21-inch stone penis may have been used for sacrificial fertility rituals 3,000 years ago, claim archaeologists
Archaeologists were investigating a site earmarked for construction in Rollsbo, Sweden when they stumbled upon the structure by accident and were shocked by its resemblance to a human penis
A large stone penis has been uncovered in Sweden and archaeologists believe it may have been used for sacrificial fertility rituals.
Experts have said the strange phallic statue, which stands erect at nearly two-feet high, is mostly linked to a Bronze Age fertility cult, the New York Post reports.
Archaeologists were investigating a site earmarked for construction in Rollsbo, Sweden when they stumbled upon the structure by accident. While they initially thought it was just a paving stone, they soon realized it resembled a human penis.
“When we excavated the rocks, we saw something that deviated from everything else. It was on the ground but had been raised in this past,” archaeologist Gisela Ängeby told Swedish newspaper Göteborgs-Posten. “There was a 52cm-long stone shaped like a penis.”
“In archaeological contexts, however, one is careful to call it a phallus. It has a distinct phallus shape. I thought when I stumbled upon it that ‘Oh, my god, it can’t be true,'" she recalled. “I showed the picture to colleagues and there is no debate about it: it has a very penis-like shape.”
Alongside the bizarre statue were two burnt bones, which experts believe have come from sacrificial animals. At the same time, the small number of bones at the site suggested it isn't a burial ground. Nonetheless, the bones and nearby stones surrounding the phallic structure indicate it was a sacrificial site from the Bronze Age, archaeologists said.
Furthermore, they believe animals were slaughtered there as part of fertility rituals. “I believe that, in connection with the erection, it was used to offer sacrifices, for example within the framework of a fertility cult,” said Ängeby.
Experts also noted the stone may have been naturally phallic shaped, but that the design was later cut and polished. “Standing stones in the middle of stone paving are not uncommon. But just the way it is designed is a little special," Ängeby continued. “It is partially weathered and then carved. And that’s how the shape has been reinforced.”