Date:

Archaeologists Discover Giant Defensive Minefield From Roman Iron Age

Archaeologists from the Museum Lolland-Falster have discovered a large 770-metre-long defensive earthwork belt that dates from around the Roman Iron Age near Rødbyhavn on Lolland, Denmark.

The Roman Iron Age is a period from AD 100-400 that is used to describe the hold that the Roman Empire had begun to exert on the Germanic tribes of Northern Europe in Denmark, Norway, and Scandinavia.

- Advertisement -

During this period, there was an influx of trade between the northern tribes and the Roman Empire, with the import of various high-status items such as vessels, bronze images, glass items, and weapons.

By the 5-6th centuries, the Roman Empire was ransacked by the Germanic tribes, bringing an end to the Roman Iron Age and the start of the Germanic Iron Age (also called the Vendel Era or the Merovinger Age).

Archaeologists have so far detected 770-metres of the defensive belt, but they believe that this is just part of a larger fortified line that ran from the island’s wetlands to the coast measuring up to 1400 metres.

Described as a minefield, the area studied contains at least 10,000 holes that held sharpened spikes with the aim to delay any advancing armies.

- Advertisement -

A similar technique was used by the Roman military, often referred to in historical documents as “the lily”. Roman soldiers would sink foot long iron hooks into the ground, a technique Caesar himself used successfully during his campaigns against the Gauls.

Header Image – The course of the hollow belt at Rødbyhavn. Image Credit : Museum Lolland-Falster

- Advertisement -
spot_img
Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan is multi-award-winning journalist and the Managing Editor at HeritageDaily. His background is in archaeology and computer science, having written over 8,000 articles across several online publications. Mark is a member of the Association of British Science Writers (ABSW), the World Federation of Science Journalists, and in 2023 was the recipient of the British Citizen Award for Education, the BCA Medal of Honour, and the UK Prime Minister's Points of Light Award.
spot_img

Mobile Application

spot_img

Related Articles

Golden primrose among new discoveries at Auckland Castle

Archaeologists from the Auckland Project are conducting excavations at Auckland Castle to unearth the home of Sir Arthur Haselrig, a leader of the Parliamentary opposition to Charles I.

Archaeologists search for lost world beneath the Gulf of Mexico

A multinational team, including researchers from the University of Bradford, is conducting a study in the Gulf of Mexico to identify submerged landscapes from the last Ice Age.

Archaeologists discover giant monumental structure

Archaeologists from the University of Hradec Králové have discovered a giant mound structure during preliminary archaeological investigations along the route of the D35 Plotiště-Sadová highway in Czechia.

Viking ship discovered at Jarlsberg Hovedgård

Archaeologists have discovered a Viking ship burial northwest of Tønsberg in Vestfold county, Norway.

Update : Ming Dynasty shipwrecks

The State Administration of Cultural Heritage has released an update on the current recovery efforts of two Ming Dynasty shipwrecks in the South China Sea.

Study reveals new insights into life at “German Stonehenge”

Excavations of the Ringheiligtum Pömmelte, nicknamed the “German Stonehenge”, has revealed new insights into domestic life from prehistory.

3,400-year-old shipwreck found with cargo mostly intact

Archaeologists from the Israel Antiquities Authority Marine Unit have discovered a 3,400-year-old shipwreck with the cargo mostly intact.

Liquid containing cremated human remains is the world’s oldest known wine

Archaeologists have discovered the oldest known preserved wine, a 2,000-year-old white wine of Andalusian origin.