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The projectile that solved an enigma

The imbroglio archaeological was so great that the University of Cordoba was appealed in 2009 to quotes from Albert Einstein and Li Hongzhi, the founder of the

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The projectile that solved an enigma

The imbroglio archaeological was so great that the University of Cordoba was appealed in 2009 to quotes from Albert Einstein and Li Hongzhi, the founder of the philosophy of Falun Gong, to try to explain it in his report Of Isturgi et Iliturgi Confusione. “Nothing is random”, he pointed out, what that came to mean that there has been a lot of interest hidden in this story without resolving that arises in 206 bc and arrives until our days. Fakes included.


Rome against Carthage, archaeology of a battle

The problem —that has been solved now by the Institute of Archaeology of the University of Jaén— was the following: there were two cities iberians calls Iliturgi and Isturgi. It was known that they were located in the interior of the province of jaén, but no one could prove its exact location. And two towns, Andujar and Mengibar —apart about 20 kilometers and archaeological sites of their own—, claimed to be the heirs of Iliturgi. Both fought for to be the direct descendants of this old hispanic settlement, because this iberian city was a kind of Numancia andalusian front of the roman troops of Escipion the African. Isturgi, in contrast, was a simple pottery center without so much epic.

The other two towns of Jaén, who use the name of the iliturgitano in shops, clubs, or institutions, have wielded since the SIXTEENTH century documents and two “testing materials” (roman inscriptions) that would demonstrate that you are the authentic Iliturgi. Until someone discovered that one of the traces was a forgery and that on the other had doubts.

expand photo Glandes of lead found in the environment of the cerro de La Muela, Mengíbar, where occurred the siege of Iliturgi. UNIVERSITY INSTITUTE OF RESEARCH IN ARCHAEOLOGY IBÉRICA, UNIVERSITY OF JAÉN

The story is complicated when Ambrosio Morales —envoy of Felipe II— found in Valdemao (Lugo), the body of saint Euphrasius, who identified himself as bishop of Iliturgi, emphasizing that this city was Andújar. From there, several authors repeat it. But in 1635 he was found, according to a document of the time, “three-quarters of a league of Andujar, in the site called Los Villares, a based very large Betpas jasper” where we read: “Res publica Isturgitanorum”, or what is the same, Andujar is Isturgi.

In 1960, archaeologists Antonio Blanco and Gaspar de Lachica found another inscription in Mengibar dedicated to the “people iliturgitano to its founder”, Tiberius Sempronius Graco, which gave the story another turn: the iberian city was returning to the field of Mengibar. However, the inscription unearthed (Lachica was Mengíbar) caused doubts. In it is recorded: “To Tiberius Sempronius Graco, its founder [deductor] the people iliturgitano”, but the word “deductor” does not exist in any entry known roman, although their use is correct. In addition, the brother of Lachica was a sculptor. For some authors it was a forgery. For others, not. “If you want to falsify something, not get a word that is not used, said many,” recalls Juan Pedro Bellón, director of the current excavations of Iliturgi.

The research of the roman siege to an iberian settlement in Mengibar began in 2012, but no one knew what city it was. The dug was ravaged during the Second Punic War (between the carthaginians and the romans between 218 to 201 bc) and against she had used heavy artillery with large projectiles.

To compare the remains of the weapons found in the siege of Mengíbar with those found in Baecula (Santo Tomé, also in Jaén), the archaeologists discovered that they were of the same type, the same that was used by Scipio, the one that was used in 206. C. Then if the ammunition matched, it was clear that we were faced with the same army in the two great battles fought in Jaén: Mengibar was Iliturgi.

The 2009 report of the University of Cordoba concluded: the experts from the SEVENTEENTH century “used false cronicones, filling his writings, inventions and lies that have filled up with real confusion these studies”, creating “a real outrageous institutionalized”. Until the University of Jaén has found the projectiles that resolve to finally clean up the mess.

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