Seventeen decapitated skeletons about 1700 years ago were found in three Roman cemeteries at Nobbs Farm in Cambridgeshire, England.
Archaeologists who excavated the site believe that people were executed for violating Roman law. However, scholars unrelated to this study gave mixed views on this explanation.
Fifty-two burials were buried in the graveyard, and the 17 decapitated bodies included nine men and eight women, who were 25 years of age or older at the time of death, the research team said on May 19. I reported it in a paper published online in the same magazine on the same day. BritanniaOften, the head of a decapitated person was buried beside his foot, and pottery was usually placed where the head was. Some of the bodies were laid face down (stomach down) in the tomb.
Researchers believe that those who were decapitated were executed. They noted that the number of death penalty crimes under Roman law increased dramatically between the 3rd and 4th centuries when these skeletons were buried. Existing archaeological evidence suggests that the Roman army used Nobu’s farm as a supply center, and they would have taken strict measures against the breach, researchers said.
“From the 3rd to the 4th centuries, the punishments granted under Roman law were steadily increasing. The number of crimes involving the death penalty increased from 14 in the early 3rd century to about 60 due to the death of Constantinus in 337 AD. The number has increased. ”Researchers pointed out in a journal article that security concerns were one of the reasons for the increase in death sentences. During the 3rd and 4th centuries, there were numerous civil wars within the Roman Empire, with several people fighting for the throne. So-called”BarbarianWas a major concern at the time.
Despite the possible execution, the individual was still buried in a pottery container and, in some cases, placed in a casket. Archaeologist Isabel Lisboa, who led the excavation, said, “The collection of decapitated women’s burial goods is by far the most abundant, buried in two ships and a necklace of coal beads of money. It was. ”Can coal charcoal is a type of coal that is easy to shine. “Under Roman law, family and friends could seek a return to bury the body of an executed criminal,” the team wrote in a journal article.
If that policy applies, explain why the executed individual was allowed to approach proper burial.
The executed people were probably not slaves, “slave had no status” and were likely not given burials, caskets or burial goods, Lisboa said.
Live Science contacted several scholars who were not involved in the study to get an idea of this discovery. There were not many answers at the time of publication. However, a few scholars who were skeptical that Roman law had a great deal to do with the execution of these individuals were skeptical.
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“What we know about the location of executions in Roman courts suggests that they were done primarily in cities and towns, as a public sight and because of their deterrent effect.” Said Simon Cleary, Professor Emeritus of Roman Archeology at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom. He noticed that Nobu’s farm was not near major towns and cities.
Laws made by the Roman emperor are difficult to enforce in remote areas, Cleary told Live Science. “In fact, whether or not to do what the emperor ordered is a local justice of the peace. It depended on the landowner, or state official, “Clary said. “if that’s it [the decapitated burials] If it is the result of such a law, one would expect to find execution burials, especially decapitations, throughout the empire. This simply doesn’t happen. Decapitation burials are almost entirely confined to Britain, “he said.” Therefore, unless Britain is a region that places much more serious imperial law than the rest of the empire, we need to look for explanations within Britain. It suggests that. ”
Cleary added that although these people may have been executed, Roman law believes that they may have had nothing to do with why they were killed. “Until the 4th century.” In addition, the Roman army was literally a law in itself for centuries, and civilians did not return, “said Cleary. Why most of the burials decapitated in the Roman Empire occurred in Britain. Is unknown. “Sometimes Roman Britain can be really, really strange, especially in the treatment of the dead. Besides decapitated or prone burials, other things that look strange to our eyes. There are many practices, said Cleary.
Other scholars also suspected that Roman law had a lot to do with the decapitated burial. “Personally, I think it’s very unlikely that the execution on Nobu’s farm was related to legal proceedings in the late Roman era,” said the director of the Institute of Law and Constitution at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. Caroline Humfres said. “If there is a judicial context, it will be localized and more likely to be related to summary execution,” Hamfres told Live Science.
Nevertheless, other scholars believed that these people may have been executed in accordance with Roman law. “Public executions seem to be the best explanation for the Nob’s Farm case,” said Judith Evans Grabs, a professor of Roman history at Emory University in Atlanta. “Official executions will be under the authority of the Governor, not the local judiciary, and will reflect the idea of imperial crime, not local,” Grabs said. She is a woman of the Roman Empire. Often subject to witchcraft and adultery accusations, both of which could be considered serious crimes for the Romans.
The excavation of the site took place between 2001 and 2010. The drilling was wholly owned by a company called Tarmac and was done before the quarry was expanded, Lisboa said.
Initially published in Live Science.
17 decapitated skeletons found in an ancient Roman cemetery
Source link 17 decapitated skeletons found in an ancient Roman cemetery