6,000-year-old ’Halls of the Dead’ unearthed in England
2013-07-31 0:00

By Tia Ghose | NBCNews

Archaeologists have unearthed two nearly 6,000-year-old burial mounds and the remains of two massive buildings in England.

The two wooden long-buildings, or halls, were burnt to the ground; the ashes were then shoveled in to make burial mounds.

"The buildings seemed to have been deliberately burned down," said Julian Thomas, the archaeologist leading the excavation and a professor at the University of Manchester.


Excavations at Dorstone Hill in the UK revealed a nearly 6,000-year-old set of burial mounds that were created from the ashes of an ancient longhall.

Researchers believe these halls of the living may have been transformed into "halls of the dead" after a leader or important social figure died.

Ancient site

The find was uncovered in an open field near Dorstone Hill, Herefordshire in the UK. For decades, amateur archaeologists have noticed pieces of flint blades in the area and wondered whether the land there contained relics of a long-forgotten time.

When Thomas and his team began excavating, they found two large burial mounds, or barrows, that could have held anywhere from seven to 30 people each.

The smaller barrow contained a 23-foot-long (7 meters) mortuary chamber with sockets for two huge tree trunks. Digging deeper, the researchers uncovered postholes, ash from the timbers, and charred clay from the walls of an ancient structure.

These burnt remains came from what were once two long-halls, the biggest of which was up to 230 feet (70 m) long, with aisles delineated by wooden posts and several internal spaces.

Though it’s not clear exactly who built the halls and barrows, the building construction is similar to that found in England between 4000 B.C. and 3600 B.C, predating the construction of Stonehenge by up to 1,000 years.


The burial mounds were made from the charred remains of two massive halls. Here, a reconstruction of what one of the halls would have looked like.

[...]

Read the full article at: nbcnews.com



Related Articles
Early Human Burials Varied Widely but Most Were Simple
Ancient Burial Shroud Made of Surprising Material, Scientists Find
From Pits to Palaces: The Evolution of Prehistoric Burial Customs in Ancient Egypt
Unique Burial: Bizarre ’cow woman’ found in Anglo-Saxon dig
Crypts and Catacombs Photos
Bizarre Catacombs, Death Cult? Capuchin Catacombs of Palermo, Italy
Human hearts with couples’ photos pinned to them found in Colma cemetery
Stonehenge started as huge graveyard, say researchers
Ancient tomb found at ’Sweden’s Stonehenge’
Stone Age Temple in Orkney 800 years older than Stonehenge


Latest News from our Front Page

Pressure from the United Patriots Front Stops Mosque Plan
2016-04-28 20:10
Pressure from the United Patriots Front appears to have killed off a mosque development in Narre Warren North. The City of Casey council now looks likely to withhold planning approval for the development in a special meeting set for Tuesday night. A council report, to be considered by councillors on Tuesday, recommends that the approval be blocked. The mosque opponents’ cause has been helped by councillor ...
Police face questions over the influence of the Freemasons
2016-04-28 20:48
South Yorkshire Police today face questions over whether powerful 'secret society' the Freemasons held sway over the force at the time of Hillsborough. Families of victims say that officers who were Masons were promoted into powerful positions despite being ill-equipped, including match commander David Duckenfield. Duckenfield told the fresh inquests he had been a Freemason since 1975 and became head of his ...
England Bans its Own Flag to Avoid Offending Muslims
2016-04-27 2:23
St. George's Cross "racist" towards immigrants Government officials said their city was ‘too multicultural’ to celebrate St George’s Day, England’s version of the 4th of July. The council said that displaying the English flag may have been seen as “racist” towards immigrants.
Half of Western European men descended from one Bronze Age ‘king’
2016-04-27 2:09
Half of Western European men are descended from one Bronze Age ‘king’ who sired a dynasty of elite nobles which spread throughout Europe, a new study has shown. The monarch, who lived around 4,000 years ago, is likely to have been one of the earliest chieftains to take power in the continent. He was part of a new order which emerged in ...
"Local Residents" Are Filmed Stealing Dozens of Bottles of Water at London Marathon Stop
2016-04-25 23:10
Editor's Comment: "Local" residents? Why bother blurring their faces? We know who they are. ... London marathon runners were robbed of dozens of bottled waters when thieves raided a refreshment area armed with trolleys during today's race. Nearby residents - including parents with children - were captured on camera piling up crates of free water handed out by volunteers during the 26-mile event. Marathon ...
More News »