The visible dead: dolmen tombs and the landscape in the Bronze Age Levant

Thursday 6 April 2017,
BP Lecture Theatre
Free, booking essential

Phone +44 (0)20 7323 8181
Ticket Desk in Great Court

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A lecture by James Fraser, Project Curator for the Ancient Levant at the British Museum.

Megalithic dolmen tombs are some of the most striking features in the archaeological landscape of the southern Levant. Yet their visibility has made them an easy target for tomb robbers over the last 5,000 years. Consequently, archaeologists have struggled to place these mysterious monuments into their true cultural contexts.

This lecture presents the results of recent fieldwork investigating a dolmen cemetery in Jordan. This fieldwork underscores a new theory that proposes that highly visible dolmen tombs helped reconfigure the ways in which people engaged with the landscape in the 4th millennium BC, a time when the region’s earliest civilisations developed a new urban way of life.

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A dolmen in the Wadi Rayyan.