The Bronze Age is a historical period characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, other early features of urban civilization. The Bronze Age is the second principal period of the three-age Stone-Bronze-Iron system, as proposed in modern times by Christian Jürgensen Thomsen, for classifying and studying ancient societies. An ancient civilization is defined to be in the Bronze Age either by producing bronze by smelting its own copper and alloying with tin, arsenic, or other metals, or by trading for bronze from production areas elsewhere. Bronze itself is harder and more durable than other metals available at the time, allowing Bronze Age civilizations to gain a technological advantage. Copper-tin ores are rare, as reflected in the fact that there were no tin bronzes in Western Asia before trading in bronze began in the third millennium BC. Worldwide, the Bronze Age followed the Neolithic period, with the Chalcolithic serving as a transition. Although the Iron Age followed the Bronze Age, in some areas, the Iron Age intruded directly on the Neolithic.
Bronze Age cultures differed in their development of the first writing. According to archaeological evidence, cultures in Mesopotamia and Egypt developed the earliest viable writing systems; the overall period is characterized by widespread use of bronze, though the place and time of the introduction and development of bronze technology were not universally synchronous. Human-made tin bronze technology requires set production techniques. Tin must be mined and smelted separately added to molten copper to make bronze alloy; the Bronze Age was a time of developing trade networks. A 2013 report suggests that the earliest tin-alloy bronze dates to the mid-5th millennium BC in a Vinča culture site in Pločnik, although this culture is not conventionally considered part of the Bronze Age; the dating of the foil has been disputed. Western Asia and the Near East was the first region to enter the Bronze Age, which began with the rise of the Mesopotamian civilization of Sumer in the mid 4th millennium BC.
Cultures in the ancient Near East practiced intensive year-round agriculture, developed a writing system, invented the potter's wheel, created a centralized government, written law codes and nation states and empires, embarked on advanced architectural projects, introduced social stratification and civil administration and practiced organized warfare and religion. Societies in the region laid the foundations for astronomy and astrology. Dates are approximate, consult particular article for details The Ancient Near East Bronze Age can be divided as following: The Hittite Empire was established in Hattusa in northern Anatolia from the 18th century BC. In the 14th century BC, the Hittite Kingdom was at its height, encompassing central Anatolia, southwestern Syria as far as Ugarit, upper Mesopotamia. After 1180 BC, amid general turmoil in the Levant conjectured to have been associated with the sudden arrival of the Sea Peoples, the kingdom disintegrated into several independent "Neo-Hittite" city-states, some of which survived until as late as the 8th century BC.
Arzawa in Western Anatolia during the second half of the second millennium BC extended along southern Anatolia in a belt that reaches from near the Turkish Lakes Region to the Aegean coast. Arzawa was the western neighbor – sometimes a rival and sometimes a vassal – of the Middle and New Hittite Kingdoms; the Assuwa league was a confederation of states in western Anatolia, defeated by the Hittites under an earlier Tudhaliya I, around 1400 BC. Arzawa has been associated with the much more obscure Assuwa located to its north, it bordered it, may be an alternative term for it. In Ancient Egypt the Bronze Age begins in the Protodynastic period, c. 3150 BC. The archaic early Bronze Age of Egypt, known as the Early Dynastic Period of Egypt follows the unification of Lower and Upper Egypt, c. 3100 BC. It is taken to include the First and Second Dynasties, lasting from the Protodynastic Period of Egypt until about 2686 BC, or the beginning of the Old Kingdom. With the First Dynasty, the capital moved from Abydos to Memphis with a unified Egypt ruled by an Egyptian god-king.
Abydos remained the major holy land in the south. The hallmarks of ancient Egyptian civilization, such as art and many aspects of religion, took shape during the Early Dynastic period. Memphis in the Early Bronze Age was the largest city of the time; the Old Kingdom of the regional Bronze Age is the name given to the period in the 3rd millennium BC when Egypt attained its first continuous peak of civilization in complexity and achievement – the first of three "Kingdom" periods, which mark the high points of civilization in the lower Nile Valley. The First Intermediate Period of Egypt described as a "dark period" in ancient Egyptian history, spanned about 100 years after the end of the Old Kingdom from about 2181 to 2055 BC. Little monumental evidence survives from this period from the early part of it; the First Intermediate Period was a dynamic time when the rule of Egypt was divided between two competing power bases: Heracleopolis in Lower Egypt and Thebes in Upper Egypt. These two kingdoms would come into conflict, with the Theban kings conquering the north, resulting in the reunification of Egypt under a single ruler during the second part of the 11th Dynasty.
