The remains of a dog dating back several millennia have been uncovered at a pre-Viking era burial site in Sweden, making it the oldest such find in the country.
The dog was discovered at an Iron Age burial site in Blekinge, southern Sweden, along with what archaeologists believe are grave goods – valuable or sentimental possessions buried with the dead.
“This is the oldest burial find of a dog in the country. The dog is well-preserved, and the fact that it lies buried in the middle of a stone-age building is unique,” said osteologist Ola Magnell.
The remains of a #dog from more than 8,400 years ago found at a #StoneAge human burial site in southern #Sweden are presented at the Blekinge Museum in Karlskrona on 24 November 2020. 📷 epa-efe / tt / Johan Nilsson#archeology #photojournalism #epaphotos pic.twitter.com/eLBy9Gbb9t
— european pressphoto agency (@epaphotos) November 24, 2020
It was around 8,400 years ago that this Stone Age village was flooded by rising sea, which means some of the remains, including those of 51 homes, are remarkably well-preserved in the mud. The find was part of the largest ever archaeological excavation in the Blekinge region, which has been further extended because of the unique discoveries.
The dog has not yet been removed from the grave, but this is set to happen later in the week and will be a delicate procedure.
“A find like this makes you feel even closer to the people who lived here” said Carl Persson, a project manager at Blekinge Museum. “A buried dog somehow shows how similar we are over the millennia, the same feelings of grief and loss.”
feature mage Jordbro Gravefield in Sweden