Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Graves and Burial Practices

An Eye for Odin? Divine Role-Playing in the Age of Sutton Hoo.

by and

This paper presents some new observations concerning the construction of the Sutton Hoo helmet, as a  point of entry to a wider discussion of pre-Christian religious and ideological links across Scandinavia. It will be argued that in certain circumstances and locations, such as the firelit interior of the hall, the wearer of the helmet was seen as both […]

The Acculturation of Scandinavians in England: A Consideration of the Burial Record


The portrayal of the ‘Vikings’ as an archetypal barbarian ‘other,’ wreaking death and destruction wherever they went, was already current in the medieval period,but in England the depictions became more extreme in the centuries after the attacks. This paper will focus on the texts and archaeology of ninth- and tenth-century England and argue that in many respects […]

The Road to Hel: A Study of the Conception of the Dead in Old Norse Literature

The Heroized Dead: People, Animals, and Materiality in Scandinavian Death Rituals AD 200-1000


As an archaeologist, my interpretation of Old Norse religion is broadly formulated on the basis of the archaeological evidence, and in the Midgard Project my focus has been especially on people’s relationship with animals. hus, in this article the role of animals will be outlined in terms of lifestyle metaphors, social identities, and cosmological agents […]

Changing Customs: Reflections on Grave Gifts, Burial Practices and Burial Rituals during Period III of the Bronze Age in Southeast Scania


This study of grave dating from Period III of Bronze Age in southeast Scania discusses a limited number of graves, and the problems associated with the various approaches are highlighted, followed by a series of more or less speculative thoughts relating to burial practices and the significance of grave gifts.  The graves are interpreted as […]

The Grave as a Doorway to the Other World: Architectural Religious Symbolism in Iron Age Graves in Scandinavia


During the last twenty years, the category ‘grave’ has been the subject of increasing debate in Swedish archaeology. It has been recognized that monuments commonly regarded as graves are sometimes also found in cultic contexts other than those associated with death and burial. In many cases, for instance, monuments similar to graves have been erected […]

A Viking Boat Grave with Amber Gaming Pieces Excavated at Skamby, Östergötland, Sweden

by and

IN THE SUMMER of 2005 the authors directed the excavation of a flat stone setting with a boat-shaped central depression at Skamby, Kuddby parish, Östergötland, Sweden. The stone setting covered a small and poorly preserved boat inhumation, dated by the artefacts recovered to the early Viking period (9th century ad). This is the first excavation […]