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Evidence of 'Stone Age Atlantis' discovered under Baltic Sea

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
January 28th, 2014
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Swedish divers have uncovered a site brimming with ancient artifacts beneath the Baltic Sea. Archaeologists believe the relics were left by Swedish nomads 11,000 years ago. The discovery may be evidence of one of the oldest settlements ever found in the Nordic region.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Some have dubbed the find as "Sweden's Atlantis." Archaeologists suggest that the settlement may have been swallowed whole by the sea in the same way as the mythical island in the Atlantic Ocean.

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Discovered by Professor Bjorn Nilsson from Soderton University and a team from Lunds University, the artifacts were found during an archaeological dive at Hano, off the Coast of Skane County in Sweden.

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Nilsson uncovered wood, flint tools, animal horns and ropes, buried 16 meters below the surface. A harpoon carving made from an animal bone, and the bones of an ancient animal called aurochs were just two of the amazing finds.

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Ancestors of modern-day cattle, aurochs lived through Europe before becoming extinct in the early 1600s. The last reported auroch died in Poland in 1627.

The very significant find suggests a date for when these items would have been used. Many of the artifacts have been preserved because the diving location is rich in sediment called gyttja.

Black, gel-like Gyttja is formed when peat begins to decay. As the peat is buried, the amount of oxygen drops and it is thought this lack of oxygen prevented the organic artifacts from being lost.

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"Around 11,000 years ago there was a build-up in the area - a lagoon of sorts - and all the tree and bone pieces are preserved in it," Nilsson says. "If the settlement was on dry land we would only have the stone-based things, nothing organic."

The dive was part of a three-year excavation partially funded by the Swedish National Heritage Board.

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Archaeologists are continuing the dig, and are now particularly interested to see whether there is also an ancient burial site in the region.

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