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Iron Age treasure hoard found in Anglesey

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An Iron Age hoard of gold coins found in Anglesey has been declared treasure by the HM Senior Coroner for North West Wales.

The hoard was found near the village of Llangoed, located on the island of Anglesey in north-west Wales.

Upon determining the significance of the find, detectorists, Peter Cockton, Lloyd Roberts and Tim Watson, reported the discovery to the Portable Antiquities Scheme, a programme to record the increasing numbers of small finds of archaeological interest found by members of the public in the UK.

The hoard consists of 15 gold coins known as staters, which were struck between 60 BC and 20 BC at three different mints across what is now present-day Lincolnshire. They are attributed to the Corieltavi tribe, who inhabited the geographical area of the modern East Midlands during the late Iron Age. The Corieltauvi were primarily an agricultural society that started minting inscribed coins during the early 1st century BC.

Sean Derby, Historic Environment Record Archaeologist and PAS Cymru Finds Recording Officer at Gwynedd Archaeological Trust, said: “This hoard is a fantastic example of the rich archaeological landscape that exists in North-West Wales. While the immediate vicinity of the find did not yield any clues as to the find’s origin, the findspot lies in an area of known prehistoric and early Roman activity and helps increase our understanding of this region. I’m very grateful to the finder and landowner for reporting the finds and allowing us to visit the site.”

The design of each of the coins is very stylised, drawing inspiration from the gold coins of Phillip II of Macedonia. Macedonian coins depict the bust of Apollo on the front (obverse) and a chariot drawn by two horses with a charioteer on the back (reverse).

In the case of the staters, the obverse exhibits Apollo’s wreath and hair in an artistic manner, while the reverse showcases a stylized triangular-headed horse, accompanied by a variety of surrounding symbols.

Amgueddfa Cymru

Header Image Credit : Amgueddfa Cymru

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Archaeology

Gold foils discovered in Ancient Egyptian tombs

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Archaeologists from the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities have discovered rare gold foils during excavations at Tel El-Dir.

Tel El-Dir is a burial complex in the area of Egypt’s Damietta Governorate. The site contains various burials and tombs from the 26th Dynasty (664 BC to 525 BC), the last native dynasty of ancient Egypt before the Persian conquest in 525 BC.

Excavations of 63 mud brick tombs and pit burials have revealed a large collection of funerary offerings, including rare gold foils depicting Ancient Egyptian deities, and foils shaped like symbols associated with good fortune and protection.

The team also found foils in the shape of tongues, a tradition that enabled the deceased to speak before the court of Osiris in the afterlife.

Image Credit : Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities

The discovery follows on from a previous haul in 2022, where archaeologists excavating at Tel El-Dir found gold foils depicting Isis, Bastet and Horus (in the form of a winged falcon), as well as foils in various shapes.

According to a press statement from the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, many of the tombs contained funeral pyres, imported and local ceramics, and Ushabti statues (figurines placed with the deceased to serve them in the afterlife).

The excavation has also yielded a large number of funerary offerings, such as protective amulets, figurines, coins, and a mirror.

Speaking on the finds, the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities explained that the objects confirm that Damietta was a centre of trade during ancient times, and provides new insights into the burial practices during the 26th Dynasty.

Header Image Credit : Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities

Sources : Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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New findings at world-famous Mesolithic site of Star Carr

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A recent study by archaeologists from the University of York and the University of Newcastle has revealed new insights into the domestic activities of the Mesolithic inhabitants of Star Carr.

Star Carr is one of the most significant and informative Mesolithic sites in Europe, which during prehistoric times was situated near the outflow at the western end of a palaeolake known as Lake Flixton.

Today, Star Carr lies at the eastern end of the Vale of Pickering near Scarborough in North Yorkshire, England.

Using microscopic evidence from the use of stone tools, the researchers found that a range of domestic activities took place in three previously excavated structures. This includes activities related to working with bone, antler, hide, meat, and fish.

The study, published in the journal PLOS One, used a combination of spatial and microwear data to provide different scales of interpretation: from individual tool use to patterns of activity across the three structures.

Dr Jess Bates, from the University of York’s Department of Archaeology said: “We found that there were distinct areas for different types of activity, so the messy activity involving butchery, for example, was done in what appears to be a designated space, and separate to the ‘cleaner’ tasks such as crafting bone and wooden objects, tools or jewellery.

“This was surprising as hunter-gatherers are known for being very mobile, as they would have to travel out to find food, and yet they have a very organised approach to creating not just a house but a sense of home.

“This new work, on these very early forms of houses suggests, that these dwellings didn’t just serve a practical purpose in the sense of having a shelter from the elements, but that certain social norms of a home were observed that are not massively dissimilar to how we organise our homes today.”

Header Image Credit : Shutterstock

Sources : Bates J, Milner N, Conneller C, Little A (2024) Spatial organisation within the earliest evidence of post-built structures in Britain. PLoS ONE 19(7): e0306908. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0306908

This content was originally published on www.heritagedaily.com – © 2023 – HeritageDaily

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