Modern society hides untold relics of historical civilizations, and archaeologists around the world thrive on bringing these artifacts to light.
That’s exactly what happened when a team that included students from the University of Lyon went digging in a park in southeastern France.
Tales of a second-century battle
Among the more than 350 items uncovered at the Clos de la Visitation Park were weapons and military equipment believed to have been used during the Battle of Lyon in 197 A.D. There were also some human heads of those who didn’t make it home after the historic battle.
This area has long been known to hold historical treasures, but this mission produced some of the most compelling finds to date, including:
- A pair of siege grappling hooks
- Multiple bronze helmets
- Various spearheads and swords
It was a dream come true for students like Caroline Lefevre, who described the excavation project as “a welcome change” from the lectures back on campus.
“For me, it’s wonderful,” Lefevre said. “I’m on my first site.”
The continuation of a long-term project
Although the team currently digging in the park is getting much of the attention, these archaeologists and students only recently took over the mission.
They began working on Monday, taking over the duties of a team who was working on the site throughout June.
As Lefevre explained, the job description includes “clearing, cleaning, discovery of the land to appropriate it.”
Ancient military artifacts are certainly cool, but she said her team still hopes to find other items that can provide additional clues about how people lived hundreds or thousands of years ago.
Unearthing jars, pottery, and other objects will help shed light on Lyon’s rich background, she said.
“As soon as we find an object, we wonder about its history,” Lefevre said.