POCKET MUSEUM: VIKINGS


POCKET MUSEUM: VIKINGS

STEVE ASHBY & A. LEONARD    Book Number: 89132    Product format: Hardback

Medieval archaeologist Steve Ashby and Cambridge University Viking Age archaeologist Alison Leonard have brought together in the most visually exciting heavyweight hardback nearly 200 of the most remarkable artefacts that are held in museum collections around the world on Vikings. Their image is one of wild and violent raiders, yet the objects in this book reveal a much more complex society comprised of pioneering explorers and master metalworkers who established a far-reaching trade network. The interactions of Scandinavians with diverse other peoples gave rise to political, social, economic and religious transformation wherever they went. The book begins with objects that truly belong to Iron Age Scandinavia like the sword, the icon and symbol of power, status and masculinity, with fine examples photographed from graves in Norway. A cauldron and tripod from 834, a set of gaming pieces in glass for gambling, the colourful glass pieces depicted were recovered from Birka grave 750. There is a toy sword, a whale bone plaque featuring a pair of in-turned dragon heads carved with some skill, jewellery, a needle case, a decorative key with ornate bows and a magnificent full-faced helmet made from iron. One object of high quality British or Irish manufacture probably started its life as a book fitting and such items have been involved in story telling as ways of passing on the mythologies of Viking Age Scandinavia. Microscopically thin gold sheets normally pressed with images of human figures or gullgubbers (meaning little old men of gold) are delicate artifacts, probably the focus of ritual and social gatherings. There is an inscribed human skull fragment from the mid 8th century, the Oseberg ship burial which gives us a glimpse into Norse belief systems, a silver cup, axes, leatherworking tools and shears, a spindle whorl, slave collar, tool chest and an Anglo Saxon jeweller's hoard found in Cheapside, London among the 200 items. Beautifully photographed on bright white quality paper, 288pp.
Published price: £12.95
Bibliophile price: £6.00


Additional product information

ISBN 9780500052068
Browse these categories as well: Last Chance to buy!, Collectables/Antiques, History

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