16 September 2021 The Future is the Product of the Past

Will new Technology be able to Solve the Mystery in Masovia?

Although there are about 500 medieval tombs found in today’s Masovia and Podlasie cities, the question of who these tombs belonged to is still a mystery.

Archaeologists and historians continue to debate. Are the tomb owners local residents, Scandinavians, or people from the east?

Dr. Dariusz Błaszczyk from the Faculty of Archaeology of the University of Warsaw told Science Poland: “The graves in these cemeteries are very distinctive. They have characteristic stone surroundings made of large boulders. They are also often covered with smaller cobblestones.”

However, the cemeteries remain a major mystery for researchers since it is unknown who was buried there. There are some conflicting definitions, according to Dr. Bazczyk. The study of necropolises started more than a century ago. Archaeologists have discovered hundreds of skeletons and equipment associated with the dead.

Some researchers speculated that they were Scandinavian in origin, pointing out that graves with stone surrounds from that time period are also known from Scandinavia.

Błaszczyk said: “But there are no northern objects in the graves in Masovia, so this concept does not seem true. In addition, these graves look different.”

Another theory is that these are the necropolises of the Balts, who were gradually Slavicized. Some historians conclude that Ruthenians were buried there because similar graves have been discovered in Belarus and Russia. However, it is unclear if they are from the same time frame.

In comparison to other areas of the Piast Kingdom, the local Slavic population used a peculiar method of burial, according to Baszczyk.

The project is financed by the National Science Centre and led by Professor Andrzej Buko from the Polish Academy of Sciences. Photo: M. DZİK

Most of the excavations took place in the 1960s and 1970s, but the first excavations were carried out in the 19th century. The methods that were available at the time were applied. Błaszczyk and his team hope to find an answer to questions using methods previously unavailable as part of their project.

Baszczyk and his team began the project by taking samples from many skeletons’ bones and dating them using the radiocarbon process, which is still widely used in archaeology. They have preliminary results. Previously, no procedure has been used to establish the age of any of the 500 cemeteries. Based on the typology of pottery and other artifacts discovered in graves, scientists estimated their age.

Błaszczyk said: “The cemeteries are grouped in two clusters, around Płock and Drohiczyn. Until now, it was believed that the ones in Podlasie are younger, and the Masovian ones are older. Our analysis shows that they are from the same period. They come from the end of the 10th century and were used until the end of the 12th or the beginning of the 13th century.”

DNA study will also be used by the researchers and will be carried out by Professor Wieslaw Bogdanowicz’s team from the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw. By examining the haplogroups of the deceased, they will seek an answer to the question of where they came from. The genetic testing will help ascertain the possible kinship of those buried in the cemeteries, as well as their blood, hair, and eye colors.

In addition, strontium and oxygen isotope studies will also help determine the origin. Researchers would be able to assess the deceased’s estimated diet by analyzing carbon, nitrogen, and sulphur isotopes. Dr. Rafał Fetner of the University of Warsaw’s Faculty of Archaeology will conduct the investigations.

The area of Masovia (which also included Podlasie at that time) in the 11th-13th centuries was within the borders of the Piast state, but according to researchers, very little information about it from contemporary texts has been preserved. Hence the great problem with determining the identity of the huge community that lived there and used a distinctive type of burial.

The project is financed by the National Science Centre and led by Professor Andrzej Buko from the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Source: PAP

Photo: M. DZİK

Banner
Related Post

9,200-year-old Noongar habitation discovered at Augusta archaeological dig site

28 July 2021

28 July 2021

An archaeological dig in Augusta, in West Australia‘s South West, has uncovered evidence of Noongar habitation dating back an estimated...

The world’s northernmost Palaeolithic settlement has been discovered on Kotelny Island in the Arctic

20 August 2021

20 August 2021

During the Paleolithic period, hominins lived in tiny groups and subsisted by collecting plants, fishing, and killing or scavenging wild...

7 Gold Pendants Found Buried by Ancient Scandinavian Elites as a Sacrifice to the Gods

13 May 2021

13 May 2021

7 gold necklaces were found in a field near the Norwegian municipality of Østfold County Rade. Researchers believe that these...

The Ancient City of Kilistra, Cappadocia of Konya’s

1 February 2021

1 February 2021

When we talk about fairy chimneys, churches and underground cities, the first place that comes to mind is Cappadocia between...

Archaeologists may have uncovered a 13th-century castle in Shropshire

7 August 2021

7 August 2021

Archaeologists have been working on a mound of land in Wem, Shropshire, that belongs to Soulton Hall, Elizabethan mansion and...

5,700-Year-old Ancient “Chewing Gum” Gives Information About People and Bacteria of the Past

4 April 2021

4 April 2021

Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have successfully extracted the complete human genome from “chewing gum” thousands of years ago....

Ancient eggshell in the Northern Cape hiding 300,000 years of history

12 July 2021

12 July 2021

Evidence from an ancient eggshell has revealed important new information about the extreme climate change faced by human early ancestors....

Dartmoor mining discovery rewrites more than 1,000 years of history

18 July 2021

18 July 2021

A new discovery at a Dartmoor mine in England dates human activity there back potentially by more than 1,000 years....

Archaeologists are deciphering Roman history along Dere Street, one of the oldest roadways in Britain

17 July 2021

17 July 2021

Final archaeological finds uncovered as part of a major road improvement in the north of England have shed new insight...

6000-Year-Old Salt Production House Rewrites Europe’s History

31 March 2021

31 March 2021

Archaeologists in the UK have found an ancient stone age-era salt-production house in North Yorkshire, estimated to be older even...

Dark secrets of Korea’s famous Wolseong palace complex are unearthed

8 September 2021

8 September 2021

The remains of an adult woman were discovered at the base of the Wolseong palace in Gyeongju, North Gyeongsang province,...

The Stolen Frescoes were Returned to the Pompeii Archaeological Park

20 May 2021

20 May 2021

Six frescoes ripped from the remains of ancient Roman villas years ago have been returned to the Pompeii archaeological site,...

Salt May Have Been Used as Money in Exchanges

24 March 2021

24 March 2021

Salt has always been a precious metal. Salt was needed in many areas, from the preservation of food to the...

A Gold Mourning Ring Found on The Isle of Man

21 April 2021

21 April 2021

The ring found with a metal detector on the Isle of Man in December 2020 will be exhibited in the...

Jomon Ruins Adding to UNESCO World Heritage List

26 May 2021

26 May 2021

An international advisory panel has recommended that a group of ruins from the ancient Jomon period in northern Japan is...

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *