Ruins of Ancient City Discovered in Australian Desert

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Alice Springs| A team of archaeologists working for the Australian National University, who were proceeding to an excavation near the sandstone rock formation of Uluru, has unearthed the ruins of a large precolonial city dating back to more than 1500 years ago. The important number of tombs and artefacts already discovered on the site suggests that it could have been the capital of an ancient empire, completely unknown to historians until now.

The site which was first noticed on satellite pictures taken in October 2013, using a newly developed ground-penetrating radar. The images revealed many 90° angles and various common geographic figures over a 16 km2 area, leading the team of scientists to direct some archaeological excavations on the spot, starting in May 2014. Over the last few months, many structures have been unearthed including what looks like a royal palace, a few temples, large rainwater reservoirs, workshops and dozens of houses.

287 individual tombs have already been discovered, but the archaeologist have not yet found the tomb of any royal figure.

287 individual tombs have already been discovered in a small necropolis located just outside the ancient city. The bodies are mostly of proto-aboriginal origins, but also surprisingly include a few Polynesian and Asian individuals.

Professor Walter Reese, in charge of the site, claims that the extent of the site and the superposition of various layers of constructions, suggests that it was occupied for 400 to 500 years, from approximately 470-80 AD, up until the 9th Century. He believes that the city could have held between 20000 and 30000 inhabitants, making it the most important center of civilization in the Southern Pacific at the time.

“This was certainly the capital of a vast empire, that practised some sort of international trade” says Mr Reese. “The fact that we have discovered some bodies of various origins suggests that this state could have been a very influential throughout the Pacific islands and Southeast Asia. We have found many objects on the site that were obviously imported from other regions, like rice, flax or lacquer.”

The various artefacts gathered from the site suggest that the city flourished thanks to some form of control over various gold mining operations in Southern Australia. The precious metal was purified and transformed by the hundreds of goldsmiths of the city before being traded for various other goods through  an extensive network reaching as far as New Zealand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and even China and India.

Thousands of artefacts have been recovered, including some 756 items made of gold. This bowl weighting 2.8 kilograms was found inside one of the temples.

Thousands of artefacts have been recovered, including some 756 items made of gold. This bowl weighting 2.8 kilograms was found inside one of the temples.

Professor Reese believes that the city could have been abandoned after some climatic changes in the 9th Century brought a dramatic decrease in the level of rainfall, making the city unsustainable.

12 Comments on "Ruins of Ancient City Discovered in Australian Desert"

  1. There is no Walter Reese working for the ANU so who is this person?

    Sniff sniff … mmm … I smell fraud.

  2. any more info on the hunter valley?

  3. What if…. There are song-lines that enable people to pass through the earth? There are stories in the Vedas of inhabitants of Lanka escaping to other parts of the world via such passageways.
    One of the problems with modern archeology is that ancient peoples are assumed to have the same senses and less intelligence than modern day people. Perhaps it is our over-inflated egos that make it difficult to be open to the possibility that ancient people possessed superior intelligence.

    • Brian – don’t worry, in your case I am quite sure that ancient people possessed superior intelligence.

    • I don’t see why not. I never understood why most people seem to think that we’re more intelligent now than ancient civilizations. Sure, maybe we know a lot more about CERTAIN things, (i.e, you’re not going to fall off the edge of the world in a boat, and sacrificing goats probably doesn’t affect the weather much), but I reckon they knew a lot more about other things. Things that are lost and forgotten to us now. Things that we’re too ‘intelligent’ to figure out on our own again any time soon. It’s just ways of thinking that change, that’s all.

    • I hope you have lead pipes or something similar in your life.

    • neal cassady | September 9, 2014 at 3:06 pm |

      i like your words. we all sit on an empty bottle, the lable says its romantic red liquid wine filled up with thoughts, emotions and feelings, floating through the universe with nobody to tell it to. if romantizismn is linked to nature.. we kill both.

  4. Egyptians and Pheonisians came to Australia between 1400bc – 500bc establishing ports (such as fresh water point in Qld) mining minerals and precious metals, erecting ba’al idols etc. Perhaps this rediscovered city is linked to this…

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