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The Buhen Horse: Fifty Years after Its Discovery (1958–2008)

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image of Journal of Egyptian History

The horse skeleton found in the autumn of 1958 at the fortress of Buhen in northern Sudan has become one of the most prominent, but also one of the most enigmatic equid remains from the second millennium BC: Firstly, because of its assumed early date of c. 1675 BC, deduced by W.B. Emery after analysing the stratigraphical data, This – according to our knowledge at the time – being several decades before the oldest known equid remains in Egypt. Secondly, because of wear on the lower left second premolar (LP2), which has led to the conclusion that it was most probably caused by bit-wear. Since the 1960s, both conclusions have been subject to criticism. The purpose of this study is to provide a review of the history of research and reception of the Buhen horse in its interdisciplinary context over the last fifty years with the result that only modern scientific techniques might be able to solve some of the outstanding questions.


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