An interesting item that’s been buried in my mailbox this week:
A large number of animal sacrifices found on an archaeological dig have shown Carshalton was likely to have been a key spiritual site in the Iron Age.
Ancient Roman remains of buried babies and animals were unearthed last summer at an archaeological dig on the site of the new Stanley Park High School.
Now a consultant archaeologist who worked on the dig has said more than a hundred animal sacrifices on the site, including sheep, a pig, a horse, a goat and dogs show it must have attracted a large number of people.
Duncan Hawkins said: “It was extraordinary. Normally the number of ritual pits found in a settlement is two or three, but on this site we found more than 30.”
He said he believed the number of sacrifices was because it was close to a Bronze age circular enclosure – an early example of a stone circle like Stone Henge – that lay under the site of the former Queen Mary’s Hospital.
He said it was one of the most important finds in London in the past 30 years.
Some 15 child bodies were also found. The high humber was because of the high infant mortality rate.
I can’t find any coverage of this from last summer; it’s amazing (but a credit to those involved) that this didn’t get sensationalized into a ‘baby sacrifice’ site story …