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Posts Tagged ‘bronze age’

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Photo: Crown Office Communications/PA
These Bronze Age objects were found buried underground by a Scotsman with a metal detector who was obliged to work near home during the pandemic.

And speaking of discoveries made when plague regulations keep folks close to home … how about this significant find by a Scotsman with a metal detector!

As Amy Walker reports at the Guardian, “Metal detectorists, it’s fair to say, have had a good lockdown. Last month it emerged that amateur treasure hunters had unearthed dozens of rare finds in their back gardens while restrictions kept them at home.

“Now a detectorist in the Scottish Borders has uncovered a haul of bronze age artefacts – including a complete horse harness and preserved leather and wood – in what is described as a ‘nationally significant’ discovery.

“Among items also pulled from the ground after Mariusz Stepien’s initial find in a field near Peebles was a sword dated from 1000 to 900BC.

“Stepien had been metal detecting with friends on 21 June when he came across a bronze object buried half a metre underground. As he received such strong signals from the earth around the object, he reported the find to the Treasure Trove unit.

“The moment of the find was emotional.

‘I felt from the very beginning that this might be something spectacular and I’ve just discovered a big part of Scottish history. I was over the moon, shaking with happiness,’ he said.

“Archeologists spent 22 days investigating the site, during which Stepien and his friends camped in the field. ‘We wanted to be a part of the excavation from the beginning to the end,’ he said. ‘Every day there were new objects coming out which changed the context of the find, every day we learned something new. I’m so pleased that the earth revealed to me something that was hidden for more than 3,000 years.’

“The archeologists found the sword, still in its scabbard, which had been adorned with straps, buckles and chariot-wheel axle caps, alongside remnants of a decorative ‘rattle pendant’ that would have hung off the horse’s harness – the first to be found in Scotland and only the third in the UK.

“Treasure Trove, which is overseeing the recovery and assessment of the find, said the soil had preserved the leather and wood found among the items, allowing experts to trace the straps that connected the rings and buckles together to make the harness, something that has ‘never been seen before in Britain.’ …

“With detecting in the open off limits between March and May, many amateurs looked closer to home during lockdown … Peter Reavill, a finds liaison officer from Shropshire, said: ‘With so many people spending so much more time in their gardens, there have been some really interesting finds. …’

“Simon Maslin, a finds liaison officer in Surrey and Hampshire, [said], “It’s the stuff that appears more humdrum that actually tends to be more archeologically important.’ ”

More at the Guardian, here.

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I love the family compound belonging to our hosts, with its birches, lupines, red cottages, and blue doors. Stuga 40 and I took photos there and at the nearby Vitlycke museum, a World Heritage site, where we saw ancient petroglyphs and a Bronze Age garden.

Near the garden were goats chewing their cud and two different kinds of shelters replicating life before 500 BC. It didn’t look luxurious. My photo of  Bronze Age instruments, below, is especially for Modern Age musician Will McC.

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