Prehistoric Cambridge may have been a far bigger settlement than previously thought

January 28th, 2009 - 4:49 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Jan 28 (ANI): An archaeological dig has led to the surprising discovery of the site of a cemetery at Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge, England, which suggests that prehistoric Cambridge may have been a far bigger settlement than previously thought.

Citing this and other discoveries, a new book published by the Cambridge Archaeological Unit (CAU), has suggested that population density in the prehistoric and Roman eras may have been higher than earlier research had claimed.

Finds at the site ranged from the late Bronze Age to the middle Saxon period, and included a cemetery and a pottery kiln complex.

Archaeologists said small settlements may have been so close together that residents could wave to each other across the 300m stretches between their homes.

The book argues this knowledge should revolutionize understanding of the early society of Cambridge.

According to Christopher Evans, who put the book together, The evidence from the huge-scale trench-survey projects that the unit has undertaken on both the adjacent Addenbrookes/ Clay Farm lands and other such projects in south-central Cambridgeshire indicate that the later prehistoric/Roman landscapes were much more densely settled than previously thought.

Researchers also discovered that the site had been used for centuries by different groups.

Under the pleasantly green and rolling landscape of the area there are multiple landscapes, and in the past, the area has hosted a lot of activity, both in terms of the scale of its Second World War defences and the density of its later prehistoric and Roman settlement, which included considerable industrial activity, said Evans. (ANI)

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