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Giant Tree Trunk Unearthed After 5,000 Years in a Bog

A 44 foot-long piece of a 5,000 year old tree trunk was uncovered on September 25 in the UK

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A bog oak floor. Image: SEIER+SEIER

A 44-foot-long piece of a 5,000 year old tree trunk was uncovered on September 25 in the U.K. The BBC reports that it was unearthed from a bog in Norfolk.

After marinating for thousands of years underwater and then seasoning for months in a kiln, bog oak and other kinds of bog woods take on a distinctive color and durability that’s highly prized by artists and carpenters the world over. The many years underground tend to dye the wood a deep brown, almost black color.

The part of the tree that was uncovered in Norfolk didn’t appear to have roots or branches, leading those involved to conclude that the tree itself might have been four times as large.

The planks from the tree trunk found in the UK will stay in a kiln until April 2013, when carpenter Hamish Low will attempt to build a 44-foot-long table and set it out for public display in honor of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. The people working on the project have even set up a Twitter page where people can follow their progress. Expect pictures and tweets like: “A gigantic 5,000 year old oak tree. An extraordinary challenge. An unprecedented masterpiece. A gift to the nation.”

More from Smithsonian.com:

The Tallest, Strongest and Most Iconic Trees in the World
Climbing the Tallest Trees

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