The Cutting Edge

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Buried 3,000-Year-Old Sword Dubbed ‘Find of a Lifetime’

If some catastrophe were to happen in my city and humans started excavating at the former location of my house thousands of years from now, they’d undoubtedly find a cache of folding knives and fixed blades like few others.

It seems like archaeologists may have found a blade addict’s house from the Bronze Age after discovering a hoard of metalwork, including an incredibly well-preserved sword from 3,000 years ago.

Archaeologists were digging at a construction site in Scotland and found a cache of weapons from the Late Bronze Age. A group called GUARD Archaeology was commissioned to evaluate a field in Scotland before starting construction on two soccer fields. That’s when the group made the once-in-a-lifetime discovery.

What the discovery looked like. Photo from GUARD Archaeology

Apparently, the artifacts were found in a pit close to a settlement from the Bronze Age. Scientists are stoked about the discovery.

“It is very unusual to recover such artefacts in a modern archaeological excavation, which can reveal so much about the context of its burial,” said GUARD Project Officer Alan Hunter Blair. “Owing to the fragile nature of these remains when we first discovered them, our team removed the entire pit, and the surrounding subsoil which it was cut into, as a single 80 kg block of soil.”

Here they are working on the block in the lab.

A few cool things were found, including a spearhead, bronze sword, a pin, and the remains of a sheath.

The bronze sword was surprisingly well-preserved and still looks like it could do some damage. But archaeologists are most excited by the leather and wooden scabbard found with it because it “is probably the best preserved Late Bronze Age sword scabbard ever found in Britain.”

Here is the sword in all its glory.

The other major find that wowed archaeologists was a gold-decorated spearhead. Here is an excerpt from the GUARD Archaeology site on the importance of the find:

Each individual object in the hoard is significant but the presence of gold ornament on the spearhead makes this an exceptional group. Within Britain and Ireland, only a handful of such spearheads are known – among them a weapon hoard found in 1963 at Pyotdykes Farm to the west of Dundee. These two weapon hoards from Angus – found only a few kilometres apart – hint at the wealth of the local warrior society during the centuries around 1000-800 BC.

Check out the spearhead.

The finds reveal some interesting new details about the societies living in the area around that time.

“The archaeology uncovered at Carnoustie is undoubtedly of national and international significance, and will certainly further enhance our knowledge of the prehistory of this area, providing an invaluable opportunity to learn more about how people in Angus lived in the Neolithic and Bronze Age,” said Claire Herbert of the Aberdeenshire Council Archaeology Service.

Cool stuff.

1 Comment

  1. badass indeed

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