ORDER15 has previously reported how in Sweden they are busily going about destroying Viking artifacts, meanwhile in Germany Hundreds of 1,000-year-old silver coins, rings, pearls and bracelets are among treasures unearthed from the time of a legendary Viking ruler.
Clues to the location of the haul were first discovered by two amateur archaeologists, a 13-year-old boy and his teacher. The pair were looking for valuables using metal detectors when they chanced upon what they thought was a worthless piece of aluminium. Upon closer inspection, they realised that it was a shimmering piece of silver, and alerted experts to the find.
Further investigation revealed a trove believed to date to the era of king Harald Gormsson, who reigned from around 958 to 986 AD. Known as ‘Harald Bluetooth’, his name lives on in the wireless technology standard named in his honour by its Swedish creators Ericsson.
King Harald is also credited with unifying Denmark and introducing Christianity to the Scandinavian nation
Some of the coins found.
The collection on the German Baltic island of Rügen, after a single coin was found in a field near the village of Schaprode by Rene Schoen and his student Luca Malaschnitschenko in January. The state’s archaeology office then became involved, digging an exploratory trench covering 400 square metres (4,300 square feet). This revealed the entire treasure, which was recovered by experts last weekend.
Bluetooth ruled over what is now Denmark, northern Germany, southern Sweden and parts of Norway.
‘This trove Including a prised Thors Hammer worn by i think all our own Odins Guard members is the biggest single discovery of Bluetooth coins in the southern Baltic sea region and is therefore of great significance,’ lead archaeologist Michael Schirren told German news agency DPA. The oldest coin found in the trove is a Damascus dirham dating to 714 AD while the most recent is a penny dating to 983 AD. The find suggests that the treasure may have been buried in the late 980s – also the period when Bluetooth was known to have fled to Pomerania where he died in 987.
‘We have here the rare case of a discovery that appears to corroborate historical sources,’ archaeologist Detlef Jantzen added.
Bluetooth, a Viking-born king turned his back on old Norse religion, but was forced to flee to Pomerania after a rebellion led by his son Sven Gabelbart. He was the son of Gorm the Old, the first significant figure in a new royal line centred at Jelling, in North Jutland.
The Trelleborg type of fortifications, built in a circular shape with a rampart and four gateways, date from his reign. A total of five are known to exist, located in modern Denmark and the south of Sweden. The expansion begun by Bluetooth in Norway was continued by his son Sweyn I, whose war with his father marked Harald’s last years.
After Sweyn conquered England in 1013 AD, his son Canute ruled over a great Anglo-Scandinavian kingdom that included parts of Sweden.
This exciting find is a fantastic reminder of our proud Ethno-European history, hopefully it encourages the next generation to go in search of lost treasures as such things are great instruments of inspiration for understanding who we are where we have come from how our potential as a people. So if you find yourself wondering what to do one weekend perhaps a trip to a museum, take the kids let them marvel, let them dream, let them aspire.