Rus Articles Journal

Who are they are a great-grandfather Indiana Jones?

my companion in a dusty camouflage was filled up in laboratory, flopped on a chair and accurately put before himself the real work of art of the Stone Age - a silicon knife. I lifted it, touched by a finger of an edge and drew aside a hand - the knife was still sharp.

- What, found the new mesolytic settlement? there is no

- drew up the statement on the farmers who opened a barrow of times of antiquity and here found a knife in a dump.

- But from where at Greeks the stone knife undertook?

my companion only smiled.

of the Great-grandfather Indiana Jones

was strenuously romaticized by

for the last decades on the screen an image of seekers of treasures. Millions of the viewers visited movies about unforgettable Indiana Jones and charming Lara Croft. Life of the main characters is cloudless, full of adventures and is magnificent. Very few people think that practically in all CIS countries treasure-hunters of “local flood“ whose life is a little similar to adventures of their Hollywood colleagues work...

Modern “white“, that is official, archeologists are quite often puzzled by the finds which are not fitting into the studied layers and cultures in any way. In an Ancient Greek burial ground the stone knife or ornament from a reindeer horn made for thousands of years before creation of the studied burial can unexpectedly be found. And in the medieval cities there are crocks of antique ware.

It demonstrates that in civilizations which are for us suppliers of antiques there were already the “black archeologists“ getting from the earth and reselling to wealthy tribespeople the curious knickknacks which got in inheritance from far ancestors. From time to time antiquity also the first “official“ mentions of “robbers of tombs“ are dated.

According to Ancient Greek historians, both the Egyptian pyramids, and barrows of the Scythian nobility in which for protection numerous traps were placed were exposed to raids of ideological ancestors of Lara Croft. Participants of modern expeditions found skeletons of the poor creatures crushed by the stones which fell out of confidential niches or who choked in the fallen-off adits more than once. But it did not stop knights of fortune. Therefore many “imperial“ burials reach us devastated - without gold jewelry, vessels for aromas and expensive weapon.

Most likely, tens of the dead of “black archeologists“ of antiquity fall on each robbed burial. The part of them died during excavation, the part - became the victims of severe guards. Then the law protected sarcophagi of governors far more reliably, than presently. By the way, especially did not favor robbers of barrows in our corner of the world. The Scythians who were long leaving on steppes the Persian army pursuing them promised that they will give battle as soon as attackers find and will try to profane barrows. And the seeker of happiness who got on conscious excavation of imperial tombs at best risked to get on a stake or to die near the same barrow of hunger and thirst …

the European Middle Ages tabooed on researches antiquities. “The black archeology“ could be only authorized from above as it occurred at the time of Crusades. But misters knights were interested mainly material of which artifacts, but not their historical value were made. The jewelry melted into ingots became guarantee of welfare of numerous knightly awards.

Also barbarous the Spanish konkvistador at conquest of America managed with certificates of antiquity also. Everything that shone, went to melting, and books, pictures, gobelins - to fires. And only in the XVII-XVIII centuries the people ready to pay not so much for metal of which the thing, how many for its rarity and historical value is made began to appear again. There was the antiquary`s profession.

“White“ and “black“ archeology were still inseparable. Excavation was financed, as a rule, by individuals and had character not of systematic researches, but collecting artifacts … Homer told to

the truth

Only in the 19th century the archeology from collecting of antiques changed in independent science. The huge contribution to it was made by Shliman who dug out legendary Troy and proved that ancient narrations - not fairy tales, and poetic retelling of quite real events.

In Greece, Turkey, Italy the real archaeological expeditions begin to work. Studying of complete image of the ancient cities and villages - with drawing up plans, topographical bindings becomes their sense. What was considered it unnecessary to nobody by garbage about hundred years ago got huge scientific value. At this stage of the road of official archeology and treasure hunting promptly dispersed.

The western museums began issue of official patents for archeological excavations to the persons having profile education with the subsequent repayment at them the found material for quite good money. Existence of official “market“ struck serious blow to positions of “black archeologists“. The legal archeologist receiving quite good bonus will not begin to risk the patent, being fond of the banal search of rarities interfaced to destruction of the real monuments.

Real life of such experts significantly differs from that which we see on the screen. Such archeology is not only and not just solving of ancient riddles, but also routine months-long earthwork under the scorching sun, digging in garbage holes of antiquity, heavy planning and the reporting. The “black“ market in Europe and America is formed mainly by the things stolen from the museums in the countries of “the third world“ or incidentally found locals.

The “full“ “black archeology“ in the USSR could not exist as in a type of absence of the extensive market of antiques (such things went in quite narrow circle and demand for “kopanny“ products was small), and in a type of efforts of law-enforcement bodies and state security. The revival which developed subsequently into a mad agiotage happened in 80 - e years of last century.

Still among archeologists the baize about the collective farmers who were digging a hole under a toilet and found a pot with elektrovy (an alloy of gold and silver) antique coins goes. Men, without thinking twice, brought and gave them rubles for 100 on the Supply in Odessa. The field investigators of KGB who quickly learned about the sale fact, having consulted at archeologists concerning find value, took away coins from dealers and contacted unlucky sellers.

Those already managed to spend on drink money, and to drown a pot in a notorious toilet. But the staff of Committee for State Security found convincing arguments, and “archeologists necessarily“ personally dived behind a vessel into sewage, did not return it to the state yet.