A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America
Rare Iron Age Wooden Axle Discovered in England
Tuesday, January 31, 2023
SUFFOLK, ENGLAND—BBC News reports that a wooden axle was discovered in a waterlogged pit in eastern England. Analysis of the wood, conducted by dendrochronologist Michael Bamforth of the University of York, indicates that the axle was made between 400 and 100 B.C. It is thought to have been part of an Iron Age chariot or cart before it was repurposed in antiquity as a stake to shore up the sides of the pit. “Most of the spindle—for the wheel hub—survives, as well as part of the rectangular axle-bed which would have been secured to the underside of the cart or chariot,” said Chris Fern of Cotswold Archaeology. Charred boards that may have been part of the vehicle were also recovered from the pit, which may have served as a watering hole for livestock. To read about Iron Age roundhouses unearthed in northwest England, go to "Hail to the Chief."
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