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Drought reveals a 3,400-year-old city in Iraq

Drought reveals a 3,400-year-old city in Iraq

An ancient city has been discovered in Iraq. It is believed to be Zakhik, a settlement in the Mittani Empire that reigned from 1550 to 1350 BC. The city had been under water and drought had exposed it.

Archaeologists ran to excavate the site before rising water levels flooded the city again. Researchers tightly covered the rubble to prevent water erosion. The cuneiform tablets that have been found have not yet been studied, but researchers hope they testify to the fate of the city, following a devastating earthquake. Archaeologists had to work in extreme weather conditions, with storms and very low temperatures, to excavate the settlement before it disappeared under water. It's practically a miracle that pots with immature clay tiles survived for decades underwater, according to researchers.

Kurdish and German archaeologists excavated the settlement in the Mosul Reservoir, along the Tigris River in the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq, in January and February. The project was in partnership with the Duhok Directorate of Antiquities and Heritage to preserve the area's cultural heritage for future generations.

The ancient city is now submerged in water, but scholars were able to catalog most of the country.