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Bekesbourne Grave 7

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posted on 10.11.2021, 14:48 by Helena HamerowHelena Hamerow
Pretty large tumulus; the grave full six feet deep. Here we met with a very extraordinary phenomenon, namely, two skeletons in sitting postures, with their backs against the head of the grave; their bones were remarkably sound, strong, and large; the skulls, which were also very sound and firm, had each of them received a very violent cut, which must certainly have been the cause of their death. The cuts were both on the left side of the occiput; one of them a little above and rather behind the meatus auditorius; this entered obliquely into the cavity of the skull, and was fully three inches and a half in length, and wide enough to admit the largest goose-quill. The other was a little lower than the meatus auditorius, and still more behind it. The stroke in this case appeared to have been given almost horizontally, and in such a manner as almost to separate the whole lower part of the skull from the upper. I stood by, and saw both of these skulls taken out, and am very certain that they did not receive any cuts from the tools of the workmen. It is, however, impossible that they could; for in their dry and brittle condition a very small stroke would have entirely shivered them in pieces.At the depth of about two feet under them, lay a third skeleton, at full length, the bones of which were much more decayed. The coffin appeared to have been pretty thick, and had passed the fire. Nothing was found with either of them; but at different depths in getting down, were several fragments of a largish coarse urn of black earth (broken in digging the grave for the persons here interred, as I imagine); and a fore tooth of a horse or ox, or of some such large animal.

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