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Circular Viking Fort Discovered in Denmark

KØGE, DENMARK—The Telegraph reports that a circular Viking fortress thought to date to the late tenth century has been discovered in Denmark. Nanna Holm of The Danish Castle Centre and Søren Sindbæk of Aarhus University took new, precise laser measurements in a field that was a likely candidate. “We suspected that one fortress was ‘missing’ in the island Zealand," Sindbæk explained. "The location at Vallø was quite the right setting in the landscape: in a place where the old main roads met and reached out to Køge river valley, which in the Viking Age was a navigable fjord and one of Zealand’s best natural harbors. From there we worked our way forward step by step.” Then a geophysical survey revealed the “ghost image” of the fortress, and excavation at the north gate uncovered charred oak posts. “The burned wood in the gates will make it possible to determine the age by means of radiocarbon dating and dendrochronology,” Holm added. Further investigation will look for buildings inside the fortress. “We are eager to establish if the castle will turn out to be from the time of King Harald Bluetooth, like the previously known fortresses, or perhaps a former king’s work. As a military fortification from the Viking Age, the monument may help to unravel the position of Zealand in relation to the oldest Danish kingdom,” she said. To read about the discovery of another legendary Norse fortification, see ARCHAEOLOGY's "Ireland's Viking Fortress."