Mersa Gawasis (Red Sea - Egypt): UNO/IsIAO and BU 2003-2004 Field Season under direction of Rodolfo Fattovich and Kathryn Bard
Redazione Archaeogate, 18-10-2004 Pag. 7 di 10
Small finds from the 2003-2004 excavations at Mersa Gawasis included rope, textiles, wood, and anchors. These finds were examined by Chiara Zazzaro.
Organic materials: Oganic materials included rope, textiles, and wood. Major concentrations of these materials were recorded in excavation units WG 16 and WG 17.
Rope: Rope fragments were found scattered in the loose sand, or were associated with living floors or features, e.g., a rope tying together a bunch of leaves in the oven at WG 17. All the ropes consisted of two twisted yarns. The fiber was usually thin, spinning from right to left (z-spun) to form a yarn. The two yarns were plied from left to right (S-plied) (see Jones 2002: fig. 1). Other rope fragments consisted of Z-plied yarns with a thicker s-spun fiber. The average thickness of the ropes was ca. 0.5 cm (see Jones 2002). The rope fragments from Mersa Gawasis are comparable to specimens in the Petrie Museum, University College, London, e.g., UC 7250, 7505, 7508, UC 52197, and UC 30845-30848.
Textiles: The textile fragments are characterized by a loose weave with an equal number of single threads (s-spun yarn) in both warp and weft directions. Some fragments were burnt. The woven textiles were made by passing alternatively one weft over and under alternating warp threads. Two small woven fragments are characterized by a tight weave of thread (z-spun yarn), and an unequal number of warp and weft. In these two cases the number of warp threads is greater than the weft ones.
Wood: Wood fragments consisted of branches and timber. Concentrations of wood fragments were found in WG 16 and WG 17. The timber fragments included a tenon; a wooden stick rounded in cross-section and well finished at both ends; and some box fragments with different kinds of joints, such as a "doweled edge-joint" similar to the "shoulder miter joint" or "spliced scarf joint" (see Killen 2000: fig. 15.26, 15.42, 15.48). Some timber fragments were covered with a white thick plaster, most likely gypsum. A few fragments had traces of red paint on the surface. Most of the fragments were parts of boxes. Those with a "spliced scarf joint" were most likely parts of boats or ships (Killen 2000).
Anchors: Two complete anchors and several fragments of anchors were recorded at Mersa Gawasis in 2003-2004. All fragments were examined, including the concentrations of limestone fragments and large limestone fragments on the surface of the site.
The following anchors and/or possible anchors were recorded:
1)A fine textured granite anchor from the eastern corner of WG 16 west-east transect. This anchor, 82 cm x 55 cm in size and 25-26 cm thick, is asymmetrical. The anchor is comparable to the limestone ones which form the base of Ankhow's shrine at Wadi Gawasis (see Sayed 1977), but the L-shaped hole at the base seems trimmed off or absent. This anchor was lying on the flatter side, and was reused in the context of the settlement.
2)Two large fragments of a possible limestone anchor, ca. 10.8 kg in weight, from the surface near WG 3-6/2001-2002.
3)Three limestone fragments with chiseled signs, possibly from an anchor, ca. 10 kg in weight, from the surface near Feature 2 at the eastern edge of the terrace. One of these fragments was rounded like the top of an anchor.
4)Five fragments of a limestone anchor with traces of an apical hole and a groove for the rope, and a possible square hole, ca. 35 kg in weight, from the surface near WG 20.
5)One limestone fragment, possibly from an anchor, ca. 5 kg in weight, from the surface near Feature 5 at the eastern edge of the terrace.
6)Many limestone fragments, including two with some evidence of an apical hole with a groove, one fragment with a square hole, and some fragments with chiseled signs, with a total weight of ca. 39 kg, associated with Feature 6 in WG 23. Also some fragments without chiseled signs, ca. 11 kg in weight, were scattered inside and outside of the structure.
7)Several fragments of limestone, sometimes with chiseled signs, ca. 55 kg in weight, from a pit in the internal chamber of the structure in WG 12/2002-2003. These include two large fragments of an anchor top with a circular hole, and the squared bottom of an anchor. Four limestone fragments without chiseled signs, ca. 18 kg in weight, were found around the structure in WG 12.
Most likely, the fragments of limestone on the surface belonged to small anchors. These anchors were different from the very large ones in the shrine of Ankhow and the complete ones on the surface near the rock shelter that Sayed investigated in the mid-1970s (Sayed 1977).
Cliccare sull'immagine per l'ingrandimento
Mersa Gawasis (Red Sea - Egypt): UNO/IsIAO and BU 2003-2004 Field Season
Complete bowl from WG 17
Complete oven at WG 17
Plan of the structure at WG 20
Plan of the structure at WG 23
Complete anchor at the entrance of the eastern chamber, WG 23
Profile at WG 18
Nubian-like potsherd from WG 18 SU 14
Types of ceramic rims and bases from Mersa Gawasis
Concentration of shells, fish bones, and crab remains from WG 18, SU 14 lev. 2
A tuyère from WG 19