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Category: Bronze Age (Page 1 of 9)

Ancient Irish King sacrificed to the Land for his people

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Eamonn Kelly, Keeper of Irish Antiquities at the National Museum of Ireland, who has worked on all the major bog body finds, theorizes that the oldest Bog Body – Cashel Man, about 4,000 years old – met his end in a form of sacrifice reports Irish Central.

Early Bronze Age death means Cashel Man is the oldest Bog Body

Found in a bog in County Laois in 2011, the Cashel Man is the oldest found bog body. From the early Bronze Age, about 4,000 years ago, he is believed to be the oldest bog body anywhere in the world. He was found between territories and within sight of a hill where he may have been crowned king.

Cashel Man suffered violent injuries to his back and a sword or axe wound on his arm, but this level of violence is not unusual for bog bodies. Keeper of Irish Antiquities, Eamonn Kelly, who has worked on all the major bog body finds, theorizes that the bog bodies died violent deaths as a form of sacrifice. He explained to the BBC:

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Amazing Druid sickle found as votive offering in East Sussex

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A late Bronze Age sickle was found at the Shinewater Park Sacred Water Site, Sussex, England in 1995 as we reported earlier. The following is an abbreviated extract from the superlative report about the conservation undertaken on the sickle by the specialist form the British Museum, Ann Brysbaert. A thoroughly researched conservation plan was required in order to meet the display conditions of the receiving museum and to meet the high standards required by the specialists involved in the treatment of this unique sickle.
The site was discovered during the excavation of a lake which forms part of a new community park being developed by Eastbourne Borough Council. The object was found in a peat environment and was block lifted from site in this soil.

Some of the remains found on site include post alignments and other wooden structures, a skeleton of a child, antler artefacts and several copper alloy objects, including the sickle. The latter finds and the post alignments have suggested to some a comparison with the site of Flag Fen in Cambridgeshire, according to M. Taylor, an independent wood specialist (personal communication). Together with the other copper alloy objects, the sickle was recorded to have lain horizontally in the acidic peat. The pottery from the site gives a date around 800-600 BC, which is Late Bronze Age or Early Iron Age.

Object description and technology

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Early Celtic Women of Ireland

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It is not known when or how the Irish language came to Ireland. It belongs to a group of languages called Celtic, once widely spoken in parts of the Continent and in Britain. Those areas also shared certain cultural characteristics in the centuries before and after the time of Christ.

The concept of Celticism is quite vague however and some modern archaeologists and historians argue heatedly about the means by which Ireland came to have a Celtic language and some aspects of Celtic culture. They have not yet been able to agree on how to interpret the sources available.

Greek and Roman writers describe early Celtic women as courageous and aggressive

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Irish Heritage Survey results

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The Irish people have just undertaken a survey whose results were released to coincide with National Heritage week. The results are somewhat surprising. Chief among the Irish heritage locations and landmarks respondents were most embarrassed at not having yet visited was the Hill of Tara. Listeners to our stories know how central and important the Hill of Tara is to the Heritage of the Irish Celts. The three most important sites voted for were Newgrange, the Burren and Glendalough in Co. Wicklow.

The Irish Times Heritage Survey

The Irish Times – Friday, August 26, 2011, reported:

The three most popular heritage sites are Newgrange Co Meath, the Burren in Co Clare and Glendalough in Co Wicklow.

That is according to a new survey released to coincide with National Heritage week.
However, while 450 of the 600 people interviewed claimed heritage was important for tourism, many respondents expressed some shame at not having visited popular sites.

Irish People embarrassed

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Oldest Welsh tree was alive 3,000 years before the birth of Christ!

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A tiny village is believed to be home to Britain’s oldest tree – a yew that first took took root more than 5,000 years ago reports the Mail Online. The majestic yew that lives in in a Welsh churchyard was 3,000 years old when Jesus Christ was born, according to tree ageing experts. Experts have run tests on the tree in the St Cynog’s churchyard at Defynnog near Sennybridge, Powys, including DNA and ring-dating. The species is common across European churchyards because its evergreen leaves and longevity is a symbol of Christ’s transcendence of death.

