Credit: University of Sheffield
Jewelry and handbags found buried in lavish Anglo-Saxon graves
Opulent personal goods including jewelry, handbags, and weapons have been recently found in 20 ancient graves, dating back to the fifth and sixth century in England.
The cemetery was unearthed throughout July 2018 after a local metal detectorist spotted a number of ancient artifacts, including copper brooches and spear heads.
"Almost without exception, the burials were accompanied by a rich array of objects," said Hugh Willmott, Senior Lecturer in European Historical Archaeology from the University of Sheffield, who was involved in the project.
"What is particularly interesting is the significant proportion of very lavish burials which belonged to women.
"These women wore necklaces made from sometimes hundreds of amber, glass and rock crystal beads, used personal items such as tweezers, carried fabric bags held open by elephant ivory rings, and wore exquisitely decorated brooches to fasten their clothing," he added.
The remains of the Anglo-Saxon people found at the site are now being analyzed by scientists at the University of Sheffield.
The academics hope that study of the skeletons' bones and teeth will help them identify where they grew up and what food they ate.
They also want to identify the elephant species which produced the number of ivory rings found at the site.
"The preservation of the skeletal remains, as well as the many grave finds, provide an exciting opportunity to explore the social and cultural dynamics of the community who chose to bury their dead on this chalky outcrop," Willmott said.