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Saxon King in Lowbury Mound?
- On Lowbury Hill, on the border
between Aston Upthorpe and Aldworth, there is a big Saxon
- A man was buried there in the
late 7th century, next to an old Roman
- The burial mound and the ruined
temple became so well known that the hill was named after them.
Lowbury means 'Burial Mound by the Enclosure (of the Temple)'.
- The man buried there had lots of
things with him: a spear, a
sword, a shield, a knife, a small pair of shears (scissors), a bone comb in a small case and a posh bronze hanging
- They were Saxon types of spear,
sword and shield. The spear and the bowl were decorated with colourful and
expensive enamel work. The Romano-British were good at doing this. The
patterns were Celtic not Saxon.
- Special tests on one of the
man's teeth show that he grew up in Cornwall. So he is likely to have
been British even though he had Saxon style weapons and possessions.
- The man might have been a king
or chief of the 'Gewissae' (pronounced Yoo-iss-eye). These were a
group of people living in the Vale of the White
Horse. They are traditionally thought to have been Saxon, but may
have been of mixed Saxon & British blood.
- Archaeologists think the king was
buried on the hill by the old Roman temple to show that, although he
may have thought of himself as a Saxon, he ruled over Romano-British people too.
- There were lots of
Romano-British people living in Wallingford
in the valley below the hill. The name means 'Welsh
people's ford'. 'Welsh' is the Saxon word for the Romano-Britons.