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Saxon & Anglo-Saxon Artifacts: New Discoveries.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 21-10-2010 14:17    Post subject: Reply with quote

Could be material for a new soap? Ends when Harold is brought in with an arrow in his eye.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 21-12-2010 16:41    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anglo-Saxon settlement unearthed in Northumberland

Anglo Saxon settlement find Investigations also revealed a number of other sites

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The remains of an Anglo-Saxon settlement have been discovered at a surface mine in Northumberland.

Buildings and artefacts dating from the 6th to 8th centuries have been uncovered at Shotton Surface Mine, on the Blagdon Estate, near Cramlington.

The site had been investigated by archaeologists before the start of open-cast mining work.

Experts said the find had provided "the first direct evidence" of Anglo-Saxon settlement in that part of the county.

A team of archaeologists from TWM Archaeology, funded by Banks Mining, undertook the excavation and discovered the settlement.
Remains 'surprise'

It comprised of at least six rectangular post-built halls - each thought to house a family unit - two buildings with sunken floors and a system of enclosures, fences and trackways.

Anglo-Saxon pottery, loom weights and metalworking residues have all been recovered from the site.

The archaeological investigations on the surface coal mine also revealed a number of other sites including several Iron Age roundhouses, ditches and pit alignments - which were used as land divisions.
Northumberlandia sculpture Part of the restoration plans for Shotton include the Northumberlandia landform

The potential of the site was recognised by Northumberland County Council archaeologists but despite the extensive preliminary work, the council said the remains came as a surprise.

Karen Derham, Northumberland County Council Assistant County Archaeologist, said: "We know Northumberland was at the heart of the early medieval Kingdom of Bernicia and yet archaeologists have so far only discovered a very small number of settlement sites, all previously in the north of the county.

"The surface mine at Shotton has given us the first direct evidence of Anglo-Saxon settlement in this part of the county and has confirmed its potential for making important archaeological discoveries."

Banks Mining has been operating Shotton Surface Mine since 2008.

Part of the restoration plans for Shotton include the Northumberlandia landform which is currently being constructed and will be open to the public in 2013.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 14-02-2011 13:17    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bicester Anglo-Saxon skeletons on display

Anglo-Saxon skeleton The remains date from 700-950 AD

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Twelve Anglo-Saxon skeletons discovered in Bicester during the construction of a community centre are now on display.

The remains date from 700-950 AD and were unearthed during ground work on the site last year.

The skeletons were exhumed from what is thought to be an old Christian burial ground and taken away for analysis.

Archaeologist Matthew Smith said: "The excavations offer an excellent opportunity to greater understand the people of Bicester in Saxon times."

After scientific work is complete the 12 skeletons will be interred in the memorial garden of the Church of the Immaculate Conception, alongside the community centre, to respect the original burial rites.

The new community building, which is to be named the John Paul II Centre, is being built as part of the NW Bicester eco development.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 07-04-2011 12:43    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anglo-Saxon 7th Century plough coulter found in Kent

Archaeologists at work The coulter was discovered in Lyminge, Kent

An archaeological discovery by the University of Reading is set to shed new light on the history of farming.

Dr Gabor Thomas and his team have found a 7th Century iron plough coulter during excavations at Lyminge, Kent.

A coulter is a vertical soil slicer mounted like a knife to cut through the soil ahead of a plough share to improve the plough's efficiency.

The coulter, one of the defining features of a 'heavy plough', transformed the landscape of England.
Anglo-Saxon monastery

Unlike the small fields associated with earlier light ploughs they cultivated the land in long narrow strips making the large open fields which would become a standard feature of the medieval countryside.

Previously it was believed heavy ploughs were introduced to Anglo-Saxon England in the late 10th Century or 11th Century, on the basis of representations in manuscripts of this period.

However, the Lyminge coulter can be firmly dated to the 7th Century.
A coulter A coulter cuts through the soil ahead of a plough share to increase efficiency

Compared to light ploughs, heavy ploughs, pulled by teams of eight oxen, were high-tech and fast.

