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Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Beheaded skeletons found in York

I didn't do it (sorry, natural reflex when headless skeletons found). The Yorkshire Post has the story:

ANOTHER headless skeleton discovered in York is among a series of gruesome archaeological finds which could hold the key to unlocking secrets behind Roman burial rituals.

The latest discovery of human remains by archaeologists follows in the wake of another headless skeleton found shackled in a grave and a Roman mummy which was also unearthed in The Mount area of the city.

A total of 57 bodies – 50 adults and seven children – and 14 sets of cremated remains have been found during excavations, most by the York Archaeological Trust at a site in Driffield Terrace.

Archaeologists are now confident the bodies will provide perhaps the clearest indication yet on the Roman attitude to death.

It is thought the Romans could have beheaded corpses to release the human spirit, which they believed was contained in the head.


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