on Durand’s description of the orientation as “about east and west” “...to the westward of the large group” and that it was “…one of many hundred that lie
(Durand 1880a: 13).grouped together.” (1880b: 12). The location of BBM no. 62905, which is marked as
“collapsed” on Prideaux’s map from 1906 (Fig. 4), ts this general description and this Chamber shape: H-shaped.
may suggest that it was the one investigated by Durand.
Chamber lengths: 4.10 m (13 ft).
General remarks: This is the rst of the two mounds which Durand reports that he opened in A’ali.
Chamber height: 1.45 m (4 ft 9”).
Durand provided a chamber plan (Fig. 15) and a stylized section of this mound (Fig.
Chamber width: 0.91 m (3 ft). 16). The mound has since been removed.
Chamber access: -Artefacts: In the chamber Durand found the bones of what he believed was either a gazelle or
sheep (the latter more likely) as well as pieces of “a rather delicate clay drinking ves- Peg holes: No.
sel…oxidized metal, brass or copper…fragments of a vessel of coarse red earthenware” and
Plaster/mortar: No.
fragments of “ivory or wood.” He also found a skull and other human bones in “…
the rst compartment to the right (and north)” [i.e., the alcoves] and concluded from the
position of these bones that the entombed individual had been buried in a “sitting Gazetteer number: 2
posture” (1880a: 13). The latter inference is probably incorrect and as suggested by
Mound name: Mound A (Prideaux) and OA 203 (Moesgaard Museum 1960). the uncharacteristic location of the human skeletal remains in the alcove, it appears
Excavator: Edward L. Durand. almost certain that the human bones had been subjected to some post-depositional
disturbance either by animals or grave robbers. Time of investigations: March and April 1879 (Durand), 1961-62 (P.V. Glob).
Mound height: 2.74 to 3.04 m (between 9 and 10 ft). BBM number: 63314.
Mound diameter: 13.72 m (57 paces in circumference). Location: See map Fig. 13.
26 27Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 26 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 27 24/11/17 10:462.
1.
Fig. 20. Durand’s reconstructed section of the large mound (A)
3.in realistic style (after Durand a: ).
4.
5.
0 10
cm
Fig. 21. Pottery from the dromos of Mound A (after Bibby : Fig. 22. Pottery from the dromos of Mound A. No. :
Black-ong. ). red goblet; no. : Black-on-red goblet; nos. -: ne ware bowls
(after Højlund : gs. -).
General remarks: This is the larger of the two mounds which Durand opened in A’ali. He made two
sketches of the mound prior to excavation which reveal a minor concavity in its
at summit as well as some deep erosion channels carved out by rainwater (Figs.
17-18). Judging from two of the other sketches which accompanied Durand’s report,
it appears that he was condent that the chamber was single-storeyed and that it
had four side alcoves similar to the one he had opened previously (see no. 1), and
that the alcove openings and roofs were sunken from the general roof level of the
central chamber (Figs. 19-20). Mackay noted that by 1925 the chambers of Mound A
had already “…been badly destroyed by stone robbers” (1929: 5). The mound was briey
reinvestigated during the present project and it now appears virtually certain that
the chamber was of the two-tiered type with H-shaped chambers in both storeys (see
Chapter 4).
Artefacts: Durand discovered a large amount of charcoal (bitumen coated palm matting?)
and impressions of palm leaf matting in the wall plaster (1880: 16). In places
similar remains of bitumen coated palm mats can still be observed in the walls of the
ruined lower chamber (see Chapter 4). During reinvestigation in 1961-62 the Danish
team found the sherds of three bowls and two hollow-stemmed beakers with black
painted designs on the oor of the entrance passage (Figs. 21-22).
Mound height: 13.72 m (45 ft).
Mound diameter: 48 m (200 paces in circumference).
Ring wall diameter: 30 m (estimated), c. 3 m high (“at least 10 ft”).
28 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 28 24/11/17 10:46Outer ring wall: 90 m. 2.
Inner ring walls: Yes.
1.
Chamber azimuth: 67˚.
Chamber shape: Lower H-shaped, upper H-shaped (see Chapter 4).
Chamber lengths: 7.5 m (estimated).
Chamber height: -
Chamber width: 2.8 m.
Chamber access: Dromos passage 9.30 m (30 ft 6”).
Peg Holes: -Fig. 20. Durand’s reconstructed section of the large mound (A)
3.in realistic style (after Durand a: ).
Plaster/mortar: The chamber appears to have been plastered, but according to Højlund (2007: 54) the
innermost 2.65 m of the dromos passage was also plastered. Judging from Durand’s
drawing of his section (cf. Fig. 20) the plastered parts of the dromos wall, however,
4. appear to have been even more extensive (c. 4.9 m). See also Chapter 4 for updated
information about the dromos passage.
Gazetteer number: 3
5.
Mound name: Mound B (Prideaux), Tomb 33 (Mackay).
Excavator: J.T. Bent and M. Bent.
th thTime of investigations: February 10 to 18 1889.
0 10 BBM number: 63159.
cm
Location: See map Fig. 13.
