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28 August 2009 @ 10:01 am
Why doesn't this stuff ever show up in my backyard?  
The only thing we ever dig up at my house are little pointy rocks. Not cool!


Viking silver treasure hoard worth £1m unearthed after 1,000 years
By Daily Mail Reporter
An impressive Viking hoard of jewellery has made a father and son metal-detector team £1m, after being bought by two British museums.

The find, which is the 'largest and most important' since 1840, was found in a field in Harrogate, North Yorkshire in January 2007. It had been buried there for more than 1,000 years.
Valued at £1,082,000, the hoard was purchased by the British Museum and the York Museum Trust after two years of fundraising.
The highlight of the collection is an intricately carved silver cup, estimated to be worth more than £200,000. It contains 617 coins and various silver fragments, ingots and rings. Some of the pieces were from as far away as Afghanistan.
The treasure is believed to have belonged to a rich Viking who buried it during the unrest following the conquest of the Viking kingdom of Northumbria in 927 by the Anglo-Saxon king Athelstan.

It is believed he was unable to go back to the hoard, possibly as a result of turbulence during the period. Conservation work on the find began about a month ago and experts hope the process will reveal crucial details about the Viking era.Initial examinations suggest the treasure dates back to AD927 or 928.

Experts have spent over a month cleaning the hoard, often with a porcupine spine, to protect the delicate collection.

The process, performed under microscope, has already revealed intricate designs which were invisible when the hoard was first discovered.

Detail on the silver jewellery fragments and in the designs and inscriptions on some of the coins is now apparent.

Close examination revealed small incisions made in the metal - evidence that the makers tested the silver before they began work.

Gareth Williams, curator of early medieval coins and Viking expert at the British Museum, said: 'There's been nothing like it for over 150 years.

'The size and range of material gives us an insight into the political history, the cultural diversity of the Viking world and the range of cultural and economic contact at that time.'
He said some parts of the hoard came from as far as Afghanistan as well as from Russia, Scandinavia and continental Europe.
Most items were preserved because they were hidden in the cup.

Finders David Whelan, 53, and Andrew, 37, from Leeds, said: 'Being keen metal detectorists, we always dreamed of finding a hoard but to find one from such a fantastic period of history is just unbelievable.

'The contents of the hoard we found went far beyond our wildest dreams and hopefully people will love seeing the objects on display in York and London for many years to come.'

The pair will share the £1,082,000 with the owners of the field, who wished to remain anonymous.

Mary Kershaw, director of collections at York Museum, said: 'The Vale of York Viking hoard is a once in a lifetime find. It will greatly add to the understanding of the early 900s in Yorkshire and its connections with the wider world.'

The treasure will go on display at the Yorkshire Museum in York from September 17 until November 1. It will then travel to the British Museum.

According to historians, Yorkshire is one of the areas which shows the strongest Viking influence.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1209649/Viking-silver-treasure-hoard-worth-1m-unearthed-1-000-years.html#ixzz0PUwVcDMT
VLelfbiter on August 28th, 2009 05:35 pm (UTC)
Well, you are bit far from the Viking trade routes... Well, with a bit of luck you could find an ancient oceanic vessel or an Irish leather boat...
Suzik00kaburra on August 28th, 2009 05:36 pm (UTC)
But I ought to be able to get a Spanish gold hoard, right? Because Spain brought all their New World gold to California...wait a minute...

I'm in a geographically undesirable location for treasure hoards! Tears!
VLelfbiter on August 29th, 2009 03:40 pm (UTC)
Well, mayhe you might stumble into remains of an ancient Amerindian potlach ceremony. But I understand that all the potential treasure hoards near the US West Coast would be inland. And many of them already looted, secretly or publicly.
Mr Bagginsmrbaggins1 on August 28th, 2009 06:27 pm (UTC)
It's Mine, It's Mine!
I now remember where I left it. Got a bit pissed in a previous lifetime after I went raping 'n raving and pillaging in a previous lifetime.