The Middle Kingdom of Egypt laste
The Locmariaquer megaliths are a complex of Neolithic constructions in Locmariaquer, Brittany. They comprise the elaborate Er-Grah tumulus passage grave, a dolmen known as the Table des Marchand and "The Broken Menhir of Er Grah", the largest known single block of stone to have been transported and erected by Neolithic people; the broken menhir, erected around 4700 BC at the same time as another 18 blocks nearby, is thought to have been broken around 4000 BC. Measuring 20.60 metres and with a weight of 330 tons, the stone is from a rocky outcrop located several kilometres away from Locmariaquer. The impressive dimensions of this menhir still divide specialists about the techniques used for transport and erection, but the fact that this was achieved during the Neolithic era remains remarkable. Worked over its entire surface, the monument bears a sculpture representing a "hatchet-plough". Today this is eroded and difficult to see, it is not known what caused the menhir to break into the four pieces that are now seen.
At one time it was believed that the stone had never stood upright, but archaeological findings have proven that it did. The most popular theory is that the stone was deliberately broken. Other menhirs that accompanied it were removed and reused in the construction of tombs and dolmens nearby. However, in recent years, some archaeologists have favoured the explanation of an earthquake or tremor, this theory is supported by a computer model; the Table des Marchand is a large dolmen containing a number of decorations. The main capstone of the chamber includes a large carving on its underside depicting an axe, part of a carved depiction of a plough pulled by oxen; this fragment indicates that the capstone was part of the broken menhir, since the design matches up with carvings on the broken remains across the breaks. Other parts were used on a nearby island; the stone at the back of the chamber contained an engraved stele with whorls and arched decorations which may represent fields of crops. The dolmen was exposed and above ground until it was excavated and rebuilt inside a cairn in 1993, reconstructing its original appearance and protecting its contents.
The Er-Grah tumulus is 140 metres long. It was originally constructed in the fifth millennium BC as a cairn, extended in both directions. A pavement surrounded the stepped structure; the capstone indicates that the monument was completed at around 3,300 BC. According to A. W. R. Whittle, "In front of the south facade of the primary phase of the long cairn of Er Grah, close to where the menhir Brise stood...a pair of domesticated cattle were found in a pit. Radiocarbon determinations suggest a date in the late sixth and early fifth millennium BC." List of megalithic sites Charles-Tanguy Le Roux, Éric Gaumé, Yannick Lecerf, Jean-Yves Tinevez, Monuments mégalithiques à Locmariaquer: Le long tumulus d'Er Grah dans son environnement, CNRS éditions, 2007, ISBN 2-271-06490-2
Kerzerho lies 8 km northwest of Carnac in the Erdeven commune and in the region of Brittany, France
National Museum of Archaeology, Malta
The National Museum of Archaeology is a Maltese museum of prehistoric artifacts, located in Valletta. It is managed by Heritage Malta; the Auberge de Provence was opened as the National Museum in 1958 by Agatha Barbara the Minister of Education. The museum included the archaeological collection on the ground floor and fine arts on the first floor; the first curator was Captain Charles G. Zammit, the son of the eminent Maltese archaeologist Sir Themistocles Zammit. In 1974, the fine arts collection was moved to the National Museum of Fine Arts, newly established in the Admiralty House building in South Street and the National Museum was renamed the National Museum for Archaeology; the museum was refurbished and upgraded in 1998. Artifacts were placed in climate-controlled displays so that the exhibition met with current conservation standards; the Auberge de Provence is a baroque building in Republic Street, built for the Order of Saint John in 1571. It was designed by the Maltese architect Girolamo Cassar, who directed the building of most important buildings in the early days of Valletta.
The building’s façade is imprinted with Mannerist characteristics associated with Cassar. The Grand Salon on the first floor is the most ornate room in the building; the Knights used it for business discussions, as a refectory and banqueting hall, where they sat at long tables according to seniority. When Napoleon expelled the Knights from Malta in 1798 the Auberge was leased to the Malta Union Club. Though the lease was to expire in 2002, on 12 August 1955 the Auberge was assigned to house Malta's National Museum; the ground floor of the museum exhibits prehistoric artefacts from the Maltese islands, from the Għar Dalam phase, the earliest appearance of settlement on the island, up to the Tarxien phase. This room exhibits artifacts from the early Neolithic Period, including decorated pottery from the Għar Dalam, Grey Skorba, Red Skorba and Żebbuġ phases. Of particular importance are the Red Skorba figurines, the earliest local representations of the human figure and the predecessors of the statues of temple periods.
