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27.12.2020

Revninge Woman

On April 22, 2014, Paul Uniake was exploring a field near Reving in eastern Denmark with his metal detector when he discovered a small, beautiful statue. He immediately recognized it as being from the Viking era and contacted Ostfins Museums, who confirmed it and began the preservation process.

The discovered gilded silver statuette, 4.6 cm high, contains many details that provide new insights into the costumes and decorations of the period. "Small characters from the Viking period are extremely rare, and the dress of the Revning woman is incredibly detailed, which will contribute to the discussion of the appearance of the clothing and how it may have been worn," explained archaeologist Klaus Feveile of the Department of Landscape and Archaeology. Ostfins Museums.

There is no doubt that the small figure with its hair pulled tightly into a bundle belongs to the Viking era. However, some of the details are quite surprising.

For example, the figure's body is two-dimensional and the head is three-dimensional, which is quite unusual. The figure must have been worn as a hanging decorative amulet, as there is a small hole in the back of the head. The woman's arms go down her sides, her hands on the sides of her abdomen. The dress has long sleeves and is ankle length. Each part of the costume is picked up with a different decoration, representing different textile and tailoring techniques. The stamped circles around the neck could represent a pearl necklace.

On April 22, 2014, Paul Uniake was exploring a field near Revning in eastern Denmark with his metal detector when he discovered a small, beautiful statue. He immediately recognized it as being from the Viking era and contacted Ostfins Museums, who confirmed it and began the preservation process.

Rare find
The 4.6 cm tall gilded silver statuette discovered contains many details that provide new insights into the costumes and decorations of the period. "Small characters from the Viking period are extremely rare, and the dress of the Revning woman is incredibly detailed, which will contribute to the discussion of the appearance of the clothing and how it may have been worn," explained archaeologist Klaus Feveile of the Department of Landscape and Archaeology. Ostfins Museums.

Amazing details.
There is no doubt that the small figure with its hair pulled tightly into a bundle belongs to the Viking era. However, some of the details are quite surprising.

For example, the figure's body is two-dimensional and the head is three-dimensional, which is quite unusual. The figure must have been worn as a hanging decorative amulet, as there is a small hole in the back of the head. The woman's arms go down her sides, her hands on the sides of her abdomen. The dress has long sleeves and is ankle length. Each part of the costume is picked up with a different decoration, representing different textile and tailoring techniques. Stamped circles around the neck could represent a pearl necklace.

Valkyrie or goddess of fertility?
The greatest excitement is the three-petaled ornament that lies between her hands. Found in graves, this item is usually placed on a chest. So archaeologists have never seen in her lifetime where it really should have been.

Dated to 800 AD, it may represent a goddess such as the Valkyrie, or it may be understood in different ways. They may represent goddesses such as the Valkyries or one of the Norns, but archaeologists tend to associate the woman Roaring with the fertility goddess Freya.

In 2013 a Valkyrie figure was found in Harby with a face similar to the woman of Revening, however, unlike the Harby Valkyrie, the woman of Revening carries no weapons and the position of the arms and the petals of the jewelry on her belly may indicate fertility, making it more likely she represents the goddess of fertility.

 

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