Britain’s Oldest Welsh Tree

There are hundreds of ancient yew trees dating back at least 600 years across Britain, but the 60-foot-wide giant Welsh tree at St Cynog’s is believed to be the most ancient.
Tree ageing expert Janis Fry, 64, who has studied yews for more than 40 years, said:

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Thornborough Henges: How YOU can help preserve them with a few words

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The Heritage Trust Blog reports : CAMPAIGNERS say allowing people access to a set of ancient monuments in North Yorkshire whose importance is said to rival Stonehenge is crucial to safeguarding their future. The Thornborough Heritage Trust has been set up to protect and raise awareness of the six “henges” and other Neolithic and Bronze Age sites on fields between Bedale and Ripon, with one of its first  objectives being to open them up to visitors.Dr Jan Harding, one of the trust’s founders and a senior archaeology lecturer at Newcastle University, said:

Despite being of unique cultural value and being described by English Heritage as the most important prehistoric site between Stonehenge and the Orkneys, it is closed to visitors, lacks educational information and sits in an extensively quarried landscape. At the moment, there isn’t even a display board. Getting some kind of formal access for the public is vital.”

It’s a while since we at Heritage Action went there (as part of our campaign against Tarmac PLC’s application to quarry its surroundings) but we do recall it was very visitor-unfriendly with no signage, parking or access. We also remember two more things that might be helpful:

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Celtic Research exploring Celtic Origins reaches its third year!

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The ‘Ancient Britain and the Atlantic Zone’ project, based at the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies at Aberystwyth, held its third annual forum at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff on Saturday 4 June. So reads the ground-breaking news from the University of Wales.

An audience of over a hundred heard experts presenting cutting-edge Celtic research in the fields of archaeology, genetics and linguistics. Project leader Professor John Koch began by setting out the implications of his ground-breaking work on the Tartessian inscriptions of the south-west Iberian Peninsula, dating back as far as the 8th century BC, which he argues to be the earliest attested Celtic language.

Tartessian Language provides key to Celtic Research

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Iron Age Warfare in Britain – Part 1 By Sue Carter

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A fabulous informative article written about Iron Age Warfare by Sue Carter appeared in Heritage Daily recently. We enjoyed it so much, we knew our readers would find it fascinating too. Here is a taster. Enjoy  :)

On whatever pretext you stir them up, you will have them ready to face danger, even if they have nothing on their side but their own strength and courage –Strabo, (64 BC – 24 AD).

Almost all of the Gauls are of tall stature, fair and ruddy, terrible for the fierceness of their eyes, fond of quarrelling and of overbearing insolence – Ammianus, (4th Century AD).

The two quotes were written by classical authors describing the Gauls of France as known at the time. Strabo would have been aware of Caesar’s excursion to Britain and possibly have read his account of the people he had been in contact with. Diodorus Siculus (V 21, 3-6) describes Britain as,

 ‘Inhabited by tribes that are aboriginal, and in their lifestyle preserve the old ways; for they make use of chariots in the wars….’

(Diodorus cited in Ireland 2003).

Due to Britain’s isolation it is possible that many of the ‘old ways’ were still being followed.

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Bronze Age site discovered 10 years ago in Shinewater Park area to rival Flag-Fen!

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Video of Shinewater Park Sacred Water site

As well as being one of the most beautiful parks in Eastbourne, underneath the park, hidden from view, is the largest bronze age village to be discovered in Europe. It is believed that the village is built on a huge oak platform covering 500m.sq. and coming of this platform are a number of causeways going towards the Downs and Hastings, these causeways alone are unusual because it would normally be just mud tracks leading to a village, but in the case of these causeways they are massive, up to 8m wide. This implies that this village was of huge importance, perhaps as a dock or a large farming area.

A tiny fraction of the platform was discovered while excavating for the lake and in this small section all sorts of pottery and artefacts were found including the Sickle you can see below. Another amazing coincidence about the site is that everything is extremely well preserved. Not only are we finding pottery and metal but also the wood and even material used over 3000 years ago. The magnitude of this find cannot not be over stated, so why aren’t they excavating the site and finding out more about the site?  [source]

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Wild Rabbits lead to massive finds at Land’s End in Cornwall

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A day of digging by three expert archaeologists has unearthed more than 60 objects from a one-metre square excavation at Land’s End reports The Falmouth Packet.

Wild Rabbits lead to massive finds!

In February the wild rabbits at Land’s End accidentally uncovered a collection of flint scrapers and arrowheads while burrowing their warrens. This discovery prompted Land’s End to commission a thorough archaeological investigation of their land and now the finds discovered and compiled by Big Heritage UK have revealed some further startling results.

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