Religion: An Ancient City Lives

In 1955 a farmer unearthed a strange item in the Syrian sands: a snarling lion carved from gray basalt. He dug a little further and found a ritual basin ringed with marching warriors and a banquet scene. The pieces ended up in the national museum at Aleppo.

Seven years later the Syrian government requested an archaeological team in a cultural exchange with Italy. In charge was Archaeologist Paolo Matthiae, 22. The intense young archaeologist decided to search for a settlement from the 2nd millennium B.C. that would reveal the urban roots of Western European culture. He had dated the broken basin...

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