The beautiful green glass bowl

One of 6 wooden buckets
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Archeologist working in an Anglo-Saxon burial ground in New Forest in June 2002 got a surprize when they found a glass bowl. What made it so anomalous was that after 1,500 years it was perfect and unbroken. It had been protected by being wrapped in cloth and placed inside a heavy wooden bucket which was bound with ornate copper alloy bands. Even with this in mind, it's a small miracle that fluctuations of temperature and just plain old age didn't cause cracks and damage to occur.

The pale green bowl measures 5" across and 1.5" high.

The cemetery dates from the late 5th or early 6th century and the grave site contained several skeletons, which are being examined at Bristol University. It'll be awhile until the causes of deaths can be established but it is known that half of the victims were under 25 years of age and two of them were children. Other items, including trinkets, ornate garnet buckles and spearheads were also unearthed along with six copper-alloy bound wooden buckets that had imprinted design along the bands.

Archaeologists believe the bowl was not native to the area but was brought from Rhineland. It's careful burial at the cemetery means the people there were of great importance in the society.

For the full, detailed story visit the English Heritage's page

Copyright English Heritage
Picture Credit Phil Yeoman
Used with permission as member