Fig. 21. Pottery from the dromos of Mound A (after Bibby : Fig. 22. Pottery from the dromos of Mound A. No. :
Black-onGeneral remarks: The trench which the Bents dug to expose the two-tiered chamber remained open g. ). red goblet; no. : Black-on-red goblet; nos. -: ne ware bowls
(after Højlund : gs. -). and as testament to the impressive scale of the mound’s two-tiered chamber
construction it became a favoured target of all of the known European photographers
who visited A’ali from 1903 to 1949. These include A. Jouannin (Figs. 23-24), F.B. General remarks: This is the larger of the two mounds which Durand opened in A’ali. He made two
Prideaux (1912: g. 2), Jacques Cartier (Fig. 25), E. Mackay (1929: g. 3), Ronald sketches of the mound prior to excavation which reveal a minor concavity in its
Sinclair (Sinclair 1930) and T.G. Bibby (1949 unpublished). Furthermore, we are at summit as well as some deep erosion channels carved out by rainwater (Figs.
fortunate that A. Jouannin in his 1905 report included reasonable plans of both 17-18). Judging from two of the other sketches which accompanied Durand’s report,
chambers (Fig. 26) as well as schematic longitudinal and transverse sections through it appears that he was condent that the chamber was single-storeyed and that it
the chambers (Fig. 27). Prideaux recorded a photo of the inside of the lower chamber had four side alcoves similar to the one he had opened previously (see no. 1), and
which documents the sunken roof level of the two east end alcoves and the presence that the alcove openings and roofs were sunken from the general roof level of the
of 3 peg holes in the back wall (Fig. 28). central chamber (Figs. 19-20). Mackay noted that by 1925 the chambers of Mound A
Mr. Bent mentioned in his own report that they found the aky asbestos like remains had already “…been badly destroyed by stone robbers” (1929: 5). The mound was briey
of palm branches in a layer over the roof of the upper chamber (Bent 1890a: 15). reinvestigated during the present project and it now appears virtually certain that
Doubtlessly, this was in fact remains of bitumen coated palm matting which has been the chamber was of the two-tiered type with H-shaped chambers in both storeys (see
observed on a number of other mounds (see Chapter 4: Mound A, Mound D, Mackay Chapter 4).
Tomb 29 and Mound N) with the bitumen coated palm mats evidently serving as a Artefacts: Durand discovered a large amount of charcoal (bitumen coated palm matting?)
protective sheet to lead away rainwater (For bitumen analysis see Appendix 2).
and impressions of palm leaf matting in the wall plaster (1880: 16). In places sim-
Mackay adds more information to Bent’s report indicating that Mound B had 5 cm ilar remains of bitumen coated palm mats can still be observed in the walls of the
(2”) thick layers of gypsum plaster at intervals of 0.5 to 0.6 m (20” to 25”) starting ruined lower chamber (see Chapter 4). During reinvestigation in 1961-62 the Danish
above the roof of the upper chamber and continuing upwards (1929: 4). These lay-team found the sherds of three bowls and two hollow-stemmed beakers with black
ers doubtlessly correspond to the successive horizontal stages in which the mounds painted designs on the oor of the entrance passage (Figs. 21-22).
generally were constructed (see Højlund 2007: 56) and the plaster layers observed Mound height: 13.72 m (45 ft).
in Mound B by Mackay simply accumulated on these temporary surfaces as a waste
Mound diameter: 48 m (200 paces in circumference). product during the construction of the chamber walls. A similar phenomenon has
Ring wall diameter: 30 m (estimated), c. 3 m high (“at least 10 ft”). been documented on Mound E, Mound O and Mound H (see Chapter 4) and here the
28 29Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 28 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 29 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 23. The Bents’ larger mound (B) years after its excavation (after Jouannin : g. ).
Fig. 24. The exposed entrances to the chambers of the Bents’ Fig. 25. The entrances to the chambers of the Bents’ larger
larger mound (B) in (after Jouannin : g. ). mound, unpublished photo from the journey of French jeweller
Jacques Cartier, . (Courtesy of the Cartier Heritage
Department, © Cartier Heritage Department).
30 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 30 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 26. Plans of the chambers of Mound B (after Jouannin
: g. ).
Fig. 28. The interior of the lower chamber of Mound B, c.
(after Prideaux : g. ).
Fig. 23. The Bents’ larger mound (B) years after its excavation (after Jouannin : g. ).
Fig. 27. Sections through the chambers of Mound B (after
Jouannin : gs. -).
layers also developed as plaster spill accumulated on the temporary horizontal work Fig. 24. The exposed entrances to the chambers of the Bents’ Fig. 25. The entrances to the chambers of the Bents’ larger
larger mound (B) in (after Jouannin : g. ). mound, unpublished photo from the journey of French jeweller surfaces which continue successively through each mound. These layers are related
Jacques Cartier, . (Courtesy of the Cartier Heritage to, but should not be confused with, the thick and systematically deposited horizontal
Department, © Cartier Heritage Department).
plaster horizons found in Mound N (Højlund 2007: 30 and this chapter no. 30 and
Chapter 4) and Royal Mound 8 (this chapter no. 40 and Chapter 4).
The mound is currently well-preserved and partially restored. According to some A’ali
village residents interviewed in 2012 and 2013 the authorities lled in the trench dug
by the Bents around 1980 because the chambers had become a hangout for stray dogs.
30 31Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 30 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 31 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 29. Back and front view of fragment of lter-neck vessel
found in Mound B (Courtesy of the British Museum).
Artefacts: The Bents found coarse unglazed pottery, painted fragments of ostrich shells and
“pieces of oxidised metal, brass or copper”. Judging from the appearance of the copper
fragments which are in the British Museum the latter originate from one or more
copper vessels. The bones of a large animal were found in the upper chamber while
human bones were found in the lower chamber (Bent 1890a: 16). A rim fragment of a
lter-neck vessel of red ware with cream slip (Fig. 29) was among the pottery found in
Mound B (Reade & Burleigh 1981: pl. 34b, BM 136250) but is not mentioned by Bent in
his paper. This vessel is typologically identical to Højlund’s type B7 (1994: 78).
