Bigger than Sutton Hoo

Today there has been an announcement of the biggest Saxon find since Sutton Hoo in 1900.

The Sutton Hoo discovery was considered something of a massive contribution to the archeaology of the Saxon period in England.  Saxon finds are so difficult to come across that much of what they were and who they were has been obscured in history.

Unlike the Romans before them and the medieval period after there is not a lot of stone or pottery to be found, these are some of the key ingredients for discoveries as the Saxons generally did not use a lot of pottery, and what they did use was apparently not that nice.  As well most of their houses were built of wood  so other than a few post holes you do not find much other than a rubbish pit to really know what is going on.

So discoveries like these are rare and important finds of historic proportion.

The BBC article shows a gold strip that was engraved in Latin quoting Psalms 67: “Rise up O Lord, and may thy enemies be dispersed and those who hate thee be driven from thy face.”

A key in finds like these is metal detectorists.   Using this equipment gives non archaeologists a chance to make some amazing discoveries.  The professional community is leery of them as they do have a tendancy to sell their finds to the highest bidder which means they can see some important pieces never make it to a museum.

As well there is a huge issue because detectorists are not always keen to consider the strategraphy of finds to keep the evidence of where they were found and how they got there.

Nonetheless they serve an important function as these volunteers find loads of things that professionals simply do not have the time or resources to accomplish.

Either way an interesting discovery.

See also this additional article.

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8 Responses to Bigger than Sutton Hoo

  1. gotiskaklubben says:

    A theory from the west part of Sweden says that the name “Sutton Hoo” is from west-swedish-orveigen language.

    It means 17 högar in old swedish. In todays English language: 17 mounds. “Hoewe” is said to be a local English word for “mound”

    Does anybody know the local English word “hoewe”?

    http://gotiskaklubben.wordpress.com/2009/09/24/17-hogar-i-sutton-hoo/

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  3. Anne (U.K) says:

    Must admit, have never heard the word ‘hoewe’.

    It was wonderful to watch the archaeologists get so emotional about this find on news reports yesterday.

  4. gotiskaklubben says:

    Oh yeah, I can understand their enusiasm. There is a lot o finding also in Sweden this days. In the south and west of Sweden.

    Who, do you think, can help me to find the old english word “hoewe”?

    Did you know that it is more easy for swedish people to read Shakespeare in original than for english. Why? Because his relatives was from here, so he ofen used his nordic langauage.

  5. Jon W says:

    Interesting. I am really excited about this find, because of how rare and cool. Thanks for stopping by.

  6. gotiskaklubben says:

    Oh thanks, Jon W, yes, isn´it!

    And what a charming and funny remark you did about “how rare and cool”.

    We have an very interesting conversation with some of your country fellows, about the meaning of the name Sutton Hoo, on our site.

    Feel free to participate on The Gothic Club.
    Regards
    Milred van Kovalowski,

  7. Jon W says:

    Yeah I was taking a look at your blog. I have to admit publicly that most of my knowledge of Saxons come from history television. I have read a few books but we did not study it at my university.

    My most recent experience was watching Time Team… a great show for geeks like me.

  8. “Hoewe” is said to be a local English word for “mound”

    Hmm, here is an easy one:

    http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Howe

    “An English topographic surname for someone who lived by a small hill.”

    Hoewe is the not the English spelling, though the words sound similar.

    See also:

    http://www.danu.co.uk/Joomla/component/option,com_rd_glossary/task,showpart/part,H/Itemid,51/

    howe
    A large earth-covered burial mound, another name for a barrow.

    Hope that helps.

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