Do you think they'll give it back?
Suzik00kaburra on August 28th, 2009 07:20 pm (UTC)
Re: It's Mine, It's Mine!
Maybe if you ask really nicely they'll go ahead and send that silver right along. :D
VLelfbiter on August 29th, 2009 03:43 pm (UTC)
Re: It's Mine, It's Mine!
Ah, there you are, you Norse who took my fair wife over the inland sea. Revenge of the Vends will me mine!

Mr Bagginsmrbaggins1 on August 29th, 2009 04:17 pm (UTC)
Revenge of the Vends
Was that the wee lassie with the red haer that struggled so much and screamed in passion in the end? I think she's the one that bashed me over the haed and took of with mine treasures...
Min: Retro/ISpyphantomminuet on August 28th, 2009 07:16 pm (UTC)
That's amazing. :-o
Danny Darkosaru_kage on August 29th, 2009 02:08 am (UTC)
I'm thinking if you want to find Viking hoards, you need to go at least as far east as Minnesota (I understand the Kensington rune stone they thought was a hoax for so many years was recently proven to actually be authentic). Of course, if you go poke around Lovelock Nevada, where they discovered a cave full of mummified "red-haired giants" back in the day, you might turn up something there. Other than that, I think the next closest legendary treasure to you is the mythical Egyptian treasure caves that are rumored to be in the Grand Canyon area.

Also, I think my all-time favorite Viking treasure find had to be large statue of Buddha they pulled out of a Norwegian (I think it was Norway, anyway) bog excavation. Those Norse boys certainly got around.
Suzik00kaburra on August 29th, 2009 04:14 pm (UTC)
Arrrgh. Why weren't the Ohlone Indians a more gold-centric culture? I mean, the metal was apparently there, but until John Sutter came along in 1849 no one was paying attention.

Is this the Buddha you were thinking of? Crazy to think the Vikings got all the way to India, but if they were able to make it North America I guess it isn't at all far-fetched.

Off to Google the Grand Canyon hoard. I'm sure if I poke around the internet long enough, someone will provide me with a treasure map, complete with big fat black X on it.
Danny Darkosaru_kage on August 29th, 2009 11:36 pm (UTC)
I think that is the Buddha I was thinking of. I don't imagine there were a lot of them that made it to Scandinavia to choose from, and now that I think about it, it makes more sense for it to have been found in Sweden than Norway.

If I remember right, the theory is that the Vikings didn't make it as far east as India, not during the Viking age anyway. They later pushed east from Kiev and laid the foundations of the Russian empire, but that's a whole other thing. What they did do was develop a strong trade relationship with the Byzantine empire. The Swedish Vikings exploited the river networks branching off the Oder and Vistula rivers to travel from the Baltic sea to the Black sea and Mediterranean regions where they traded slaves for silver (the English word for slave comes from Slav, as in the Slavic peoples the Vikings moved around the continent like cattle). And actually right up until the collapse of the empire, the Byzantine emperor had his elite Varangian guard, which was made up entirely of fierce red-headed giants from the north-lands. The Buddha statue, if I'm remembering right, was thought to have come west along the silk roads where some Viking sea king picked it up in Byzantium as a symbol of status or something.

Of course, they might have gone further. History has a way of fucking with the academic preconceptions, so you never know.

The Egyptian treasures of the Grand Canyon thing is a little dodgier. Actually, it's a lot dodgier. It's like something out of a Neil Gaiman novel, but the legend of caves full of Egyptian (or Egyptian-like) carvings and artifacts has been around for a long time. Supposedly there is some kind of elite division of Hopi mystics whose main purpose is to protect these secrets of the Grand Canyon, and will kill anyone who gets too close. I think Glenn Kimball and/or Steve Quayle are the guys who've written about it the most, but they're camped pretty solidly in conspiracy land, so you may want to take what they say with the appropriate amount of salt.