The excavation of the upper chamber yielded many objects, all of which were made
of ivory and are also at the British Museum. Among the many ivories are fragments
of circular boxes, pendants, the torso of a small statue and the hoof of a bull attached
to a pedestal (Bent 1890a: 15; Reade & Burleigh 1981: pl. 31b). A radiocarbon dating
conducted in 1961 on a sample of these ivories produced a date of around 250 +/-
150 AD. Reade & Burleigh argued that this was too young and should be disregarded
on methodical grounds (1981: 79-80). Whether the ivories found by the Bents are of a
Bronze Age date as Reade has suggested (Reade & Burleigh 1981) or belong to later
interments in the Tylos period remains an open question but an association with the
primary Early Dilmun period interment seems most probable.
Mound height: 10.67 m (35 ft).
Mound diameter: 23.17 m (76 ft). The diameter given by Bent appears too small and from the 1959
aerial photo it can be estimated as about 40 m.
Ring wall diameter: 27.5 m (estimated).
Outer ring wall: -
Inner ring walls: -
Chamber azimuth: C. 79°.
Chamber shape: Upper H-shaped, lower H-shaped.
Chamber length: Upper chamber 9.14 m (30 ft), lower chamber 9.14 m (30 ft).
Chamber height: Upper 1.37 m (4 ft 6”), lower 2.61 m. Bent gives the height of the lower chamber at
2 m (6 ft 7”) but Prideaux corrects this since the 6 ft 7” given by Bent in fact is the
“height of the doorway above the threshold” and “The chamber itself average about two feet
more…” (1912: 69).
Chamber width: Lower chamber 1.51 m, upper chamber 1.40 m (estimated).
Chamber access: Dromos passage 7 m long (23 ft).
32 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 32 24/11/17 10:46Peg holes: Bent mentions peg holes in the lower chamber at intervals of two feet (1890a: 16) and
Prideaux adds that there are also peg holes in each of the four alcoves in the lower
chamber (1912: 67). Mackay further informs us that the lower chamber had three peg
holes in the north wall, four in the east wall, two in the west wall and four and three
peg holes in the eastern and western end alcoves respectively (1929: 13).
Plaster/mortar: Yes. In the lower chamber only.
Gazetteer number: 4
Mound name: Bents' Smaller Mound.
Excavator: J.T. Bent and M. Bent.
Fig. 29. Back and front view of fragment of lter-neck vessel
Time of investigation: 1889.found in Mound B (Courtesy of the British Museum).
BBM number: 63308 (uncertain).
Location: See map Fig. 13 for uncertain location. Mound 63308 which was located right next Artefacts: The Bents found coarse unglazed pottery, painted fragments of ostrich shells and
to Prideaux’s camp is marked “collapsed” on his 1912 map and is most likely the “pieces of oxidised metal, brass or copper”. Judging from the appearance of the copper
Smaller Mound investigated by the Bents.fragments which are in the British Museum the latter originate from one or more
copper vessels. The bones of a large animal were found in the upper chamber while General remarks: Bent mentioned that his Smaller Mound was of a coarser construction than the others
human bones were found in the lower chamber (Bent 1890a: 16). A rim fragment of a (1890a: 17). The mound (no. 63308) was removed after 1959.
lter-neck vessel of red ware with cream slip (Fig. 29) was among the pottery found in Artefacts: -
Mound B (Reade & Burleigh 1981: pl. 34b, BM 136250) but is not mentioned by Bent in
Mound height: 5.18 m (17ft).his paper. This vessel is typologically identical to Højlund’s type B7 (1994: 78).
Mound diameter: - The excavation of the upper chamber yielded many objects, all of which were made
of ivory and are also at the British Museum. Among the many ivories are fragments Ring wall diameter: -
of circular boxes, pendants, the torso of a small statue and the hoof of a bull attached Outer ring wall: -
to a pedestal (Bent 1890a: 15; Reade & Burleigh 1981: pl. 31b). A radiocarbon dating
Inner ring walls: -
conducted in 1961 on a sample of these ivories produced a date of around 250 +/-
Chamber azimuth: -150 AD. Reade & Burleigh argued that this was too young and should be disregarded
on methodical grounds (1981: 79-80). Whether the ivories found by the Bents are of a Chamber shape: H-shaped.
Bronze Age date as Reade has suggested (Reade & Burleigh 1981) or belong to later
Chamber lengths: -
interments in the Tylos period remains an open question but an association with the
Chamber height: -primary Early Dilmun period interment seems most probable.
Chamber width: -Mound height: 10.67 m (35 ft).
Chamber access: - Mound diameter: 23.17 m (76 ft). The diameter given by Bent appears too small and from the 1959
aerial photo it can be estimated as about 40 m. Peg holes: Bent noted that they found traces of wood in the peg holes of this his second mound
(1890a: 16). Ring wall diameter: 27.5 m (estimated).
Plaster/mortar: Yes. It is not explicitly stated by Bent but by implication of there being peg holes in Outer ring wall: -
the chamber walls these must also have been plastered.
Inner ring walls: -
Chamber azimuth: C. 79°.
Gazetteer number: 5
Chamber shape: Upper H-shaped, lower H-shaped.
Mound name: Mound C (Prideaux).Chamber length: Upper chamber 9.14 m (30 ft), lower chamber 9.14 m (30 ft).
