Archaeologists have discovered a 5,500-year-old megalithic tomb in County Meath, Ireland.
The discovery was made in collaboration with the University College Dublin by Devenish, an agri-technology company (UCD). They had been digging at the site for over a year and have now revealed their most exciting discovery in the area.
Two burial chambers were discovered hidden beneath a large stone cairn by the team. They discovered the remains of six kerbstones that likely formed the perimeter of the cairn. One of them had Neolithic carvings on it. Two more satellite tombs were discovered.
“It is truly the find of a lifetime for the archaeologists involved in this discovery,” Dr Clodhna N Lionáin, Devenish’s lead archaeologist for the project, said in a statement.
The discovery was made at the Br na Bóinne complex at Dowth Hall. In recent weeks, a number of archaeological discoveries have been made here, including the discovery of a previously unknown monument as a result of a drought.
These monuments are thought to have been built by some of Ireland’s first farmers, with the discovery hoped to shed more light on the people and culture of the time. The historic site will be preserved for the enjoyment of future generations.
“This is the most significant megalithic find in Ireland in the last 50 years, since the excavation of Knowth,” said Dr Steve Davis of the University College Dublin School of Archaeology. “The recent spate of archaeological discoveries in Br na Bóinne demonstrates what a globally significant place this is.”
Br na Bóinne, which means “palace” or “mansion” of the Boyne, is located near Ireland’s east coast, about 40 kilometers (25 miles) north of Dublin. Knowth, Newgrange, and Dowth are three passage tombs built around five millennia ago in the Neolithic or Late Stone Age. The tombs house Western Europe’s largest collection of megalithic art (related to large stones).
Other interesting discoveries in the Dowth Hall area include a Late Neolithic henge, a Bronze Age enclosure, Early Medieval enclosures, and Late Medieval settlements.
During Heritage Week, which runs from August 18 to 26, visitors will be able to tour the latest excavation’s megalithic finds.