Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

Special Introductory Offer!

Erosion Reveals Cist Burial in Scottish Cliff

Friday, April 04, 2014

Cist-Burial-Isle-ArranSANNOX, SCOTLAND—A Bronze Age cist burial was rescued from an eroding cliff face on the Isle of Arran. “All the bone was uniformly white and in a similar condition, which is evidence for a hot cremation pyre,” excavation leader Iraia Arabaolaza explained to Culture 24. Some of the bones may have been lost to erosion, or not included in the burial. A green stain indicates that a copper artifact may have originally been part of the burial. A sharp knife made of Yorkshire flint was recovered, along with a cracked food pot that may have been fired when the body was cremated.