Excavator: Unknown and F.B. Prideaux. Chamber height: Upper 1.37 m (4 ft 6”), lower 2.61 m. Bent gives the height of the lower chamber at
2 m (6 ft 7”) but Prideaux corrects this since the 6 ft 7” given by Bent in fact is the Year of investigation: Before and during 1906-07.
“height of the doorway above the threshold” and “The chamber itself average about two feet
BBM number: 63310.
more…” (1912: 69).
Location: See map Fig. 13.
Chamber width: Lower chamber 1.51 m, upper chamber 1.40 m (estimated).
General remarks: Prideaux named the mounds on his 1912 map alphabetically in accordance with the
Chamber access: Dromos passage 7 m long (23 ft).
time of their excavation. This mound was assigned the letter “C” because an
eye32 33Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 32 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 33 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 30. In the foreground Mound C can be seen with a skirt of spoil and a cutting on the western side in one of the only existing
depictions of the mound. The larger Mound O is located in the background on the left and Mackay Tomb on the right (after Jouannin
: g. ).
witness convinced Prideaux that this mound was the smaller tomb which had been
excavated by the Bents in 1889 (1912: 67). However, since Mrs. Bent explicitly states
in her diary that their smaller mound was of the same plan as that of their larger
2H-shaped mound (Mound B), and since Prideaux states that Mound C was T-shaped
and had hardly been excavated, one can safely assume that this was not the mound
excavated by the Bents.
Rather unusually the oor of the chamber had been sunk 2.1 m (7 ft) below the
surface of the limestone bedrock (Prideaux 1912: 69). One of the illustrations from 1903
provided by A. Jouannin (Fig. 30) clearly shows that a trench had already been dug
into Mound C.
The mound last appeared on a photo taken in 1986 by Thorkild Ebert, chief designer
of the exhibitions in the Bahrain National Museum (1988) (unpublished Moesgaard).
The mound was demolished to make room for houses shortly afterwards.
Artefacts: Prideaux reports that he found a large red pot with a circumference of 1.52 m (60”)
and a broad black circular line near its neck (probably below the rim) and a vessel of
yellow clay with a narrow mouth and a lter-neck pierced by 24 pencil wide holes
(Prideaux 1912: 70). The latter is depicted on a photo by Prideaux (1912: g. 7 left
hand side) which is reproduced in Chapter 2 (Fig. 5). This vessel unmistakably
corresponds to Højlund’s type B7 (1994: 78).
Mound height: 5.1 m (17 ft).
Mound diameter: 17 m (estimated).
2 “The small mound…turned out to be the same plan on a smaller scale.” (Bent 1889/Brisch 2010: 25).
34 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 34 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 31. Idealized section through Mound D with Jouannin’s tunnel and the upper chamber (after Jouannin : g. ).
Ring wall diameter: -
Outer ring wall: No.
Inner ring walls: -
Chamber azimuth: -
Chamber shape: T-shaped.
Fig. 30. In the foreground Mound C can be seen with a skirt of spoil and a cutting on the western side in one of the only existing Chamber lengths: -
depictions of the mound. The larger Mound O is located in the background on the left and Mackay Tomb on the right (after Jouannin
: g. ). Chamber height: Since Prideaux states that sand had lled the chamber to a height of 4 or 5 ft
(Prideaux 1912: 114) the height can be estimated to more than 1.52 m (5 ft). Further since
witness convinced Prideaux that this mound was the smaller tomb which had been the oor was sunk 2.1 m (7 ft) below bedrock one can safely assume that the chamber
excavated by the Bents in 1889 (1912: 67). However, since Mrs. Bent explicitly states was considerably higher. Aside from this the height cannot be specied further.
in her diary that their smaller mound was of the same plan as that of their larger
Chamber width: -
2H-shaped mound (Mound B), and since Prideaux states that Mound C was T-shaped
Chamber access: Shaft. and had hardly been excavated, one can safely assume that this was not the mound
excavated by the Bents. Peg holes: Yes. The number and locations were not specied by Prideaux (1912: 67).
Rather unusually the oor of the chamber had been sunk 2.1 m (7 ft) below the sur- Plaster/mortar: Chamber walls are plastered.
face of the limestone bedrock (Prideaux 1912: 69). One of the illustrations from 1903
provided by A. Jouannin (Fig. 30) clearly shows that a trench had already been dug
Gazetteer number: 6into Mound C.
The mound last appeared on a photo taken in 1986 by Thorkild Ebert, chief designer Mound name: Mound D (Prideaux).
of the exhibitions in the Bahrain National Museum (1988) (unpublished Moesgaard). Excavator: M.A. Jouannin.
The mound was demolished to make room for houses shortly afterwards.
Time of investigation: September 1903.
Artefacts: Prideaux reports that he found a large red pot with a circumference of 1.52 m (60”)
BBM number: 62618.and a broad black circular line near its neck (probably below the rim) and a vessel of
Location: See map Fig. 13. yellow clay with a narrow mouth and a lter-neck pierced by 24 pencil wide holes
(Prideaux 1912: 70). The latter is depicted on a photo by Prideaux (1912: g. 7 left General remarks: Jouannin entered the upper chamber through the north-western alcove by means of
hand side) which is reproduced in Chapter 2 (Fig. 5). This vessel unmistakably corre- a horizontal tunnel which he dug into the side of the mound (Figs. 31-33). He was
sponds to Højlund’s type B7 (1994: 78). perfectly aware of the presence of a lower chamber but makes it clear that for lack of
Mound height: 5.1 m (17 ft). time he did not expose it.
