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Runic Inscriptions

34 35 The prominent site at Spong Hill in Norfolk has been an occupation site since Mesolithic times and was used by the AngloSaxons as a burial ground. Archaeological excavations began in 1971, unearthing over 1700 cremation urns, mostly decorated, and digging still continues today. This urn utilises a rune stamp around its curvature which is also used on other pots from the same site. Unusual in appearance, the runes resemble twig runes but are in fact double runes. Divided down their central axis they read out the common magical rune word Alu both forwards and backwards. Alu was used in conjunction with other magical words and appears in numerous European inscriptions between the third and the eighth centuries. The word Alu has a basic meaning of ecstasy or magic and is cognate with the Old Norse word Ol and the Old English Ealod, or Ealu, both meaning ale, or beer. Dated to the 5th century it can be seen at the Norwich Castle Museum. the Alu FunerAry urn an intoxicating invocation
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