Preserving history

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via Bangkok Post, 30 April 2018:

Ruins and ancient sites are always under threat from time and disaster. The great flood of 2011, for instance, damaged 128 archeological sites on and around the city island of Ayutthaya. After the incident, the government provided a budget of 600 million baht for the clean-up and restoration work, and there was also financial and technical aid from Unesco, as well as certain foreign countries.

Source: Preserving history

Angkor Events at the Asian Civilisations Museum

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In conjunction with the exhibition, Angkor: Exploring Cambodia’s Sacred City that is currently on at the Asian Civilisations Museum in Singapore, there are a number of associated events upcoming in May and June:

  • 11 May 2018, The invisible paintings of Angkor Wat: This is me! I’m pleased to be talking about my discovery and research on the invisible paintings of Angkor Wat.
  • 18-19 May 2018, Exploring Angkor Symposium: A special symposium organised in collaboration with the Guimet Museum, with a number of speakers including Pierre Baptiste, Alison Carter, Chhay Rachna, Darith Ea, Martin Polkinghorne, Paul Lavy, Miriam Stark, Olivier Cunin, Stephen Murphy, Kong Vireak, Sok Sangvar, D. Kyle Latinis, and Damian Evans
  • 8 June 2018, Angkorian medical industries: Recent excavations at the Tonle Snguot Hospital Site, Siem Reap, Cambodia: D. Kyle Latinis will be talking about the recent excavation at Tonle Sngout and the spectacular finds discovered there, such as a 2m-tall statue of a dvarapala and a medicine Buddha.

Evidence for persistent forest reliance by indigenous peoples in historical Sri Lanka

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via Science Daily, 26 April 2018:

Working closely with Wanniyalaeto (Vedda) elders in Sri Lanka during the repatriation of skeletal remains, a team of researchers have demonstrated that while some indigenous hunter-gatherers in Sri Lanka made use of agricultural resources and trade connections with farmers and colonial power structures, others continued to subsist primarily on tropical forest resources as late as the 19th century.

Source: Evidence for persistent forest reliance by indigenous peoples in historical Sri Lanka

Superstition helps protect heritage, says park director

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via Bangkok Post, 26 April 2018:

AYUTTHAYA: The return of an ancient brick souvenired from the famous Wat Chaiwatthanaram in Ayutthaya Historical Park is proof that superstitious belief helps protect the old temple, according to park director Sukanya Baonerd.

Source: Superstition helps protect heritage, says park director

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Vale Ian Glover

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I am sorry to share the news of the passing of Ian Glover, a titan in the field of Southeast Asian archaeology. Lia Genovese shares the following:

Dear All,

In case you have not heard. Some very sad news.

Ian Glover passed away yesterday, on his birthday, while on holiday in Sicily. He collapsed after breakfast in Catania and could not be revived.

Only this afternoon I emailed him to wish him happy birthday again and to tell him about my recent fieldwork in Borneo. I also told him that conferences will never be the same again without him. I was referring to a recent conversation I had with Ian, when he told me that he would not be attending the IPPA in September this year because “he had nothing new to say”.

RIP, Ian, a gentleman and a most generous scholar.

Underwater survey reveals secrets of Australia WWI wreck off PNG

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via Channel NewsAsia, 23 April 2018:

SYDNEY: Researchers Monday (Apr 23) voiced renewed hope of discovering why Australia’s first submarine sank, after a detailed underwater survey of the long-lost wreck off Papua New Guinea led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. HMAS AE1, the first of two E Class submarines built for the Royal Australian Navy, vanished on Sep 14, 1914 near the Duke of York Islands. The disappearance of the sub, carrying 35 crew members from Australia, Britain and New Zealand, was the nation’s most enduring military mystery until the wreck was found in December following 12 previous expeditions. The new survey, conducted earlier this month with Allen’s research vessel the R/V Petrel, used a remotely-operated vehicle to inspect the sub and collect more than 8,500 high-resolution photos and several hours of video footage. James Hunter of the Australian National Maritime Museum, an archeological observer to the US-Australia expedition, said the fresh imagery should help unravel the mystery of what happened to AE1. “We’re not there yet, we’re still looking through all the footage … it’s going to give us the detail that we need that we didn’t have before,” he told AFP. He said the researchers, who also came from the Royal Australian Navy, Curtin University, the Western Australian Museum and the Submarine Institute of Australia, previously only had low-resolution overhead shots of the wreck. “We’re going to be looking for all sorts of clues. Even the seemingly most innocuous clues may actually help us move forward and have a better understanding of what happened to the submarine,” he added. So far, the images that have been reviewed reveal that the sub’s stern torpedo tube cap was open, although it is not known why, Hunter said. AE1, found in more than 300 metres of water, was the first Allied submarine loss in World War I. The sub had joined naval forces assigned to the capture of the German Pacific colonies in 1914. On Sep 14 she vanished after a rendezvous off Herbertshohe – present day Kokopo – near the Duke of York Islands with the destroyer HMAS Parramatta. Retired Royal Australian Navy Rear Admiral Peter Briggs said in December the most likely cause of the loss remains a diving accident. Allen’s Petrel was involved in the recent discovery of the wreckage of WWII aircraft carrier USS Lexington off the east coast of Australia.

Source: Underwater survey reveals secrets of Australia WWI wreck off PNG