Our exchange partners prepared a comprehensive information folder with things to do in that area. One spot caught our interest straight away: close to our house is an ancient Celtic burial site, actually around 500 B.C. It’s called the Hochdorf Chieftain’s Grave. In the late 1970s, this grass mound among agricultural fields was excavated and revealed a most astonishing find.
The original pieces and remains are housed in a museum in Stuttgart but what they have in place here is pretty impressive and well worth a visit.
“A man, roughly 40 years of age and 6 ft 2 in (187 cm) tall, was laid out on an exceptionally richly decorated 9 ft (275 cm) bronze couch on wheels inside the burial chamber. Judging by other objects found there, this man probably had been a Celtic chieftain: He had been buried with a gold-plated torc on his neck, a bracelet on his right arm, a hat made of birch bark, a gold-plated dagger made of bronze and iron, rich clothing, amber jewelry, a razor knife, a nail clipper, a comb, fishing hooks, arrows, and most notably, thin embossed gold plaques were on his now-disintegrated shoes.
At the foot of the couch was a large cauldron decorated with three lions around the brim. This cauldron was originally filled with about 100 gallons (400 l) of mead. The east side of the tomb contained an iron-plated wooden four-wheeled wagon holding a set of bronze dishes—along with the drinking horns found on the walls enough to serve nine people.”
The art work on his shoes and the drinking horns in bronze and gold was exquisite.
Given my Irish farming background, the reconstructed mound reminds me of a bunker silo. In case you don’t know what they look like, take a peek. This is how they are made:
How did they do it all that time ago without machinery?