Friday, July 26, 2013

Viking Jewelry from Denmark

Danish archaeologists have excavated several pieces of jewelry from a Viking age site in Vestervang, ca. 850 to 950 CE. Above, a copper alloy brooch showing a stylized animal. Its diameter is 2.9 inches (7.5 cm).

Detail. These zoomorphic figures are associated with shamanism, but there's not way to know if the person who wore it was a shaman or just liked the style.

This brooch was made in continental Europe between 500 and 700 CE, long before the Vestervang site was inhabited. The excavators say it "might have been acquired through exchange." Does that mean, like, "I don't drive my ax through your skull and in exchange you give me all your valuables"?

Trefoil brooch either made in the Carolingian empire in the 9th century or influenced by its fashions.

Copper alloy brooch showing the characteristic swirls of the insular style. More at Livescience.

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