Legendary Viking town unearthed
The lost town of Sliasthorp was only known from documents written by the Carolingians as far back as the year 800AD. The site of the town and even it’s existence had never been certain, until German/Danish archaeologists found final proof of its location near the town of Hedeby (Haithabu) in modern day north Germany near Schleswig.
According to texts from the 8th century, the town served as the centre of power for the first Scandinavian kings.
But historians have doubted whether Sliasthorp even existed. This doubt is now starting to falter, as archaeologists from Aarhus University are making one amazing discovery after the other in the German soil.
“This is huge. Wherever we dig, we find houses – we reckon there are around 200 of them,” says Andres Dobat, a lecturer in prehistoric archaeology at Aarhus University.
“And the houses we have dug up so far were filled with finds: beads, jewellery, pieces of broken glass, axes, keys and arrowheads.”
One of the first Scandinavian towns
The finds support the archaeologists’ interpretation that the town belonged to the Viking elite and functioned as a military strategic centre.
“Both Dannevirke and Hedeby – two of the world’s largest monuments from the Viking Age – could be controlled from this place,” says Dobat.
The full story of the discovery is revealed in the following article which includes a selection of images of the finds and site.