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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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B6657 (B6657) - iron staff

object; 900-1000; not skaldic;

Historisk museum i Bergen
Location: Trå;

contents from the ONP and skaldic databases:

object/burial information
description:

Find place:

Trå, Granvin, Ulvik, Hordaland, Norway

Context:

Grave

Grave type:

An inhumation under a mound. Inside the mound there were remains of wood and iron nails which indicates that the deceased was laid in a chest. The grave assemblage suggests that the deceased was probably a woman.

Finds:

An iron staff; two oval brooches (Rygh’s type R651, Petersen’s variant 51F) of bronze with gold gilding and silver wire adornments; a partly preserved trefoil brooch of bronze with gold-gilding decorated in Borre style.

An iron chain-necklace including: thirteen glass beads (yellow, red, orange, green, white with green spots, light-blue with yellow spots); a coiled snake pendant; a silver staff-shaped pendant with eight pierced holes; a silver ring-shaped pendant; a strike-a-light shaped pendant; three small rings of twisted silver wire).

A number of loosely found beads; perhaps originally from a bracelet – one carnelian bead; four round rock-crystal beads; one fayense bead; one mosaic bead; nine glass beads (white, yellow, red-brown and green).

Remains of a wooden chest which included: a black glass smoother; a wool comb; an iron weaving sword; a spindle whorl; a knife.

Textile remains (very good quality wool); a frying pan; an iron scoop; an iron cauldron; a bronze ladle with two runic inscriptions; remains of a bronze hanging bowl; remains of a soapstone vessel; fragment of a glass vessel; remains of two whetstones; horse bits; harness mounts.

Placement of the staff within the grave:

Somewhere in the middle of the grave.

Total length of the staff:

88.5cm is preserved, but the item could have been around 90cm. The lower end of the object is broken off and missing.

Weight of the staff:

?

Cross section of the shaft (shape):

Square

Width of the shaft:

1cm

Length of the ‘handle’ measured from the upper part/tip of the staff:

No ‘handle’

Comments:

This is a very problematic find. Either only the lowest mount of the ‘handle’ is preserved or it never had a ‘basket handle’ at all. From the present condition of the find I am inclined to assume that the item did not belong to the ‘expanded handle’ type.

Description of the plate:

Fig. 1: Details of the iron mount of the staff.

Fig. 2: Fragments of a bronze hanging bowl.

Fig. 3: Fragment of a glass vessel.

Fig. 4: 2 oval brooches and a fragmented trefoil brooch.

Fig. 5: A black glass smoother and a steatite spindle whorl.

Fig. 6: A necklace and a bracelet.

Fig. 7: Fragments of a bronze scoop.

Fig. 8: A drawing of the fragmented bronze scoop and the runic inscription on its surface.

page- images - sts/text texts
1 d 300dpi

images

B6657, 1 (d300dpi)
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