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Newly discovered ‘Stonehenge of the Netherlands’ is 4,000 years old

Right on schedule for the summer solstice of this current year and half a year before the winter solstice, a group of scientists revealed that they found a sanctuary dating back to 4,000 years ago. The sanctuary is made up of burial mounds and ditches and is situated in the center of the Netherlands, roughly 45 miles to the east of Rotterdam, specifically in Tiel.

The group thinks that it could have been constructed to correspond with the sun during the solstices, much like Stonehenge, the most well-known stone circle in southern England. The primary tomb is approximately 65 feet wide, and its corridors are coordinated to function as a sun-based timetable. The timetable was utilized to establish important dates such as spiritual celebrations and crop harvesting, as per the team’s findings.

At different spots where the sun penetrated on the longest and shortest days of the year, the city discovered human craniums, precious things like a spear point made of bronze, and gifts, comprising of animal skeletons. The gravesite comprised the leftovers of about 60 individuals, including males, females, and juveniles. As per the crew, it’s possible that the burial grounds were exploited for almost eight centuries.

“What a spectacular archaeological discovery! Archaeologists have found a 4,000-year-old religious sanctuary on an industrial site. This is the first time a site like this has been discovered in the Netherlands,” authorities hailing from the municipality of Tiel posted on Facebook.

Excavations and digging started in this outdoor place of worship in 2017, and during the last six years, the crew discovered articles from the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, the Iron Age, the Roman Empire, and the Middle Ages.

Through analyzing the dissimilarities in the hue and makeup of the dirt in proximity, researchers discovered three sepulchers a short distance from the Waal River. Inside one of the tombs, the group unearthed a female interred with a glass sphere from what is currently Iraq (Mesopotamia). This sphere is the most ancient to ever be discovered in the Netherlands, and the group asserts it substantiates that individuals from this epoch were communicating with those who resided over 3,000 miles afar.

The municipality of Tiel in the Netherlands has published a video in Dutch showcasing artist’s drawings of the discovery and how it could have appeared. The video is credited to the Town of Tiel. Featured Image: GEMEENTE TIEL

According to a statement made to the AFP by University of Groningen archaeology professor Stijn Arnoldussen. “Glass was not made here, so the bead must have been a spectacular item as for people then it was an unknown material. Things were already being exchanged in those times. The bead may have been above ground for hundreds of years before it reached Tiel, but of course, it didn’t have to be.”

A number of these findings will be showcased in a nearby exhibition hall in Tiel as well as in the Netherlands’ National Museum of Antiquities in the future.

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