Bones and antlers
Skull from a young pig / wild boar found in
shallow waters by the settlement
Finds of, among other things, fishbones and bones from stags,
wild boar and cows show clearly that Stone Age people lived off
both fishing and hunting. Parts of stag antlers have also been
found, which would have been used as tools, including for working
flint, and as fishing tools.
Antlers were often used as tools.
In addition, a large number of different bone tips has been
found. Finds of bone tips are, however, nothing new, but the many
different types that have been found in Rødbyhavn indicate that
they were made with a specific purpose in mind. Some were used as
fishing tools, others for sewing fishing nets and clothes. There
would have been a sort of professionalisation, where the tools were
processed so as to match the specific task.
Bone tips - with and without ornamentation - are
richly represented in the excavations.
A few of the tips feature ornamentation in the form of lines.
Whether these are merely decorative or they had a practical
function, e.g. in connection with tying the tip to something is
One tip is in the shape of a lancet and looks like a small spear.
It is an arrowhead made of bone. The arrowhead would have been
hafted by having the long end stuck into the hole of an arrow
Livestock in prehistoric
In prehistoric times, livestock were
important to the population. Once under human control, livestock
produced skins, milk, meet and served as labour - no part of the
animals was wasted. The individual animals each had their own role,
but they did not all become domesticated at once. It was a long
process that spanned most of antiquity.
Initially, the dog appeared in the middle of
the Mesolithic Age (from ca. 9000 BC). This was followed by goats,
sheep and cattle, which started appearing in earnest after the
arrival of agriculture in Denmark ca. 3900 BC. The horse followed
next during the Bronze Age (1700 BC - 500 BC), and by the end of
the Iron Age, pigs, chickens, cats and ducks were also to be found
in the villages.
All of the animals mentioned here went
through a genetic change over time, adapting to life as livestock.
They all started as wild versions, but as time passed, they were
adapted through deliberate breeding in order to utilise and improve
their best qualities. Such animals are called domesticated