Al-Subiyah, Tumuli Graves Project (Kuwait), 2012

Al-Subiyah, Tumuli Graves Project (Kuwait)

Dates of work: 25 February – 6 April 2012

General Project Directors: Prof. Piotr Bieliński (PCMA UW), Dr. Sultan Al-Duweish (Department of Antiquities and Museums of the State of Kuwait)
Field director: Dr. Łukasz Rutkowski, archaeologist, head of survey and tumuli research project (PCMA UW)
Archaeologists: Dr. Maciej Makowski (Institute of Mediterranean and Oriental Cultures, Polish Academy of Sciences), Maciej Marciniak (PhD student, Antiquity of Southeastern Europe Research Centre, University of Warsaw), Ewelina Mizak (independent), Khaled Salem, Mustafa Ansari, Ahmad Al-Mutairi, and Faisal Al-Uteybi (all archaeologists and archaeological team support from the Department of Antiquities and Museums of the State of Kuwait)
Archaeologist/archaeozoologist: Katarzyna Hryniewicka (independent)
Archaeologist/topographer: Jakub Kaniszewski (independent)
Archaeology student-trainees: Katarzyna Cieślak, Michał Karolak (both Institute of Archaeology, University of Warsaw)
Underwater archaeology specialists: Dr. Radosław Karasiewicz-Szczypiorski, Magdalena Nowakowska (both Institute of Archaeology, University of Warsaw), two-week reconnaissance for a new research project

Field research was concentrated on excavating burial mounds and non-sepulchral structures located in two different microregions: Muhaita (a new cluster of five structures representing different categories) and Bahra/Nahdain (three tumuli of which two represented a type with outer ring wall that had not been excavated so far). The excavation also provided the first secure dating evidence for the burial field in the form of a radiocarbon date for material from one of the tumuli and a dating based on the first pottery find from the tombs for another one. This has supported an earlier hypothesis that at least part of the cemetery should be dated to the Early/Middle Bronze Age. Areas between previously investigated locations were surveyed, completing gaps in the hitherto studied regions.

None of this work would have been possible without the hospitality and generosity of Mr. Shehab A.H. Shehab, presently Assistant Secretary General of the National Council for Culture, Arts and Letters of the State of Kuwait. Members of the Polish staff wish to thank Dr. Sultan Al-Duweish, presently Director of the Department of Antiquities and Museums of the State of Kuwait, and his colleagues for their unstinting support and generosity offered to the mission in the field.

[Text: Polish Archaeology in the Mediterranean 24/1]

Ł. Rutkowski: