Family who use a metal detector to look for lost earrings find treasure from a Viking Age burial instead

Just days after it was revealed that a man with a metal detector was making “Gold find of the century” in Norway, a family in the country has made another unprecedented discovery using the same kind of device. The family was looking for a lost gold earring in their yard with a metal detector when instead they discovered artifacts dating back more than 1,000 years, local officials said.

The Aasvik family searched for the lost jewelry in their home in Jomfruland, but as soon as they turned on the metal detector, they stumbled across a bowl-shaped buckle and another object that appears to be part of a Viking Age burial, according to a Facebook post this week by the Cultural Heritage in Vestfold and Telemark County Council.

Pictures posted by the council present the family with a lock and buckle with intricate engravings at the site of their discovery.

Fantastic Viking Age find on Jomfruland! In Jomfruland there has been settlement for many years, but the evidence for that…

Posted by Cultural heritage in Vestfold and Telemark county municipality on Monday, September 25, 2023

“The discovery was made in the middle of the garden under the big tree,” officials said.

Experts believe the two metal objects were used in the burial of a woman from the 9th century. The artefacts are believed to be the first discovery from the Viking Age in Jomfruland, an island off the south coast of Norway.

Experts knew there had been settlements in the Virgin Land dating back many hundreds of years, but the available evidence previously only extended to the early Middle Ages.

Officials praised the family for the unprecedented discovery and for immediately contacting authorities about the rare find.

“They did everything correctly and contacted us first,” officials said.

Earlier this month, officials said a 51-year-old man who had only recently purchased his metal detector found nine pendants, three rings and 10 gold pearls on the southern Norwegian island of Rennesø.

Ole Madsen, director at Archaeological Museum at the University of Stavangercalled it “the gold find of the century in Norway”.

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