Archaeology Magazine

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Bone Fragment Dates to the Time of Alfred the Great

Friday, January 17, 2014


WINCHESTER, ENGLAND—A fragment of a pelvis from a man who was between 26 and 45-plus at the time of his death has been found in a box of bones at Winchester’s City Museum. The bones, which have been dated to the ninth century, were discovered in 1999 during a dig at Hyde Abbey, but they were never tested due to a lack of funding. Scientists now think the bone fragment may have belonged to King Alfred the Great, or his son, Edward the Elder. “These are the bones that were found closest to the site of the high altar. As far as we know, from the chronicles and the records, the only individuals close to the site of the high altar who are the right age when they died and the right date when they died would be either Alfred or Edward,” said Katie Tucker of University of Winchester.