via ANU E-press: New free E-book on the archaeology of Sulawesi edited by O’Connor et al.
Archaeology of Sulawesi by O’Connor et al
The central Indonesian island of Sulawesi has recently been hitting headlines with respect to its archaeology. It contains some of the oldest directly dated rock art in the world, and some of the oldest evidence for a hominin presence beyond the southeastern limits of the Ice Age Asian continent. In this volume, scholars from Indonesia and Australia come together to present their research findings and views on a broad range of topics. From early periods, these include observations on Ice Age climate, life in caves and open sites, rock art, and the animals that humans exploited and lived alongside. The archaeology presented from later periods covers the rise of the Bugis kingdom, Chinese trade ceramics, and a range of site-based and regional topics from the Neolithic through to the arrival of Islam. This carefully edited volume is the first to be devoted entirely to the archaeology of the island of Sulawesi, and it lays down a baseline for significant future research.
Source: The Archaeology of Sulawesi (Terra Australis 48) – ANU Press – ANU
via HuffPost, 13 Nov 2018: Kinda expected that they wouldn’t go to jail, but the vandals will still have to pay a fine.
via HuffPost, 20181113
A Canadian woman who was arrested in northern Thailand for spraying paint on an ancient wall has avoided more jail time, but must still pay a $4,000 fine for her actions.
Brittney Schneider, who is from Grande Prairie, Alta., was arrested along with British resident Lee Furlong on Oct. 18 after they sprayed the walls of the Tha Pae Gate — part of a 13th-century structure that forms a square around Chiang Mai’s inner city.
Source: Brittney Schneider, Canadian Charged For Vandalizing Ancient Thai Wall, Won’t Face Jail Time | HuffPost Canada
via Khaosod English, 13 November 2018: The DNA evidence discussed lines up with the prevailing theory about human migration in Mainland Southeast Asia in the last 4,000 years. Unfortunately, the article does not mention any specific paper where this research would have been published in.
BANGKOK — New DNA tests show that prehistoric Thais in the northeast came from southern China, while Mon and Khmer people inhabited that region prior to their arrival. Confirming what had been understood for the first time through DNA testing, Thammasat University Professor Samerchai Poonsuwan presented the test results Monday. The professor of sociology and […]
Source: DNA Links Northeastern Proto-Thais to Southern China
via PLOS One, 5 Nov 2018: A cool new Open Access paper by Klassen et al. using machine learning to create a predictive chronology of Angkorian temples based on the architectural features and artifacts found at a site.
Archaeologists often need to date and group artifact types to discern typologies, chronologies, and classifications. For over a century, statisticians have been using classification and clustering techniques to infer patterns in data that can be defined by algorithms. In the case of archaeology, linear regression algorithms are often used to chronologically date features and sites, and pattern recognition is used to develop typologies and classifications. However, archaeological data is often expensive to collect, and analyses are often limited by poor sample sizes and datasets. Here we show that recent advances in computation allow archaeologists to use machine learning based on much of the same statistical theory to address more complex problems using increased computing power and larger and incomplete datasets. This paper approaches the problem of predicting the chronology of archaeological sites through a case study of medieval temples in Angkor, Cambodia. For this study, we have a large dataset of temples with known architectural elements and artifacts; however, less than ten percent of the sample of temples have known dates, and much of the attribute data is incomplete. Our results suggest that the algorithms can predict dates for temples from 821–1150 CE with a 49-66-year average absolute error. We find that this method surpasses traditional supervised and unsupervised statistical approaches for under-specified portions of the dataset and is a promising new method for anthropological inquiry.
Source: Semi-supervised machine learning approaches for predicting the chronology of archaeological sites: A case study of temples from medieval Angkor, Cambodia
via Tempo, 3 November 2018: A team of archaeologists discover the remains of wooden buildings in Central Java. Article is in Bahasa.
via Tempo, 3 November 2018
The research team at the Liyangan Archaeological Center in Yogyakarta discovered a unit of the remaining wooden buildings on the site Liyangan, Temanggung, during the research period October 18 to November 4, 2018. The former building was found outside the Liyangan Temple area in Liyangan Hamlet. Purbasari Village, Ngadirejo District, Temanggung Regency, Central Java.
