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Archaeologists discover 5,000-year-old fingerprint

An image of the fingerprint captured using Reflectance Transformation Imaging this week. (Jan Blatchford)

An Orkney potter’s fingerprint dating back 5,000 years ago has been discovered by archaeologists.

It is the latest startling discovery made at the University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute’s flagship Ness of Brodgar excavation, where a complex of monumental buildings in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney World Heritage Site has been under investigation since 2006.

The potter’s fingerprint was noted by ceramics specialist Roy Towers, who was examining a pot sherd from the huge assemblage recovered from the site — the largest collection of late Neolithic Grooved Ware pottery in the UK.

For the full story, pick up the next edition of The Orcadian.