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Archaeological visit to Sudan

In February 2020, Professor Haour was hosted by colleagues at the University of Khartoum for a three-week visit to Sudan, and in particular to its Red Sea coastline. The focus of this pilot survey was the identification of archaeological sites of medieval date which apparently played a role in the trade in cowries and pottery, linking the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean. The team of archaeologists was received by local guides and youth associations and was shown a number of sites and introduced to local informants who could speak to the cowrie trade and past traditions of settlement. The team also identified a dozen previously unknown sites. This is a region that has long interested historians and archaeologists but is only recently opening up to research after several decades of political instability and conflict with neighbouring Eritrea. The team was privileged to be received with great warmth by local communities, keen to showcase their cultural heritage and to demonstrate the famed Sudanese hospitality. At the conclusion of her trip, Professor Haour delivered a well-attended seminar to colleagues at the Department of Archaeology at the University of Khartoum.