• Sweden's news in English
 
Swedish divers unearth Stone Age 'Atlantis' relics
A diver exams an 11,000-year old tree trunk. Photo: Arne Sjöström

Swedish divers unearth Stone Age 'Atlantis' relics

Published: 24 Jan 2014 12:26 GMT+01:00

"What we have here is maybe one of the oldest settlements from the first more permanent sites in Scania and in Sweden full stop," project leader and archaeology professor at Södertörn University Björn Nilsson told The Local.

Nilsson's team has been diving in Hanö, a sandy bay off the coast of Skåne County, and has been given the resources by the Swedish National Heritage Board (Riksantikvarieämbetet) needed for a three-year excavation of an area 16 metres below the water's surface.

So far, they've uncovered a number of remnants that are believed to have been discarded in the water by nomadic Swedes in the Stone Age, objects which have been preserved thanks to the lack of oxygen and the abundance of gyttja sediment. 

One of the biggest finds has been what Nilsson believes was an abandoned harpoon carving from animal bone, which was discarded into the water along with a host of other objects.

"There's wood and antlers and other implements that were thrown in there," he continued. "Around 11,000 years ago there was a build up in the area, a lagoon or sorts ... and all the tree and bone pieces are preserved in it. If the settlement was on dry land we would only have the stone-based things, nothing organic."

Things made of textiles, like rope, can survive where there is a high presence of gyttja, which is sediment rich in organic matter at the bottom of a eutrophic lake. The team has also recovered wood pieces, flint tools, animal horns, and bones of the aurochs, the ancestor of domestic cattle, the last of which died off in the early 1600s. They archaeologists are also keeping a keen eye out for any potential burial sites.

Nilsson admitted that "lousy Swedish tabloids" had blown the story out of the water by labelling the find "Sweden's Atlantis", even though the remnants never belonged to an actual village. The people were all nomadic at the time, he explained, so there was no village. He trumpeted, however, that the finds so far were "world-class" and "one-of-a-kind". He added that was extremely rare to find evidence from the Stone Age so unspoiled.

"What we found here is totally new for us - the whole diving team is really thrilled. They're having the time of their lives down there."

The Local/og/sr

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
'High chance' of northern lights in Sweden skies
Photo: TT

'High chance' of northern lights in Sweden skies

A particularly active sun and clear cold nights are a combination which have dramatically raised the chances of experiencing the northern lights in Swedish skies this new year. READ  

South-East Asian tsunami: Ten years on
Swedes in Thai tsunami remembrance
Khao Lak beach in Thailand. File photo: TT

Swedes in Thai tsunami remembrance

The Swedish embassy and Swedish Church has organized a ceremony on the beach at Khao Lak in Thailand on Friday in remembrance of the devastating 2004 tsunami which claimed almost 228,000 lives, including over 500 Swedes. READ  

Five hurt in mosque arson attack
Photo: TT

Five hurt in mosque arson attack

An arsonist set fire to a mosque in central Sweden on Thursday injuring five people, police said, in the latest of a spate of attacks targeting Muslims. READ  

Fast wifi tops Swedes' holiday wish list
Dreaming of a faster wifi? Photo: TT

Fast wifi tops Swedes' holiday wish list

Nice views are all well and good but the item that Swedes prioritize above all when kicking back on holiday is the speed of their wifi connection, a new survey has shown. READ  

Princess Madeleine plans Europe move
Photo: The Royal Court

Princess Madeleine plans Europe move

Sweden's Princess Madeleine has said that she and her husband Chris O'Neil plan to soon leave the US and move to Europe as the couple await their second child. READ  

Teenager arrested over Malmö bomb
Photo: TT

Teenager arrested over Malmö bomb

A 15-year-old has been arrested after a series of new explosions rocked the Malmö suburb of Rosengård on Christmas Eve. READ  

Sweden's legal elite take ice bucket challenge
Photo: Screenshot Maria Melin

Sweden's legal elite take ice bucket challenge

A group of some of Sweden's top prosecutors, police officers and legal powerbrokers have joined the legions of people worldwide and subjected themselves to an icy shower to promote awareness of ALS. READ  