The researchers found fibers, bamboo, and wood, all of which were shaped like charcoal and weathered. The rest of the building was buried with material from Sindoro Mountain which was known to have erupted violently and catapulted thousands of material cubes in the 11th century.
Source: Tim Arkeologi Temukan Sisa Bangunan Kayu di Situs Liyangan – travel Tempo.co
via South China Morning Post, 13 November 2018: Cambodian workers at the West Mebon restoration project face serious financial hardship now that their salaries are slashed in half. This story was previously reported by the Phnom Penh Post.
Angkor temple restorers face financial ruin after French funding ends, but want to finish job
Source: Angkor temple restorers face financial ruin after French funding ends, but want to finish job | South China Morning Post
via Jakarta Observer, 02 November 2018: Results of a geoarchaelogical survey in Pulau Sawah, West Sumatra. Article is in Bahasa Indonesia.
Penelitian geoarkeologi yang dilakukan di permukiman kuno di sekitar situs Pulau Sawah, Dharmasraya, Sumatera Barat (Sumbar) menunjukkan adanya kearifan lokal dalam memilih lokasi permukiman.
Seperti disampaikan Dr Taqyuddin,peneliti dari Departemen Geografi, FMIPA, Universitas Indonesia, masyarakat Dharmasraya pada abad 8 hingga abad 13 Masehi sudah maju pada masanya dalam menentukan lokasi permukimannya yaitu memilih tempat yang subur dan luas dengan sungai yang sepanjang tahun berair.
Source: Penelitian Geoarkeologi Situs Pulau Sawah, Buktikan Masyarakat Dharmasraya Abad 8-13 M Sudah Maju dalam Penentuan Lokasi Permukiman – Jakarta Observer – Breaking News & Opinion
via artnet news, 06 November 2018: An expanded article based on a news reports in Thailand last week.
Source: artnet news, 20181106
Thailand has stepped up its efforts to reclaim bronze and stone sculptures that have been in US museum collections for decades. The Kingdom of Thailand’s culture minister announced last week that the country is seeking the return of 23 antiquities, some of which have been housed in the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, and New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art since the late 1960s.
Unnamed Institutions in the UK and Australia are also in the Thai government’s sights as it intensifies its efforts to recover sculptures and other artifacts it claims were illegally removed from temples and archaeological sites. Culture Minister Vira Rojpojchanarat is leading a task force to recover more than 700 artifacts in collections abroad that Thailand claims were stolen, the Bangkok Post reports.
Source: Thailand Is Ramping Up Efforts to Recover Cultural Heritage From US Museums, Including the Met | artnet News
via Bangkok Post, 07 November 2018:
Wat Phra That Phanom. Source: Bangkok Post 20181107
Disgruntled vendors gathered outside historical Wat Phra That Phanom in Nakhon Phanom on Wednesday in protest against their eviction from the grounds to pave the way for registration of the temple as a Unesco World Heritage site.
About 100 vendors converged on the area in front of Wat Phra That Phanom Voramahaviharn, widely known as Wat Phra That Phanom, in That Phanom district to air their grievance.
Source: Vendors evicted as temple readies for heritage site status | Bangkok Post: news
via The Nation, 02 November 2018: Puen Ruam Thang, led by veteran singer Suthep Prayoonpitak, told media last week that it had “renovated” more than 200 temples – including those registered as monuments – across the Kingdom and plan to continue doing so.
IMMEDIATE ACTION is required to renovate the hundreds of historical temples painted in gold across the Kingdom, the Fine Arts Department said early this week.
Source: Fine Arts Department frets over ‘illegal’ gold painting of numerous temples