Archaeologists returning to the spot where the enigmatic ‘Lion Man’ was found 74 years ago have announced the discovery of almost 1,000 new fragments of the mammoth ivory figure – and new dating evidence that could put it among the oldest figurative sculptures in the world. The first pieces of the Palaeolithic statue were excavated [...]
The identification of four 7,000-year-old wells as the world’s oldest-known timber structures suggests that Neolithic communities were capable of much more sophisticated woodworking techniques with stone tools than previously thought, newly published research says. Previous excavations at three Neolithic settlements near Leipzig, Germany, had uncovered four well-shafts, each lined with oak planks preserved for thousands [...]
Our ideas about what a Roman fort should look like are being overturned, or at least being severely challenged, by recent reconstructions at the Roman fort of the Saalburg in Germany, as Andrew Selkirk reveals.
Previously thought to be little more than hillfort, is this actually the first Iron Age city north of the Alps?
Archaeologists have identified the world’s oldest instruments, showing that early modern humans were making music 40,000 years ago. Two flutes, one made from bird bone and the other from mammoth ivory, were uncovered during excavations at Geißenklösterle cave in south-west Germany between 1973 and 1990. Now, researchers led by the University of Oxford’s Prof. Tom [...]
In his first-hand account of the Gallic Wars (Commentarii de Bello Gallico), Julius Caesar observes that the Gallic people have a moon- based calendar, and that the big event for them was what astronomers now call the Lunar Standstill, which occurs every 18.6 years. Lunar Standstills are marked in several ancient cultures (including sites in [...]
Weapons, horse bones, and human skeletal remains have been found in the bed of the River Tollense, in north-eastern Germany, suggesting that at least 100 people were involved in ferocious horse-mounted and hand-to-hand combat during the Early Bronze Age. Among the fractured and unhealed skulls and bones were found wooden weapons shaped like baseball bats [...]
The sheer scale of Rome’s German frontier is overwhelming. Running for almost 550km, and boasting at least 60 forts, 80 fortlets and over 900 towers, it is the longest archaeological monument in Central Europe. The frontier’s circuitous and occasionally bewildering path carries it from mountain ridges to river pastures, sometimes heeding the limits of fertile farmland, others simply ploughing an arbitrary line across the landscape. This complex barrier is more than just an extended display of Imperial might, it is a physical testament to the way terrain forced the military’s hand.
Human remains found wrapped in costly dyed silk in Germany’s Magdeburg Cathedral in 2008 have been confirmed as those of Eadgyth (pronounced ‘Edith’), the wife of the Holy Roman Emperor Otto I and granddaughter of England’s Alfred the Great. Archaeologists at the UK’s Bristol University announced the results of tests to measure the isotopes in [...]
Thanks to preservation under waterlogged conditions, a well in the federal state of Saxony, Germany, has revealed unprecedented information about woodworking skills, diet, and ritual in early Neolithic Europe. Found in early 2008 at Altscherbitz, during construction work on the Leipzig/Halle airport, the well was carefully isolated and extracted from the ground in one block [...]
Feasting of a different kind was the subject of a paper in the latest issue of Antiquity (www.antiquity.ac.uk) reporting the evidence of mass cannibalism at a Neolithic site near Herxheim in Germany. In the measured language of academic journal publication, the authors – Bruno Boulestin, Andrea Zeeb-Lanz, Christian Jeunesse, Fabian Haack, Rose-Marie Arbogast and Anthony [...]
35,000 year old venus statue found at Swabian Jura, the earliest example of its kind by some 5,000 years
Exquisite prehistoric figurines found
David Miles considers how Berlin is dealing with its recent heritage including a look at Libeskind’s Jewish Museum and Eiserman’s Holocaust Memorial
Researchers at UCL have revealed the chemical make up of Hessian crucibles using X–ray diffraction
David Miles writes from Dresden and shares his thoughts on the renovation and restoration of an historic city
Stone phallus discovered during excavations at Hohle Fels Cave, Swabian Jura, Germany
Remains of a young woman found in a bog in 2000 have been identified as dating from the Iron Age
In early June a glittering European Awards Ceremony was held in Bergen, Norway to celebrate the 2005 European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Awards. The overall winner in the ‘Archaeological Sites’ category is the Varusschlacht im Osnabrücker Land – Museum und Park Kalkriese. The judges chose the German team because of their [...]
A project to reconstruct a 5000 BC henge monument, interpreted as a solar observatory, the oldest of its kind in Europe, has just begun at Goseck in the German state of Saxony. The ambitious reconstruction, which is estimated to cost a total of 100,000 euros (c.£70,000) at its completion, should be finished by the end [...]