Ritual animal sacrifices.  Thousands of bones discovered in Europe – o2

6,770 bones from 52 different animals It was discovered in Casas del Toronuelo, a settlement inhabited in the 5th century BC. According to researchers, it is the remains of an ancient sacrificial pit.

The finds include the skeletons of at least 41 horses, six cattle, four pigs and one dog. The animals were buried in three waves over a completely unknown period of time. However, analyzing the bones gave scientists a lot to think about.

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It turns out that the first two groups of animals were buried intact in the pit, often in pairs and in a ritual order. The third layer, in turn, bears signs of slaughter practices. It is very likely that the animal sacrifice would eventually turn into a feast during which the flesh of the last creatures lying in the pit would be eaten.

Analysis of the bones indicates that the slaughtered animals were healthy and did not die as a result of unintentional accidents. The degenerations in the horses’ skeletons and the fact that they were sacrificed in pairs also indicate that the animals were used for draft purposes during life, and some were certainly used for riding. They may have served Iron Age warriors. Researchers have also discovered tooth marks indicating the use of some types of bits by modern riders.

Further evidence of the nature of the pit rituals are traces of burnt plant material, It is a typical ritual for offering burnt offerings.

The discovery of mass animal sacrifices in the Mediterranean is unusual, but few literary sources mention such practices. In Homer’s Odyssey itself, you can come across the story of King Nestor’s sacrifice of 81 black bulls. Turn “Iliad” sIt tells of 50 black rams presented to the gods by Peleus, Achilles’ father.

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