Roman lovers 'buried holding hands for 1500 years'

The skeletal remains of a Roman-era couple have been unearthed showing the pair had been holding hands for the past 1,500 years.

Researchers believe the pair died “looking into each other’s eyes” when they were buried sometime between the 5th and 6th century A.D.

Italian archaeologists made the astonishing discovery in Modena, in the country’s north, last month.

They found the remains in a tomb, appearing to show the woman positioned so that she was gazing at her male partner, during a dog of an Ancient Roman palace.

"We believe that they were originally buried with their faces staring into each other’s,” said Donato Labate, the director of the excavation.

“The position of the man's vertebrae suggests that his head rolled after death. I have been involved in many digs but I've never felt so moved.”

The two skeletons, which are poorly preserved, will be studied to establish the couple's age, their relationship and the possible cause of death.

The archeological dig disclosed three layers of scientific interest. The couple were found on the middle layer among a total of 11 burials at a depth of about 10 feet.

Archeologists believe the couple were not particularly rich, due to the simple nature of the tombs they were buried in and say they may have lived on a farm.

It is thought the man's head would have been looking at the woman's when they were buried.

The area was subjected to several floods from the nearby river Tiepido – which may have caused the male skeleton's skull to roll away from the female skeleton after burial.

The necropolis was covered by alluvial deposits, and on top of them, another seven tombs were built.

The skeletons will now be studied by Giorgio Gruppioni, an anthropologist at the University of Bologna.(Telegraph)


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