Viking treasures: an unexpected find by a family from Norway!

Viking treasures: an unexpected find by a family from Norway!



Average reading time – 2 minutes

On the island of Jomfruland, located on the southeast coast of Norway, only about 75 people live permanently. Among them is the Aasvik family, who accidentally discovered 1,200-year-old Viking treasures in their backyard!


How did this happen?

Jan Erik Aasvik used a metal detector to find his mother’s lost gold earring in the backyard. The man had no success in this and was about to give up, when suddenly the metal detector began to emit a loud signal under a large tree. Jan Erik knew he had found something special.

“I took the spade and started digging,” the man recalls. “I think I dug no deeper than 20-30 centimeters. I didn’t understand what it was, but it looked old. I am a member of a group for people who use metal detectors, so I posted the photo there.

In the photo: where the treasure was discovered.


Asvik’s post on Facebook was noticed by Vibeke Lia. The woman works as a consultant and archaeologist for the Vestfold og Telemark county council. The expert contacted Jan Erik and quickly went to Jomfruland. “I was sure it was a Viking Age find,” says Vibeke.


What was found?

The treasure consisted of two bronze objects, partially covered with gold: the first was a bowl-shaped brooch, which was used to hold a woman’s costume dress. “It looks great and functions as a kind of clasp pin,” says Lia.

The archaeologist says that such brooches were made in pairs, and their style is characteristic of the 9th century. In addition, these decorations are usually found in burials. Because of this, the expert concluded that in the backyard of the Aasvik family house there is the grave of a Viking woman from a noble kin.

In the photo: found brooches dated by the 9th century.


The second treasure is a round brooch. Vibeke said that molds for such products were found at archaeological excavations in the city of Ribe, Denmark, founded in the 6th century. However, experts are confident that the brooch discovered by Jan Erik was made in the 9th century. Since the engravings of animals and various geometric patterns with which the jewelry is decorated are characteristic of those times.


What will happen to the found jewelry?

Vibeke said the items are now in the county council office. But soon they will be sent to the Museum of cultural history in Oslo.

In the photo: Norwegian Museum of cultural history, Bygdøy Peninsula, Oslo.


Interesting fact:

These artifacts are the first discovery of the Viking Age (793-1066 AD) on the island of Jomfruland. The discovery confirms that people lived here at that time.


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