Excavation continues. Lots of pottery, and some surprising stones, mark today’s story so far.
A lot of stones, many not local to the Maldives, turning up in Trench 321.
Time to brush up on my geology…
Meanwhile, we hit an unexpected problem at Trench 631. The stones which we thought marked out a series of houses are not that. Once exposed a little further, it is clear that some are, in fact, gravestones. And the sandstone blocs probably delimit a mausoleum.
Ah. Not what we had hoped for!
Team meeting so that everyone gets to see the site, and no mad rumours (e.g. about ibn Battuta’s bones) start to fly.
We phone the Council president to inform him, and he comes to visit. He texts and calls two Islamic scholars, and both confirm his feeling that as long as we don’t disturb any bones, it is fine to continue to dig.
This gives us a great opportunity to better understand the funerary archaeology here. Thus far, one gravestone from Kinolhas has been published by colleagues ten years ago. Amazingly, it is a marble stone probably from Gujarat (see my post from last year).The ones we are looking at now are probably more mundane, but who knows…
A (dated) epitaph would be lovely!