Seahenge Bronze Age timber circle

Contributed by Lynn Museum

Seahenge Bronze Age timber circle, Holme, Norfolk. © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service

This unique find of international significance was discovered by chance in 1998 on Holme beach on the north Norfolk coast and excavated in 1999. It comprises a ring of timbers nearly 7 metres in diameter, formed from 55 oak posts standing side by side and 2 metres high. At the centre was a massive oak tree stump.

The circle was originally built inland from the sea. Coastal erosion and other changes have transformed the landscape from marsh to beach.

This mysterious construction was built around 2,050 BC, during the earlier Bronze Age, when people in this part of Europe first began to use metal tools. We cannot be certain why it was built. It was probably used during the burial of an important person in the region. The timber circle has now been reconstructed and can be seen in the Lynn Museum.

This monument provides a unique insight into religion and ritual practices at this important stage of social development in western Europe.

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