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More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire

The body of young man buried with spears sticking out of his body ‘like a hedgehog’ is one of the more bizarre findings of a recently discovered Iron Age burial site in Yorkshire.

More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire
The young man buried with spears sticking out of his body 
[Credit: MAP Archaeological Practice]
The Pocklington site, which is now recognised as being on international importance, is being hailed as one of the largest and most significant Iron Age findings. And historians say the discovery may shape our understanding of this period in time.

More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire
The Pocklington settlement [Credit: MAP Archaeological Practice]
The ‘speared burial’ figure was found amongst 75 Square Barrows which contained skeletons dating back as far as 800 BC to 00 AD. At this plot archaeologists found a young man in his late teens or early 20s who has been laid to rest with his sword at his side. But before his grave was covered he had half a dozen spears pressed ritualistically into him.

More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire
A bronze bracelet with coral decoration [Credit: MAP Archaeological Practice]
Paula Ware, Managing Director at MAP Archaeological Practice, who revealed the site, described how this would have produced a mound with the spear shafts protruding like “the spikes of a hedgehog” visible for years afterwards.

More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire
A skeleton that was found at the settlement [Credit: MAP Archaeological Practice]
Other findings included one woman who had died in childbirth and a child who was buried with a bangle on each of it is limbs. Several people were interred without any accompaniment but some had a variety of grave goods, including brooches, bangles, pendants, glass beads, pots and prehistoric weapons.

More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire
An iron knife [Credit: MAP Archaeological Practice]
Paula Ware said: “We are hoping these findings shed light on the ritual of Iron Age burial – and as we can assume from the shield and sword burials, these were significant members of society, so our understanding of culture and key figures of the time could be really enhanced. On the whole this is a hugely important discovery. We will understand much more once the full analytical process has been completed – but as with any significant finding, this will take time to process."

More on Iron Age village uncovered in East Yorkshire
A spearhead from the site [Credit: MAP Archaeological Practice]
"The findings reveal a mixture of men, women and children from the ‘Arras Culture’ who lived within the local area over two and a half thousand years ago. A major focus of the archaeological analysis will concentrate on whether the population is indigenous or migrants from the continent. 
The analytical process will also reveal how those buried at the site died, what stresses the body had been place in during their life span and whether or not they are related in any way."

The site was discovered by one of Yorkshire’s largest house builders, David Wilson homes, who will press on with a new development now the archaeology has been completed.

Author: Lexi Finnigan | Source: The Telegraph [March 19, 2016]
TANN

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