|28 September 2011
Bronze Age finds under Llangollen's Pillar
Remains dating back to the Bronze Age have been uncovered by archaeologists excavating a 9th Century monument: the Pillar of Eliseg near Llangollen, Denbighshire (Wales). Possible cremated remains and prehistoric bone fragments are now being examined. The experts said the finds had complicated the picture regarding the site's historical significance and make it worthy of more investigation.
Bangor and Chester university experts and students have been involved in a dig with historical monuments agency Cadw to conserve and better understand the mound. Last year's excavations focused on the mound, which was identified as an early Bronze Age cairn. It is said the local landowner Trevor Lloyd re-erected the monument on the mound in 1773 after it fell over and found a grave with a body inside along with pieces of silver. The experts have been trying to find if there any truth to the story which some think is legend.
Prof Nancy Edwards from Bangor University said to establish any truth in the story they had to clear away debris left by Lloyd more than 200 years ago. "We have been digging that out to reveal what we think are the Bronze Age remains underneath," she said. "We have had what we think is an early medieval long cist grave so it is looking even more complicated now and also what may be evidence of Bronze Age cremations."
The Pillar of Eliseg was originally a tall stone cross but only part of a round shaft survives set within its original base. It once bore a long Latin inscription saying that the cross was raised by Concenn, ruler of the kingdom of Powys, who died in 854 CE, in memory of his great-grandfather, Eliseg, who had driven Anglo-Saxon invaders out of the area.
Edited from BBC News (25 September 2011)
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