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Defenses of Iron Age Hillfort Uncovered in England

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

SHROPSHIRE, ENGLAND—Excavations at Nesscliffe, an Iron Age hillfort in western England thought to date to 500 B.C., have unearthed the fort's inner rampart as well as rare guard chambers at its northeastern entrance, The Shropshire Star reports. The fort's location near the steep cliffs at Oliver's Point made it easily defendable. "There is a possibility that this was a highly strategic point," said University of Oxford archaeologist Gary Lock. "It would have been seen from miles around and would have given a great viewpoint for those inside, it would have been very spectacular." Measuring 26 feet wide, the rampart wall was faced with stone and filled with smaller stones and sand. Test pits yielded second-century A.D. Roman pottery from a later occupation level. To read about other defensive structures in the British Isles, go to "Letter from Wales: Hillforts of the Iron Age."

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