The mound is currently preserved. The tunnel which A. Jouannin dug into the west-Mound diameter: 17 m (estimated).
ern side of the mound is still intact but the upper chamber seems to have been
dismantled and robbed of its stones. The mound was reinvestigated during the present
project (Chapter 4).2 “The small mound…turned out to be the same plan on a smaller scale.” (Bent 1889/Brisch 2010: 25).
34 35Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 34 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 35 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 32. Plan of Mound D with Jouannin’s tunnel and the upper chamber (after Jouannin : g. ).
Fig. 33. Sections through the upper chamber of Mound D. Jouannin’s entry hole through the north-western alcove can be seen on the
right (after Jouannin : gs. -).
36 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 36 24/11/17 10:46Artefacts: The excavator recovered possible ivory fragments, ostrich eggshell and bone in the
upper chamber. However, judging from the above-mentioned letter of E.A.W. Budge
(see Chapter 2) Jouannin did not take anything with him when he left for Iraq.
Mound height: C. 6.2 m.
Mound diameter: 27 m.
Ring wall diameter: 20.9 m.
Outer ring wall: No.
Inner ring walls: Yes. Can be estimated to c. 18 m in diameter.
Chamber azimuth: 42° East of North (2012).
Chamber shape: Upper H-shaped, lower H-shaped (presumably).
Chamber lengths: Lower chamber c. 3.50 m (presumably), upper chamber 3.48 m.
Chamber height: -
Chamber width: C. 1 m.
Chamber access: Dromos passage.
Peg holes: Not in the upper chamber and the lower chamber is unknown.
Plaster/mortar: Jouannin explicitly states that the upper chamber was uncoated (1905: 157).
Gazetteer number: 7
Mound name: Mound E (Prideaux), “The Goat Mound.”
Excavator: F.B. Prideaux.
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
BBM number: 64356.
Location: See map Fig. 13.
General remarks: Prideaux started his excavation campaign at the Royal Cemetery by digging into
Mound E. In order to ease the digging out of the colossal chamber a large horizontal
plateau was established by cutting away the entire northern half of the summit (Fig.
34). This operation left a characteristic break in the mound’s prole which is still
visible today. Prideaux observed a two tiered chamber structure, but, as has become
Fig. 32. Plan of Mound D with Jouannin’s tunnel and the upper chamber (after Jouannin : g. ).
clear from the re-investigations of Mound E in 2010-13 (see Chapter 4), Prideaux
was confused by an elaborate supporting structure which surrounded the lower
chamber and this led him to partially misread the central chamber construction. The
confusion caused Prideaux to inict much unnecessary damage to the side walls of
the chamber’s support structure which he in four instances broke through in search
of “…additional constructions…” (Prideaux 1912: 72). Additionally, the alcoves of the
upper chamber collapsed during excavation (Prideaux 1912: 72). When J. Cartier
visited A’ali in 1911 the two northern alcoves of the upper chamber were still partly
preserved (Fig. 35, see also Fig. 6). Note here the remains of the upper chamber’s
north-eastern alcove in the upper right corner and the back end of the north-western
alcove in the upper left corner. The photo depicts the same emptied out sandbox
where a man is seen standing in the picture taken by Prideaux approximately 5 years
earlier (see below Fig. 37). Walls in front of the sandbox are either from an additional
sandbox or represent a section of the central corridor of the lower chamber. Note
that while the upper north-eastern alcove is still partly preserved, almost the entire
north-western alcove has been removed. Photos published by Prideaux document
Fig. 33. Sections through the upper chamber of Mound D. Jouannin’s entry hole through the north-western alcove can be seen on the that in 1906 the upper chamber had been heavily dismantled already (Figs. 36 and
right (after Jouannin : gs. -).
37). The photos also make clear that several large tabular slabs of limestone,
doubt36 37Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 36 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 37 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 34. Aerial photo of Mound E taken from the north-west. Note the plateau which Prideaux established on the northern half of the
summit and his deep trench (Fritsdal ).
Fig. 35. The interior of Mound E seen from the south in a photo recorded by Jacques Cartier’s photographer in . Published with
courtesy of the Cartier Heritage Department. © Cartier Heritage Department.
38 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 38 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 34. Aerial photo of Mound E taken from the north-west. Note the plateau which Prideaux established on the northern half of the Fig. 36. Mound E in the course of excavation (after Prideaux : pl. xix (a)).
summit and his deep trench (Fritsdal ).
Fig. 35. The interior of Mound E seen from the south in a photo recorded by Jacques Cartier’s photographer in . Published with Fig. 37. Tomb in Mound E from south-east (after Prideaux : pl. xix (b)).
courtesy of the Cartier Heritage Department. © Cartier Heritage Department.
38 39Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 38 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 39 24/11/17 10:46lessly capstones, were strewn across the centre of the mound. In the photo Fig. 36 a
group of men are seen working outside the upper chamber’s south-eastern alcove
and several tabular "capstones" are strewn across the rim of the excavation hole. In
the photo Fig. 37 a man is seen standing on the outer wall of the lower chamber's
support structure between the remains of the two north side alcoves of the upper
chamber. In the wall between the lower and upper section of the north-western
alcove a ledge can be seen. This ledge was intended to hold the capstones that made
up the roof and oor of the two superimposed alcoves, respectively.
