Skip to comments.Swedes Find Viking-Era Arab Coins
Posted on 04/04/2008 7:50:12 AM PDT by blam
Swedes find Viking-era Arab coins
The Arab coins reveal where they were minted and the date
Swedish archaeologists have discovered a rare hoard of Viking-age silver Arab coins near Stockholm's Arlanda airport.
About 470 coins were found on 1 April at an early Iron Age burial site. They date from the 7th to 9th Century, when Viking traders travelled widely.
There has been no similar find in that part of Sweden since the 1880s.
Most of the coins were minted in Baghdad and Damascus, but some came from Persia and North Africa, said archaeologist Karin Beckman-Thoor.
The team from the Swedish National Heritage Board had just started removing a stone cairn at the site "when we suddenly found one coin and couldn't understand why it was there", she told the BBC News website.
"We continued digging and found more coins and realised it was a Viking-age hoard." The coins were left there in about AD850, she said.
Such Viking hoards usually come from Gotland - a large Swedish island in the Baltic Sea, she explained.
"No Viking was buried at this site - the grave is older. Maybe the Vikings thought the hoard would be protected by ancestors," Ms Beckman-Thoor added. Vikings had settled in a village nearby.
The Vikings travelled widely in their longships in the Baltic region and Russia from the late 8th to the 11th Century. They are known to have travelled as far as North Africa and Constantinople (now Istanbul).
WOW! Talk about life imitating art! Antonio Banderas was in a movie about an Arab Merchant Prince who traveled to the Viking lands and fought alongside them!...............
One lecture I recently heard cited a jade Buddha statue turning up in a discovered Viking hoard. The distances and the variety of cultures the Scandinavian traversed is mind boggling in its scope.
Talk about art imitating Michael Crichton, read if you haven’t Eaters of the Dead about Vikings way down yonder, which cites, by the way, everybody’s favorite Mad Arab, Abdul Alhazred.
Maybe they fell out of Richard Widmark’s pockets when he swam from Morocco to Norway in The Longships?
Judging from the holes in the tops of a few, they could have been used as ornamentation also (like some pretty dress that someone picked up while pillaging south).
Yep, that was one impressive swim. However, the distance record is yet held by Buster Crabbe, who butterflied across the Aether from the planet Mongo back to Doctor Zarkov’s laboratory atop Mount Palomar.
Good chance this was money from Arab muslim slave traders buying some of the Vikings captives.
Given the three choices we have for POTUS, Ming doesn’t look so bad.
That was a great movie!
The early Muslim coinage copied the designs of the coinage of the Sasanian Empire the Muslims had overthrown as the local population was familiar with the design.
Although the Muslim coinage carried Arabic inscriptions, the old designs were retained, sometimes even to the point of retaining the images of the Zoroastrian Fire Altars.
(Note the coin at the right hand side with the Fire Altar image.)
These designs remained in use for approximately 200 years and, gradually, the Islamic coinage rid itself of all "graven images".
An article about that was post on FR.
This story does not seem surprising.
H.P. Lovecraft's nom de plume........
The Michael Crighton book, “Eaters of the Dead” (movie 13th Warrior) is loosely based on 7 translation of the Arab Ibn Fadan who came from what is now Baghdad.
The book is semi-fiction but based on the translations of an ancient diary of Ibn Fadn.
Theory goes that that the enemies that were harassing the Vikings were actually the last remnants of Neanderthals.