Pile of Skeletons Found Inside 2,400-Year-Old Tomb in Iraq
A tomb in northern Iraq held a pile of skeletons, including those dating back 2,400 years and more recent burials (shown here). The white dust is from the excavation of the more recent burials.
Credit: Michael Danti
A 2,400-year-old tomb filled with the skeletons of at least six people has been discovered in northern Iraq. Among the artifacts found in the tomb is a bracelet decorated with images of two snake heads peering at each other.
The tomb was constructed toward the end, or just after, the time of the Achaemenid Empire (550 to 330 B.C.), an empire in the Middle East that was conquered by Alexander the Great in a series of campaigns, according to the archaeologists, led by Michael Danti, a professor at Boston University. The excavation results were presented by Kyra Kaercher and Katie Downey, graduate students at the University of Pennsylvania and The Ohio State University, respectively, in November 2016 at the American Schools of Oriental Research's annual meeting.
"The snake-headed bracelet was very popular in Achaemenid times," and helped date the tomb, the team of archaeologists told Live Science in an email. [In Photos: Ancient City Discovered in Iraq]