At some point, the centre of Mound E was cleared of chamber stones and most of the
shaft walls to make room for a goat pen. This practice was however stopped by the
Directorate of Archaeology and Antiquities in 2006. In testimony of this latest activity
the mound received its recent nickname, the Goat Mound, and a dark layer of lanolin
wool fat coats the plastered surfaces all around the mound’s centre. Based on the
evidence available Højlund suggested a multiple chamber reconstruction of Mound E
in which the ground plan had a completely unique design (Fig. 38). The mound was
reinvestigated during the present project (Chapter 4) and in light of the results of the
recent excavations Højlund’s proposed reconstruction can now be disregarded.
Artefacts: Prideaux reports that he found the fragments of about 20 coarse earthen vessels some
of which came from the mound ll. Two or three were found in the north-eastern
alcove while the excavator believed that other vessels found had dropped down
from the upper chamber. Additionally, two beads were found (Fig. 39). The bones
of a man were discovered “5 feet above the oor of the upper south-eastern recess close to
the main passage” and Prideaux goes on to suggest that this individual presumably
was a slave that had been sacriced (1912: 73). This interpretation is without support
based on the evidence from other Early Dilmun period mounds. Conversely, the
bones must reect a secondary interment dug into the mound from the roof of the
upper chamber presumably through an existing robber’s shaft (?). That this
interment occurred at a much later point in time is further indicated by the ve feet of soil
which had accumulated on the oor of the alcove and on which the bones apparently
rested at the time of recovery.
Mound height: 12.1 m (preserved 2012).
Mound diameter: 50 m.
Ring wall diameter: 33.1 m.
Outer ring wall: Not observed, but doubtlessly originally present.
Inner ring walls: Yes (recorded in 2012 with a diameter of 26.1 m).
Chamber azimuth: 99°.
Chamber shape: Lower H-shaped with Appendix Room, upper H-shaped without Appendix Room.
Chamber lengths: Lower 10.09 m, upper 8.6 m.
Chamber height: Lower 5.49 m (18 ft), upper 3.2 m.
Chamber width: 2.02 m.
Chamber access: Shaft.
Peg holes: Prideaux mentions recesses of 15 cm (6”) in diameter in the lower chamber and its
alcoves (1912: 73), but these are different from the usual round peg holes of about
7-10 cm in diameter. What Prideaux referred to are the beam holes which supported
the wooden scaffolds used by the ancient construction crew (Chapter 4).
Plaster/mortar: In the shaft, the lower chamber, surrounding stone structure and at least partly in the
upper chamber.
40 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 40 24/11/17 10:46lessly capstones, were strewn across the centre of the mound. In the photo Fig. 36 a
group of men are seen working outside the upper chamber’s south-eastern alcove
and several tabular "capstones" are strewn across the rim of the excavation hole. In
the photo Fig. 37 a man is seen standing on the outer wall of the lower chamber's
support structure between the remains of the two north side alcoves of the upper
chamber. In the wall between the lower and upper section of the north-western
alcove a ledge can be seen. This ledge was intended to hold the capstones that made
up the roof and oor of the two superimposed alcoves, respectively.
At some point, the centre of Mound E was cleared of chamber stones and most of the
shaft walls to make room for a goat pen. This practice was however stopped by the
Directorate of Archaeology and Antiquities in 2006. In testimony of this latest activity
the mound received its recent nickname, the Goat Mound, and a dark layer of lanolin
0 3 6wool fat coats the plastered surfaces all around the mound’s centre. Based on the
evim Fig. 39. Corrugated gold ring from Mound F anked by beads
dence available Højlund suggested a multiple chamber reconstruction of Mound E found in Mound E (after Prideaux : g. ).
in which the ground plan had a completely unique design (Fig. 38). The mound was Fig. 38. Højlund’s reconstruction sketch of Mound E
(after Højlund : g. ).reinvestigated during the present project (Chapter 4) and in light of the results of the
recent excavations Højlund’s proposed reconstruction can now be disregarded.
Artefacts: Prideaux reports that he found the fragments of about 20 coarse earthen vessels some
Gazetteer number: 8of which came from the mound ll. Two or three were found in the north-eastern
alcove while the excavator believed that other vessels found had dropped down Mound name: Mound F (Prideaux).
from the upper chamber. Additionally, two beads were found (Fig. 39). The bones
Excavator: F.B. Prideaux.
of a man were discovered “5 feet above the oor of the upper south-eastern recess close to
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07. the main passage” and Prideaux goes on to suggest that this individual presumably
was a slave that had been sacriced (1912: 73). This interpretation is without support BBM number: 63456.
based on the evidence from other Early Dilmun period mounds. Conversely, the
Location: See map Fig. 13.
bones must reect a secondary interment dug into the mound from the roof of the
General remarks: It is clear from Prideaux’s cursory description of Mound F that the chamber was upper chamber presumably through an existing robber’s shaft (?). That this
interof the single-storeyed type and it had a vertical casing wall over the entrance. An ment occurred at a much later point in time is further indicated by the ve feet of soil
elevation drawing suggests that the ruined remains of Mound F may possibly be still which had accumulated on the oor of the alcove and on which the bones apparently
preserved under a pottery kiln and associated waste heap from an adjacent pottery rested at the time of recovery.
factory.
Mound height: 12.1 m (preserved 2012).
Artefacts: In the single storey chamber of Mound F the excavator found the “most ornamental
Mound diameter: 50 m.
pottery, as well as a corrugated gold ring…” (Fig. 39) and “fragments of a piece of black
Ring wall diameter: 33.1 m. stone ware” (Prideaux 1912: 74-75). The stone ware (steatite?) may have been found in
Mound G since Prideaux species that it was discovered when sifting soil from the Outer ring wall: Not observed, but doubtlessly originally present.
chambers from either Mound G or Mound F. The gold ring may currently be held
Inner ring walls: Yes (recorded in 2012 with a diameter of 26.1 m).
with the pottery in the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya Museum
Chamber azimuth: 99°. in Mumbai but could not be located among Prideaux’s nds in their collection (see
Appendix 1). Chamber shape: Lower H-shaped with Appendix Room, upper H-shaped without Appendix Room.
