Radiocarbon dating of blackened grains from the site bodybulding dating sites
Just over eight feet below the surface, the team unearthed a piece of wood about three feet long.
The carved oak plank was drilled with holes, some of which contained wooden pegs still in place.
Miller also said the researchers found many of the burnt eggshell fragments in tight clusters less than 10 feet in diameter, with no other eggshell fragments nearby.
Some individual fragments from the same clusters had heat gradient differences of nearly 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit, conditions virtually impossible to reproduce with natural wildfires there, he said.
Carbon-14 testing can only return a date range, but dendrochronological analysis can, in the best case scenario, pinpoint the precise year in which a tree was felled. Those dates fit squarely within the hoped-for range, but there was still too much wiggle room to prove that Borgring was a Trelleborg fortress.
Two samples taken from the north gate timbers were radiocarbon dated and produced pleasingly consistent dates. Archaeologists hoped the timbers could be dated dendrochronologically as well, but the charring impeded the analysis.
In the initial excavation, large oak timbers were unearthed at the north gate, charred in a fire that had engulfed the gate after its construction.
These forts were built during a short window of a few years at the end of his reign, so pinpointing its age was essential.The geophysical data was significant, but open to interpretation.Scholars were reluctant to accept that the Zealand structure, dubbed Borgring, was a fortress of the Trelleborg type based solely on these initial discoveries.“We can’t come up with a scenario that a wildfire could produce those tremendous gradients in heat,” Miller said.“We instead argue that the conditions are consistent with early humans harvesting Genyornis eggs, cooking them over fires and then randomly discarding the eggshell fragments in and around their cooking fires.” Another line of evidence for early human predation on eggs is the presence of ancient, burned eggshells of emus, flightless birds weighing only about 100 pounds and which still exist in Australia today, in the sand dunes.