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IPFS News Link • Archaeology

Sweet Track, a 6,000-year-old Testament of Prehistoric Ingenuity

• arclein

The Sweet Track is an ancient wooden trackway, or causeway that was built during the Neolithic period in what is now Somerset, England. It is one of the oldest known engineered roads or trackways in the world, dating back to around 3807 BC, during the late Neolithic or Early Bronze Age . The trackway was discovered in 1970 during peat excavation work in the Somerset Levels, a wetland area in southwestern England. The Sweet Track was constructed over marshy terrain to provide a reliable pathway for people to traverse the landscape, especially during periods of wet weather when the surrounding area would have been waterlogged. The trackway was made by laying down long wooden planks and linking them with interlocking wooden pegs, creating a raised pathway above the wet ground. This innovative construction technique allowed people to move more easily across the landscape, connect different areas, and potentially transport goods. A true Neolithic shortcut!