Research continues at site where gold bracelet was found in Saare County

The third century gold bracelet discovered in Saaremaa in September 2019.
The third century gold bracelet discovered in Saaremaa in September 2019. Source: Marika Mägi

Additional excavations will be carried out at an archaeological site in Saaremaa where a rare 3rd century golden bracelet and other jewelry was discovered in 2019.

In 2019, archaeologist Marika Mägi and her team unearthed a rare gold bracelet and other jewelry made from precious metals in what may be the most valuable find in Estonia of all time in Saare County.

Now, she has carried out additional excavations at the site of the 3rd century golden bracelet to find out what could have happened in and around this place about 1,700 years ago.

Last autumn, only metal detectors were used to inspect the site, but now more delicate work using shovels and brushes will be carried out.

During last week's excavations, no golden objects were found, but the digging wasn't a complete waste of time.

Several flintstones were found which were not ordinary as Mägi confirmed. But what is this site, which hasn't been ploughed for centuries?

"I think it's a place of sacrifice. And I stick to that opinion and I don't see anything here that points to a grave. Just because there are bones it does not always have to point to a grave," Mägi said.

According to Mägi, she has not yet managed to get a complete picture of the region and its connection with the gold find. To this end, she plans to explore the area around the intersection of the three villages even more extensively.

Speaking last autumn to the newspaper "Saarte Hääl" Mägi said that gold is rare in Estonian archaeology, and such a big piece, with such fine details and ideological significance, has never been found before, which is why this find is a likely candidate for being the most valuable find of all time in Estonia.

She told ETV's "Aktuaalne kaamera", also in 2019: "It is believed that whoever wore these, they were a symbol of belonging to the highest echelons of society. So these are not regular bracelets. How this particular bracelet ended up in Saaremaa is an exciting question in its own right, and one we'll likely never get a real answer for. This is a type of jewelry which throughout Scandinavia is considered one of the most significant items of the Roman Iron Age, and it is associated with royal power and royal families."


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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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