A 3,500-year-old bronze hand discovered by archaeologists in Switzerland, with a gold cuff around its wrist, buried in an ancient grave. This was a perplexing but possibly significant discovery.
Researchers are unsure of their motives and are looking for clues. It looks like a power sign. However, it’s not known if this was part of an original sculpture or if it is the top decoration for a staff.
The Canton of Bern’s Archaeological Service is currently carrying out a thorough scientific investigation of the object. All questions will be answered within a few months according to the service.
Preliminary carbon dating has shown that the hand was produced between 1,500-1,400 BCE in Europe’s Middle Bronze Age. The date suggests that it may be the oldest bronze artifact showing a part of the human anatomy. If it’s a sculpture, it may be the oldest bronze sculpture anywhere in Europe.
The Archaeological Service of Canton of Bern stated in a press release that “there has never been another comparable sculpture dating from Central Europe’s Bronze Age,”
It is therefore a unique and exceptional object.
The so-called “hand of Prêles” was discovered in the fall of 2017 near Lake Biel in the western province of Bern, alongside a bronze dagger blade and a human rib. In the summer 2018, archaeologists discovered the bones of an adult man buried in the area. His tomb also contained a bronze brooch, bronze hair decoration and remains of a gold plate, which may have been previously part the bronze hand.
Researchers believe that the researchers could determine the identity of this mysterious person to understand the significance of the unusual bronze hand.
The Canton of Bern’s Archaeological Service observed that “He must have had been a high-ranking personality.”
It’s too early to know if the hand was created in the Three-Lakes region, or in another country. It’s unclear what its purpose is or what it signifies. Its gold decorations suggest that it is a symbol or deity, an identifying feature of the social elite or a sign of authority.