Archaeological Findings

114 posts / 0 new
Last post
Spudnik510's picture
My thoughts are if the city

My thoughts are if the city was burnt to the ground by an enemy invasion of some sort would it really leave 5 metres of ash and did they build there infrastructure out of materials that are easily combustible.

chimp3's picture
Remember Von Daniken? It is

Remember Von Daniken? It is absurd to read that much into archeological findings.

Dave Matson's picture
Wasn't Von Daniken an

Wasn't Von Daniken an armchair nut job? I don't recall anything about him being an acclaimed archaeologist. Keep in mind that modern archaeology is the reason we know anything at all about what was really going on in the ancient Middle East! Whole civilizations would have to be left out if we relied only on materials outside of archaeology. And, what was left would be seen only through a grossly distorted glass.

Apollo's picture
Yes, von Daniken was a nutjob

Yes, von Daniken was a nutjob championed by athiests at the time he was published. I recall the parents of one of my highschool friends telling me that they were atheists and von Daniken proved god didn't exist. These days atheists seem to all rally around the mixed up Dawkins who is in the same league as Von Daniken. How long will it take for atheists to progress in their thinking?

Anonymous's picture
Hi, Apollo,

Hi, Apollo,

Let's all act like grown-ups, and save ourselves lots of time. What is your beef? Your high school friends? "von Daniken"? Dawkins? Atheists in general? Atheism, as a topic? Or, my theory: it's Sunday and many theists come to atheist sites when they are not enchanted with Xtianity anymore... is this you?

Or do you just need someone to chat with. It'll really help all of us out, especially on a Sunday before the work week. C'mon, be a pal.

Tin-Man's picture
@Apollo Re: "These days

@Apollo Re: "These days atheists seem to all rally around the mixed up Dawkins who is in the same league as Von Daniken."

Howdy, Apollo. Welcome to the AR. Nice of you to join us.

Your "theory" and view of atheists is fascinating. By the way, who the hell is this Von Daniken dude all we atheists supposedly champion??? I've never heard of him until reading this thread today. Odd, I must have missed the section that talks about him in the Unholy Atheist Handbook. And as for Dawkins, I had never heard of him until AFTER I had dumped all the religious nonsense behind me. Only then did others point me in the direction of Dawkins and other such great-minded speakers who merely helped to confirm the views/thoughts I already had.

Oh, and I have to confess, I got a bit tickled with your being a theist and accusing atheists for not "progressing in their thinking." Good one. LOL Have you ever considered a career in stand-up comedy?

arakish's picture
Erich von Däniken was an

Erich von Däniken was an alien conspiracy theorist back in the 1960s. And he was a nut job. I read his first book Chariots of the Gods? and thought it was interesting, then read his second book Gods from Outer Space (no link available) and realized he was a head case.

He is as bad as Giorgio Tsoukalos of the History Channel's Ancient Aliens and WWW meme scapegoat. Also see the attached image I made of him.



Attach Image/Video?: 

watchman's picture


" would it really leave 5 metres of ash ....."

No...of course it wouldn't.... that's why.... if you read Collins' report.....

what he actually says is ,"The entirety of Tall el-Hammam’s MB2 footprint is covered in heavy ash (from .5m-1m thick),


You see...what they found is not quite as impressive as you make it out to be..... .5m -1m thick.....or to put it another way 0.5m to 1m... so only half a meter up to 1 meter...

Quite possibly the remains of timber floors in two storied buildings with reed thatch roofs..... plus grain stores ,animal pens ,carts and tools. All contained within a relatively small area ....

Spudnik510's picture
Thank you for correcting the

Thank you for correcting the post but even .5 to 1m of ash seems a little deep for the ordinary i know of a large barn that was burnt to the ground it was stocked with wood and it left no more than about 1.5 ft of ash in its place and the barn was stacked full also was the entire site covered in ash or was it deposited?

Sushisnake's picture


Re: " i know of a large barn that was burnt to the ground it was stocked with wood and it left no more than about 1.5 ft of ash "

Um...1 1/2 ft equals 48.7 cm which is only a centimetre or so under 0.5m, so you should be the least suprised person here about the Tall El-Hammam ash layer- you've seen an ash layer of similar depth in real life.

Dave Matson's picture


There is also a compaction factor. At the very least, someone building on a burned site would pack it down to form a firm foundation. Additional layers of earth, and the usual settling, would squeeze that initial layer of ash down a bit. On the other hand, the ash would probably be mixed with earth to some extent as mud brick walls toppled (or were knocked down) during or after the fire. The whole mess then gets leveled and packed down when the next city is built.

watchman's picture


" even .5 to 1m of ash seems a little deep for the ordinary".....

not sure what you mean by "for the ordinary".

