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5 December 2014
Polish archaeologists dissect Iron Age burial mound

In the depths of the forest in Grudna (Poland) archaeologists have been painstakingly de-constructing a 2,000 year old burial mound to determine how it was put together. The research was financed by the Institute of Prehistory, Adam Mickiewicz University Poznan and the Wielkopolska Provincial Conservator.
     By methodically going back through the construction process they found that the ground had been prepared by ritual burning before the cremated remains of the occupant had been placed in the burial pit. Then they worked through the layers of stone and sand to the outer layer of pebbles. Alongside this mound was another one of similar construction but without any cremated remains or evidence of a burial pit. They are hoping to eventually re-create a mound and use it for education purposes.
     Igor Koloszuk, head of the team, is quoted as saying "We believe that we could have discovered traces of a specific burial ritual from before 2000 years. Perhaps the empty tomb discovered in 2012 and the cremation grave discovered contained the remains of the same person. They were located very close to each other. Perhaps the body of the person buried in the skeletal grave remained there for as time, and then was exhumed and buried again, this time in the cremation rite".

Edited from Science & Scholarship in Poland (21 November 2014)

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