Sunday, February 22, 2015

Spotted creatures

Links for notes....

What have metal detectorists done for us? A case study of Bronze Age Gold in England and Wales

Fascinating, is there a slow acceptance of metal detectorists becoming more law biding, and given the archaeologists rather poorer show of finding hoards and single gold objects does that mean the hobby will be pulled round to a lawful pursuit. Times will tell......
And to something completely different, how do two similar tombstones look alike - job lot in tombstones in the Viking era, or perhaps two artists using the same drawing....

Viking gravestone with a Ringerike-style beast (reconstruction drawing showing original colouring)St.Paul's churchyard, City of London 11th century (Drawing Eva Wilson) Taken from Anglo-Saxon Art.
A photo on Flickr shows the tombstone which is exactly like the top drawing

So did this 'Saxon/Viking tombstone drawing below get copied from the London Viking tombstone drawing, or are they identical?

This of course comes from the Great Canfield Church in Essex

"Even though the ornamentation and in some cases the runic inscriptions of this group of Ringerike style stone sculpture point to a Scandinavian background, the shape of these slabs is also found on other sepulchral sculpture in South-East England;
note; check Ringerike carving from Rochester.
In addition there are parallel-sided, square-headed grave markers, amongst the the above mentioned, St Paul stone, from the same period.
This indicates that Ringerike style stone carvings in England cannot only be viewed as Scandinavian ornamentation and Anglo-Saxon grave forms.
The group also mark interfaces between Scandinavian and also A/S burial and memorial traditions, places where interchanges of ideas and practices apparently took place in the early 11th C.  In connection with this, the often cited rune stone from Navelsjo in Smaland should also be taken into consideration.  It is raised in memory of Gunnar who was laid in a stone coffin (stainpro) in Bath, England by his brother Helge.  Like the Ringerike style stone sculpture it clearly illustrates intertwined A/S connection as well as Scandinavian knowledge of English Grave monuments.
St. Paul stone;  Had engraved 'Ginna and Toke had this stone laid'.  The stone originally had a roughly dressed lower portion for insertion into the ground...

Taken from; Early Christian Grave Monuments and the 11th  C context of the monument marker - Hvalf

Acquisition - Viking Hoards


  1. Interesting the same design - very beautiful though.
    I noticed when I went into our churchyard the other day to remove a holly wreath that the latest row of gravestones are absolutely identical in material, shape, size and design of wording - even the messages are almost the same. I like a bit of originality and to this end chose a beautiful large rock for the headstone for my first husband. I had a small bronze plaque fixed to it and every time I visit the grave I get pleasure from the fact that I know he would have loved it.

    1. That is a beautiful idea Pat, and the sameness of grave stones can be boring, though of course they also point to the same funeral stone maker. Funnily enough I have been researching why the two sculptured stones were so similar (type up my notes tomorrow) and it of course they seem to come from the short reign of Cnut, and the Scandinavian dominance in this part of the South-East.