Your comparison with the barn.... doesn't indicate anything much..... IE.. how many buildings were at Tall el-Hammam..

it seems to have been a small town /large village (by todays standards) but we don't know how many buildings were there and Dr Collins' reports are not particularly thorough.... but in answer to your question ,"was the entire site covered in ash or was it deposited?"

Well like you all I have to go on are the site reports....
but Collins does say ,""The entirety of Tall el-Hammam’s MB2 footprint is covered in heavy ash (from .5m-1m thick),

This seems to imply that either the ash on site was subject to "drifting" possibly caused by winds..... or that certain areas of the site had more buildings than others...thus accounting for the differing depths of ash.

I also note there is no mention of human remains ..... which would seem to align with the

"Manetho's account, as recorded by Josephus, Hyksos subdued the country by military force. He records that the Hyksos burnt their cities, destroyed temples, and led women and children into slavery."

So, no wholesale slaughter but the taking anything of value and burning the rest..... in fact burning so total that it almost has to be a deliberate "message" to others....

Although I admit that this last is my own supposition ..... but it does fit with typical "invasion tactics" of the area...... look at the Assyrian & Babylonian invasions of Israel and Judea ..... buildings looted and destroyed and the populace "spirited away".

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Spudnik

@ Spudnik
even if the ash was 2 meters deep it would not follow that this place was the legendary Sodom or Gomorrah. It was a small city in an ideal place, destroyed and abandoned and resettled. It is totally the wrong era to be of any biblical origin. Wars of destruction were waged all over the area with genocide being a common practice for the males of anyone unfortunate enough to be on the losing side.

Collins has an axe to grind, by his reports he seems a competent enough leader of the archeology team. However his expenses, salary and support all come from a dubious source, whose mission statement I have put up here before.. All Collins has uncovered is a small city, destroyed in part by burning, neither of which are uncommon. Anything ese is wild , unsubstantiated speculation.

Consider this, even if they found a buried plaque reading "This is Sodom" it would not prove the accuracy of the Bible or the existence of god. It would only prove , yes: "All Collins has uncovered is a small city, destroyed in part by burning, neither of which are uncommon."

Spudnik510's picture
Thank you guys for your

Thank you guys for your replies are there any more ancient sites around the world that were destroyed by man leaving at least 1m of ash is it a reoccurring thing?

Nyarlathotep's picture
First you should find a peer

First you should find a peer reviewed paper (or at least a reputable source) that backs up your "5 Metres of ash" claim. I suspect you have been hoodwinked.

If you are no longer supporting that claim of 5 meters of ash; what source did you get that claim from in the first place? What other claims from that same source are you still incorporating into your views on this subject? Why did you believe the claim in the first place?

watchman's picture
@Spud …..

@Spud …..

Rome , of course...the great fire AD64..

The Temple at Jerusalem …. burned down in 587 BC

then there is the fire of Londinium (London)…. AD60 …. The city was totally destroyed by Boudica's army after her revolt.... the destruction was so total that it has left a layer of so called "red ash" beneath the present city ,so extensive that modern archaeologists use it to this day to date stratigraphy's on digs .

There are more listed here ……

But you'll have to find the details for yourself I'm afraid..... look for detailed site reports at properly recorded sites … try to find digs conducted by legitimate universities.....

Oh...and just one final point about Tall El-Hammam ….. surely Sodom was destroyed by a "rain of brimstone" … probably sulphur..... and yet Collins report has no signs of sulphur traces ….or brimstone for that matter.

Dave Matson's picture
If you have ever subscribed

If you have ever subscribed to something half-ways serious, such as Biblical Archaeology Review (BAR), you soon realize that archaeological finds are often blown way out of proportion. And, that applies to actual finds by real archaeologists that, from time to time, can be exploited by wild-eyed believers. Then there are those claims that haven't even been scientifically documented!

The very first thing to do is read what the actual archaeologist has to say about his own work. The next thing to do, if further investigation is desired, is to look into some serious (but popular periodical such as BAR) and see what the commentary is on this claim. Invariably, this will give you a responsible, sober take on the situation.

There aren't many ways a city can be wiped out by serious heat. Overlooking a great accidental fire, which probably wouldn't destroy everything, I can only think of two legitimate causes. We can dismiss god magic since there no evidence to say that a burning is supernatural, and because the remaining two possibilities are serious alternatives.

