Germany

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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

Heuneburg, Germany

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

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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 […]

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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 […]

The Roman frontier

Germany: The Roman Frontier

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.

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Neolithic treasure chest

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 […]

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Tracing the travelling Empress

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 […]

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