Pineuilh is an archaeological site in southwestern France. Around 979 AD a knightly family built a house there on an artificial platform surrounded by ponds and marsh, and they lived on that platform for about a century. The choice of such an uncomfortable but easily defensible site tells you something about life at the time. Because the whole platform eventually sank into the marsh, many wooden and bone artifacts were preserved, including this amazing chess piece. Below, a view of the excavations in progress. More at INRAP.