Friday, May 15, 2009

Viking Sword

click on these images to enlarge. The upper picture is a mockup of how the sword parts which survived the ages would have sat upon a real sword. Below is what the detectorists actually found. The whole story of the find is here...

What we are looking at here are some very nice castings in bronze, the deep incisions would have been lovely and were present in the mould. The space in between the "lobes" were filled in with silver wire (now corroded away), making them a little less prominent. The symmetry of the designs is quite stunning, and I have found that they don't appear on the back.
This find was made by licenced metal detectorists Dan Crowe and Rob Farrer, in the Isle of Man last year.
Manx National Heritage Curator for Archaeology, Allison Fox explained:
“This is only the 13th recorded Viking sword from the Island – but Dan and Rob knew what they were looking at and what to do next, in notifying MNH. Even though they had done exactly the right thing by not cleaning the surface dirt from the finds, when they brought them into the Manx Museum it was clear straight away that we had something very special indeed. Once the artefacts had been initially cleaned by our Conservator, the wonderful designs have really had an impact on all the people who have seen them.
The most decorative part of a Viking sword was usually the handle, or hilt and it is part of this that has survived over one thousand years in the soil. And the decorations are really superb. The pommel (the top part of the sword) looks like a set of knuckles - it is divided into 5 parts, or lobes, each with intricately carved designs. In between the lobes are sets of finely twisted silver wires – this is a technique that we’ve seen a few times on artefacts from the Island. But the shape and style of the pommel hasn’t been found over here previously. Unfortunately the blade of the sword has not survived.”

ip-location map zoom

No comments: