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Tuesday 23 October 2018

Precious Viking hoard goes on public display for first time

Among the items found were a perfectly preserved 1,000-year-old weaver’s sword featuring a carved human face in the Ringerike style of Viking art.
Among the items found were a perfectly preserved 1,000-year-old weaver’s sword featuring a carved human face in the Ringerike style of Viking art.
Luke Byrne

Luke Byrne

Ireland's most recently discovered horde of Viking treasure is to go on view to the public for the first time.

The wealth of artefacts was unearthed during the development of the former Beamish and Crawford site in Cork city centre.

Among the items found were a perfectly preserved 1,000-year-old weaver's sword featuring a carved human face in the Ringerike style of Viking art.

It was used to hammer threads into place on a loom and is around 30cm in length.

The foundations of 19 wooden Viking houses from the 11th and 12th centuries and three stone walls and a door way of St Laurence's Church, understood to be from the 13th century, were also found at the site.

An assortment of spoons, ladles and buckets as well as a wooden thread-winder with the design of two horses' heads carved into it were also found.

The findings identify Cork as a significant early Viking settlement in Ireland.

The excavation was undertaken by the renowned archaeologist Dr Maurice Hurley and his team.

"The preservation of a great variety of wooden structures and objects of the late Viking age has been the greatest reward and cultural gain from the excavation in the medieval levels of Cork city," he said. "I hope the exhibition will be to the enjoyment of scholars and residents of Cork fascinated by the Viking era."

A team of archaeologists excavated the site between November 2016 and March 2018 on behalf of contractor BAM.

It helped fund the 'Below our Feet' exhibition at Cork Public Museum which will begin tomorrow and run for the summer.

Irish Independent

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