Digging work at Ämari Air Base reveals valuable archaeological finds

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The dig site at Ämari Air Base. Source: Centre for Defence Investment.

An ancient rumbler bell and a coin minted in the 14th century have been unearthed during digging performed as part of the construction of the perimeter fence of the Ämari Air Base in northwestern Estonia.

The bell would have been used as a piece of jewelry attached to headdresses or necklaces and the coin was minted during the time of the Bishop of Tartu, Dietrich III Damerow, in Livonia at the end of the 14th century, the Center for Defense Investment said in a statement on Monday.

Additional archaeological surveys will now take place on the site starting in April 2021 in an area of approximately 100-150 square meters.  

The ancient bell found at Ämari Air Base. Source: Centre for Defence Investment.

The Center for Defense Investment signed an agreement on the construction of the perimeter fence of the Ämari Air Base in September of this year. The works are aimed at modernizing the northern perimeter of the base in order to ensure the security of the territory. 

"While for us the archaeological finds mean the project becoming more expensive and the date of completion of the works becoming unknown, we consider local history, its research and preservation as very important and are very proud to be able to make our contribution to the more comprehensive surveying of the location of one of the most important national defense sites of Estonia, which has so dignified and long cultural history," Mario Metsoja, head of the infrastructure portfolio for West Estonia at the Center for Defense Investment, said.

The 14th-century coin found at Ämari Air Base. Source: Centre for Defence Investment.

How long the deadline of the completion of the works is to be delayed beyond the current deadline of September 2021 will become clear after the end of the archaeological surveys. 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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