Neolithic Structure Older Than Stonehenge Excavated in Czech Republic
The builders of the structure likely belonged to a culture that flourished in Neolithic Europe during the fifth millennium BC.
Ruins of an ancient structure that may be thousands of years old have been excavated by archaeologists near Prague, in the Vinor district.
The circular structure, a so-called roundel, is 55 meters wide and appears to be older than famous ancient monuments such as Stonehenge and the Egyptian pyramids, according to The Archaeologist website.
Jaroslav Ridky, spokesperson for the Institute of Archaeology of the Czech Academy of Sciences, has revealed that the structure’s builders belonged to the Stroked Pottery culture that flourished in Neolithic Europe in 4,900-4,400 BC, Live Science notes.
Miroslav Kraus, the man in charge of the excavation, said that it is unclear exactly what purpose structures like the one they are working with served.
“One of such theory is that it could have been used as an economic centre, a centre of trade. It could also have been a centre of some religious cult, where rites of passage or rituals connected to the time of year were performed,” he said, as quoted by The Archaeologist.
As Kraus explained, “roundels were built during the Stone Age, when people had not yet discovered iron,” so the only tools the builders could use “were made of stone and animal bones.”
He also pointed out that part of the roundel was actually revealed back in the 1980s, “during the laying of gas and water pipelines.”