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Skeletons mark ancient conflict in Denmark

  |   Aug. 14, 2012 at 3:33 PM
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ALKEN ENGE, Denmark, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Archaeologists say hundreds of skeletons buried in a bog in Denmark suggest a large-scale military conflict at the site about the time of the birth of Christ.

Damaged human bones, along with axes, spears, clubs and shields, confirm the bog at Alken Enge near Lake Mosso in East Jutland was the site of violent confrontation, Aarhus University researchers reported Tuesday.

"It's clear that this must have been a quite far-reaching and dramatic event that must have had profound effect on the society of the time," Aarhus archaeologist Mads Kahler Holst said.

An international team of researchers will study the recovered skeletal remains and artifacts in an attempt to discover who these warriors were and where they came from, the university said.

"The dig has produced a large quantity of skeletal remains, and we believe that they will give us the answers to some of our questions about what kind of events led up to the army ending up here," Holst said.

There are indications the find is much larger than the area excavated thus far, researchers said.

"We've done small test digs at different places in the 40-hectare (100-acre) Alken Enge wetlands area, and new finds keep emerging," Ejvind Hertz of Scanderborg Museum, who is directing the dig, said.

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