1,400-year-old folding chair discovered in Bavaria


Valued today as a space saver, once a sign of power and dignity, archaeologists have discovered an approximately 1,400-year-old folding chair in Middle Franconia. The Bavarian State Office for Monument Care (BLfD) announced on Monday that it is only the second find of an iron folding chair from the early Middle Ages in Germany.

Across Europe, 29 sites with early medieval tombs with folding chairs have survived, only six of which are made of iron. The excavation team discovered the folding chair in Steinsfeld (Ansbach district) in Middle Franconia in August in a woman’s grave. So it dates from around 600 AD, so from the early Middle Ages. When folded, the chair, measuring about 70 by 45 centimeters, was placed at the feet of the dead.

“This find, which at first glance appears so modern, is an absolute rarity and of the greatest cultural-historical importance, as it provides insight into the burial equipment of prominent populations and into the early use of furniture,” said BLfD Director Mathias Pfeil.

Folding chairs have been around since ancient times
According to experts, people have been making iron and bronze folding chairs since ancient times. They were an important official sign in society and symbolized power, authority and dignity. According to the state office, they are mainly found in women’s graves as grave goods.

In the woman’s grave, the excavation team also discovered the skeleton of a woman who, according to initial estimates, was around 40 to 50 years old. The dead woman had a necklace of colorful glass beads around her neck and a pendant of fibulae (a kind of safety pin, ed.) and a large bead hung from her belt. In addition, the experts uncovered the grave of a man. It included a hip belt with a bronze buckle and a complete set of weapons.

Source: Krone


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