Skeletal remains found in a newly excavated farm settlement raise questions about ancient Irish burial practices.

Up to 1,000 human skeletons, some of them more than one thousand years old will be unearthed this year by archaeologists working on construction sites and on the routes of new roads and motorways throughout the country.

The remains of an infant have been discovered at an archaeological dig at 'The Place of the Broken River' in Ardrahan in South Galway. While archaeologists already know that the child lived a thousand years ago, DNA analysis will reveal more about its short life. 

Osteologist Katie Keeffe explains that the remains must be removed before a road is built over the site.

The job that we're in is rescue archaeology.

A thousand years ago, this site was the walled homestead of a farming family. 

What they did with their dead is unlocking a new chapter in the history of rural Ireland.

Chief Project Archaeologist Jerry O'Sullivan explains how Christians at the time had the unorthodox practice of burying their dead at home. This was a practice that the church was not very happy about. 

Archaeologist John Lehane describes the discovery as the story of how we lived and died. 

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 7 March 2008. The reporter is Jim Fahy.