Category Archives: Scottland

Archaeologists Unearth Hollowed-Out Whale Vertebra Containing Human Jawbone, Remains of Newborn Lambs

Iron Age Scots made the unusual vessel with the bone of a fin whale, Earth’s second
largest whale species
Whale Vessel

When archaeologists excavated a Scottish Iron Age site called the Cairns in 2016, they discovered a hollowed-out whale vertebra filled with a trio of unexpected objects: a human jaw bone and the remains of two newborn lambs. Dated to about the mid-2nd century A.D., the vessel was propped near the entrance of a broch, or type of roundhouse, and held in place by a pair of red deer antlers and a large grinding stone.