Steinsfeld Folding Stool
In 2022, archaeologists unearthed a rare Medieval folding chair in the grave of a woman in Steinsfeld, Germany. The woman, aged 40 to 50, wore a necklace of colored glass beads. This discovery, the second of its kind in Germany, revealed an iron folding chair from the early Middle Ages, with only six such finds across Europe. After almost a year of examination, experts decided to excavate, restore, and preserve the chair in the summer of 2023, revealing intricate brass inlays and decorative motifs. The chair, made of two frames connected with an axle pin, had narrow slots in the horizontal struts for attaching a seat, likely made of animal fur. Computer tomography showed the chair to be well-preserved, providing a rare and detailed glimpse into early Medieval burial practices and furniture use. Professor Mathias Pfeil, head of the Bavarian State Office for Monument Preservation, called it a “spectacular find of the century” and highlighted its cultural-historical significance in understanding the burial customs and early furniture usage of the time. Folding chairs, symbols of power and authority, have been crafted from iron and bronze since ancient times.