2000-year-old bowl found in un­der­ground cham­ber

The Scotsman - - Around Scotland - By LUCY CHRISTIE

Ar­chae­ol­o­gists have un­earthed a 2,000-year-old wooden bowl from an un­der­ground cham­ber on Orkney.

The dis­cov­ery was made last week by a team from the Univer­sity of the High­lands and Is­lands (UHI).

The an­cient ves­sel made from alder was found be­neath The Cairns Broch on South Ron­ald­say.

Ar­chae­ol­o­gists say it pro­vides a valu­able in­sight into life in an Iron Age broch, or round tower, in north­ern Scot­land.

The bowl has been dated from its lo­ca­tion in the subter­ranean cham­ber, which was sealed when the broch went out of use and was aban­doned some­time be­tween the later 1st and mid-2nd cen­tury AD.

It is as­sumed the bowl dates from this pe­riod, how­ever ra­dio­car­bon dat­ing will be car­ried out.

Site di­rec­tor Martin Car­ruthers, lec­turer in Ar­chae­ol­ogy at UHI Ar­chae­ol­ogy In­sti­tute, said: “It’s mirac­u­lous that we’ve got this wooden ves­sel.

“It’s re­ally quite un­prece­dented preser­va­tion for a north­ern broch, and I still can’t be­lieve it has turned up at The Cairns.

“The bowl is sim­i­lar in shape to cer­tain pot­tery ves­sels of the pe­riod, and in par­tic­u­lar it looks like the sort of ves­sel we sus­pect to have been used for serv­ing food or drink.”

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