Friday, May 11, 2007

Amesbury Archer

Amesbury Archer (or King of Stonehenge) is an early Bronze Age man dating to around 2300 BC, whose grave was exposed in May 2002, at Amesbury near Stonehenge. His grave is of particular importance because of the rich valuables and the earliest gold objects ever found in England.

Recent research using lead isotope analysis recognized the origin of the man as being Central Europe. He is believed to have been one of the earliest metalworkers in Britain. He is nicknamed the "archer" because a longbow was among the artifacts buried with him.

The Amesbury Archer is important for many reasons This was a time when the first metals were brought to Britain, and the Archer was buried with two gold hair tresses which are the oldest securely dated gold still found in Britain (dated to around 2,400BC).The Archer was important for another reason: he was buried three miles from Stonehenge at the very time when the massive stones were being brought to Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire to erect the world-famous monument. The Archer is essential because he is the first example of a powerful elite who may well have organized the erection of Stonehenge


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