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Tue Dec 30, 2014, 02:45 PM

Underground medieval palace revealed by surface survey

Underground medieval palace revealed by surface survey

The layout of a medieval city underground at the site of Old Sarum has been revealed through the use of non-invasive digital mapping technologies.

by Michelle Starr
/8 December 2014 1:07 am GMT

Old Sarum in Salisbury, the UK, is rich with history, dating back 5,000 years. During the Iron Age, it became the site of a hill fort, during the Roman occupation of Britain hundreds of years later, it became a military outpost and, during the Middle Ages, the site of a bustling city.

Although much of these ruins have been excavated over the years, there are sections that remained underground: the Inner and Outer Baileys of the ancient hillfort, where a city arose in the 11th Century, complete with a castle and cathedral -- and stood for over 300 years, declining in the 13th century when New Sarum -- Salisbury -- rose, and the city relocated.

Although the existence of this city was known, its layout was not -- and now a number of surveys have revealed the network of buildings -- including what was probably one of the largest royal palaces of the time.

"Archaeologists and historians have known for centuries that there was a medieval city at Old Sarum, but until now there has been no proper plan of the site," said Kristian Strutt, Experimental Officer and Director of Archaeological Prospection Services at the University of Southampton.


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Archaeologists discover lost medieval city undisturbed underground for more than 700 years
Dec 03, 2014 00:00
By Richard Smith

Team of academics used state-of-the-art scanning techniques to uncover the site of Old Sarum, near Salisbury

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Archaeologists have unearthed an almost complete medieval city without the need for any Digging. For the first time the
plan of a network of buildings in a once thriving medieval city at the historic site of Old Sarum, near Salisbury, Wiltshire
A long-lost medieval city has been discovered by experts without using spades to dig up any earth.

Latest X-ray scanning techniques were used to map out a network of 11th century buildings at the famous Old Sarum archaeological site.

The city has lay undisturbed beneath grass for more than 700 years.

But university researchers found a series of massive structures - believed to be large defensive buildings - along the southern edge of the outer bailey wall.


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