Shackled for Eternity

Digs & Discoveries March/April 2015

(Courtesy © Frédéric Méténier, Inrap 2014)

Archaeologists have recently uncovered a large Gallo-Roman necropolis in southwest France. Located just 800 feet from the Roman amphitheater in Saintes, the cemetery may have been the final resting place for many of the arena’s victims. Several hundred graves dating to the first and second centuries A.D. were found, including many double burials, in which two bodies were interred in one trench, lying head to foot. The archaeologists also excavated at least five individuals—four adults and one child—who were still wearing riveted iron shackles around their wrists, necks, or legs. The graves were almost entirely devoid of artifacts, except for that of a young child who was buried with coins on his or her eyes and seven small vases.

  • Artifacts March/April 2015


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    (Courtesy Andy Chapman/MOLA Northampton)
  • Around the World March/April 2015


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    (Courtesy Brick Township, New Jersey)
  • Digs & Discoveries March/April 2015

    Seismic Shift

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    (Courtesy Sichuan Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology)
  • Features March/April 2015

    Rome's Imperial Port

    The vast site of Portus holds the key to understanding how Rome evolved from a mighty city to an empire

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    (De Agostini Picture Library/Bridgeman Images)