(ORDO NEWS) — In the UK, archaeologists excavating a future tunnel near Stonehenge have found traces of human presence spanning about 7,000 years. Of particular interest was the mysterious slate object, created about 4,500 years ago.
A summary of the large study has been posted on the Wessex Archeology project website. It is being supported by the Wiltshire Archaeological Survey and members of the A303 Project Advisory Group.
The main task of archaeologists is to conduct an examination – the fact is that a tunnel is planned to be built near the famous Stonehenge. It is important that not only this monument is not damaged, but also archaeological sites, possibly hidden underground in this area.
So far, archaeologists have carried out only part of the planned work, but have already made many discoveries. They reportedly found evidence of human activity over a long period of time. Moreover, the most ancient of them can exceed 7000 years.
So, as part of a preliminary assessment of the sites planned for construction from the town of Amesbury to Berwick Down, Neolithic burials were discovered, as well as ancient tools and ceramics.
The object found in the woman’s grave aroused the greatest interest. The latter died between the ages of 20 and 30. According to preliminary data, the age of the burial is about 4500 years ago. Scientists have dated it from other items found in the grave. It is believed that it was then that new types of ceramics appeared in Britain.
By the way, during the same period of time, several circles of blue stone were built at Stonehenge. As for the mysterious object, it is made of slate. According to researchers, its age coincides with the age of the burial. The purpose of this artifact has not yet been established.
“This is a unique item: we have never seen anything like it before,” says Dr. Matt Leavers, consultant archaeologist at Wessex Archeology. “For now, we can only speculate what it was. It may have been a ceremonial bowl, deliberately damaged before how they put her in the grave. But it could also be the knob of a ceremonial staff or club.”
Another mysterious find is the original C-shaped structure of the Bronze Age, the purpose of which scientists have not yet been able to explain. It may have been part of an ancient workshop. The strange structure is located in an area that can be called industrial.
A large amount of fired flint was found here. This indicates the possible mass production of flint tools and other artifacts.
By the way, flint tools were found in the graves of the Neolithic, they lay next to fragments of pottery and animal bones. In one of the Neolithic burials, the remains of a baby were found, buried together with a simple primitive vessel.
“These preliminary studies gave us the opportunity to learn more about the landscape that existed here and immerse ourselves in the lives of those who have lived here for thousands of years,” says Matt Leavers. “We found some traces of their activities and personal belongings of those people. will change our ideas about this place, but new knowledge will help us to “finish” the picture that we already have.”
By the way, the start of the main field work is scheduled for the end of spring this year. It is assumed that 100-150 archaeologists will take part in them, and the excavations themselves will last about a year and a half – until the start of construction in 2023.
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