Viking weapon decorations

Beautiful ornamentation for Viking Age weapons.

Beautiful ornamentation for Viking Age weapons.

Just a super-quick post to share with you today. Early in the Iceland National Museum exhibition of the Settlement Age, they mentioned that much of the art that survived came either in jewelry, or in weapon decoration. Today’s post is just two photos of some of the latter, since I’ve already spent so much time on the former (oh.. and there’s more to come!)

The display on Trade and Battle indicated that Icelanders during the Viking Age were mostly farmers rather than Vikings, “although they maintained certain Viking customs. They traded, and the men were armed”. Their display included swords, axe heads, shield bosses, arrowheads, spear heads, and these bronze scabbard chapes.

Beautiful ornamentation for Viking Age weapons.

Beautiful ornamentation for Viking Age weapons.

The write up for these chapes said “a relatively large number has been found in Iceland. These are works of craftsmanship, generally with zoomorphic ornamentation of the Viking Age. Most are in the Jelling style with a large ribbon shaped animal, while some are in the Borre style with an animal head”.

These decorative chapes aren’t dated, but another piece in the same display (an upper guard of a sword hilt inlaid with bronze) was dated to 900 CE.

National Museum of Iceland
www.nationalmuseum.is
Suðurgata 41, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland
+354 530 2200

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