Terii’s Cycling Babble

*Cough, Cough, Wheeze* » 14-03 c Burial Ground 2

Vallsgärde Grave Mounds/Field

The first burial (one of the ships) at this location dates to the 600’s AD, the middle of the Vendal period (550 – 790 AD in Sweden) which stretches between the Migration Era (376 – 800 AD throughout Europe) and Viking Age (793 – 1066 AD). The Vendal period is named for Vendal Parish in Uppland, Sweden.

Finds from boat burials at Vendal and Vallsgärde show that Uppland was an important and powerful area, consistent with accounts in Norse Sagas of a Swedish kingdom. Old Uppsala was probably the center of religious and political life with its well known sacred grove, Royal mounds and the pagan temple. There were lively contacts with the rest of Europe with the exports of iron, fur, and slaves in return for arts and innovations such as the stirrup.

Riches were probably acquired by control of mining districts and production of iron and iron goods. The rulers had troops of elite mounted warriors outfitted with costly suits of armor. Graves of such mounted fighters have been found with stirrups and saddle ornaments of birds of prey in gilded bronze encrusted with garnets.

The mounted elite warriors were mentioned in the work of 6th century Goth scholar, Jordanes, who wrote the Swedes had the best horses beside the Thuringains.

The last burial at Vallsgärde was during the 1000’s AD. In all there were 15 boat burials and some 60 or more skeletal and cremation burials including men, women, and even children.

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