Parts of a bow, a paddle, and the wooden shaft of an axe are among the discoveries recently unearthed from the Stone Age settlement Kanaljorden outside of Motala, according to local media reports.
“Totally unbelievable,” project leader Fredrik Hallgren with the Stiftelsen Kulturmiljövård Mälardalen (‘Cultural Preservation Society of Mälardalen’) told the local newspaper Motala & Vadstena Tidning.
All of the artifacts except for the axe blade are made of wood. The objects have been preserved for thousands of years because a layer of peat covered the mud in which they were found.
The discovery is unique for central Sweden, and the bow is the first of its kind ever discovered in Sweden.
Similar bows have, however, been uncovered in Denmark.
Archaeologists working at the site had previously unearthed a femur from a human who lived in the later Stone Age.
The wooden artifacts were found nearby and weren’t resting there by chance.
“They are part of a burial ritual,” Hallgren told the newspaper.
The Kanaljorden settlement excavation site it located about 500 metres from Motala’s central train station. It was used during a part of the Stone Age known as the Mesolithic period, at which time the area around Motala an almost perfect place to live.
There was no agriculture in the area, however, with settlers instead surviving by fishing, hunting, and gathering.