The Traveller (fragment)

1920s. The Senghenydd Crate.

A BRAVE AND MOBILE STOAT

Among other items, the Crate contained a typewritten copy of several lines from “The Traveller”, a fragment of Anglo-Saxon poetry found in the Exeter Book. The fragment tells the story of a “Stauten” (or stoat) that accompanies a man on a long journey. At the poem’s close the man is buried next to an animal head, underneath a drawing.

THE ORIGINS OF AN ANCIENT POEM

The similarity to the site of the Stoat Drawing is striking. The drawing was found in Paviland Cave, a cave complex that also contained the famous “Red Lady”. This skeleton was found with a mammoth skull placed above its head. The image of the Stoat was discovered only 10 yards from this site, overlooking the remains.

Perhaps ancient welsh inhabitants found this burial site and constructed this poem as a way to explain the unusual find? Or could this burial even be the hero celebrated in this famous poem?

RELATED EXHIBITS

Mustela Erminea (stuffed)
The Stoat Drawing