viernes, 17 de febrero de 2017

Did Stone Age people build a large labyrinth in Denmark?

1/8. (Danish Geodata Agency / Pernille Rohde Sloth)

Archaeologists have discovered a large enclosure from the Neolithic period near Stevns in Denmark--but the purpose of the site is a mystery.

A series of Stone Age palisade enclosures have been discovered in Denmark in recent years and archaeologists are still wondering what they were used for.

One of the latest additions is a huge construction, discovered by archaeologists from the Museum Southeast Denmark. The fence dates from the Neolithic period and seems to frame an oval area of nearly 18,000 square meters.

“It was actually somewhat overwhelming to experience that it is possible to reveal the traces of such a huge building from the Neolithic period. There are many suggestions for what they could’ve been used for, but to put it simply, we just don’t know,” says archaeologist Pernille Rohde Sloth who leads the excavation.

What was the space used for?

One of the most remarkable things about the fencing at Stevns is the way the entrances have been constructed. The fence is in fact built in five rows that extend outwards, and the opening in each row appears to be offset from the others.

Sloth suspects the uneven design was deliberate.

“The openings don’t seem to sit next to each of the post rows, and we're slightly amazed by that. But maybe it functioned as a sort of labyrinth--at least that’s how we imagine it. That way you weren’t able to look inside the common space, which may have been an advantage,” she says. [...] ScienceNordic