Late Bronze Age Ox Yoke

Contributed by Ballymoney Museum

Late Bronze Age Ox Yoke

Very few prehistoric Irish wooden yokes have ever been found. This example has no provenance, however it was most likely discovered preserved in one of the large expanses of bogland that once covered North Antrim. It is made from willow and has been radiocarbon dated to 770-440BC, the Irish Late Bronze Age. The structure of the yoke is very similar to those used up until recent times and it shows how farming technology did not change in the centuries that followed. It would have been drawn by two oxen. The shaped ends of the beam were placed on the necks of the animals it reflects the relatively small size of livestock during prehistory. Ballymoney Museum also hold a number of other wooden artefacts in their collection which were found in the local boglands, including bog butter vessels and a large 1,000 year old wooden plough found at Drumlee which may be the oldest in Ireland.

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Ballymoney, County Antrim


7th century BC


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