The Glastonbury bowl

Contributed by Nancy Hollinrake

The Glastonbury bowl

The Glastonbury Lake Village is the best-preserved Iron Age settlement known in Europe. The village was constructed on a large timber raft within the wetlands of the Somerset Levels. The waterlogged conditions ensure the preservation of organic remains which rot away on dry-land archaeological sites. Metal tools were often found with wooden handles attached and many wooden artefacts survive, including the only known Iron Age wheel hub and spokes, used as templates for reconstruction of chariots, as well as wooden tubs and vessels.
The site was discovered and excavated over 100 years ago by Glastonbury people. The 2 volume report, published in Glastonbury, is still read today. The bronze bowl with decorative studs quickly became an icon of the site, demonstrating the technical expertise and high status of the inhabitants.
The site is still owned and managed by the Glastonbury Antiquarian Society, who also run a museum in the Tribunal on the High Street. They have ensured that the site is still waterlogged and research on the finds is still ongoing. Today the bowl also stands for the enduring dedication of Glastonbury people to their heritage.

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possibly the lake village

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