Beads from Isle of Man Bronze Age jet necklace to go on display

  • In Science
  • 2022-09-27 17:54:33Z
  • By BBC
Bead in the from of half the necklace
Bead in the from of half the necklace  

Beads from a 4,000-year-old jet necklace found during an archaeological dig on the Isle of Man are set to go on public display for the first time.

The 122 beads, which were unearthed at a site outside Kirk Michael in 2019, form an intricately decorated crescent-shaped necklace and matching bracelet.

The jewellery was declared treasure at an inquest earlier this month.

It was found during the Round Mounds of the Isle of Man project, which focuses on Bronze Age burial practices.

The four-year research project was a collaboration between University of Leicester and Newcastle University and was supported by Manx National Heritage (MNH).

The necklace, which is the first of its kind to be found on the island, was uncovered alongside human remains in what is thought to have been the earliest burial in the mound.

The decorative piece, which would have been strung in seven strands, is thought to have originated from Whitby in North Yorkshire.

Holes for the necklace to be strung
Holes for the necklace to be strung  

MNH curator of archaeology Allison Fox said the discovery showed the island was part of the "society and community around the Irish Sea".

She added that the fact the jewellery, which was "probably quite valuable", was buried with the woman and not distributed to the community or her family showed it was "very personal to her".

"I think what we can take from that is that it was a high-status person and a person who also had a high status within the feeling of the community as well," she said.

Although the necklace is complete, conservation of some of the beads is still ongoing, so only part of the decorative item will be put on display at the present time.

The beads will be on display in the prehistory gallery at the Manx Museum in Douglas from Wednesday.

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