The Cave of the Birds / The Entrance of Agathodaimon
NEW PICTURE GALLERIES
(1) The lower hewn chambers:
In the first Picture we see more signs of what the modern vandals left behind on the ceiling of one lower tomb chamber.
As we lead into this first picture we have to step back for a moment and just consider the implications!
This was an ancient system recently rediscovered. Arguably it is filled with the evidence of ages and needs at very least to be overseen by senior archaeologists, with a team of experienced excavating archaeologists.
Can you conceive therefore that the team who were let loose in there for a few weeks were so unprofessional and so undisciplined and so unsupervised, that they would vandalise the system on the whim of leaving their initials all over the ceiling?
If you or any professional authorities doubt it... and or give a damn.... we have the photos to prove the graffiti that appeared very recently.... and from the period when Zahi's hand picked team worked there !! It is an example of the same unprofessionaL disrespect shown elsewhere in the system.
And now the tomb itself.
We propose that many thousands of years ago when the water from ice age melt swilled at this level, it found passage through known deep tectonic fissures across the plateau. Later as the water receeded, settlers wiishing to rebuild, hacked their way into the front sections of this giant fissure entrance to create a tomb complex. Just inside the doorway, they followed the fissure cracks each side with steps down to another level - where more tomb chambers were hewn from the watercourse. Both above and below, the fissures however continue on into the depths of the plateau. It is our expectation that pre-inundation these fissures from an even earlier originating time were used as a way into a survival system of deep tunnels and chambers prepared in anticipation of what was to come
Within this natural ground floor level at the far end/right of the corridor from up on the platform, access is gained into the start of the continuing fissure/water course system. The steps down to the lower level chambers are immediately right and left of the entrance.
Note at a time in the past it was deemed necessary by the users of the hewn Tomb to brick/block themselves completely from the deeper system. This suggests a separation of use and/or ideology for the deeper system - which the evidence clearly proves was used intensively in a vastly earlier time.
Left and right of the entrance - the steps down to the lower hewn corridors and chambers.
THE LOWER CHAMBERS
A lower corridor, and an example of the mass of floor debris in the chambers
- suggesting maybe a much deeper fissure continuation from the floor areas.
There were still a few large bones to be found, and at lower levels of the floors where the working crew had been active,
there were often examples of worked blocks.
Most of the chambers were connected to each other with doorways or higher window apertures,
and in many of the niches and alcoves, vivid red red or yellow ochre bearing rock could be seen.
This was the third right / lower rear chamber that housed the sargophigus I evidenced the first time there,
but has disappeared since the hand picked (expert !) crew were in there clearing up.
Looking out to the corridor. The floor of rubble decends quite deep away from the entrance.
This is the chamber then, that I referred to in my initial account where there was access to another aspect of the natural cave system.
I remember noticing its potential on our first visit, and seeing now it had been cleared I wanted to investigate.
Look to the dark shadow top left of the end wall. It is approximately 12 feet from the floor rubble and is an entrance to another substantial cavern system which is largely blocked by fallen boulders. It is undoubtedly a lower manifestation of the water fissures I spoke of which 'must' penetrate from the main caves system higher above. Though difficult to negotiate, the views inside are very exciting. Hopefully the following examples from this section will convey a little of the feeling.
A Closeup of the Opening
The following pics are examples from beyond the opening
I am so thankful the camera picked up such vivid images, because from the light of the flashlight torches
I was carrying, it was like trying to see daylight through a blindfold.
I had hoped the images would capture some evidence I saw for unnatural (human) additions in the system. I saw shaped blocks for example, and I believe these parts would have been readily accessable and used at one time before rock falls blocked them.
(In this pic there is an object like an animal horn in the middle.)
This was looking upwards between huge boulders which had dropped.
On the right hand side you can see moisture/deposits from above from ? bats, minerals or otherwise ?
Here is a closeup of some of the minerals leeching out of the rock stone
And this is from beneath the cave opening in the chamber - looking back out to the doorway and the corridor beyond.
I am closing this gallery here before the file becomes too big for everyone to easily view.
In the next gallery we will look further around the lower chambers, and later we will then be able to
return to the deep system and view many more photographs from there.
We hope you are enjoying this exploration through the chambers and cavern systems and that you will be motivated to leave your comments on the message board on the index page... It helps to know what impact or ideas if any, our efforts have generated.
Back to the index page and soon the next gallery.