• Sweden edition
 

'Viking ship' discovered in Sweden's largest lake

Published: 08 May 2009 18:27 GMT+02:00
Updated: 08 May 2009 18:27 GMT+02:00

Marine archaeologists in Sweden have discovered what they believe to be the wreck of a Viking ship at the bottom the country's largest lake.

A team of 50 divers from the Swedish coastguard happened upon the 20-metre long wreck by chance on Wednesday afternoon.

"Never before has a Viking shipwreck been found in Swedish waters," marine archaeologist Roland Peterson from the Vänern Museum told The Local.

A few Viking boats have previously been discovered in Sweden, but earlier finds were made on dry land, Peterson explained.

One of the ship's ribs was discovered protruding from the bottom of the lake, while the rest of the boat was filled with a one metre-thick layer of sediment.

A wood sample from the ship, as well as iron samples from a spear and a sword found with the vessel, are to undergo expert analysis over the coming weeks.

"We can't be sure of anything until we get the dating results back, which could take around a month. But the sword did seem semi-familiar," said Peterson, referring to the weapon's apparent similarity to earlier Viking era finds.

The ship's clinker-built structure also strengthened the hypothesis that the vessel found in the Lurö archipelago, in the middle of Lake Vänern, dates from the Viking era. Vänern is Europe's third largest lake, with an area measuring 5,648 square kilometres.

The Swedish coastguard and the Vänern Museum are currently involved in a joint project to discover and examine shipwrecks lodged at the bottom the vast lake.

Six other wrecks have also been discovered within a 100 metre radius, three of which were found lying almost on top of each other.

"But it's too early to say whether these date from the same era," said Peterson.

The Viking Age marked the end of the Scandinavian Iron Age and spanned the period from the eighth to the eleventh century.

Paul O'Mahony (paul.omahony@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

11:38 May 9, 2009 by Benzed
I love this stuff. The lack of authentic viking heritage in Sweden has been a bane of my existence here. Amon Amarth alone cannot keep Sweden true.
18:44 May 9, 2009 by yaguei
http://74.125.95.132/search?q=cache:a3wFrzVavmUJ:www.geocities.com/jvertesi/christscan.html+Christianiazation+of+scandinavia&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk

Although the Christianization of America had been done by Scadinacians in the tenth century the holocaust that Native America endured in the XVI century and still does had been not much different given the R.C.Church proceeds to "convert" people as we can read in the link above.
19:11 May 9, 2009 by Greg in Canada
Cool. I'm a wreck diver myself, having done hundreds of wreck dives in the Great Lakes, but never anything this old. I'd imagine the wreck itself is nothing but a bunch of boards, but there could be some interesting historical artifacts in the area. I would imagine that this site is now off limits to the general dive population?
00:20 May 10, 2009 by Nemesis
Hello Greg,

The wreck should be off limits to all.

ONLY archeologists should have access to it to study it properly at present.

To much or our European history and culture has been destroyed. This should be preserved.
05:48 May 10, 2009 by Greg in Canada
It's the same thing over here. A new undiscovered wreck is supposed to be reported to the authorities and it then becomes a "national museum property".

My wife and I are advanced divers and have taken special courses on under water archeology. There has been a new War of 1812 Lake Ontario wreck discovered near Kingston recently. We might ask if they need dive volunteers to help with the excavation.
07:32 May 10, 2009 by Joemath
The next question involves the artifacts proximate to the ship.
08:24 May 10, 2009 by Jhomu
Hej all,

1. COULD THIS SHIP HAVE BEEN EVOLVING UNDER THE LAKE? To say yes would be utter foolishness, because the wood used came from the forest, the Iron used was mined, melted and made into the desired shape. This confirms lack of evidence for Evolution or the theory of the Big Bung.

2. To claim that there is a designer would make sense because someone must have cut wood from an Oak-tree, shaped it and made the ship. Someone also mined Iron-ore, melted it and made the metal pieces that made-up the ship.

I am happy that science is proving Evolution to be a MYOPIC BELIEF

Jhonnah
08:45 May 10, 2009 by Muttlestar Galactica
What?
10:59 May 10, 2009 by Taz Mania
Interesting Find.

What on earth are you writing about Jhomu? Evolution? Va?
11:06 May 10, 2009 by Jamtjim
Jhonnah what are you going on about? If you want a debate regarding the relative merrits of Evoluationary Theorey vs Intelligent Design, why dont you start a new thread about it?

I think its great this ship has been found and it should be protected so that we can learn all we can from it. Anyone stealing or damaging the wreck should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law...
10:49 May 11, 2009 by Grass
"Never before has a Viking shipwreck been found in Swedish waters," marine archaeologist Roland Peterson from the Vänern Museum told The Local.

What the hell was the Vasa then? or is the Vasa deemed as being "after" the Viking age?
12:33 May 11, 2009 by Jamtjim
Yes Grass. The vasa was about 600 years after the viking age...
12:36 May 11, 2009 by Mzungu
^

....also as with this one and many more....

