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Looking for Archaeological Evidence in Syria

Freie Universität’s Institute for Near Eastern Archaeology Presents Exhibition at Globetrotter

№ 331/2011 from Oct 31, 2011

During November the Institute for Near Eastern Archaeology, Freie Universität, is presenting an exhibition about its excavations at Tell Fekheriye in Syria. It is on display in Berlin-Steglitz in a Globetrotter store, a recreational outfitter. Excavation equipment and artifacts are being shown. On November 24 Prof. Dr. Dominik Bonatz from Freie Universität will be giving a talk on the excavations and will explain their relevance for archaeology in Syria. The exhibition includes a children’s program and a raffle. It is open to the public at no charge. Admission to the lecture costs five euros per person.

What would Indiana Jones have done, had he taken part in this excavation? In a country such as Syria, steeped in history, it is not unusual for archaeologists to make spectacular discoveries. However, the work of modern archaeologists is quite different from the adventures of a movie hero. In this exhibit, you can slip into the role of an excavator and immerse yourself in the everyday life of the excavations at Tell Fekheriye in Syria.

For more than 8000 years, people have settled at Tell Fekheriye and left their mark. A great deal of the fascination of archaeology has to do with the way something so incredibly far back in time is close enough to touch with each dig of the spade. Since 2005, parts of this fascinating mound (in Arabic: Tell) have been in the process of being excavated by a German-Slovak-Syrian archaeological team. The exhibition demonstrates the scientific methods used by the archaeologists, who have to work under extreme climatic conditions. It also shows examples of their discoveries. The search for an undiscovered capital city is just one of many challenges inspiring the archaeologists.

Part of the special attraction of the excavation in Syria is encountering another culture. Life in a small Arab town on the edge of the excavation is illustrated with photo documentation. What does the local population think about the work of foreign archaeologists? How does it benefit from their discoveries? Both children and adults visiting the exhibition are invited to reflect on these and other questions. With a bit of luck, some of the answers will be rewarded with an archaeological prize.

Location and Dates

  • Globetrotter Steglitz, Schloßstr. 78 – 82, 12165 Berlin; train and subway station: Rathaus Steglitz (S1, U9)
  • Tuesday, November 1 – 24, 2011. (Public lecture on November 24, 8:00 p.m. | 5 euros/person)

Information about the Excavation Project

Further Information

Prof. Dr. Dominik Bonatz, Institute for Near Eastern Archaeology, Freie Universität Berlin, Tel.: +49 (0)30 / 838-52057, Email: