The stories of ancient Egypt include a story of the “Land of God” or “Land of Punt”. It was said that people put treasures in the hands of those who left here. It is believed to be one of the oldest fictional stories. However, archaeologists believe Punt was indeed a place. Recently, they got the skull of a 3,300-year-old baboon, believed to have originated from the same location.
A ‘treasure’ was hidden in Egypt
The Egyptians began traveling to Punt 4,500 years ago and have continued for thousands of years. However, the treasure referred to in related articles included everything from food to metals and rare animals. This treasure was never touched, but now this find has drawn attention to ancient history. At Dartmouth College, primatologist Nathaniel Domini and his colleagues found him safe in a British museum.
These remains are believed to be Hamadrya baboons, discovered in the city of Thebes in the 19th century. The Egyptians considered this baboon to be Throth, the “God of conscience”. He was also associated with the Sun God. However, this species of primates is not native to Egypt.
The 3,300-year-old copra came from Punt? (Photo credit: British Museum administrators)
How open secret?
Domino and his colleagues studied isotopes of strontium in baboon teeth from which a location can be detected. Based on the strontium isotopes in animal tooth enamel, we can tell where his life would have been spent. This study showed that the baboon was not born in Egypt but would have occurred today where the region of Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia is located. This is the area where, according to archaeologists, the Punt area. It is believed on this basis that this baboon is part of his treasure.
Travelogue to punt
Between 2001 and 2011, archaeologist Catherine Byrd of Boston University excavated a site named Mersa on Egypt’s Red Sea coast and found a stone that was 2,800 years old. The trip to Punt was mentioned in this connection. Byrd says the new find indicates where Punt was actually located.