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7096405.stm
15:35 October 21, 2011 by HunleyFinder
I like it because it was another "accidental" discovery. I put accidental in quotes, because although they were "amateur" divers (members of the Swedish Coast Guard) and not professional archaeologists, they recognized the wreck's potential importance and reported it so archaeologists could properly study it. I have been saying for years that the bulk of all discoveries are made by non-archaeologists and we need to encourage them, not discourage them. In some cases, amateurs (in the sense they don't do archaeology for a living) actually know more than the professionals.
Today's headlines
Three rescued after cruise ship sinks boat
Rickard Rundgren Björk of the coastguard services speaks to the media after the rescue operation on April 19th 2014. Photo: Maja Suslin /TT

Three rescued after cruise ship sinks boat

Three Saturday morning sailors had a lucky escape after their small boat collided and sank after it crashed into a cruise ship whilst sailing in the Stockholm archipelago. READ () »

Missing Swede found alive and well in UK
Sofie Marie Jansson. Photo: Metropolitan Police

Missing Swede found alive and well in UK

British police have found the missing Swedish girl Sofie Jansson in London, exactly a week after she was last seen, with authorities saying she is doing well. READ () »

Social Democrats make tax pledge to elderly

Social Democrats make tax pledge to elderly

Sweden's opposition party have stepped up its efforts to secure the pensioner vote by pledging to lower taxes for the elderly and make higher earners pay more. READ () »

Malmö Nazi attack victim on the mend
Showan Shattak pictured in Malmö before his attack. Photo: Facebook

Malmö Nazi attack victim on the mend

The 25-year-old man, whose stabbing by neo-Nazis sparked mass demonstrations across Sweden, has made a strong recovery in hospital and took to social media to thank supporters for campaigning against fascism. READ () »

Police seeking missing Swede in London

British police have issued a plea for tips in the search to find Swedish national Sofie Marie Jansson who hasn't been seen for almost a week. READ () »

University applications rocket to record high

University applications rocket to record high

Swedish universities continue to draw vast amounts of applicants with the number of prospective students seeking a third level education increasing for the seventh year in a row. READ () »

Man jailed in US over Lars Vilks murder plot
Swedish artist Lars Vilks pictured in New York in 2012. Photo: Linus Sundahl-Djerf/TT

Man jailed in US over Lars Vilks murder plot

American authorities have sentenced a 20-year-old accomplice of 'Jihad Jane' to five years in prison for an attempted terror plot to kill Swedish artist Lars Vilks, after getting involved with the murder plans when he was a teenager. READ () »

Sweden scraps 'new start zones' after EU input
Integration Minister Erik Ullenhag visits a school in Tensta, one of the neighbourhoods mentioned when he and his colleagues first floated the new start zone proposal. File: TT

Sweden scraps 'new start zones' after EU input

Sweden has abandoned a plan to ease taxes for small companies in blighted areas after the European Commission challenged its legality. READ () »

'Easter eggs an invitation to spread germs'
A typical Swedish Easter egg. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

'Easter eggs an invitation to spread germs'

A Swedish microbiologist has warned that traditional Swedish Easter eggs laden with candy are an open invitation to the spread of bacteria and viruses. "Is this really a good idea?" he asked. READ () »

Jammed truck snarls Stockholm rush hour
Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Jammed truck snarls Stockholm rush hour

PICTURES: A truck got wedged inside a tunnel in central Stockholm on Thursday, with authorities concerned the accident may have damaged cables in the tunnel's ceiling. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Society
Swedish supermarket Ica pulls contested Easter commercial off air
Kungahuset
Society
Swedish royals set baptism date for princess
finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 16
Politics
Who's the prime minister's heir?
Alfie Atkins
Society
Are children's books the key to families integrating in Sweden?
National
'Sweden Dem protests cater to party's martyr image'
National
'Swedish research grants were fantastic, but now it's like Australia'
Society
Only in Sweden: The ten problems you'd never encounter elsewhere
National
Swedes stopped to take my picture, but didn't look me in the eyes
Business & Money
A swipe of the hand replaced cash and cards in Lund
YouTube
Features
Video: Oliver Gee finds out how to embrace The Swedish Hug
TT
National
Abba duo hints at reunion
Advertisement:
Private
National
Flash mobs hug it out across Sweden
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 11-13
TT
Politics
Swedes to give six-hour workday a go
TT
Society
Aussie choir member wows Abba in Sweden
YouTube
Society
Stockholm magic a surprise YouTube hit
Fastighetsbyrån
Society
Gallery: The Local's Property of the Week
Private
Society
Swedes find 200-year-old gravestone in living room
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
Why a bachelor's degree is no longer enough
Deepti Vashisht
Features
Deepti Vashisht dissects the magic of Sweden's personal ID number
Shutterstock
Society
Ten signs you've been in Sweden too long
Society
Jimi Fritze heard every word when doctors discussed taking his organs
Society
A Swedish farmer explains why the new bestiality ban is 'pointless'
ESL
Sponsored Article
Learning Swedish the easy way
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Blog Update: The Diplomatic Dispatch

28 October 15:16

The Green Growth Group Summit »

"Today on the 28 October in Brussels, a large group of key EU Ministers and business people, including UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, and Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek, will meet to discuss green growth. They all have a stake in resolving a challenge which, although it is crucial..." READ »

751
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com