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x0x A Medley of five Cultures: Hasankeyf

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    [See photographs at: http://www.pbase.com/dosseman/image/51489733 ] x0x A Medley of five Cultures: Hasankeyf For the first time five different periods of
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 10, 2007
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      [See photographs at: http://www.pbase.com/dosseman/image/51489733 ]

      x0x A Medley of five Cultures: Hasankeyf

      For the first time five different periods of
      history have been found so intertwined with each
      other during the excavations that have been
      carried out in Hasankeyf, which is under the
      threat of remaining under waters of the IlIsI Dam

      DIYARBAKIR - Anatolia News Agency


      Hasankeyf, the site of a frantic archeological dig
      under the looming threat of being buried by the
      IlIsu Dam, plays host to "the first time five
      different periods of history have been found so
      intertwined with each other."

      Professor Abdusselam Ulucam, head of the
      excavation, said that the dig in 2007 had
      concentrated on three areas and is now continuing
      in two of them.

      One of the dig areas stretches from the bridge to
      the center of the castle. The professor said that
      Romans had set up shops on the sides of the
      ancient road in the area they used to call $ahap
      Valley. They worked the rocks on the side of the
      road to make shops and houses lining the road.
      "This year we cleared thousands of tons of rock
      fall to reveal over 42 different stores from all
      five periods."

      Ulucam indicated that these excavations have
      revealed the relatively unknown and rich culture
      of the Hasankeyf area: "This years work was very
      fruitful. There were five levels in the
      excavation; one for each period. We found ruins
      from the ninth century B.C. at the lowest level.
      Then some Roman ruins from the fourth century
      along with the first fort gate. There were six
      Roman shops scattered around the site. Then there
      is the Artuklu mosque. There are both buildings
      from the Ottoman period and the early Republic."

      Ulucam said that he believed the history of the
      area stretched back 12 thousand years but had
      failed to find any solid evidence of this.
      However, they have found proof stretching back to
      three thousand years and find this to be
      encouraging.

      The area served as the capital of the Arturks
      (Artuqid dynasty) for 130 years as is evidenced by
      the amazing architecture found on the site
      attributed to that time and people.

      To continue the digs, said Ulucam, he will need
      government support in the way of loans, grants,
      and digging permission. He says there are several
      sites simply left because of lack of funding and
      equipment and that the project needs a cash
      injection to save as much of the history as
      possible.

      "People in the surrounding areas are living a life
      of limbo" said the professor. Many of them had
      already moved to other areas because of the
      impending reservoir project; those that remain do
      not even care for their homes as it doesn't matter
      to them anymore.

      Ulucam finds it unbelievable that the area was
      declared a historical treasure in 1986. "It was
      against the law to touch the houses then but now
      it is fine to bury the entire town under tons of
      water. I don't understand."

      ___________________________________________________

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