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Scientists Examine 15th-Century Remains in Scotland

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Scotland Clan FeudBRADFORD, ENGLAND—According to a BBC News report, archaeologists are examining two complete skeletons and four skulls discovered during the 1997 excavations of a grave at Tarbat Old Parish Church in the Scottish Highlands. The bones, which are thought to date to the fifteenth century, may be the remains of men killed during a feud between the Ross and Mackay clans. Cecily Spall of York's Fieldwork Archaeological Services said one of the skeletons belonged to a powerfully built man who had suffered a fatal sword wound to the head. Chemical analysis of the bones could reveal where the men were born and even what they had eaten, she added. In addition to radiocarbon dating the remains, the research team will also attempt to extract DNA samples from them. “Are these men related?” Spall asked. “Are they father and son, brothers, or are they clan chiefs who were related to each other, or are they rivals?” To read about Scottish clan conflicts, go to "A Dangerous Island."

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