Dutch 18th Century mass grave: Skeletons in Vianen were British soldiers

Eighty-two skeletons found in a mass grave in the Dutch city of Vianen were mainly British soldiers who died of illness in an 18th Century field hospital, archaeologists say. The remains were found outside the city’s old wall in November 2020 and then researched by forensic anthropologist April Pijpelink. All but four were men and many originated in southern England. “It’s most likely these young men came to fight against the French,” she said. But they lost their lives because of poor hygiene in a field hospital, she told the BBC. “At first we thought these men died of injuries in battle, but during my research it became clear that around 85% of them suffered from one or more infections, while basically all their trauma wounds had healed.”

Samples were taken from six of the skeletons and isotope analysis of their bones concluded that one came from southern England, possibly Cornwall, another from southern Cornwall and a third from an urban English environment. Two more may have been from the Netherlands but of possible English descent while the other was from Germany.(BBC)…[+]

 
 

Source