Uncovering Kalkriese

Since its discovery by the British officer Tony Clunn in the late 1980s, the German site of Kalkriese in Lower Saxony, north of Osnabrück, has been considered the scene of the AD 9 Varus Disaster, so impressively described by ancient authors such as Tacitus and Cassius Dio.


The bear necessities

Fragments of ivory found in a German cave on the eve of war have been reconstructed to create a magnificent ‘Lion Man’. This figure has been feted as the earliest representation of a god, and a representation of shamanic beliefs, but how secure are these interpretations?


Travel: Berlin’s Museum Island

Richard Hodges traces different journeys in the 8th century AD Berlin seems an unlikely place to discuss the 8th century AD in Europe. Yet a galaxy of scholars has been drawn to the stolid Bode Museum on Museum Island in the heart of the German capital to do just this. Today, the city boasts renowned […]


Ice Age figurine reassembled

Archaeologists have found the missing head of a 40,000 year old figurine, whose body was excavated in 1931. The two pieces have now been reassembled, revealing that the artefact is a model of a cave lion. Both pieces of the mammoth ivory carving were found in Vogelherd Cave in southwestern Germany, where archaeologists led by […]


Cologne: Roman gateway to the Rhine

Archaeologists in Cologne are completing the city’s biggest project of its kind ahead of construction for a new railway network. When it is finished, commuters will buy their tickets and board their trains just metres above the newly discovered remains of a Roman harbour on the former banks of the Rhine, as Alfred Schäfer and […]


Reconstructing the Lion Man

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 […]


World’s oldest timber structures

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 […]


Germany: Saalburg

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.


Heuneburg, Germany

Previously thought to be little more than hillfort, is this actually the first Iron Age city north of the Alps?


Earliest instruments

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 […]

Magdalenenberg: Germany’s ancient moon calendar

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 […]


Germany: Bronze Age Battle Site

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 […]

1 2 3