London: In one of most significant historical finds of the century, scientists say they have recovered beads from a 4,000-year-old burial chest unearthed from Dartmoorm National Park here.
The amber Bronze Age beads unearthed from a prehistoric burial chest on Dartmoor National Park, have been heralded as one of the most significant historical finds in more than a century.
The chest`s other well-preserved contents include human bones, teeth, textiles and intricate jewellery.
Bronze Age expert Ben Roberts of Durham University rated the find a `seven or eight out of ten` on a scale where the ruins of Pompeii get a ten.
"This is an incredible find. We had no idea we could end up with something as astounding as human remains. The amber beads probably came from the Baltic and meant they were long-distance trading 4,000 years ago," Jane Marchand, senior archaeologist from Dartmoor National Park said.
"We lifted the cist lid and saw some red fur with bits of bone sticking out. We thought a fox might have died there. But then a little black bead fell out and we realised it was something much more interesting," Marchand said.
"And it looked like the fur had been wrapped around some remains, lying on the granite base of the cist. The number of beads is particularly exciting," she added.
"There were a number of amber beads which probably came from the Baltic - and that must have meant they were doing long-distance trading 4,000 years ago."
The cist, measuring roughly 30 inches wide by 60 inches long, also contained a band of leather complete with tassels, believed to be some sort of clothing item.
Some wooden jewellery, believed to be ear studs, was also discovered.
The contents of the chest could point out that it was a high-status burial, however, the age or sex of the person whose remains have been found is still unknown.