Hjortspring Boat

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Summary

Earliest N. European vessel found. Remarkable features: double horns at bow and stern, similar to Scandinavian rock art images. Keel plank a hollowed log, upper strakes joined laced lapstrake. Thwarts for rowers. Built around 350 BC (established by relative dating/ comparison of weapons styles associates and C14 2 samples:370 & 390 BC) in the Baltic region, used likely for raiding, then sacrificed (?) in a bog on the island of Als, Denmark.

Discovered (in fragments)1880-1889 by peat cutters. 1915 museum official Jens Raben hears of it. Excavated 1921-22 by Gustav Rosenberg. Reassembly by Fr.Johannesen. Exhibited at National Museum in Copenhagen 1921-mid 60s. Re-conserved replacing alum with PEG 400 1960s-80s. Reconstructions attempted beginning 1971. 1986 reexcavated bog area, found. 2 new wood samples for C14 dating. 1986 New exhibition built. 1995-1999 seaworthy replica Tilia Alsie built.

Sources

Crumlin-Pedersen, O. and A. L. Trakadas, Hjortspring: A Pre-Roman Iron-Age Warship in Context. Ships and Boats of the North, Volume 5. Roskilde, The Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde. 2003.

Ferger, N.P., and H. Lumbye-Hanswen. 2000. "Reconstruction of the Hjortspring Boat - Theoretical Performance and Initial Test Results." In Down the River to the Sea, edited by J. Litwin, 103-10. ISBSA VIII, Proceedings of the Eighth International Symposium on Boat and Ship Archaeology, Gdańsk 1997. Gdańsk: Polish Maritime Museum.

Jorgensen, A. N. Maritime Warfare in Northern Europe: Technology, organization, logistics and administration 500 BC - 1500 AD. Studies in Archaeology and History. Copenhagen, The National Museum. Papers from an International Research Seminar at the Danish National Museum, Copenhagen, 3-5 May 2000. Randsborg, K. Warfare & Sacrifice in Early Europe Aarhaus university press, Cambridge U. Press, DK/UK 1995.

Kaul, F. Da våbnene ta. Hjortspringfundetog dets baggrund. Copenhagen National Museum of Denmmark/Nyt Nordisk Forlag, 1988.

McGrail, S. Ancient Boats in N.W. Europe. Longman Group UK, New York, 1987.

Randsborg, K. (1995). Hjortspring: Warfare & Sacrifice in Early Europe Jensen, J. The Hjortspring Boat Reconstructed. Online at The Guild of the Hjortspring Boat

Rieck, F. and O. Crumlin-Pedersen. Bade fra Danmarks oldtid. 1988   Valbjorn, K.V., H.P. Rasmssen, and J.A. Jorgensen. 2000. "Reconstruction of the Hjortspring Boat - Philosophy, Execution, and Initial Results." In Down the River to the Sea, edited by J. Litwin, 103-10. ISBSA VIII, Proceedings of the Eighth International Symposium on Boat and Ship Archaeology, Gdańsk 1997. Gdańsk: Polish Maritime Museum.

Westerdahl, C. Crossroads in Ancient Shipbuilding: Proceedings of the Sixth International Symposium on Boat and Ship Archaeology. Roskilde 1991.

Viking-Age Ships and Shipbuilding in Hedeby/Haithabu and Schleswig. Schleswig, National Museum of Denmark.

Internet sources

Viking Ship Museum

Hjortspringbåden Laug

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