Suontaka Viking Sword

365

3 in stock

Description of the Product

In 1968 a ditch was being widened, when they noticed an object in the excavators bucket. The sword was luckily salvaged and a grave found. This woman’s grave was dated to about 1030 so the sword likely was made and used during the 900s. In addition to this mighty sword also a complete set of jewelry and a second sword were put into the grave to accompany the deceased into afterlife. Although other fine swords have been found in Tavastia, this one from Suontaka is undoubtedly one of the finest and definitely would have demonstrated the power and prestige of its owner. The sword is possibly local craftsmanship but just as likely it could have been imported or arrived to Tavastia as a part of loot (items stolen in a raiding party). Even if the swords tale is long buried in the sands of time, it does bring us a glimpse of this fascinating time of which we know so little. It also raises an interesting question if Tavastia was ruled by powerful female chieftains and warriors such as Louhi in the Finnish epic poem Kalevala. One could view this as a strange incident but similar luxury swords have been found from other female graves in Tavastia also.

Iron Age in Tavastia (Finland) was a period of notable wealth but also unrest, as the area was under the tug of war of both the east and the west. The first historical mention of an attack by Novgorod to Tavastia is from 1042 and a Swedish runestone from 1030 tells of an important figure who fell whilst on a campaign here. The 11th century seems to have been a time of turbulence also based on the several finds of buried silver treasures from that time. Whoever buried his/her treasures didn’t stay alive to collect the treasures later on. It was here, at the edges of the spheres of influence of Sweden and Novgorod on the other side that the two cultures clashed. Finnish Iron age is unfortunately pre-history and the lack of written sources leaves a great deal open to interpretation and to imagination when trying to recreate the past from unearthed objects.

The original can be seen in the National Museum of Finland in Helsinki. Our stunning version of this national treasure features a highly detailed knot work pommel, guard, grip band and inserts. All have been lavishly plated in rich copper. The tough hand wrought 1085 high carbon steel blade has a full tang and is fully tempered, then peened over the pommel. The sword comes complete with a rich leather scabbard and matching copper fittings and sports a baldric for wearing this powerful piece. The sword is delivered in a decorative gift pack. Made by Windlass Steelcrafts.

Overall: 94 cm
blade: 78 cm
long, 4,5 cm
wide. Weight: 1,4 kg.

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- Joe Richardson

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