Swedish archaeologists found seven tombs dating back to the 10th century, one of which contained two children who may have been twins.
The new discovery
made by archaeological company Uppdrag Arkeologi, is located in the town of Sigtuna, just north of the Swedish capital Stockholm. All 7 graves keep the remains in good condition, including 4 adults and 4 children.
"In one grave, there were two very skull apparel young infants of the same age. That could be the tragic result of a miscarriage of twins," Johan Runer, project manager of Uppdrag arkeologi told. Live Science.
The remains belong to "Christianized" Vikings who lived more than 1,000 years ago. The excavation team said they found a very distinct Christian character in the layout of the tombs.
"Most people are buried on their backs in an east-west direction, while traditional Vikings in this part of Sweden tended to be cremated at the time," explains Runer. prefer.
Runer's team also found coal residue at the burial site
suggesting that the bonfire ritual involved at least four graves. This ritual was quite common among the Viking Christians but was quite rare in the former Sigtuna.
The graves contain a number of interesting dragon skull artifacts such as leather belts with metal fittings, an animal bone comb and silver coins found in the mouth of the remains. Runer adds that placing coins in the mouth of the dead was also common in Christian burials in central Sweden during Viking times.
The cause of death of this newly excavated group is still a mystery. The team plans to send the remains to a chiropractor for further examination and hope to be able to answer this question in a scientific paper in the near future.