They permitted the cultivation of heavier soils, especially in areas of poor drainage, by creating a deep furrow characteristically known as 'ridge and furrow'.

Dr Thomas, from the University of Reading's department of archaeology, said: "The coulter was discovered at the base of a structure known as a sunken featured building.

"It looks to have been carefully placed at the bottom of the pit on the building's abandonment, perhaps as a ritual offering with symbolic connotations."

Dr Thomas said the discovery of the Lyminge coulter was significant, as it enabled Anglo-Saxon landowners to maximise profits from their estates and increase productivity.
Continue reading the main story
“Start Quote

This is the object I have been waiting for all my life”

End Quote Dr Peter Fowler Leading Anglo-Saxon archaeologist

"This 7th-century wealth may have been invested in the establishment of England's earliest Christian monasteries as represented at Lyminge," he said.

Peter Fowler, a leading Anglo-Saxon archaeologist and former professor of archaeology at Newcastle University, said the find was of "huge significance".

"This is the object I have been waiting for all my life," Professor Fowler said.

"It was known in Roman Britain but apparently then forgotten, and with a lack of evidence we believed that such a plough was unknown in England before the Late Saxon period."

The 2010 excavation forms part of research in which archaeologists have been unearthing the remains of an Anglo-Saxon monastery preserved under the inhabited core of the village in Lyminge.

The excavations are being funded by the British Academy, Society of the Antiquaries and the Royal Archaeological Institute.

The coulter is currently undergoing analytical conservation by a team at the Institute of Archaeology, UCL.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 18-04-2011 18:46    Post subject: Reply with quote

Colchester dig uncovers 'spearmen' skeletons

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The teeth of the tribal warriors will be tested to find out how old they are

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The bones of two Anglo-Saxon soldiers have been discovered beneath former Army barracks in Colchester.

They may have lived and fought in the 5th or 6th Century AD, Colchester Archaeological Trust said.

The bodies had shields on their chests, spears to one side and one had a dagger in a belt around his waist.

The skeletons were found beneath Hyderbad and Meanee Barracks, once home to 3rd Battalion Parachute Regiment, which are being redeveloped as housing.

"There is a strong probability these were post Roman 'spearmen', with Germanic or Saxon origin," said Trust director Philip Crummy.
'Local militia'

"But there is a tantalising possibility they were 4th or early 5th Century, in which case they could have been part of a militia living here in Roman times."

Achaeologists have already found Anglo-Saxon burials south of the nearby site of a former Roman circus.

These were from the 4th Century and featured small ring-shaped ditches with a single burial inside.

The latest discoveries also featured ring ditches, suggesting the spearmen may have been descended from that group.

"Many men from the continent were hired by the Romans and posted at frontier towns and cities like Colchester to act as soldiers," said Mr Crummy.

"Some then turned on their masters and paved the way for the conquest of much of eastern Britain by their own kind."

Colchester Archaeological Trust has been working at the Hyderbad site since 2002, on behalf of developer Taylor Wimpey.

The highlight of its excavation was the 2005 discovery of a Roman chariot circus in the gardens of the sergeants' mess.

It will carry out more work including DNA tests later this year in an attempt to discover exactly when the newly-discovered warriors lived.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 04-07-2011 17:19    Post subject: Reply with quote

Staffordshire Hoard 'to help rewrite history'

The hoard could provide an early glimpse of Mercia's conversion

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A haul of Anglo-Saxon gold discovered beneath a Staffordshire farmer's field could help rewrite history, experts say.

Historians believe the Staffordshire Hoard could hold vital clues to explain the conversion of Mercia - England's last great pagan kingdom - to Christianity in the 7th Century.

The hoard was found buried on a farm in Staffordshire in July 2009.

The 1,500 pieces of gold are thought to be the spoils of an Anglo-Saxon battle.

'Warring kingdoms'
TV historian Dan Snow believes the find has the potential to rewrite the history books.

Speaking on BBC1's The Staffordshire Hoard, he said the conversion of Mercia "marked the beginning of a new era in English history".

