Major Viking exhibit comes to the British Museum in 2014
In March 2014 the British Museum will be unveiling a new exhibition on The Vikings: Life and Legend. Created with the help of the National Museum of Denmark and the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, it focuses on the core period of the Viking Age from the late 8th century to the early 11th century.
The exhibition will capitalise on new research and thousands of recent discoveries by both archaeologists and metal-detectorists, to set the developments of the Viking Age in context. These new finds have changed our understanding of the nature of Viking identity, trade, magic and belief and the role of the warrior in Viking society. Above all, it was the maritime character of Viking society and their extraordinary shipbuilding skills that were key to their achievements.
One of the highlights of the exhibition will be a reconstruction of the surviving timbers of a 37-metre-long Viking warship, the longest ever found and never seen before in the United Kingdom. The ship, known as Roskilde 6, was excavated from the banks of Roskilde fjord in Denmark during the course of work undertaken to develop the Roskilde Viking Ship Museum in 1997. Since the excavation, the timbers have been painstakingly conserved and analysed by the National Museum of Denmark.
The exhibition will also include the skeletal remains from a mass grave of Vikings that was discovered in Dorset in southwest England in 2009. To learn more about this archaeological find, please see Death on the Dorset Ridgeway: a Viking Murder Mystery
Weapons and looted treasures demonstrate the central role of warfare to the identity of the Vikings. Recently excavated skeletons from a mass grave of executed Vikings near Weymouth in Dorset, will provide a close-up encounter with ‘real’ Vikings and illustrate what happened when things went wrong for Viking warriors on British soil.
This exhibition is currently on about to finish its run at the National Museum of Denmark – you can read a review of it from Medieval Histories. Vikings: life and legend will be shown at the British Museum, from 6 March – 22 June 2014, and then at the Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, 10 September 2014 – 4 January 2015.
Source: Copyright © 2013 Medievalist