Sweden braces for Christmas Eve snow
File photo: TT

Sweden braces for Christmas Eve snow

The Swedish weather agency has issued a warning for heavy snow in Sweden's east and near north on Christmas Eve as a winter takes a belated grip on the country. READ  

'Avoid politics for Christmas peace': expert
Swedish Christmas smorgasbord. Photo: TT

'Avoid politics for Christmas peace': expert

Ban political discussions at Christmas and go easy on the alcohol - two tips from Swedish experts for a peaceful and cordial family festive season after a stormy political autumn. READ  

Swedish help hotlines ready for festive rush
Photo: TT

Swedish help hotlines ready for festive rush

Help hotlines across Sweden are preparing themselves for what is typically one of the busiest periods of year. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Sweden's wild carnivore population on the rise
Gallery
Property of the week: Östermalm
Graeme Richardson/Swedish Lapland
Accelerated
ICE MUSIC: Why are Texans coming to Sweden to make music with ice?
National
Meet the Italian sketching a new Swedish future
Technology
Agency: Dream in vain of a white Christmas
Blog updates

23 December

Editor’s Blog, December 23rd (The Local Sweden) »

"Hello readers, It’s time for the weekly news round up… on a Tuesday? Yes, on a Tuesday. Most of the..." READ »

 

22 December

A Tale of Three Cities (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"Today I am pleased to welcome a guest blogger on my blog, Sir David King, The..." READ »

 
 
 
Society
Video: The best & worst of Swedish Christmas
National
Second baby on the way for Princess Madeleine
Gallery
People-watching: December 20th - 21st
Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: December 18th to 25th
National
'Unprecedented' Russian activity: Armed Forces
Society
Interview: The Local chats with Melinda Gates
Society
VIDEO: Stockholmers try out some Swedish tongue twisters
Society
Eight things to do when it gets dark in Umeå
National
Inside Sweden's first 'light therapy' school
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching: December 17th
Estelle through the years
Gallery
Princess Estelle through the years
Society
Why are there so many 100-year-olds in one Swedish town?
Society
Is it time to better celebrate Sweden's diverse identity?
Gallery
Property of the week: Huddinge
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
National
CATCH UP: Russian plane in Baltic near-miss drama
Lifestyle
How my compass drew me to Sweden
National
The man whose memory you need to remember
Gallery
People-watching: December 13th - 14th
Sponsored Article
How to get your own office anywhere in the world
Politics
'Our party will stand alone': Stefan Löfven
Society
The Local chats to Ruben Östlund, director of Golden Globe nominated Force Majeure
Lifestyle
Ten things to know before a Swedish party
Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: December 12th to 19th
Gallery
IN PICTURES: The 2014 Nobel Banquet
National
The Local's guide to the Nobel Prizes 2014
Education
Introducing... Education in Stockholm
Society
The Swedish Christmas market with a twist
Lifestyle
Why do so many Swedes have tattoos?
Society
Get 20% off Swedish Christmas decorations
National
Dewani family: We only heard half the story
Business & Money
Business in Stockholm: 'efficiency is money'
Gallery
Property of the week: Östermalm
National
Meet the Swedes hosting festive feasts for 'lonely' guests
Gallery
TIMELINE: Swedish honeymoon killing murder trial
Gallery
People-watching: December 7th
Gallery
IN PICTURES: What's it like to fly planes in Sweden?
National
Submarine hunters 'robbed' of reward cash
National
The Local's Countdown to Christmas
Sponsored Article
SIS: the thinking behind globalised learning
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Family life in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

1,656
jobs available
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
psdmedia.se
The Local Spain is hiring!
The Local is seeking a new editor for our site in Spain to join our growing team of internationally-minded, driven, ambitious and clued-up journalists.
Details and how to apply
Counselling and Psychotherapy in English
Sometimes living in another culture can cause stress, confusion and feelings of sadness and loneliness. Talking to a professional psychotherapist/counsellor might help you. I am a UKCP Reg. psychotherapist. My practice is in Södermalm, Stockholm.
Contact me to discuss your options