"The Staffordshire Hoard is helping shine a light on exactly how and when the transformation occurred," he explained.

Historian David Starkey said: "England, remember, isn't England at all; England has yet to be invented - the word barely exists.

"Instead, there were these rival warring Anglo-Saxon kingdoms that behaved like the worst kind of takeover bidders of the city.

Continue reading the main story
The site was excavated by Birmingham Archaeology between July 24 and August 21, 2009
The vast majority of items in the hoard are martial - war gear, especially sword fittings
There is nothing feminine - no dress fittings, brooches or pendants, the gold objects most commonly found from the Anglo-Saxon era
The objects display three kinds of decoration - cut and mounted garnets, gold filigree and animal patterns
The hoard is thought to have been war bounty, seized from vanquished enemies by the victorious
"They decapitated each other - literally, not metaphorically.

"It's gang warfare, when you take over the territory of a rival gang, the lot get bumped off."

Mercia was one of Britain's largest and most aggressive kingdoms, stretching from Humber to London.

The pagan kings of Mercia resisted conversion to Christianity until it became surrounded by Christian states late in the 7th Century.

Historians believe the hoard could give the last glimpse of Paganism and the first of Christianity.

The largest-ever haul of Anglo-Saxon gold found in Britain, the Staffordshire Hoard was discovered buried beneath a farmer's field near Brownhills by amateur metal detector enthusiast Terry Herbert.

The hoard comprises more than 1,500 items, made of gold and silver, embedded with precious stones and jewels and was valued at nearly £3.3m.

After the Staffordshire Coroner ruled in September 2009 that the find was the "property of the Crown", arrangements were made for the valuation.

The money was split between Mr Herbert, and Fred Johnson, who owns the farm where it was discovered.

More than 40 items from the Staffordshire Hoard are on display in this summer's Tour 2011 across the West Midlands.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 08-09-2011 14:30    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Saxon' skeletons at Southampton building site

The skeletons were unearthed in St Mary Street

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Archaeologists are studying nine skeletons discovered at a housing development site in Southampton.

The remains, believed to date to Saxon times, were unearthed in St Mary Street where Hyde Housing is building 13 affordable homes and a shop.

Excavations from May to August also unearthed a belt buckle, post holes and a ring ditch, indicating that there was a dwelling on the site.

Two of the skeletons were discovered in a double grave.

Andy Russell, of Southampton City Council, said the two people buried there may have died of disease.

He said: "It might be that some hideous disease came through Southampton at that time.

"We are having the bones looked at but things like plague and cholera won't show up on the bones."

The site is thought to have been the first cemetery of the old Saxon town of Hamwick, which occupied a site between 650 AD to 900 AD larger than the walled medieval city.

Samples of bone are to be sent for radio carbon dating to find out the age of the remains.
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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 08-10-2011 18:09    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm, while I'm with the church regarding the reburials maybe these people worshipped Wotan.

Bicester Anglo-Saxon skeletons re-interred

The remains were all buried in one wicker coffin

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Fifteen Anglo-Saxon skeletons unearthed in Oxfordshire last year have been re-interred in a church memorial garden.

A requiem mass was held on Saturday before a wicker coffin containing all the remains was buried at the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Bicester.

The Auxiliary Bishop of Birmingham, whose diocese covers Bicester, led the Roman Catholic ceremony.

The burial led to a disagreement with the church and local archaeologists, who wanted the bones put in a museum.

The remains date from AD640 to 685

The skeletons, exhumed from what is thought to be an old Christian burial ground, were reinterred to respect the original burial rites.

James Lewis of Thames Valley Archaeological Services said: "As archaeologists we'd much rather they had gone into a museum, which would be available for future analysis.

"There are other ways of showing respect other than reburying."

The archaeologists' case went to the Ministry Of Justice but it was ruled the bones were not of national significance and so could be buried.

Speaking after the ceremony the Auxiliary Bishop of Birmingham, William Kenney, said of the Anglo-Saxon deceased: "These are the remains they have left on earth and they should be treated with dignity."

