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Neolithic lake dwelling found in Zurich reconstructed

The archaeological discoveries made under the so-called 'place of the Sechseläuten (festival)' in Zurich were so numerous that assessment work lasted five years. The results now allow us to imagine life in a lake village some 5,000 years ago.

Neolithic lake dwelling found in Zurich reconstructed
Reconstruction of the Neolithic lake dwelling site discovered in Zurich [Credit: RFJ]
These are the most important excavations of a Neolithic lake dwelling site in the last fifteen years in Switzerland, said district officials in a statement on Thursday.

No less than 20,000 house stilts or piles, 20,000 animal bones and a myriad of stone tools have been analysed.

The specialists were able to deduce not only the layout of the villages, where and how domesticated animals were kept and raised, but also the overall material culture of the time. In addition, the examination of parasites also showed that the hygiene conditions were poor.

The most spectacular discovery is probably a wooden door which has proved to be the second most ancient of the world.

The site dating from between 3,234 and 2,727 BC was discovered in 2010, during the construction of a car park under the new Sechseläuten square. The town had then conducted important excavations which lasted nine months and cost 6 million francs.

The discoveries are kept in the premises of the archaeologist in charge of the project.

Source: RFJ [March 15, 2017]

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