flightless hag

A chronicle of the adventures of birdwoman: a lonely, talentless freak who wanders the internet in search of entertainment.

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Location: Philly

I'm a 40-something married white female, survivor of weight watchers, avid reader of pulp. Dogs (not cats), extreme right (handed, not politics), ENTJ, alto, wanna-be knitter.

August 26, 2005

The Pompeii of Turkey

Part two of my tv bonanza of Wednesday night (see post below).

The NOVA special that I watched was a special on an archaeological dig in Turkey. Seems that the gov’t was going to dam up the Euphrates, and just above where they were damming – the area to be flooded – was the site of an “important” ruin.

The town of
Zeugma was an incredibly rich, important city in the Hellenic times. It had both Greek and Roman influence, and was an important gateway to the east from the west. It was sacked by Persians some time around 300BC, and suffered from a landslide sometime closely after that, which completely buried the town.

Then, the Turks decided to build a dam, which would cover the area in water. Cue the “scientist scurry”.

Don’t get me wrong: they’ve found some really cool stuff at this dig. The sewer system of Zeugma was more advanced than that of London 1500 years later. The mosaics in the floor of one house were prettier than anything I’ve seen in our own time.

They also, because of the time constraints, were forced to be innovative in their method of discovery. They used techniques drafted by oil speculators to map the area. They used advanced computer methods and models to rebuild parts of the city.

Though the government delayed the dam completion for the dig, they did eventually have to flood the area. Not all of the dig has been covered with water, but much of it has. And here comes the question – what’s more important – a study of our past, or provisions for the future? Though I’m sad that Zeugma was ignored by the scientific community until it was too late, I think that electricity for the masses is more important.

Does that mean I have a lack of foresight?



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