A man has found an Iron-Age Viking sword and jewellery while clearing some undergrowth in his forest in Finland, yet despite the fact that they suspect there are more treasures – the local heritage committee does not have the cash to dig them up.
The man, who has not been named, reportedly lives Janakkala, which is a municipality in southern Finland and his discovery has led to an extensive Iron Age grave field being unearthed in mid-October.
Reijo Hyvoenen, a member of the ‘Kanta-Haemeen menneisyyden etsijaet’, a regional history association, received a message along with a photograph from the man and his partner, who own the land and who were acquaintances of his showing a sword they had found.
Hyvoenen told local media: “They asked what to do now, after finding a complete sword while working in the forest. Of course, I got excited. I asked if I could come and see the sword and visit the discovery site to see if there might be something else there.”
Hyvoenen immediately identified the sword as dating back to the Viking period and a quick survey of the site also revealed a spearhead and an axehead.
Hyvoenen has estimated that the sword most likely dates back to between 1000 and 1100 AD, while the Viking era is typically considered to have taken place between 780 and 1050 AD.
Hyvoenen visited the area with Antti Krapu from the Finnish Heritage Agency on 26th October and they found even more artefacts, including a tortoise brooch, a series bracelet, a spiral ring, a chain, burnt bone and ceramics.
Hyvoenen said: “They dug four test pits and they found a number of fine Viking-era objects.”
Hyvoenen and the team of archaeologists are reportedly very excited about the discovery because it indicates that there was a large Viking settlement and a lot of activity in the area.
The area has now been designated as a protected area but there are currently no plans to investigate further, due to the Finnish Heritage Agency’s limited resources, according to local media.