The remains inside the coffin have been buried in plastic bags in case archaeologists need access to them in future.

The skeletons are largely female and over the age of 35, with the remains of just one male discovered.

Isotope analysis revealed they were originally from the UK and had a lot of fish in their diet.
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What a Cad!
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PostPosted: 24-11-2011 10:11    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked couple find four bodies under their patio... and discover they are living on top of a 1,400-year-old Anglo Saxon burial ground
By John Stevens
Last updated at 1:46 AM on 24th November 2011

When builders digging up Stephen and Nicky West’s patio for an extension came to the back door clutching a human skull, the couple were understandably alarmed.
But fear turned to fascination after experts said four bodies unearthed by the workmen came from a burial site dating back as much as 1,400 years to the middle Saxon period.

Archaeologists believe the skeletons may have been there since 650AD and are part of a much larger burial ground under the home in the Warwickshire village of Ratley.
They say the remains of two women, a man and a child aged between ten and 12 provide an insight into an obscure period.
Analysis of the bones shows that the population at the time suffered from periods of malnourishment and would have been in near-constant pain because of infections.

Mr West, 55, said: ‘It was a bit of a shock to find out I’ve been living above an ancient burial site all these years.
‘It’s a privilege to be so close to such amazing history – and as long as they don’t wake me up, I’m quite happy for it to stay that way.’

He added: ‘We had builders in as we were extending the back of our house, and I heard one of them knock on the door.
'I was absolutely amazed when I saw a workman standing holding a skull – he just said “I think there’s something you should see”.
‘I was praying that the bodies were really old and we hadn’t stumbled across something more grisly.
‘But the archaeologists came over within a couple of hours and said it was quite likely there were a lot more bodies under the house.’

Mr West said he had joked at the start of the building work that they might find something from the English Civil War because their house is near the site of the battle of Edgehill, where the army of Charles I clashed with Parliamentarians in 1642.
But the remarkable archaeological find pre-dates that by nearly 1,000 years.
Carbon-dating from two of the skeletons showed that they died between 650 and 820 AD.
England was then divided into a number of kingdoms and the area may have been a frontier in another war between the Saxon kingdom of the Hwicce and the eventually dominant Anglian kingdom of Mercia.

Stuart Palmer, of Archaeology Warwickshire, said: ‘The discovery of this previously unsuspected burial ground is an extremely rare and important addition to what has previously been an archaeologically invisible period of Warwickshire’s history.’

Mr West, who runs an online bird feed company, said further digs may be limited.
‘We’re interested to know what’s down there, but to be honest we’d like to keep the bit of the house we live in standing where it is, so we won’t be searching too hard.’

The early Anglo-Saxons founded much of England as we know it, including developing systems of justice and currency.
They ruled England through the upheavals of the Viking age right up to the Norman conquest of 1066.

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Psycho Punk
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PostPosted: 03-12-2011 18:02    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yorkshire Dales National Park reveals Anglo Saxon building

Items dating back as far as 6,000 years ago were found in the ruins of the Selside building

Unusual stone circle investigated
Dales dig turns up surprises

The ruins of what is thought to be an Anglo Saxon building have been revealed by amateur archaeologists in part of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

The stone building, near Selside, North Yorkshire, was uncovered by members of the Ingleborough Archaeology Group.

Samples of charcoal found in the soil floor were carbon dated. That revealed they date from between 660 and 780 AD.

Robert White, from the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, said the building was an "exciting" discovery.

"The National Park has a wealth of archaeological sites, but very few have been excavated and even fewer since scientific dating techniques became widely available," he said.

"This is the first building in the national park that is firmly dated to the 7th Century and is one of only a handful in the north.

"The results help fill in a picture of how life and farming communities developed in the Dales, and shows just how much unrecorded archaeology there still is."

Early Neolithic

Dr David Johnson, who supervised the excavation, said items from an even earlier period were also found in the remains of the building.

"We found small pieces of chert, a dark, rock-like flint that was knapped to make small tools," he said.

