Giant Viking Hall Possibly Linked to King Harald Bluetooth Unearthed in Denmark
The hall, measuring 40 meters and dating back as early as the 10th century, has been described as a gathering place for political meetings and large Viking guilds, where important decisions that would shape the region were made.
Danish archeologists have unearthed a portion of a massive Viking hall that may be connected to the legendary King Harald "Bluetooth" Gormsson, who is revered for consolidating Denmark and introducing Christianity.
The hall, located in North Jutland, is considered the largest Viking Age find of its kind of the decade, measuring 40 meters long and 10 meters wide. So far, only half of the building has been excavated, and archaeologists estimate it was built between 950 and 1050 AD. The hall also had up to 12 oak posts that supported the roof.
According to Thomas Rune Knudsen, an archaeologist with North Jutland Museums who led the excavation, this used to be a prestigious building which, in addition to more everyday functions, must have also been a gathering place for political meetings and large Viking guilds. Knudsen also described it as a place, where "important decisions that would shape the region" were made.
The hall's design is similar to other structures in the area probably built during the reign of Harald Bluetooth (who unwittingly was the inspiration for modern-day Bluetooth technology). Researchers surmise that the hall might have been part of a larger plot or farm. They expect more houses to lie hidden under the mulch, as buildings of such nature “rarely stand alone”.
28 October 2022, 05:20 GMT
The land on which the Viking hall is located was linked to a Danish nobleman called Runulv the Councilor. This has been ascertained by a runestone 1.5m tall found nearby and dating from the same period. According to the engraving, the runestone was raised by his three sons, Hove, Thorkild and Thorbjorn.
Both the runestone and the hall suggest membership of the political and social elite, Knudsen emphasized.
With only half the Viking Hall excavated, the work continues, and is expected to yield an accurately timed result by the end of 2023.
During his reign, Harald Bluetooth was known as an apt and crafty ruler, who was fortunate both in battle and statesmanship, undertook successful raids abroad and managed to subjugate Norway. The traditional explanation for his nickname is that Harald had a conspicuous rotten tooth that appeared to be "blue".