Photography: Hordaland Country Council
A traveler during a halt not far from the village of Haukheli in the Norwegian province of Telemark discovered a perfectly preserved Viking single-edged sword, reports The Local. Presumably, the weapon was forged in 750-800 year. Although the blade itself is well preserved, the weapon lacks guard, handle and pommel, characteristic of Scandinavian swords.
The sword will be deposited at the University Museum in Bergen. According to the estimates of archaeologists who examined the discovery, it is very rare to find such old weapons in good condition. The length of the sword is 77 centimeters. According to archaeologists, this is the characteristic length for Viking weapons of the VIII-IX centuries, who lived in western Norway.
Presumably, the weapons found in those times were very expensive. To his master, the sword probably served as a symbol of wealth and power. In the spring of next year, after the snow melts, archaeologists intend to carefully examine the place where the sword was found. If there are a few more items from that era, it will be possible to count on the discovery of the burial.
Details of the sword found by the traveler are not specified. Judging by the photograph, this is a weapon with one-sided sharpening that looks like a Germanic short sword – scramasax. Whether there is a dol in the sword found that is characteristic of two-edged and single-edged Scandinavian weapons is not visible in the photograph.
Usually the length of the Scandinavian swords of the eighth and first half of the ninth century was from 77 to 80 centimeters, and the width of the blade could vary from five to six centimeters. The hilt of the swords was short – from 8.5 to 10.5 centimeters. The blade together with the guard, the hilt and the pommel weighed about a kilogram.
Due to the nature of the handle, in particular, the relatively large size of the top, the Vikings, allegedly, rarely used swords to deliver thrust. Weapons inflicted chopping blows on the top or on the legs, for which at that time there was no adequate protection.