Skip to comments.Ancient 'Cow Woman' Skeleton Called Bizarre
Posted on 07/03/2012 2:33:16 PM PDT by DogByte6RER
Ancient 'Cow Woman' Skeleton Called Bizarre
The skeleton of a 1,400-year-old Anglo-Saxon woman buried alongside a cow has emerged from a former children's playground near Cambridge in England, making the "cow woman" an extraordinary unique find.
Described as "hugely exciting" and "bizarre," the burial was uncovered by students from Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Central Lancashire.
The find is believed to be the only one of its kind ever found in Europe.
"Usually it is warrior men who are discovered buried with their animals. Never before have we found a woman buried alongside a cow," Faye Simpson, of the Department of History at Manchester Metropolitan University, said.
Simpson and colleague Duncan Sayer, from the University of Central Lancashire, believe the burial indicates the woman enjoyed a high social status within her community.
A cow is symbolic of economic and domestic power. In the 5th century this animal was a very important to a communitys survival, so to sacrifice one is highly significant. Such a unique burial indicates the woman's role as regional elite," Simpson told Discovery News.
According to the researchers, the community would have wanted to give the woman something really important to show respect -- something they wouldn't have done for just anybody.
"She was buried in the late 5th century, a significant period after the Roman occupation. The burial demonstrates that the reordering of social boundaries could include important matriarchal figures," Simpson said.
The theory is backed by the abundance of grave goods unearthed with the skeleton. These include two small disc brooches, three necklaces made of glass beads, amber beads, wrist clasps, belt buckle, strap end, and belt hanger with set of keys.
Analysis of the woman's bones and teeth suggest she was in her twenties or thirties when she died.
"We have not yet ascertained her cause of death, although there does not appear to be any significant trauma evident to suggest a violent death," Simpson said.
Photos: The skeleton of the 1400-year-old Anglo-Saxon woman buried alongside a cow. Credit: Faye Simpson; - The woman skeleton with grave goods. Credit: Faye Simpson.
FYI ... more coverage:
“Who was she? Mystery of the bejewelled Anglo-Saxon woman found buried beside sacrificial cow in unique discovery”
“Bizarre find makes history”
She must have really loved that cow.
Maybe she was a cowgirl
I told my wife that when I die, I want to be buried with a spear in one hand and an iPod in the other to really throw “researchers” off 1,000 years from now.
Given the headline: ‘Cow Woman’, I immediately assumed it was Michelle’s granny...
So the cow died and fell on the woman....big deal.
You must be just down the highway from me!
Maybe an heir to queen Boudicca?
One day somebody’s going open a tomb or unearth a skeleton,
and some germ or virus that killed them is going to be loosed.
is that Lady tata’s?
saw that movie, highly unlikely.
Don’t forget to throw a few Roman coins in your pocket along with some US change. Who ever digs you up is going to think you are a time traveler.
Still have my masonry tools.
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