The lucky man, Ole Ginnerup Schytz, discovered a total of 22 gold objects close to Jelling in southwestern Denmark. The finds are engraved with riveting 6th-century symbols that could reveal new information about pre-Viking Danish people.
"Some of the objects have runic motifs and inscriptions, which may refer to the rulers of the time, but also recall Norse mythology," director of research at the Vejle museums in western Denmark, Mads Ravn, told AFP.
"The find consists of a lot of gold items, including a medallion the size of a saucer," Ravn noted.
For now, the Vejle museums will host the objects – which cumulatively weigh about one kilogram. However, Ravn added that "It is the symbols on the items that make them unique, more than the quantity found."
An offering to the gods?
Initial assessments state that the treasure could have been buried as an offering to the gods at a time of great insecurity – perhaps when the climate in northern Europe took a turn. Following a volcanic eruption in Iceland in 536 AD, ash clouds covered the sky and brought about a cold front. The abrupt change could've caused anxiety for the people living at the time, and prompted them to seek help from a higher power.
"[The objects] have many symbols, some of which have not been seen before, which will enable us to enlarge our knowledge of the people of this period," Ravn stated.
Experts also say that Jelling, where the treasure was discovered, was a cradle for kings of the Viking Age.
The amazing find – and hopefully, further fascinating insights – will be on display at the museums in Vejle from February 2022.
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