Pounders and quern

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Before their visit to the town of Meroë, the African Expedition stopped to a less known locality, which was recorded by Henry Field with this paragraph in the 1949 Chronicles:
About 2.5 miles slightly south of west of Hagar el-Mirwa our Rubatabi guide led us to a large ruined site, referred to on the map and locally as El Koneisa ("The Church"). Here thousands of sherds covered the continuous low mounds. We also collected many quartz pounders and a few fragmentary querns. The newly appointed Commissioner for Archeology, Peter L. Shinnie, who identified the pottery as third-fourth century Meroitic, deduced that this was no Christian church. The outer wall was of irregular outline with maximum dimensions of approximately 150 x 100 meters. The raised structure, now but rubble, in the northeast corner may have served as a watch-tower. Excavation would probably yield but little of significance except the ground plan.
Featured today are a few of the quartz pounders and one quern.
Peter L. Shinnie, who was Commissioner for Archaeology and Anthropology in 1947, published many books and articles on his work in Sudan. It would be interesting to know if he agreed with Henry Field upon the minor value of excavating El Koneisa or if the site was ever probed. Among the rubble Henry Field and colleagues noticed some petroglyps and despite their relevant weight they shipped two fragments to Berkeley. You can see them below.

PAHMA 5-1006 Pounders, quartz

PAHMA 5-1006
Pounders, quartz
Africa; Sudan; El Koneisa
Collected by UC African Expedition, 1947-1948

PAHMA 5-1021 Quern, fragment
PAHMA 5-1021
Quern, fragment
Africa; Sudan; El Koneisa
Collected by UC African Expedition, 1947-1948

PAHMA 5-1025 Petroglyph, fragment
PAHMA 5-1025
Petroglyph, fragment
Africa; Sudan; El Koneisa
Collected by UC African Expedition, 1947-1948

 

Paolo Pellegatti
Research Archaeologist
Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology

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