June 28, 2019
Receding waters in the Mosul Dam reservoir have unveiled “one of the most important archaeological discoveries in the region” – a mysterious ancient Vedic palace. Researchers said the Mitanni Empire is one of the least understood ancient civilizations, however recent studies have shown its connections to Vedic civilization.
इस लेख को हिंदी में पढ़ें: इराक में सूखे से निकला अति-प्राचीन वैदिक महल
Iraq’s drought reveals ancient Vedic palace
A team of German and Kurdish archaeologists have discovered what they claim to be a 3,400-year-old palace that belonged to the mysterious Mitanni Empire, the University of Tübingen announced on Thursday.
As reported by Deutsche Welle, Germany’s international broadcaster, the discovery was only made possible by a drought that significantly reduced water levels in the Mosul Dam reservoir.
“The find is one of the most important archaeological discoveries in the region in recent decades and illustrates the success of the Kurdish-German cooperation,” said Hasan Ahmed Qasim, a Kurdish archaeologist of the Duhok Directorate of Antiquites who worked on the site.
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Shrouded in Mystery
Last year, the team of archaeologists launched an emergency rescue evacuation of the ruins when receding waters revealed them on the ancient banks of the Tigris. The ruins are part of only a handful discovered from the Mitanni Empire.
“The Mitanni Empire is one of the least researched empires of the Ancient Near East,” said archaeologist Ivana Puljiz of the University of Tübingen. “Even the capital of the Mitanni Empire has not been identified.”
The team had little time to spare as water levels continued to rise, eventually submerging the ruins again. At least 10 cuneiforms clay tablets were discovered inside the palace.
“We also found remains of wall paints in bright shades of red and blue,” Puljiz said. “In the second millennium BCE, murals were probably a typical feature of palaces in the Ancient Near East, but we rarely find them preserved. Discovering wall paintings in Kemune is an archaeological sensation.”
A team of researchers in Germany will now try to interpret the cuneiform tablets. They hope that the clay tablets will reveal more about the Mitanni Empire, which once dominated life in parts of Syria and northern Mesopotamia.
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Roots to Vedic Civilization
Although German researchers are still studying the clay tablets found, recent studies have revealed the Mitanni Empire’s roots to the Vedic civilization.
In his study About the Mitanni-Aryan Gods, Arnaud Fournet proposes the etymology for the word Mitanni itself to be on the basis of Sanskrit mith ‘to unite’. In addition to nouns and adjectives with parallels in Sanskrit this Hurrian-speaking kingdom had kings with Indo-Aryan names and two documents even list the main gods of the Indian pantheon.
In a treaty between the Hittites and the Mitanni, the deities Mitra, Varuna, Indra, and Nasatya (Ashvins) are invoked. A Hurrian master horse-trainer Kikkuli’s horse training text includes technical terms such as aika (Vedic Sanskrit eka, one), tera (tri, three), panza (pañca, five), satta (sapta, seven), na (nava, nine), vartana (vartana, round).
Scholar Subhash Kak in his study on Vedic Elements in the Ancient Iranian Religion of Zarathushtra, summarize the general structural and nomenclatural similarities between the Zoroastrian and the Vedic systems showing that the Zoroastrian innovations on the prior Vedic system in Iran have parallels in the adaptations that were taking place in India in the Puranic period. The spread of the Vedic system also explains how the Mitannis, remained connected to their Vedic traditions. They were neighbours to the pre-Zoroastrian Vedic Iran and thus they should not be seen as an isolated group.
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It should be noted that while a team of German and Kurdish archaeologists and researchers will be actively engaged in the further study of the 10 cuneiform clay tablets to reveal more about the mysterious Mitanni Empire not a single Indian archaeologist or researcher is directly involved in the project. The GreatGameIndia team would like to advise the Indian government to officially and actively engage in this most important archaeological discovery that could resolve many of the questions of India’s past and heritage.
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