"These are likely to date from the early Neolithic period, possibly 6,000 years ago and it was probably pure chance that the pieces found their way into the building," he said.

"They may have been trapped in turf used for sealing the walls or roof of the building."

The site where the building was found has now been backfilled and the turf re-instated to protect it.
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PostPosted: 16-03-2012 10:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cross and bed found in Anglo-Saxon grave shed new light on 'dark ages'
Archaeologists in Cambridge thrilled to discover grave with body of young woman on a bed with an ornate gold cross
Maev Kennedy
The Guardian, Friday 16 March 2012

The dead are often described as sleeping, but archaeologists in Cambridgeshire have uncovered a bed on which the body of a young Anglo-Saxon woman has lain for more than 1,300 years, a regal gold and garnet cross on her breast.
Three more graves, of two younger women and an older person whose sex has not yet been identified, were found nearby.

Forensic work on the first woman's bones suggests she was about 16, with no obvious explanation for her early death. Although she was almost certainly a Christian, buried with the beautiful cross stitched into place on her gown, she was buried according to ancient pagan tradition with some treasured possessions including an iron knife and a chatelaine, a chain hanging from her belt, and some glass beads which were probably originally in a purse that has rotted away.

The field where she lay, now being developed for housing at the edge of the village of Trumpington on the outskirts of Cambridge, hid a previously unknown Anglo-Saxon settlement. It may have been a wealthy monastic settlement – more of it probably lies under the neighbouring farm and farmyard – although there are no records of any church earlier than the 12th century village church which overlooks the site.

Pectoral crosses from the dawn of Christianity in England, and bed burials - where the body was laid on a real bed, now traced only by its iron supports, centuries after the timber rotted – are both extremely rare.

[Cambridge University video describing the discovery of the graves]

There is only one previous record of the two together, a grave found at Ixworth in Suffolk in the 19th century. The excavation records for that find are patchy, whereas archaeologists from Cambridge university will be working for years to recover every scrap of information from the Trumpington site.

A gold and garnet pectoral cross of such quality, the most beautiful and sophisticated examples of Anglo-Saxon metalwork like the contemporary jewels found in the Staffordshire Hoard or the Sutton Hoo burial, could only have been owned by a member of an aristocratic or even royal family. Only five have been found, one in the coffin of St Cuthbert. In some contemporary pieces the gems came from as far as India, and the gold from melted down coins from Constantinople.

Sam Lucy, an Anglo-Saxon expert from Newnham College Cambridge, who helped excavate the site, said the small loops on the arms of the Trumpington cross, worn shiny by rubbing against the fabric, showed the woman probably wore the cross during her short life, at a time when the Anglo-Saxon aristocrats were gradually converting to the powerful new religion.

The find sheds further light on a period once known dismissively as the dark ages, now being revealed by archaeology as a time of superb craftsmanship and complex international trade routes.

While the body of the prince who was buried at Sutton Hoo was laid in a ship under a great mound of earth, and the warrior at Prittlewell in an oak plank chamber hung with his weapons and treasures, a small group of bed burials have been discovered, all believed to be of women, all from the same region and the same late 7th century date.

Lucy said the beds may well have been the ones the women used in life, as they are all believed to be pieces of real furniture, not made specially for a funeral ceremony. At Trumpington the evidence suggests the bed was lowered first into the ground, and then the body, uncoffined, laid on it.

Scraps of textile found under the chain may reveal what she wore when she went to her grave. The same Anglo-Saxon word, leger, can mean either a bed or a grave.

"It is striking that such a young woman was of such importance to own and be buried with an object as valuable as the cross. And it's almost unnerving that there was an important Anglo-Saxon settlement so close to us of which we had absolutely no records," she said.

The fields had already yielded a wealth of iron age and earlier material but the Anglo-Saxon finds were a complete surprise. The bones and teeth are in good condition, so further scientific tests should be able to establish where the little group came from, what their diet was, and whether they are related - though it will probably always be a mystery how they ended up, so young, buried in a field in Cambridgeshire.

