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History Buff, a blog for history lovers everywhere! History Buff brings
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Skull returns to final rest place
The skull is believed to be that of a woman in her 50s
A rare 2,000-year-old Roman skull has been returned to the cave beneath the Yorkshire Dales where it was discovered by divers in 1996.
Archaeologists were called in after cave divers unearthed human bones in what is believed to be one of the most important cave discoveries ever made.
The skull dates to the 2nd Century and is that of a local woman in her 50s.
It was stored at Sheffield University for carbon-dating and recently returned to the cave, which has now been sealed.
There are other human remains in the cave which date back to the Bronze Age - more than 1,000 years before Roman Britain. Animal remains, including horses and dogs, have also been excavated.
Cave burials from this period are rare so this site is considered an archaeological treasure trove.
Experts believe the cave could have been a tomb, but that some of the deaths may have been through sacrificial ceremonies.
Tom Lord, research fellow at Lancaster University, has studied ancient bones in caves for more than 20 years and believes there is more to be unearthed in the cave.