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In the trenches: rescue archaeology at the Bala Hissar, Kabul

In the trenches: rescue archaeology at the Bala Hissar, Kabul
In the trenches: rescue archaeology at the Bala Hissar, Kabul
The Bala Hissar was the royal, military and administrative heart of Kabul for a significant period before it
was occupied by British forces during the first two Anglo-Afghan wars in the nineteenth century. Despite its
archaeological and historical significance, part of the site continues to function as a military base, an expansion
of which began in 2007 when nine large holes were bulldozed into the site before protests halted the
work. This paper details the findings of an archaeological impact assessment undertaken in July 2007, and
incorporates an analysis of satellite images documenting further construction in 2009. The results provide the
first explicit archaeological (in particular ceramic) evidence suggesting deep continuity of occupation at the
site. The contested ownership and uncertain future of the Bala Hissar in Kabul exemplify the pressures placed
on archaeological sites around the world, in the face of uncontrolled development and competing agendas.
bala hissar, kabul, afghanistan, historic fort, ceramics
0578-6967
151-196
Gascoigne, Alison L.
a24fc628-51a6-44fe-8c15-536eebffb3a0
Thomas, David
54ebbdb1-9299-4907-b574-4f2d42886832
Kidd, Fiona
7bea7e88-1f21-4088-860c-2e6cad5cae7b
Gascoigne, Alison L.
a24fc628-51a6-44fe-8c15-536eebffb3a0
Thomas, David
54ebbdb1-9299-4907-b574-4f2d42886832
Kidd, Fiona
7bea7e88-1f21-4088-860c-2e6cad5cae7b

Gascoigne, Alison L., Thomas, David and Kidd, Fiona (2013) In the trenches: rescue archaeology at the Bala Hissar, Kabul. Iran, 51, 151-196.

Record type: Article

Abstract

The Bala Hissar was the royal, military and administrative heart of Kabul for a significant period before it
was occupied by British forces during the first two Anglo-Afghan wars in the nineteenth century. Despite its
archaeological and historical significance, part of the site continues to function as a military base, an expansion
of which began in 2007 when nine large holes were bulldozed into the site before protests halted the
work. This paper details the findings of an archaeological impact assessment undertaken in July 2007, and
incorporates an analysis of satellite images documenting further construction in 2009. The results provide the
first explicit archaeological (in particular ceramic) evidence suggesting deep continuity of occupation at the
site. The contested ownership and uncertain future of the Bala Hissar in Kabul exemplify the pressures placed
on archaeological sites around the world, in the face of uncontrolled development and competing agendas.

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More information

Published date: 2013
Keywords: bala hissar, kabul, afghanistan, historic fort, ceramics
Organisations: Archaeology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 347300
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/347300
ISSN: 0578-6967
PURE UUID: 266f95cc-fd31-4134-80d5-e31c6449cc29
ORCID for Alison L. Gascoigne: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-2742-9483

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 18 Jan 2013 09:07
Last modified: 25 Jul 2019 00:34

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