Spanish archaeologists are amazed at the ancient cemetery with more than 4,500 remains



There are 400 tombs that have been found by archaeologists in an ancient Muslim cemetery in Spain.

There are 400 tombs that have been found by archaeologists in an ancient Muslim cemetery in Spain.

The ancient Muslim cemetery containing more than 4,500 remains was uncovered after archaeologists unearthed more than 400 tombs in a 2-hectare site in northeastern Spain, CNN reported.

 The discovered tombs are located in the 8th century cemetery in the city of Tauste, near Zaragoza in Aragon - Eva Gimenez, an archaeologist who is currently excavating the area with archaeological firm Paleoymás, revealed.

Spanish archaeologists are amazed at the ancient cemetery with more than 4,500 remains

Archaeologists found 400 tombs in an ancient Muslim cemetery. / Ph: El Patiaz

 In 711 Arab forces invaded and began to conquer the Iberian peninsula.  They continued here for the next 7 centuries until 1492, when the area was completely re-occupied by the Christian kingdoms.

Basque Country researchers said the Muslim occupation of Tauste was considered "random and even non-existent", according to recorded and traditional sources.  However, the area's cultural association has long suspected the area is home to a large number of Muslim settlements due to the evidence of Muslim architecture and remains found in the city.  Says Miriam Pina Pardos, director of the Tauste Islamic Cemetery of the El Patiaz Cultural Association.

 According to Basque Country researchers, between 711 and 1492, the boundary between the Christian north and the Muslim south changed constantly with the change of government.

According to Pina Pardos, the first excavation of the site in 2010 revealed a 2-hectare cemetery, spanning at least two levels.

According to El Patiaz, DNA and carbon dating studies identified the remains in the graveyard between the 8th and 11th centuries.

Spanish archaeologists are amazed at the ancient cemetery with more than 4,500 remains

The remains in the graveyard between the 8th and 11th centuries. / Ph: El Patiaz

According to Pina Pardos, all the skeletons were buried according to Islamic customs, placed to the right and facing southeast towards Mecca.
 The finding, experts believe, will challenge previous assumptions about Muslim settlements in the region.  “We can see that the Muslim culture and the presence of Islam in this area are more important than we thought.  We can see that there has been a large number of Muslims here in Tauste from the moment Muslims first appeared in Spain" said archaeologist Gimenez.

 “It's very important - 400 Muslim tombs show people who have lived here for centuries.  The remains will be cataloged and archived to research and study"- said Ms. Pina Pardos.

Spanish archaeologists are amazed at the ancient cemetery with more than 4,500 remains

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