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Kingston Down Grave 2

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posted on 10.11.2021, 15:30 by Helena HamerowHelena Hamerow
In the next which I opened, at about the same depth from the surface (but under a larger tumulus than the former), I found a skeleton lying in nearly the same direction as the last, except that the feet pointed rather more northward. These bones were not near so sound as those before mentioned. It was very plain that this person had been included in a wooden chest or coffin (like those at Ash and Chartham Down); but it did not seem to have passed the fire. I traced the wood very visibly all about it, especially at the head and feet, where it could not, I think, have been less than three inches thick; for there I could take up large handfuls of it, and some large lumps, on which the grain was still very discernible. With this skeleton I found the largest hemispherical iron umbo I ever yet met with, it being, from one extremity of the rim to the other, fall seven inches diameter; whereas they do not in general much exceed six inches. In its rim were, as usual, four broad flat-headed iron studs or rivets, by which it was fastened to the shield [M 6237]; their strigs were about half an inch long, which shows the exact thickness of the shield: three other broader convex iron studs, each near two inches broad, with strigs also about half an inch long. The iron head of an hasta or spear, from the point to the end of the socket was full twenty-one inches; it lay on the outside of the chest or coffin, and. as I think, on the lid of it; for the point reached beyond the head of the coffin at least four inches. It had been wrapped up in, some coarse cloth, like many I met with at Ash.

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