North West Wales

Anglesey 1,500-year-old 'time capsule' unearthed

A Roman brooch found at Llangefni Image copyright Anglesey Council
Image caption A Roman brooch found at Llangefni

Archaeologists digging on the site of a new road in Anglesey have unearthed an ancient cemetery and a 1,500-year-old "time capsule".

Some 48 early medieval graves have been discovered on the Llangefni link road site.

The "cist" graves each hold several bodies, alongside jewellery and French pottery.

Iwan Parry, of Archaeoleg Brython Archaeology, said: "This is a fantastic find of national importance."

He added: "A cemetery like this, where there is such good preservation, is like finding a time capsule left by a community almost 1,500 years ago.

"The manner of how the remains have been preserved is amazing."

Image copyright Anglesey Council
Image caption One of the cist graves being unearthed

DNA techniques

Archaeologists now hope to use DNA techniques to discover whether the group are related to modern Llangefni residents.

The finds include a Roman bronze brooch, fragments of Samian pottery imported from Gaul (modern-day France), and a brooch clasp.

Although skeletons do not normally survive in the acidic soil of north west Wales, many of the excavated bones have remained intact in the local limestone bedrock.

The Welsh Government-funded Llangefni Link Road is being built to provide better access to the local enterprise zone and the Grwp Llandrillo Menai Pencraig college campus.

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