Archaeologists have determined the age of a pair of skis that melted in Norway

(ORDO NEWS) — Archaeologists have determined the age of a pair of skis that melted out of ice on Mount Diegervarden in 2014 and 2021. Radiocarbon analysis showed that it was made between 668 and 775 AD, that is, during the Merovingian Iron Age.

Climatic changes allowed the development of a new direction in the study of antiquities – glacial archeology.

As part of it, scientists are looking for and studying artifacts, remains and other biological materials (for example, ancient manure) that have been stored under ice and snow for a long time.

The real impetus for the development of glacial archeology was the accidentally discovered ice mummy, which had lain in the Ötztal Alps for more than five millennia (more about it can be found in the material “From the abyss in the ice”).

The vast majority of the finds were made in ice patches located in the Alps and Norway, as well as in the northern regions of the United States and Canada.

For example, mummies of a wolf cub (Canis lupis) and a caribou calf (Rangifer tarandus) that lived more than 50,000 years ago were found in the Yukon.

Recently, a well-preserved mummy of a woolly mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius) was also found there.

Archaeologists believe that glacial archeology is promising in the Andes (earlier, the mummy of the Ice Maiden was found there, which can be read about in the Well Preserved material), the Himalayas, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia and New Zealand. So, in Mongolia, researchers recently found the remains of argali and ancient weapons.

In Norway, the main research in the field of glacial archeology is carried out by the team of the Secrets of the Ice project, which brought together scientists from different universities and organizations.

One of the highlights of the last year’s finds made by these archaeologists on Mount Diegervärden was a well-preserved wooden ski.

Five meters away, back in 2014, scientists made a similar discovery. Now they believe that they had at their disposal a whole couple, the preliminary age of which was estimated at 1300 years.

The researchers decided to clarify the age of this find. To do this, they selected a small sample for radiocarbon analysis, which showed that the ski was made around 668-775 AD.

According to archaeologists, this confirms that the two skis are a pair. Moreover, the new dating covers a narrower time interval related to the Merovingian Iron Age.


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