Monday, 7 October 2013

1,500 year old massacre found in Sweden

Archaeologists at Lund University have found what they describe as a moment frozen in time by a brutal massacre, leaving a fort untouched since the 5th century.
1,500 year old massacre found in Sweden
An archaeologist works to uncover one of the skeletons found lying within the
5th-century fort on the Swedish island of Öland [Credit: Lund University]
“There are so many bodies, it must have been a very violent and well organized raid”, says Helene Wilhelmson, a PhD student in historical osteology, who was astounded when the skeletons kept emerging from the Sandby fort site on Öland, an island just off the Swedish coast.

During the Migration Period in Scandinavia it was customary to burn the dead, and very few uncremated remains have previously been recovered. The archaeological site therefore offers important clues about the period, and five bodies have been discovered in one house alone. Human bones have been found in other parts of the fort, making it highly likely that many more bodies are yet to be dug out.

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