Reconstruction of the graves of the Frankish boy and woman


The young prince was not laid in a coffin, but in a beautifully turned and decorated cot. The legs of both this cot and the chair positioned at the end of the cot were shortened to make them fit into the low-ceilinged burial chamber. His helmet hangs on the arm of the chair. On one side of the cot stands a shield, on the other an angon (javelin), lance, and francisca (throwing axe). As was the case with the grave of the woman, a variety of grave-goods were lined up under and beside the chair: a wooden bucket, canteen, wooden bowls, glass bottles containing ointments and perfumes, a glass bell-beaker and a simple beaker made of birch wood that is more suitable for use by a child.


The woman in the grave was buried in a traditional costume and her most precious jewellery. Although her identity cannot be proven with any certainly, it is likely that the remains in the grave are those of the Lombard princess, Wisigard, whose fate was recorded by Gregory of Tours. Other personal items (e.g. amulet box and scissors) were buried with her in the wooden coffin, which, with the exception of a few splinters, had completely decayed by the time the grave was discovered. Similarly, only a very small piece of the woollen blanket that covered the coffin has been preserved in the corroded bronze basin that stood at the food of the coffin (right). Other grave goods found at this end of the burial chamber, which was made of trachyte slabs, included a number of different vessels: a bucket, a box, a wooden canteen, glass bottles with ointments and perfumes, a bell-beaker, and glass bowls.