The Largest Viking Treasure Ever Discovered: The Hoen Hoard

The Largest Viking Treasure Ever Discovered: The Hoen Hoard

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
  • 447
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    447
    Shares

THU 17 JAN 2019 08:31 PM.

The Largest Viking Treasure Ever Discovered: The Hoen Hoard

The Largest Viking Treasure Ever Discovered: The Hoen Hoard
The Largest Viking Treasure Ever Discovered: The Hoen Hoard

The Hoen Treasure is the biggest finding of gold jewelry from the Vikings Age and one of the most important European collection’s of jewelry from the 800s.

It consists of 20 coin’s, 50 jewelry of various types and 125 pearls totaling approximately 2.5 kilos of golds.

The treasure was discovered in 1875 in connection with trenching on the Hoen farm by the Drammenselva river in Buskerud county.

The place was strategically located in relation to travel routes in the Vikings Age and control of goods between the inner parts of Eastern Norway and the coast.

The gold was probably buried in the marsh between 875 and 900 AD and confirms that Hoen was an vital chiefdom with international connections.

European and Asian Jewelry:

Spanning nearly 500 year’s, the oldest coin is Roman and dated to 364-367 AD while most of the coins are Arabic from the 800’s.

The majority of the jewelry has been dated to the same period, and the youngest coins indicate that the treasures probably was buried between 875 and 900 AD.

Frankish hanging jewelry in gold and maroon colored glass.
Frankish hanging jewelry in gold and maroon colored glass.

The decor shows that a big portion of the artefact’s is Carolingian – i.e. from the Frankish Empire.

The other objects include a Byzantine medallion, an English gold ring and 2 reliquaries from the Mediterranean region besides Scandinavian and continental metal works.

Many of the object’s may originate from ravages along the rivers Seine and Rhine, ransom money to raise a siege or for the release of a powerful person.

Many Theories:

Many experts have discussed the found. Some believe it is a sacrifice to a Norse god while others think the treasure has been wrapped and hidden – perhaps in connection with war and unrest.

It is certain that a woman’s has worn the Hoen jewelry but a man could also have used the neck rings.

One theory is that the objects belonged to a rich and powerful woman who has invested in equipping ship’s that went Viking, and that the gold is her share of the revenue. Another theory is that they have belonged to a priestess.

Although the Hoen discovery has been linked to Viking raids, it is not possible to determine whether the objects are collected through looting, trade or exchange of gifts.

It appears that gold and silver jewelry almost never was placed in Vikings graves, and it is therefore found very few examples from this period.

Needle case of gold
Needle case of gold

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
  • 447
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    447
    Shares
Jessica Saraceni has been a part of Histecho Since 2018, drawn to the site for its quirky character and through Articles about the Mysteries of earth and human behavior. previously, she was an assistant editor and Research fellow at Archaeology magazine, where she gained an appreciation for the field work. A master's degree in biogeochemistry and environmental science from the Center for Archaeological Research, the University of Texas at San Antonio. She enjoys all forms of exercise; reading works by her favorite author, Haruki Murakami; and playing with her sons.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *