The best archaeological discoveries made in 2020
A selection of notable archaeological finds and excavations from the past year, ranging from the standout discovery of dozens of sarcophagi in Saqqara, Egypt to 8,000-year-old bone needles used for spinning thread in Turkey.
Archaeological highlights of the year include the following finds:
1. Jan-Aug: Hundreds of monks’ bodies at medieval sacristy, 1200AD, Westminster Abbey, London, England.
2. Jan 23: Cave paintings of people and animals, 5000-4000BC, Sinai Peninsula, Egypt.
3. Jan 29: NZR V Class steam locomotive no. 127, 1927AD, Branxholme, New Zealand.
4. Jan 30: 16 tombs, 664–525BC, Tuna el-Gebel, Egypt.
5. Feb 12: 83 tombs, 4000BC, Cairo, Egypt.
6. Feb 17: Animal carvings in cave, 13,000BC, Catalonia, Spain.
7. Feb 21: Sarcophagus in Roman Forum that may belong to Rome’s founder, Romulus, 717BC, Italy.
8. Feb 21: Lost city, 1400-600BC, Konya Plain, Turkey.
9. Mar: Roman amphitheatre, 43-410AD, Richborough Castle, England.
10. Mar 10: Capital of Mayan Kingdom of Sak Tz’i, 750BC, Chiapas, Mexico.
11. Mar 16: Two stone tablets in cave, 24,000-12,000BC, Sulawesi, Indonesia.
12. Mar 17: Bone circle of at least 60 mammoths, 23,000BC, Kostenki, Russia.
13. Mar 31: Neolithic burial cairns, 2500BC, Blaenau Gwent, Wales.
14. May 20: Skeleton of 7-tonne, straight-tusked elephant, 300,000BC, Schöningen, Germany.
15. May 25: Cave paintings, 1000BC, Prachuap Khiri Khan Province, Thailand.
16. Jun 3: Maya ceremonial platform, 1000BC, Tabasco, Mexico.
17. Jun 9: Megalithic monument, 6000-5000BC, Dumat al-Jandal, Saudi Arabia.
18. Jun 21: Sword and scabbard, horse harness and rattle pendant, 1000-900BC, Peebles, Scotland.
19. Jun 22: Durrington Shafts neolithic pit circle, 2500BC, Stonehenge, England.
20. Jun 27: Excavation of Viking ship burial (found in 2018), 800AD, Gjellestad, Norway.
21. Jul 13: Remains of Aztec Palace of Axayacatl, 1400AD, Mexico City, Mexico.
22. Jul 23: Wreck of SS Pere Marquette 18, 1902-1910AD, Lake Michigan, U.S..
23. Aug 4: Prehistoric woodhenge, 3400-2000BC, Évora, Portugal.
24. Aug 5: Fluted arrowheads, 6000BC, Oman and Yemen.
25. Aug 24: 425 gold coins, 750-1258AD, Yavne, Israel.
26. Aug 29: Bone needles and round stones used for spinning thread, 6,600BC, Denizli, Turkey.
27. Sep 6: Terracotta mask of Greek god Dionysus, 400BC, Anatolia, Turkey.
28. Sep 8: Lion statue, 1300AD, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
29. Sep 20: 27 wooden sarcophagi, 500 BC, Saqqara, Egypt.
30. Sep 26: Oldest and most complete known set of Roman body armour, 9AD, Kalkriese, Germany.
31. Oct: Cat outline, 200-100BC, Nazca Lines, Peru.
32. Oct 3: 59 sarcophagi, 500BC, Saqqara, Egypt.
33. Oct 12: Sarcophagus of high priest Djehuty Imhotep, 500BC, Minya, Egypt.
34. Oct 12: Engraved tablet with Hellenistic script, 165BC, Simele, Iraq.
35. Oct 13: Footprint tracks of adult and child, 8000BC, New Mexico, U.S..
36. Oct 20: More than 80 sarcophagi, 500BC, Saqqara, Egypt.
37. Nov 21: Remains of wealthy man and slave, 79AD, Pompeii, Italy.
38. Nov 27: Partially fossilised whale skeleton, 3000BC, Bangkok, Thailand.
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