Review – Flag Fen Basin: living in prehistoric wetlands

Review – Flag Fen Basin: living in prehistoric wetlands


Iron Age and Bronze Age swords and daggers excavated from the Must Farm river. The Iron Age sword on the left has been broken in two, and bears a dot-and-swirl mark left by its maker. (Image: Cambridge Archaeological Unit)

Remarkable finds from Must Farm take centre stage in a new exhibition at Peterborough Museum, which tells the story of excavations at the ancient river channel and settlement, and explores their connection with other prehistoric sites around the Fens. Lucia Marchini delves into Bronze Age life at Must Farm and Flag Fen.

When the remains of the Must Farm roundhouses were unearthed, their exceptionally well-preserved contents gave a uniquely detailed snapshot of ordinary life in the Bronze Age (CA 312 and 319). Textiles, pottery with food residues, and striking quantities of metalwork have all survived thanks to the waterlogged conditions of the special landscape that is the Flag Fen Basin. The basin’s flagship site, Flag Fen, lies just two miles from Must Farm and boasts similarly high levels of preservation. With evidence of prehistoric activity from various other locations around this part of the Fenland, there is a good possibility that other…

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