It turns out that the ancient structure built along the Nile was ``the world's oldest system to control the flow of the river''
The Nile River , which flows through the northeastern part of the African continent, is a historically important river that has fed many people since ancient times, and was also used to transport goods when the pyramids were built in Egypt. A new survey by an international research team consisting of the University of Western Australia, the British Museum, and the Sudan National Antiquities Museum Corporation has revealed that structures built along the Nile River from northern Sudan to southern Egypt 'control the flow of the river.' It turned out to be the oldest system in the world.
Three thousand years of river channel engineering in the Nile Valley - Dalton - Geoarchaeology - Wiley Online Library
Walls along River Nile reveal ancient forms of hydraulic engineering
Ancient Structure Along River Nile Is Oldest Hydraulics System of Its Kind : ScienceAlert
A groyne is a river control structure built to control sediment and water flow, often constructed as a jetty projecting vertically from the river bank. Drains have effects such as slowing the erosion process during floods and are still found in many rivers today.
Nubia , which spans from modern Egypt to northern Sudan, and mapped the water system for about 1100 km. Dalton said, 'Using satellite imagery, drones, ground surveys, and historical data, we have constructed approximately 1,300 dikes between the 1st Nile Falls in southern Egypt and the 4th Falls in Sudan. I found it,' he said.
A research team led by Dr. Matthew Dalton of the University of Western Australia's Faculty of Humanities investigated the area around the Nile River in the area called
Many of the discovered dykes were found in the ancient Nile basin, which has already dried up due to past climate change, and in the river bed of the Nile. Some of them were found in 19th-century traveler's records and archives of aerial photographs taken by the Royal Air Force in the first half of the 20th century, but were already sunk to the bottom of the Aswan High Dam. matter.
Below is a picture of the water system actually identified by the research team. You can see that there are various types of sluice structures, from thick stones arranged horizontally to flat stones stacked vertically.
radiocarbon and photoluminescence dating techniques were used to analyze a dike found near a site in Sudan called Amara West . Some water systems have been identified as dating from around 1000 BC. This indicates that the Nubian people built a ditch 2,500 years before the oldest ditch ever found on the Yellow River in China.
Regarding the role of the water system created by the ancient Nubians, the research team ``blocks the fertile soil brought by the Nile River'', ``irrigates the land'', ``prevents erosion of the embankment'', ``seasonal It is thought that there were various uses such as protecting the surrounding area from violent floods, creating artificial pools for fishing, and preventing wind-blown sand from damaging crops.
Although the practice of building dykes along the Nile has been thought to be relatively modern, dating back to the early 19th century, there were also dykes in Nubia that are believed to be even older. Ancient Nubians living along the Nile River were known to have built canals and ports, but the water system was never independently dated.
It is difficult to determine the exact age of submerged dikes, but
'These walls trapped fertile sediment during the annual Nile floods, allowing crops to be grown on reclaimed land without artificial irrigation,' Dalton said. We can see that the indigenous people of the region, the Nubians, and the inhabitants of the city built by the pharaohs of the New Kingdom of Egypt , shaped the landscape.”
Climate change in the past has also altered the course of the Nile, with some tributaries drying up completely, devastating dykes, and others sinking to the bottom. However, when the research team interviewed a Sudanese farmer, the water system continued to be built even in the 1970s, and some of the land created by the water system was still cultivated even today. matter.
The picture below shows a water system made in the 20th century, and you can see that crops are grown in the adjacent landfill. 'This incredibly long-lived irrigation technology has played a vital role in growing food and thriving communities in Nubia's harsh wilderness for more than 3,000 years,' Dalton said. said.
In addition, near the ancient temple of Soleb on the west bank of the Nile, it was also found that there is a wall with a total length of 700 m made of rocks weighing 100 kg in the Nile. Built into the river, these walls are thought to have created a calmer channel and improved access for ships.
Further investigation is needed to determine the exact age of these structures, but 3000-year-old water dikes have also been found nearby, suggesting they may be just as old. 'These monumental water features facilitated the long-distance movement of resources, armies, people and ideas along the Nile and helped connect the peoples of ancient Egypt and Nubia,' Dalton said. said.
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