Freitag, 30. März 2007

Oseberg woman stems from the Middle East

The grandmother of Harald Fairhair, first king of Norway, had a servant, whose ancestors were coming from an area in the Middle East. This is supposed by a new ancient DNA research of one of her tooth (see here and here). It is supposed, that the two women, that were found in the famous Viking Oseberg ship, which was excavated 1904, and which is dated to 834 AD, were this grandmother (at death around 80 years old) and her servant (at death around 50 years old). More in the text:

... "Our results so far have been very interesting. Further analysis of the remains of both women would hopefully allow us to establish whether the two were related. What we already know is that the ancestor to the younger woman came from the the area around modern day Turkey and Iran," said Professor Per Holck. He has also found that their diet was heavy on meat, but that they ate comparatively little seafood. The full findings will be presented in an article in the British magazine "European Archaeology" later this year. (...)

"This is the first DNA profile we have from a Viking skeleton," says Lena Fahre, archaeologist and spokeswoman at Midgard Historical Centre. (...)

Until now, the common assumption for many years, though less and less in vogue among historians and archaeologists, has been that the older woman in the grave was Queen Åsa, mother of Halvdan the Black, and grandmother of Harald Fairhair, the first king of the united Norway, and that the younger woman was her servant, who went to her death with her mistress. Dendrochronological analysis, or tree-ring dating, of the timbers used to build the burial chamber, shows that they were felled in the autumn of the year 834 AD. ...

1 Kommentar:

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