The cross is going through a treasure valuation and inquest process, but the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge hopes to acquire and display it.
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PostPosted: 25-06-2012 20:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cow and woman found in Cambridgeshire Anglo-Saxon dig

Archaeologists described the find as "unique in Europe"

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Archaeologists excavating an Anglo-Saxon cemetery in Cambridgeshire say the discovery of a woman buried with a cow is a "genuinely bizarre" find.

The grave was uncovered in Oakington by students from Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Central Lancashire.

At first it was thought the animal skeleton was a horse.

Student Jake Nuttall said: "Male warriors might be buried with horses, but a woman and a cow is new to us."

He added: "We were excited when we thought we had a horse, but realising it was a cow made it even more bizarre."

Co-director of the excavation, Dr Duncan Sayer, from the University of Central Lancashire, said: "Animal burials are extremely rare, anyway.

Grave goods including brooches indicated the woman was of high status
"There are only 31 horse burials in Britain and they are all with men.

"This is the first animal to be discovered with a woman from this period - the late 5th Century - and it's really interesting that it's a cow, a symbol of economic and domestic wealth and power.

"It's also incredibly early to find any grave of a woman buried with such obvious wealth."

'Unique' burial
The skeleton was found with grave goods including brooches and hundreds of amber and decorated glass beads.

"She also had a complete chatelaine [keychain] set, which is an iron girdle and a symbol of her high status," Dr Sayer said.

"It indicates she had access to the community's wealth.

"She is almost certainly a regional elite - a matriarchal figure buried with the objects that describe her identity to the people who attended her funeral."

Joint director Dr Faye Simpson, from Manchester Metropolitan, said: "A cow is a big thing to give up.

"It's a source of food and something that would have been very expensive to keep, so to sacrifice it would be a big decision.

"They would have wanted to give her something really important to show respect and they wouldn't have done that for just anybody.

"That's why we don't find cows with burials," she said.

Dr Sayer added: "The cow burial is unique in Europe which makes this an incredibly exciting and important find.

"I don't think I'll find anything as significant as this again in my lifetime."
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PostPosted: 06-08-2012 21:43    Post subject: Reply with quote

Soldiers uncover 27 ancient bodies on Salisbury Plain

All the burials at the mound, which was under attack from burrowing badgers, were excavated by soldiers from The Rifles

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Soldiers have unearthed 27 bodies during an archaeological dig on Salisbury Plain.

Troops from The Rifles, injured in Afghanistan, were excavating the 6th Century burial site at Barrow Clump, as part of a programme of rehabilitation.

The bodies, including Anglo-Saxon warriors, had been buried with a range of personal possessions.

Rifleman Mike Kelly said: "As a modern day warrior, unearthing the remains... fills me with overwhelming respect."

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

I have been to war myself and I can imagine what the soldier would have felt as he went into battle”

Rifleman Mike Kelly
1 Rifles
Barrow Clump, a 40m (131ft) barrow, is sited on the Defence Training Estate on Salisbury Plain near the village of Figheldean.

According to county archaeologist, Melanie Pomeroy-Kellinger, it is the only remaining "upstanding Bronze Age mound" of a group of 20 mounds.

"All the others were ploughed flat but this one managed to survive," she said.

"But there are at least 70 badger sets - and badgers have been attacking the barrow and chucking things out.

"So a decision was taken to completely excavate what's left of it."

A project was set up by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), English Heritage and Wessex Archaeology for a team from The Rifles to excavate all the burials at the monument.

Continue reading the main story
Discovering the dead

Burial mounds, also known as barrows in England, are artificial hills of earth and stones built over the remains of the dead
They were usually reserved for members of the social elite or Anglo-Saxon royalty - ordinary people were usually cremated or buried in more humble graves
They were first constructed in about 4,000 BC up to the late pre-Christian era. England's most famous barrow is at Sutton Hoo in Suffolk
Mound One at Sutton Hoo was excavated in 1939 by Basil Brown, who discovered a lavish tomb and the remains of a 90ft (27m) long ship
Archaeologists believe it is the tomb of Raedwald, leader of the Wuffing dynasty of the East Angles, dated to AD 625
Source: BBC Religion

How do archaeologists make ancient bones give up their secrets?
By the end of July, artefacts uncovered included shield bosses, brooches, amber and glass beads, spear heads and a wooden drinking vessel.