The exhibition features a reconstruction of the rock-cut tombs that were a characteristic of the early Neolithic period in Malta. Rock-cut tombs reached their climax in burials like the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum and the Xagħra Stone Circle; these rooms show examples of architecture, human representation and other items that date from the Mġarr, Ġgantija and Tarxien phases of Maltese prehistory. The temples that were built at this time are considered to be the world’s first free standing monuments and are listed in the UNESCO World Heritage List; the museum exhibits numerous corpulent statues representing human bodies unearthed from temple excavations, along with phallic representations. Until the statues were called Mother Goddesses, Fat Ladies and Priests among other names, but it is now argued that these statues were asexual and represented a human being, irrespective of whether it was male or female; the representations vary in size and shape, with the largest being as tall as 2.7 m and the smallest 4 mm.
The discovery of temple altars and corpulent human representations suggests that some type of cult existed on the islands of Malta and Gozo in prehistory. Given the corpulency of the statues it may be. Fertility at this time must have been important since, apart from family growth, it meant the reproduction of crops and animals; the exhibition includes altars excavated from the Tarxien Temples that were used for animal sacrifices. They were brought to the museum for conservation reasons; the Grand Salon on the second floor holds temporary exhibitions of particular national interest. It has hosted the following exhibitions, among others: Silent Warriors, featuring artifacts from the terracotta army of the first emperor of China, Shi Huangdi. Caravaggio L'Immagine Del Divino, exhibiting original masterpieces of the Italian artist, Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, active in Malta in the early 17th century. Renzo Piano's designs for the redevelopment of Valletta’s City Gate, Parliament House and Opera House.
In Quest of Beauty, an exhibition of works by the Bohemian Art Nouveau artist Alphonse Mucha. The museum plans to open the first floor galleries and expand the exhibition in the near future to include archaeological artifacts from the Bronze Age, Phoenician and Roman Periods; the museum is open every day from 9 am with last admission at 6:30 pm. They are closed on Good Friday, Christmas Eve and Day, New Year's Eve and Day. List of museums in Malta Heritage Malta The National Museum of Archaeology on Euromuse.net National Museum of Archaeology Visit Malta information
Valletta is the capital city of Malta. Located in the south east of the island, between Marsamxett Harbour to the west and the Grand Harbour to the east, its population in 2014 was 6,444, while the metropolitan area around it has a population of 393,938. Valletta is the southernmost capital of Europe. Valletta's 16th century buildings were constructed by the Knights Hospitaller; the city is Baroque in character, with elements of Mannerist, Neo-Classical and Modern architecture, though the Second World War left major scars on the city the destruction of the Royal Opera House. The city was recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1980; the city's fortifications, consisting of bastions and cavaliers, along with the beauty of its Baroque palaces and churches, led the ruling houses of Europe to give the city its nickname Superbissima— Italian for Most Proud. The peninsula was called Xagħret Mewwija or Ħal Newwija. Mewwija refers to a sheltered place; the extreme end of the peninsula was known as Xebb ir-Ras, of which name origins from the lighthouse on site.
A family which owned land became known as Sceberras, now a Maltese surname as Sciberras. At one point the entire peninsula became known as Sceberras; the building of a city on the Sciberras Peninsula had been proposed by the Order of Saint John as early as 1524. Back the only building on the peninsula was a small watchtower dedicated to Erasmus of Formia, built in 1488. In 1552, the watchtower was demolished and the larger Fort Saint Elmo was built in its place. In the Great Siege of 1565, Fort Saint Elmo fell to the Ottomans, but the Order won the siege with the help of Sicilian reinforcements; the victorious Grand Master, Jean de Valette set out to build a new fortified city on the Sciberras Peninsula to fortify the Order's position in Malta and bind the Knights to the island. The city was called La Valletta; the Grand Master asked the European kings and princes for help, he received a lot of assistance, due to the increased fame of the Order after their victory in the Great Siege. Pope Pius V sent his military architect, Francesco Laparelli, to design the new city, while Philip II of Spain sent substantial monetary aid.
The foundation stone of the city was laid by Grand Master de Valette on 28 March 1566. He placed the first stone in what became Our Lady of Victories Church. In his book Dell’Istoria della Sacra Religione et Illustrissima Militia di San Giovanni Gierosolimitano, written between 1594 and 1602, Giacomo Bosio writes that when the cornerstone of Valletta was placed, a group of Maltese elders said: "Iegi zimen en fel wardia col sceber raba iesue uquie". De Valette never saw the completion of his city. Interred in the church of Our Lady of the Victories, his remains now rest in St. John's Co-Cathedral among the tombs of other Grand Masters of the Knights of Malta. Francesco Laparelli was the city's principal designer and his plan departed from medieval Maltese architecture, which exhibited irregular winding streets and alleys, he designed the new city on a rectangular grid plan, without any collacchio. The streets were designed to be wide and straight, beginning centrally from the City Gate and ending at Fort Saint Elmo overlooking the Mediterranean.
