It starts at dawn.
The strongest soldiers pulled the ropes with all their strength and pulled the heavy oak boat ashore from the river. In the morning light penetrating the cold fog, a group of people pulled the wooden boat to the foot of the hill.
The crowd on the hillside quietly watched the wooden boat arrive at the tombs of the royal descendants. When the wooden boat moved to the prepared trench, the mourners put the funerary objects in the middle of the hull, and then pushed up the mound on it.
The ship coffin was buried in the long river of history until it was discovered by a man named Bassor Brown before the Second World War after 1300.
This archaeological discovery is called the “British Tutankhamun”, and it has now become the central story of the latest film “Excavation” on the streaming platform Netflix, which is adapted from the novel of the same name by the British writer Preston.
The film “Excavations” is performed by British actor Ralph Fiennes, playing the self-taught archaeology lover Bassor Brown, and Kerry Mulligan as the hostess of Sutton Hoo Estate in Suffolk County Edith Piletti.
Bassor Brown in the film
Piletti has always believed that the mound in Sutton Hoo Manor is of special significance. It is believed that the mound has existed since the Viking era. A visitor to the manor once saw a ghost appear near the mound, and it is also spread there. Anecdotes about buried treasure.
Brown is a local. He grew up in Suffolk County. He dropped out of school at the age of 12 to work on a farm and later became an insurance intermediary. At the same time, he was self-taught, speaks several languages, and is familiar with astronomy and archeology. Piletti asked the local museum about archeological excavations, and the museum recommended Brown to her.
Brown began excavation work in June 1938. Starting from some relatively small mounds, he found traces of tomb robbers, and also found some copper products that may be older than the Viking era.
In the summer of 1939, World War II was approaching, and the excavation proceeded to the largest mound. Brown found a large number of iron products, believed to be the rivets of a wooden boat.
Next he found the biggest treasure, an astonishing ship coffin. The hull of more than 27 meters is large enough to hold 20 oarsmen on each side. The wooden ship board and remains have been decayed, but the ship coffin is in the soil. There is a clear trace: a ship coffin that is more than 1,000 years old.
Basol Brown’s excavations have rewritten the history books.
Ship coffins have also been excavated elsewhere, but this is the largest ship coffin found so far. Prior to this, a 23.8-meter-long Viking ship was discovered in Norway in 1888, which was the largest at that time.
Because of similar excavations in other places, Brown knew that there must be many burial objects on the ship. On June 14th, he discovered a wooden cabin structure that might be a tomb in the middle of the ship.
Progress in the excavation of Sutton Hoo in July 1939
But Brown’s excavation work has been heard by the British Museum and the University of Cambridge. A few days later, a bunch of experts and scholars swarmed in. Brown was immediately forced to give up his dominant position and was treated as a worker for the excavation work because of Brown’s University degree. No, these experts and scholars can’t let a local amateur point their fingers.
An archaeological team organized. One of the archaeologists named Peggy Piggott found the first gold object on July 21, two days after participating in the on-site archaeological work, and then more .
Sutton Hoo’s rare treasures are in the British Museum
Soon, the team discovered more precious treasures. There were more than 250 items in total. It is not enough to describe them as “rare treasures.” These treasures include food vessels for banquets, corner cups for drinking, and exquisite jewelry. , Ancient Greek lyre, scepter, sword, stone tools from Asia, silverware from the Byzantine Empire, coins from France, etc.
In addition, there is a gold buckle depicting snakes and beasts with intertwined shapes, which makes the British Museum staff incredible; shoulder buckles and belts studded with jewels; and a covered, ornately decorated helmet.
The ship coffin and the treasures on it that Suttonhu discovered belonged to the dark ages. The Romans have just left, and the Vikings have not yet arrived. Historians know very little about what happened during these 400 years, but this A big excavation provided many valuable clues.
It is generally believed that the Anglo-Saxons who ruled several kingdoms in England during this period were relatively crude and backward in development, almost arguably more primitive, but the treasures unearthed here are very gorgeous and exquisite.
From the unearthed treasures, we can know that the society at that time attached great importance to technology, crafts and art, and trade spread all over Europe and beyond.
Just as Europe was about to fall into World War II under the threat of Nazis, this archaeological excavation brought a lost civilization and its exquisite rare treasures back to people’s eyes again.
Rare Treasures of Sutton Hoo
The 27-meter-long oak ship coffin was used as the tomb of the Anglo-Saxon rulers. About 1,300 years ago, the funerary items included warrior armor and utensils for holding banquets after death.
The treasures found on the ship included a warrior’s iron helmet, a sword, silverware from the Byzantine Empire, gold jewelry, banquet tableware and a treasure box made of whale bone.
Archaeological excavations showed that people had close trade relations with Scandinavia, the Byzantine Empire and Egypt at that time.
Archaeological excavations have also changed historians’ knowledge and understanding of the seventh century. Before that, historians generally believed that England was divided into several Anglo-Saxon kingdoms during that time, and the development was backward.
Rediscover the story of Bassor Brown
When the writer Preston discovered that his aunt Pigot had participated in the archaeological excavation of Sutton Hoo, he conducted a research and investigation and immediately found this story suitable for novelists.
His novel “Excavation” based on this story was published in 2007 and received critical acclaim.
Film producer Wood said that in 2006, before the novel was published, she decided to adapt the novel into a movie after reading the manuscript.
Wood said, “As the ship is unearthed, the life stories of the surrounding characters are also displayed in front of the readers. This is the most tense and original part of the whole work. I can feel the deep feelings of the characters in the story, although they are because of the British Human
subtlety and social class structure can’t be expressed.” said Buffini, the screenplay writer. “This book touched me deeply. After reading the book, the whole feeling is very strong. I think it expresses the fragile side of everything, including We are within ourselves. When I was writing the script, I felt that the characters in the story dig into the soil as if they were exploring our hearts.”
Brown’s great contribution “has been unrecognized for many years”
Sutton Hoo excavation scene set in the movie
Wood said that although it has been many years since the novel was published, her determination to adapt and make a movie has not changed. “I think this is a story about Brown. Because of the arrogant attitude of the social class and the academic circle, his great contribution has not been recognized for many years. I think more people must understand his contribution.”
Sutton Hoo The unearthed treasures were later permanently displayed in the British Museum, but the name of Bassor Brown has not been mentioned until recently.
Although many treasures have been unearthed from the archaeological excavations of Sutton Hoo, there are still many unsolved problems, and there are still many uncertainties about the ship coffin.
Who is buried here? The most likely one is Redwold, the King of East Anglia. He was the leader of the power at the time. He died around 624 AD. He claimed to be the descendant of Odin, the main god of Norse mythology. He was also the first to convert. The Christian King of England, at the same time, was cautious not to offend pagan gods.
So what was this ship originally used for? Whether it is a warship or a state ship, no one can be sure.
The movie “Discovery” has no luxurious scenes but it is shocking. The two main actors Fiennes and Mulligan performed particularly brilliantly. When answering a question at a recent press conference, Fiennes said that the first time he read the script was on an airplane, “After reading the script, I had tears in my eyes. I can’t tell why, but the characters in the story dig this and have something to do with the whole country. My spirit touched me.” The
story took place on the eve of the outbreak of the Second World War disaster, which seemed to echo the current global status quo, which could not be foreseen in advance at the time of the adaptation of the film.
Buffini said, “I’m really thinking whether we are aware of the end of life, our smallness and insignificance in the entire huge structure. But there is an idea that keeps us hopeful, that is, life is continuing, I A line to Basol,’From the time when humans left the first handprint on the cave wall, we are all part of continuous development.’