Archaeologists in Poland recently made an exciting discovery from the Bronze Age. A metal detectorist named Denis Konkol was exploring the forests of Kociewie when he came across five bronze axes buried just below the surface of the soil. The artifacts were between 3,700 and 3,100 years old, dating back to between 1700-1300 BC.
Kociek is a region of forests and farmland in northern Poland. Konkol had obtained the proper permits to conduct a metal detecting survey in the area. When he discovered the axes, he promptly reported his find to the local officials in charge of protecting archaeological sites.
Igor Strzok, the Provincial Conservator of Historic Monuments for Pomerania, confirmed the discovery. Under his supervision, archaeologists carefully excavated the site to retrieve the objects without damaging any other potential evidence.
They found the five axes buried together in a shallow pit, about 20-30 centimeters below ground level under a layer of grass and soil. Strzok said artifacts from this time period are rarely uncovered in this region, making this an especially unique find.
Piotr Klimaszewski, the head of the Archaeological Monuments Department, examined the axes and he believes they were likely part of a ritual deposit or offering, perhaps related to trade or the religion practiced by Bronze Age peoples in this area.
The discovery provides new clues about the cultures that lived in Poland during the Bronze Age over 3,000 years ago. Similar lone bronze axes from this period have been found before, but never a group of five artifacts buried together.
Strzok said the last comparable find was about 20 years ago in the Lublin area. Most archaeological sites from this time reveal bracelets, armor, or other items rather than a cache of tools, so due to its rarity, experts are calling this an “archaeological sensation.”
Within the next few days, the five Bronze Age axes will be transported to the Archaeological Museum in Gdańsk for further study and preservation. Finds like this help scientists learn more about the technologies, beliefs, and trading networks of ancient cultures.
While thousands of dedicated treasure hunters explore areas like the Kociewie forests each year, few make discoveries as important as Konkol’s Bronze Age axe deposit. His diligence in reporting his find promptly allowed archaeologists to properly investigate and protect this rare glimpse into Poland’s distant past.
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