Skip to comments.Mystery of Anglo-Saxon teen buried in bed with gold cross
Posted on 03/16/2012 11:46:01 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
One of the earliest Anglo-Saxon Christian burial sites in Britain has been discovered in a village outside Cambridge. The grave of a teenage girl from the mid 7th century AD has an extraordinary combination of two extremely rare finds: a 'bed burial' and an early Christian artefact in the form of a stunning gold and garnet cross.
The girl, aged around 16, was buried on an ornamental bed -- a very limited Anglo-Saxon practice of the mid to later 7th century -- with a pectoral Christian cross on her chest, that had probably been sewn onto her clothing. Fashioned from gold and intricately set with cut garnets, only the fifth of its kind ever to be found, the artefact dates this grave to the very early years of the English Church, probably between 650 and 680 AD.
In 597 AD, the pope dispatched St Augustine to England on a mission to convert the pagan Anglo-Saxon kings; a process that was not completed for many decades. Using the latest scientific techniques to analyse this exceptional find could result in a greater understanding of this pivotal period in British history, and the spread of Christianity in eastern England in the Anglo-Saxon period.
To be buried in this elaborate way with such a valuable artefact tells us that this girl was undoubtedly high status, probably nobility or even royalty.
Was this teenage girl an early Christian convert, a standard-bearer for the new God? "Christian conversion began at the top and percolated down," says Dr Sam Lucy, a specialist in Anglo-Saxon burial from Newnham College, Cambridge.
(Excerpt) Read more at pasthorizonspr.com ...
Could be ``J`` directly above the ``C`` and at the bottom rt. of the top segment?
English Church? In those years, it would be the Roman Catholic Church. Imagine being converted by St. Augustine, or his emmisary!
One of the most humorous books I have ever read is David Macaulay’s Motel of the Mysteries.
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That sounds hilarious
You’re welcome! And that’s ok - I’m going to have fun exploring all those links later. :-)
I’m surprised that her skull (and teeth) survived in such good shape.
The first Council of Arles was held in 314, bishops from the western part of the empire including three from Britain attended.
If the church did not exist in England before Augustine who were they?
The early English church was essentially wiped out by the various pagan invaders, of whom the Anglo-Saxons were merely the most prominent.
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