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Manchester’s bog head
Melanie Giles

a few cultural habits with them as auxiliaries (Redfern and Bonney 2014 : 242). The taking and keeping of such ‘dark trophies’ might not have been officially sanctioned but it was probably tolerated (Fields 2005 ): like those from the Vietnam war (see Harrison 2012 ), this was a ‘private’ matter (A. Fear pers. comm.) with improvised cleaning, preparation or modification of the skull according to personal or cultural tastes. Indeed, the decapitated head was used as a symbolic shorthand for the hyper-martiality of some ethnicities – a cultural topos , such as on

in Bog bodies