Friday, December 29, 2006

 

Boat provides historical insight

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BBC
December 28, 2006



A Bronze Age logboat which had lain unseen in the River Tay for 3,000 years is being studied by archaeologists.
It is hoped the find will yield important new information about how human ancestors lived.

Although the boat, made from the trunk of a single oak, was found five years ago, it was only lifted out of the Tay during the summer.

Repairs carried out on the 30ft vessel have already given experts an insight into Bronze Age technology.

The boat, which would have been powered by up to 12 men, is being studied by archaeologists in Edinburgh who have claimed it to be one of the best examples of its kind in Scotland.

Preservation work
Experts have also been intrigued about the discovery of sulphur in the wood.

Noel Fojut, of heritage agency Historic Scotland, said: "There are very advanced techniques now for analysing the material, such as what was used to make a repair in the middle of the boat.

"We can now do a lot with very small samples, so the boat looks just as it did before."

The logboat currently has to be kept wet to prevent drying out and cracking.

However, once the research has finished, it will be injected with chemicals and freeze dried to preserve it.



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