| 8 February 2009
5,500-year-old tomb unearthed in Sudan
French archaeologists in northern Sudan say they've unearthed a 5,500 year-old Stone Age tomb which they believe confirms the location of Africa's 'oldest human sacrifice'. In a graveyard in Al-Kadada, north of Khartoum, the archaeologists have dug up the tomb of a man and a woman facing each other in a ditch, with bodies of two women, two goats and a dog buried nearby.
The discovery 'confirms' excavations last year which found traces of the oldest human sacrifice ever identified in Africa, said Jacques Reinold, a researcher for the French section of the Sudanese antiquities department. The unearthed bones date from between 3,700 and 3,400 BCE, a period considered to be one of the key stages in the transition from a hunting to a farming society.
Reinold's team also unearthed polished axes, a millstone, make-up palettes and ceramics at Al-Kadada. The Al-Kadada region, on fertile land alongside the Nile, is regarded as one of the cradles of humanity in the Neolithic era.
Sources: Khaleej Times, AFP, Telegraph.co.uk (4 February 2009), The Age (5 February 2009)
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