The bone of a large animal, according to Prideaux possibly bovine, was found just Chamber lengths: Lower 10.09 m, upper 8.6 m.
above the roof of the chamber. It is difcult to elucidate the nature of this discovery,
Chamber height: Lower 5.49 m (18 ft), upper 3.2 m.
but the bone probably reects some type of secondary use of the mound or a possible
Chamber width: 2.02 m. votive deposit.
Chamber access: Shaft. Mound height: >4.6 m according to 1977 map.
Peg holes: Prideaux mentions recesses of 15 cm (6”) in diameter in the lower chamber and its Mound diameter: 20 m.
alcoves (1912: 73), but these are different from the usual round peg holes of about
Ring wall diameter: -
7-10 cm in diameter. What Prideaux referred to are the beam holes which supported
Outer ring wall: No.the wooden scaffolds used by the ancient construction crew (Chapter 4).
Inner ring walls: -Plaster/mortar: In the shaft, the lower chamber, surrounding stone structure and at least partly in the
upper chamber. Chamber azimuth: C. 69° (indicated by the trench on Prideaux’s 1912 map (this vol. Fig. 4)).
40 41Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 40 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 41 24/11/17 10:46
NFig. 40. View into the un-plastered H-shaped chamber of Mound Fig. 41. In the foreground the almost levelled ruin of Mound G
G with light coming in through the collapsed roof over a rear end seen from Mound P (Glob ).
alcove (after Prideaux : g. ).
Chamber shape: H-shaped (?).
Chamber lengths: -
Chamber height: -
Chamber width: -
Chamber access: Dromos passage.
Peg holes: -
Plaster/mortar: -
Gazetteer number: 9
Mound name: Mound G (Prideaux).
Excavator: F.B. Prideaux.
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
BBM number: 63420.
Location: See map Fig. 13.
General remarks: According to Prideaux this mound “…had the best cone of all the mounds I have seen.“
(1912: 74) and this suggests that despite a probably relatively small ring wall
diameter, the mound originally stood comparatively high. Prideaux provides very limited
information about the evidently unplastered chamber (Fig. 40). When J. Cartier
visited A’ali in 1911 the trench dug by Prideaux was apparently used as a kiln (see Fig.
6). Due to its relatively small size Mound G had almost completely been levelled out
by 1954 (Fig. 41) and had been entirely removed before 1969.
Artefacts: -
Mound height: -
Mound diameter:
Ring wall diameter: -
Outer ring wall: No.
42 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 42 24/11/17 10:46Inner ring walls: -
Chamber azimuth: -
Chamber shape: H-shaped.
Chamber lengths: -
Chamber height: -
Chamber width: -
Chamber access: Dromos passage.
Peg holes: No.
Plaster/mortar: No.
Gazetteer number: 10
Fig. 40. View into the un-plastered H-shaped chamber of Mound Fig. 41. In the foreground the almost levelled ruin of Mound G Mound name: Mound H (Prideaux).
G with light coming in through the collapsed roof over a rear end seen from Mound P (Glob ).
alcove (after Prideaux : g. ). Excavator: F.B. Prideaux.
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
BBM number: 63371.
Location: See map Fig. 13.Chamber shape: H-shaped (?).
General remarks: According to Prideaux the upper chamber contained a considerable amount of Chamber lengths: -
rubble (1912: 77). Prideaux left his spoil at the foot of the mound to the north of his Chamber height: -
trench (Fig. 42), but this has now been removed and his sounding has been partially
Chamber width: - back-lled. The mound is currently preserved and was reinvestigated during the
Chamber access: Dromos passage. present project (Chapter 4). The orientation of the chamber indicated by a mark on
Prideaux’s map (Fig. 4) is now proven to not reect the actual orientation and the Peg holes: -
angle established during the recent investigations was 104° east of north. The mound
Plaster/mortar: - was reinvestigated during the present project (Chapter 4).
Artefacts: Of signicant importance is a fragment of an “earthen pot of the ltered mouth-piece
Gazetteer number: 9 type” found in one of the alcoves (Prideaux 1912: 75, g. 7 right). Another coarse red
ware vessel was found in the opposite alcove. The lter-neck vessel corresponds to
Mound name: Mound G (Prideaux).
Højlund’s type B7 (1994: 78). The bones of a man was found in the lower chamber
Excavator: F.B. Prideaux. placed in a position which Prideaux describes as “at on his back with the head to
st st the west" (1912: 75). Both the position and orientation of the body differs from the Time of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
foetal position consistently used in Dilmun burial rituals (see Chapter 7). Since
PrideBBM number: 63420.
aux also mentions that the door blocking the tomb was placed at a curious distance
Location: See map Fig. 13. from the outside and that it covered several peg-holes, it is likely that the bones were
an interment from a later period. At this time a new blocking door was probably General remarks: According to Prideaux this mound “…had the best cone of all the mounds I have seen.“
installed. (1912: 74) and this suggests that despite a probably relatively small ring wall
diameter, the mound originally stood comparatively high. Prideaux provides very limited Mound height: 5.9 m.
information about the evidently unplastered chamber (Fig. 40). When J. Cartier
visMound diameter: 26.15 m.
ited A’ali in 1911 the trench dug by Prideaux was apparently used as a kiln (see Fig.
