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Ballateare Viking Burial Grave Goods

Date made: Viking: 800-1265

Description: A burial took place sometime around AD 900. A man dressed in a woollen cloak fastened by a pin was placed in a wooden coffin. In the coffin with him were placed spears, a knife, a shield and a finely-crafted sword, broken into two pieces. The coffin was placed into a grave and covered with white sand, then turf upto a height of 1.2m.

On this mound was then placed the body of a woman whose skull had been slashed by a heavy, sharp implement, leaving a large hole on the top. Her body was then covered by a layer about 8cm thick of a mixture of cremated animal bones - ox, horse, pig, sheep, goat and dog - mixed with earth and charcoal. A final layer of earth and possibly turf was added to complete the mound.

The mound was completed with a layer of earth and probably turf, and a post marked the site of the burial for all to see in the surrounding landscape.

See 1966-0373/0001 - /00013 for associated finds

Gerhard Bersu was an eminent archaeologist and a wartime internee. He was encouraged to lead excavations of many of the Island's most prominent archaeological sites.

Materials: bone, copper alloy, iron, leather, silver, wood, wool

Date found: 1946-11

Object name: grave goods

Collection: Archaeology Collection

ID number: 1966-0373


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