Several Sandstone Sarcophagi Dating Back To The Early Medieval Era Were Unearthed Beneath The Streets Of A French City

natalia_maroz - - illustrative purposes only

Below the streets of a city in France, several sandstone sarcophagi from the early medieval period were discovered.

According to the National Institute of Preventative Archaeological Research (INRAP), the sarcophagi were unearthed during excavations in downtown Dijon, the historic capital city of the Burgundy region located in eastern France.

The excavations were being conducted at the grounds of the Church of Saint-Jean, where a necropolis had been lying since early medieval times.

Researchers found sandstone sarcophagi shaped like trapezoids. They appear to be from the Merovingian period, which began in the 6th century and ended in the 8th century. That means the burial containers are more than 1,200 years old.

Some show signs of damage due to overlapping burials. In addition, archaeologists uncovered a limestone sarcophagus that was shaped like a cube and had a heavy, curved lid. It seemed older than the sandstone ones, possibly dating back to the 5th century.

There were three skeletons inside, indicating that it was utilized for multiple burials over different time periods. Further analysis will be needed to determine the age of the remains.

Aside from the sarcophagi, a number of other burials were found at the necropolis of the Church of Saint-Jean, including many tombs consisting of stone slabs.

Several child burials thought to be from between the 11th and 13th centuries particularly stood out to the archaeologists.

In the early Middle Ages, the necropolis was located just outside of the walls that surrounded the city of Dijon, next to the site of the church.

natalia_maroz – – illustrative purposes only

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