Ring wall diameter: 18.9 m. 6). Due to its relatively small size Mound G had almost completely been levelled out
by 1954 (Fig. 41) and had been entirely removed before 1969. Outer ring wall: No.
Artefacts: - Inner ring walls: 16.7 m.
Mound height: - Chamber azimuth: 104°.
Mound diameter: - Chamber shape: Upper chamber unspecied but probably T-shaped, lower chamber T-shaped.
Ring wall diameter: - Chamber lengths: -
Outer ring wall: No. Chamber height: -
42 43Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 42 24/11/17 10:46 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 43 24/11/17 10:46Fig. 43. Mound I seen from the west with Prideaux’s shaft
partly relled (Raun ).
Fig. 42. Mound H seen from Mound E. A car is parked in front
of Mound H and Durand’s larger mound (A) with outer ring
wall is visible in the background (Glob ).
Chamber width: -
Chamber access: Shaft.
Peg holes: Yes, along the sides of the lower chamber.
Plaster/mortar: Yes.
Gazetteer number: 11
Mound name: Mound I (Prideaux).
Excavator: F.B. Prideaux.
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
BBM number: 63094.
Location: See map Fig. 13.
General remarks: The mound is preserved with excavation trenches dug to its northern and southern
sides. The vertical walls exposed when the inner ring wall(?) was stripped of its
stones revealing a clear “section” through the horizontal sand and gravel layers of
which the mound was originally constructed (Fig. 43). Prideaux’s large shaft-like
trench is partially open but currently no stone masonry is visible. In the space where
the slopes of Mound L and Mound I merge one can observe some exposed stone
masonry that may represent a secondary tomb.
Artefacts: Prideaux does not clearly state whether or not he found anything in Mound I, but it
cannot be excluded that some nds come from this mound. Two lter neck vessels
are mentioned by Prideaux as having been found in Mound I, Mound J or Mound K
(1912: 75) (see also Appendix 1).
Mound height: 8.5 m.
Mound diameter: 21.6 m.
Ring wall diameter: -
44 Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_r1_.indd 44 30-11-2017 0:03:26Outer ring wall: No.
Inner ring walls: 18.6 m (estimated).
Chamber azimuth: -
Chamber shape: H-shaped (presumably).
Chamber lengths: -
Chamber height: -
Chamber width: -
Chamber access: Shaft (?).
Peg holes: Unknown.
Plaster/mortar: Unknown.
Fig. 43. Mound I seen from the west with Prideaux’s shaft
partly relled (Raun ).
Gazetteer number: 12
Mound name: Mound J (Prideaux).
Fig. 42. Mound H seen from Mound E. A car is parked in front
of Mound H and Durand’s larger mound (A) with outer ring Excavator: F.B. Prideaux.
wall is visible in the background (Glob ).
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
BBM number: 63064.
Location: See map Fig. 13.
Chamber width: -
General remarks: Removed between 1959 and 1969.
Chamber access: Shaft.
Artefacts: The chamber contained an ivory fragment in the shape of a bull’s leg attached to part
Peg holes: Yes, along the sides of the lower chamber. of a pedestal (Prideaux 1912: 75, g. 5). The Bents discovered an ivory bull’s leg of
similar description in Mound B (Bent 1890a: 15). In Mound J Prideaux also found “…Plaster/mortar: Yes.
an oxidized piece of metal, curved like a lyre” which, as previously pointed out by Reade
(Reade & Burleigh 1981: 81), probably is an omega shaped holdfast of copper of a
Gazetteer number: 11 type known from several other Early Dilmun tombs (for a brief discussion of this
type see also Højlund 2007: 167). Two lter-neck vessels are mentioned by Prideaux Mound name: Mound I (Prideaux).
as having been found in Mound I, Mound J or Mound K (1912: 75) (see also
AppenExcavator: F.B. Prideaux. dix 1).
st stTime of investigation: October 1 to March 31 , 1906-07.
Mound height: -
BBM number: 63094.
Mound diameter: 21.6 m.
Location: See map Fig. 13.
Ring wall diameter: -
General remarks: The mound is preserved with excavation trenches dug to its northern and southern Outer ring wall: No.
sides. The vertical walls exposed when the inner ring wall(?) was stripped of its
Inner ring walls: -stones revealing a clear “section” through the horizontal sand and gravel layers of
which the mound was originally constructed (Fig. 43). Prideaux’s large shaft-like Chamber azimuth: -
trench is partially open but currently no stone masonry is visible. In the space where Chamber shape: H-shaped (?).
the slopes of Mound L and Mound I merge one can observe some exposed stone
Chamber lengths: - masonry that may represent a secondary tomb.
Chamber height: -Artefacts: Prideaux does not clearly state whether or not he found anything in Mound I, but it
cannot be excluded that some nds come from this mound. Two lter neck vessels Chamber width: -
are mentioned by Prideaux as having been found in Mound I, Mound J or Mound K Chamber access:
(1912: 75) (see also Appendix 1).
Peg holes: -
Mound height: 8.5 m.
Plaster/mortar: -
Mound diameter: 21.6 m.
Ring wall diameter: -
44 45Contents
This page is protected by copyright and may not be redistributed.
107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_r1_.indd 44 30-11-2017 0:03:26 107642_Royal Mounds_CC17_.indd 45 24/11/17 10:46

  • Accueil Accueil
  • Univers Univers
  • Ebooks Ebooks
  • Livres audio Livres audio
  • Presse Presse
  • BD BD
  • Documents Documents