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Ælfrun
Tuesday, January 24th, 2012, 06:10 PM
'Time capsuals' history challenge

Stories of Bronze Age Scandinavian invaders killing men and enslaving women may have to be rewritten thanks to discovery of a series of virtual "time capsuals" in the Outer Hebrides.
Archaeologists have published the results of over 20 years of work in South Uist uncovering ancient settlements preserved under sand dunes dating from the Bronze Age to the modern era.

The team said the research challenges the existing belief that the Norse period marked a cataclysmic change in the Hebridean way of life.
Instead of supporting the view that the Scandinavian invaders killed men and enslaved their women and children, the archaeological evidence suggests a greater degree of intermixing and continuity than has previously been accepted.

The team roamed from the grassy coastal machair plains to South Uist's mountains, exploring hundreds of sites including Neolithic tombs, early Bronze Age occupations, Norse dwellings and blackhouses. The research is published in a book entitled From Machair To Mountains.
Editor Professor Mike Parker Pearson said: "South Uist has an extraordinary number of superbly preserved archaeological sites and landscapes from all periods. Best known are the settlement mounds of all periods on the island's machair, the coastal grasslands on shell sand, but the moorlands and mountainous areas also contain remarkable remains."
Before the South Uist investigations began, sites from the Middle and later Bronze Age were almost unknown in the Western Isles. The team discovered late Bronze Age evidence of burnt human cremations at Cladh Hallan, within stone ring settings, as well as burials beneath roundhouses from the same period.

Historic Scotland's head of archaeology programmes Rod McCullagh said: "The sites compare very well with almost any of the settlements of similar age anywhere in Europe outside Rome and the Aegean."
The findings build on earlier work on South Uist by Historic Scotland and other agencies since the 1950s - research that has also uncovered Iron Age settlements, Medieval townships and early modern shielings.
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: "The findings show that these remote locations were attractive to human inhabitants from the earliest times and that communities have successfully survived here for thousands of years. The project has added substantially to our understanding of the history of the Outer Hebrides and western Scotland."

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5i9Ch-qrsirXxKzallg90pvq4k0uQ?docId=N006416132 7250498262A

Hersir
Tuesday, January 24th, 2012, 06:15 PM
Instead of supporting the view that the Scandinavian invaders killed men and enslaved their women and children, the archaeological evidence suggests a greater degree of intermixing and continuity than has previously been accepted.

The same happened in England, where Germanics and Celts mixed.