Often stereotyped as tattooed barbarians, the Picts had a talent for war. But these ‘lost’ ancient people of Scotland also a talent for carving stone and shaping silver, and some stunning pieces have just been unearthed in Scotland.
Archaeologists have surveyed a field in Northern Scotland and uncovered a hoard of 100 more silver items, including coins, and pieces of brooches and bracelets, all dating to late Roman times.
Picts were one of the reasons even heavily armoured Roman legions could not conquer the area.
A team led by Dr Gordon Noble, senior lecturer in the department of archaeology at Aberdeen University, reported the findings in a study published in the journal Antiquity.
‘We set out, not really thinking we would find more silver,’ Dr Noble said. ‘We just wanted to learn more about the context’ of the original find.
The researchers were surprised when they discovered more than 100 silver items.
The finds included late Roman coins and military equipment, personal ornaments including brooch and bracelet fragments, ingots and Hacksilber parcels – pieces of cut, bent and broken silver.
Originally, there were also two man-made stone circles, one dating to the Neolithic and the other the Bronze Age (B.C. 1670 to B.C. 1500), the researchers said.
Gaulcross is now an intensively-farmed field in rural Aberdeenshire, and there is no evidence left showing the stone circles.