'Sign of respect'
"I never imaged that we would uncover such amazing artefacts," said Rifleman Mike Kelly from 1 Rifles.

"I discovered a warrior that had been buried with his shield placed across his face, which I believe to be a sign of respect.

"I have been to war myself and I can imagine what the soldier would have felt as he went into battle."

The artefacts are due to taken to Wiltshire Heritage Museum in Devizes.

Rowan Kendrick, from 5 Rifles, said: "My best subject at school was history and I really enjoyed school trips to museums.

"But I can't believe that when I visit the Wiltshire Heritage Museum I will be looking at artefacts that I have found."
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PostPosted: 10-08-2012 11:01    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a short article on page 10 of this month's Current Archaeology about this too. I typed this out because as far as I'm aware they don't put the magazine online so any mistakes are mine. There's probably something in British Archaeology magazine too but I haven't read that yet....:

...The 6th-century inhumation cemetery at Barrow Clump is a Scheduled Ancient Monument, on English Heritage's register of at-risk sites due to extensive damage by badgers.

Soldiers from the Rifles have excavated and recorded 24 burials of warriors, women, and children, with three shield bosses, five spearheads, and a spear ferrule showing that some of the men were buried with weapons.

Together with glass and amber beads, a Roman broach, and Anglo-Saxon square-headed and disc brooches, the star find so far has been a small wooden drinking vessel, bound with bronze and remarkably well preserved.

Corporal Steve Winterton of 1st Battalion The Rifles said the project had inspired him and seven comrades to enrol at Leicester University to study archaeology later this year...

Obtain a copy here:
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PostPosted: 08-09-2012 18:41    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ipswich waterfront Saxon dig unearths 300 graves

A team of 38 people is excavating the site on Great Whip Street

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An archaeological dig at Ipswich waterfront has unearthed 300 skeletons and evidence of an old church.

The excavation is taking place before 386 homes are built on Great Whip Street by Genesis Housing Association.

It is believed the Saxons occupied the site in the 7th Century and burials are believed to have taken place there until the 16th Century.

Rubbish pits were also uncovered during the dig, led by Oxford Archaeology and Pre-Construct Archaeology.

Paul Murray, senior project officer with Oxford Archaeology, said: "A certain amount of historical research was done before we got here, so we had a general idea of what to find, but this has exceeded our expectations.

Church 'robbed'
"We had evidence that a church was in the area, but we've uncovered its location, so it's a significant find.

The graves and burial mounds have revealed 300 skeletons so far
"Many churches fall into disuse, deteriorate, whatever's left is robbed for the materials and it falls out of living memory."

Seventh Century burial mounds have been found at one end of the 2.8 acre (1.15 hectare) site, while the 9th/10th Century church and its graveyard were found at the other end.

Helen Webb, who is overseeing the study of the skeletons, said: "We're got the full range of ages, but it's the normal cemetery population with lots of the very young and very old dying.

"Once they're excavated, the skeletons will be analysed to estimate age, sex and look for joint disease, scurvy, rickets and that sort of thing.

"Then they will be re-buried in consecrated ground as close to this site as possible."

'Paupers' cemetery'
The graves have already revealed cases of leprosy and syphilis, but no jewellery or other artefacts have been found.

Mr Murray said: "More commonly you'd have shroud pins, but we've not had them either, so we're assuming it's a paupers' cemetery."

Genesis, which is paying for the archaeological work, is due to begin building the new houses and apartments in October, covering up the former graves.

Mr Murray said: "There's a certain amount of disappointment, but archaeology is a process of preservation by record and the work will add to the overall knowledge of the history of Ipswich."
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