CSI meets ancient bog bodies
23 June 2016
A new book that explores the mystery of Europe’s ‘bog bodies’ and sheds new light on our prehistoric past has won a prestigious award from the Society for American Archaeology.
Likened to a real-life forensic thriller, Bog Bodies Uncovered by Miranda Aldhouse-Green, Emeritus Professor in the School of History, Archaeology and Religion won the 2016 Book of the Year in the Popular Category at the Society’s annual awards held in Orlando, Florida.
The book explores existing and new prehistoric ‘cold’ cases from Europe 2,000 years ago, taking a radically different approach akin to a criminal investigation.
Examining the grisly deaths of men, women and children discovered in the peat bogs of Northern Europe, Professor Aldhouse Green treats each as a crime scene. She draws on the latest evidence and research to piece together the truth about these prehistoric murders.
Professor Aldhouse-Green said: “I am delighted to receive this award from such a prestigious society. What I’ve tried to address is whether human sacrifice was behind some or all of the Iron- and Roman-period bog deaths, combining latest scientific evidence with our knowledge of Celtic myths and ancient accounts of barbarian rituals.
“Bog Bodies Uncovered has advanced what we know about these amazing 2,000 year old bodies. It explores the idea that each body represents an ancient crime scene, with all the forensic implications that can be unpicked. It provides a close and personal examination of who these people were, why they were chosen to die violent and special deaths, why they were placed in special, marginal boggy places, and who killed them.”
Bog Bodies Uncovered is published by Thames and Hudson.