Archaeology Magazine

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Eight Bronze Age Boats Found Near Flag Fen

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

v0 masterPETERBOROUGH, ENGLAND—Eight Bronze Age boats have been discovered in a quarry in southeastern England, just two miles away from the Flag Fen archaeological site. They had all been deliberately sunk over a period of 600 years in a creek that has since dried up. The boats are so well preserved that researchers can see repairs made with clay patches, carved handles and decorations, and traces of fires that had been set on deck. One of the boats still floats. Archaeologists don’t know if the boats had been ritually deposited in the creek, or if they had been stored it its silt in order to keep the wooden vessels from drying out. “Either this was the Bermuda Triangle for Bronze Age boats, or there is something going on here that we don’t yet understand,” said conservator Ian Panter. More boats may yet be found in the creek bed, which continues outside the boundaries of the quarry.