An exciting archaeological discovery has emerged in Estonia during highway widening works in the town of Viru-Nigula. Archaeologists have found human bones near the local church, confirming suspicions that it and the attached cemetery were built in medieval times on the remains of an ancient Viking settlement.
Eleven skeletons were found during the excavations, with evidence that at least four of them were buried in a mass grave. Preliminary estimates suggest that these burials date back to a period between the 16th and 18th centuries.
According to the website Err.eethe findings may help understand the era’s methods of treating illnesses and injuries.
“We discovered several interesting pathologies, fractures and bone injuries that are of great interest to my area of study. For example, one of the skeletons had a fractured femur. It will be fascinating to investigate how this person dealt with this injury. Evidently someone took care of her and cured her. Many believe that severe fractures like this were fatal at the time, but these discoveries show that people were able to survive and recover, even though the treatment methods were very different from today,” explained bioarchaeologist and bone specialist Martin Malve, researcher at the University of Tartu, Estonia.
Pottery fragments, nails and fish and bird bones were found in abundance at the site. These finds not only shed light on the community’s diet and use of tools at the time, but also include soil samples on which plant residues are being analyzed, providing valuable information on the agricultural practices of the time.
Discoveries from different periods awaken the imagination and raise speculation about events that may have occurred in Viru-Nigula at the end of the Ancient Age, eight centuries ago, and during the Crusades.
“People’s romanticism led them to think that the village was burned down or that the Germans came and destroyed it. But we don’t know what really happened,” says Malve. “Maybe part of the village has been abandoned or demolished. If you look at the maps of the settlement and the cultural layer of the area, there is evidence that the church and cemetery were built right in the center of the village.”
The closure of the archaeological excavations in Viru-Nigula is scheduled for Sunday (8). Until then, more secrets about this region’s enigmatic past may be revealed.
The post Discoveries of human bones and Viking Age settlements in Estonia appeared first on Olhar Digital.
Source: Olhar Digital
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