His assistant was the Maltese architect Girolamo Cassar, who oversaw the construction of the city himself after Laparelli's death in 1570. The Ufficio delle Case regulated the building of the city as a planning authority; the city of Valletta was complete by the early 1570s, it became the capital on 18 March 1571 when Grand Master Pierre de Monte moved from his seat at Fort St Angelo in Birgu to the Grandmaster's Palace in Valletta. Seven Auberges were built for the Order's Langues, these were complete by the 1580s. An eighth Auberge, Auberge de Bavière, was added in the 18th century. In Antoine de Paule's reign, it was decided to build more fortifications to protect Valletta, these were named the Floriana Lines after the architect who designed them, Pietro Paolo Floriani of Macerata. During António Manoel de Vilhena's reign, a town began to form between the walls of Valletta and the Floriana Lines, this evolved from a suburb of Valletta to Floriana, a town in its own right. In 1634, a gunpowder factory explosion killed 22 people in Valletta.
In 1749, Muslim slaves plotted to kill Grandmaster Pinto and take over Valletta, but the revolt was suppressed before it started due to their plans leaking out to the Order. On in his reign, Pinto embellished the city with Baroque architecture, many important buildings such as Auberge de Castille were remodeled or rebuilt in the new architectural style. In 1775, during the reign of Ximenes, an unsuccessful revolt known as the Rising of the Priests occurred in which Fort Saint Elmo and Saint James Cavalier were captured by rebels, but the revolt was suppressed. In 1798, the Order left the French occupation of Malta began. After the Maltese rebelled, French troops continued to occupy Valletta and the surrounding harbour area, until they capitulated to the British in September 1800. In the early 19th centur
Malta Environment and Planning Authority
The Malta Environment and Planning Authority was the national agency responsible for the environment and planning in Malta. The national agency was established to regulate the environment and planning on the Maltese islands of Malta and other small islets of the Maltese archipelago. MEPA is bound to follow the regulations of the Environment Protection Act and the Development Planning Act of the Laws of Malta; the national agency is responsible for the implementation of Directives and Regulations under the EU Environmental Acquis as Malta is a member of the European Union, while considering other recommendations and opinion of the Union. The Authority employs over 420 government workers, from a wide range of educational backgrounds, all within their merit of profession; the Officio delle Case was the planning authority during the Order of St. John. MEPA acts as the national representation under a number of international environmental conventions and multilateral agreements; these include information supported by the Aarhus Convention: On access to information.
The Agency is governed by a board of professional, whose responsibility is to provide strategic guidance within, laid by the laws of Malta. The board comprising a maximum of 15 personnel led by Perit Vincent Cassar. Members within the board, include two representative members of the Parliament of Malta, who are knowledgeable and experienced about matters relating to the environment and development such ranging from: commercial and social affairs. A number of appointed boards and committees provide strategic guidance or expert advise to the directorates to ensure that the organization fulfils its functions and responsibilities efficiently and in line with legal obligations. MEPA’s operational functions and responsibilities are carried out by the work of four main structures, namely: The Chairman’s Office is responsible for providing the framework within which the MEPA Board together with the Commissions and Committees operate; the secretariat is the point of reference for issuing and communicating the Board's and Commissions' decisions and in this context are a primary point of contact for ministries and agencies as well as the general public.
The Communications Office and Complaints office are an integral part of the function of this office. The Chief Executive Officer is responsible for the implementation of the aims and supervise and control the Directorates; the CEO and other directors, are responsible for developing the necessary strategies. The Planning Directorate processes planning applications, it is responsible for enforcement, policy development and plan making, transport planning and research and other. The Enforcement Directorate is responsible for both Development Control and Environmental Protection and for supporting the Authority in enforcement campaigns including Direct Action, enforcement and actions as necessary to ensure compliance with the building development permits and to protect the environment to help achieve a sustainable environmental improvement; the Environment Protection Directorate advises Government on environmental standards and policies, draws up plans and provides a licensing regime to safeguard and monitor the environment and controls the activities having environmental impact.
The Directorate for Corporate Services, is responsible for Human Resources, Information Technology and Land-surveying, support services and Finance. There are a number of boards and committees, which provide strategic guidance for the Directorates to ensure the organization fulfils its functions and responsibilities efficiently and in line with its legal obligations. Here is an incomplete list of graded property by MEPA according to category; the below property are named according to the official name used by MEPA and not as how they are known among the public. Grade 1: Building at this grade have great historical and architectonical values and may not be altered Palazzo Dorell Palazzo Parisio San Anton Palace Villa Bologna Villa Francia Lija Belvedere Tower La Borsa Ponsonby's ColumnGrade 2: Building at this grade have historical and architectonical value and can have moderate alterations Palazzo Dragonara Palazzo NasciaroGrade 3: Building at this grade are not considered important and can be demolished