The Amesbury Archer

The Amesbury Archer

The grave of a man dating to around 2,300BC was discovered three miles from Stonehenge by Wessex Archaeology staff in May 2002. His grave was the richest from this period (the early Bronze Age) ever found in Britain and contained the country’s first gold objects.
He was found during excavation in advance of a housing development at Amesbury in Wiltshire, and the man was dubbed the “Amesbury Archer” or the “King of Stonehenge” by the media. He has featured on several radio and TV programmes, including the BBC2 Ancestors series.
This section gives full details, including the results of tests carried out in late 2002 to find out as much information about the Archer, and a second skeleton found nearby.

The Amesbury Archer: pilgrim or magician?

Artists interpretation of the Amebury ArcherArtists interpretation of the Amebury ArcherTo coincide with the new BBC Timewatch programme on Stonehenge, made in collaboration with the Open University and the Smithsonian Institute, we are presenting a summary of one of our key finds, the Amesbury Archer.
Are the new theories about this extraordinary discovery better than the old ones? Or are they just different?
And what of another key find that yet to figure in the debate? Were the Boscombe Bowmen some of the builders of Stonehenge who came from Wales. Or were they pilgrims to Stonehenge who came from France?
Read our blog post about the Archer and Bowmen, and have your say!

Press Releases

View the press release in different languages:

Amesbury Archer Museum Display

The skeleton of the Amesbury Archer with his grave goods are on permanent display at Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum.


Archer, Journey to Stonehenge 

We are delighted to see the publication of Archer, Journey to Stonehenge by Jane Brayne – an illustrated adventure story for children set in the Beaker period.
Jane drew the original reconstruction drawings for the Amesbury Archer and was inspired to interpret the story for children.
You can find out more about the book and Jane’s illustrations by visiting her website.