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New unique Neolithic finds in Vantaa

Amateur archaeologists have unearthed a new, unique Stone Age clay figure doll or idol at excavations at Jokiniemi in Vantaa. The figure unearthed on Wednesday is thought to have been created by an ancient shaman at least 5,500 years ago.

Finds from 2014 Jokiniemi dig.
The clay figure in the centre is the latest major find at the Jokiniemi excavation in Vantaa. Image: Heureka

Professional Archaeologist Jan Fast, who is leading the excavations, is excited about finds made on Tuesday and Wednesday.

"It's absolutely amazing. It was only yesterday we found a nice idol ... but to find another to today, it's just unbelievable," exclaims Fast.

The dig, which has been underway for about a week, is a joint venture by the University of Helsinki and the Heureka Science Centre which offers amateur volunteers the chance to learn and experience practical archeology. Finds are being put on display at the Heureka Science Centre Tikkurila in the city of Vantaa.

Jan Fast says the clay figures, which may depict human fetuses, were probably used by shamans in rituals.

The excavations are centred at a site that was a settlement during the Stone Age, approximately 6,000 years ago. At the time, it was located on the seashore and its inhabitants lived by hunting game, including seals.

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