Europe

London dig turns up link to past

Updated 1652 GMT (0052 HKT) August 12, 2015
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London suspected plague pit CrossrailLondon suspected plague pit Crossrail
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Archeologists work at a mass burial site suspected of containing 30 victims of the Great Plague of 1665, unearthed at Crossrail's Liverpool Street site in London. Copyright Crossrail Ltd.
In 1665 as many as 100,000 people, or a fifth of London's population at the time, died as the disease swept through the city. Copyright Crossrail Ltd.
The approximately 30 bodies appear to have been buried on the same day and a gravestone nearby in the Bedlam burial ground is dated 1665, adding weight to the theory that they died in the outbreak of that year. COPYRIGHT CROSSRAIL
The "plague pit", uncovered in early August, had at least 40 separate coffins placed in it. COPYRIGHT CROSSRAIL
The positioning of the coffins, and the fact they were used at all, run counter to many of the images of plague pits from the 17th century. COPYRIGHT CROSSRAIL