1) There's volcanic action, which would also explain sulfurous fumes. Unfortunately, the lowlands of the plains are the result of alluvial deposition (sediment washed down from the highlands over hundreds of thousands or millions of years) and there is no volcanic activity in that geological record.

2) In war, when a city got sacked it was often burned more or less to the ground. Cities weren't that big in those days, so general mayhem was often the rule. Cities all over that region have been burned down at one time or another, so the mere fact of a charcoal layer hardly ties a city to some Bible story!

When we hear serious archaeologists agreeing, more or less, that this tell should be associated with the Sodom of the Bible, then take a closer look. Until then it is not a serious enough claim to bother with.

algebe's picture


Another possible cause of destruction accompanied by intense fire would be seepage of natural gas. Natural gas is heavier than air, so it would spread undetected and collect in low-lying areas. If it reached a human settlement, a spark from a cooking fire could set off a massive gas-air explosion.

Spudnik510's picture
Even the Londinium fire left

Even the Londinium fire left a ash layer of only 1ft that is still a fair bit less than just over 3ft at the collins site what do you guys think?

mickron88's picture

@spudnik one is buying it bruh...sorry
try to find concrete solid than that to convince us.

watchman's picture
@ Spud.....

@ Spud.....

Can I ask where you got the "1 foot" figure from ….. which part of the city … which dig...… when ….. conducted by whom.....?

watchman's picture
@ Spud...

@ Spud...

Stop looking.... I've found the reference...… I'm chasing it down now...…

but just while I'm back here for a moment..... can I just now seem to be claiming a 3 foot thick layer on Collins' dig...… where I thought we'd got it down from 5 meters to 0.5 meters.... that's 1ft 7.6850393700787 inches..... Approx.

So ...not sure where you're getting the three foot figure from.

(edited to clarify measurement..)

Spudnik510's picture
Because it says in Collins

Because it says in Collins report that it was 0.5 to 1m and 1m is just over 3 ft

watchman's picture
OK...I think this is the dig

OK...I think this is the dig you were referencing …….

Its the Wallbrook site....." In common with Colchester, the main evidence for Boudicca's revolt in London is the presence of a charred archaeological layer dating to before 60 A.D. within the bounds of Roman Londinium. The layer, which is up to 30 cm thick in some areas, includes the remains of buildings burnt down by the rebels."

And you are quite correct the destruction layer is 30 cm wide..... that is 1foot.

Spudnik510's picture
So that would mean that in

So that would mean that in certain places the ash layer at the collins site would of been 3 times the thickness of the London site when measuring the 1m ash layer of the collins site against the 1ft ash layer of the London site. I wonder why so much more ash is present at the collins site.

Spudnik510's picture
Another question I have is

Another question I have is does the date in which the apparent destruction of the tall el hammam site match up with biblical dates because I have some say it is 500 years out and others saying 270 years out and others claiming that all the dates match up perfectly.

arakish's picture
As far as I know there are NO

As far as I know there are NO dates in the Bible. So what is your question?


watchman's picture
@ Spud...…

@ Spud...…

You really want to believe this "guff" don't you.....?

Well that's can believe any rubbish you want....I'm not sure why you are here though...… you are not open to anything counter to what you have already decided...… that's ok too...… really ought to look at the other "Sodoms"..... there are several.....some more compelling than yours..... one even has sulphur (brimstone) balls...….

try this one...

or this one

or even this one

and again....

It seems you can't throw a rock in the lower Jordan valley without hitting a "Sodom"....
and each comes with its own American Evangelical "Archaeologist" ….. do you not see the pattern here?


Pity because while these circus's continue we will not find out what is really there or it significance.

Sheldon's picture
"one even has sulphur

"one even has sulphur (brimstone) balls...…."

Sounds painful, I agree about the rest. It's never clear to me why religious people think being suggestible and biased in favour of a belief is open minded? You always hear them raise that objection when you refute their claims, that you're being closed minded, as if not believing something is closed minded but believing it is open minded. Do they not know how to Google the meaning of phrases and words.

Spudnik510's picture
Hi Thank you guys for your

Hi Thank you guys for your patience with me no I actually do not believe it at all. I have come to the conclusion what they have found is not something supernatural and actually more an expected thing something may have happened that would of left tales to tell. Plus like you guys say there is obviously an agenda at the heart of it all.


Donating = Loving

Heart Icon

Bringing you atheist articles and building active godless communities takes hundreds of hours and resources each month. If you find any joy or stimulation at Atheist Republic, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.

Or make a one-time donation in any amount.