Medieval cemetery discovered in France

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A cemetery dating back to the Middle Ages has been discovered at a building site in Bas-et-Lezat, a commune in the Puy-de-Dome department in Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes in central France.

Medieval cemetery discovered in France
One of the graves discovered during the excavations [Credit: Hades]

The work was immediately stopped, the DRAC (Direction Regionale des Affaires Culturelles) was informed and archaeological excavations were ordered from the Hades archaeological investigation office. The excavations, which lasted three weeks from late April to mid-May, uncovered about sixty graves.




It is likely that many more graves are to be found as only 130 m² have been excavated (the surface area of the house to be built) while the site is more than one hectare in size.

Medieval cemetery discovered in France
Aerial view showing the small area that has been excavated [Credit: Hades]

It is probably the former cemetery of the parish of Lezat (Bas and Lezat were only merged during the revolution). It apparently dates from the Middle Ages, between the 9th and 14th centuries. No evidence, such as pieces of ceramics or other artefacts, have been found to facilitate the work of the archaeologists.

Carbon-14 dates of the skeletal remains should provide a more accurate picture. Archaeologists will also have to determine the significance of this discovery in order to determine whether or not the excavations are to be continued.

Source: France Blue [June 10, 2019]

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