Top 3 Greatest Viking Ships in the Viking Age

Without the greatest Viking ships, there would have been no great Viking age. Indeed, the Viking ships must be the most wonderful masterpiece of the Vikings that presented not only the majesty but also the power of the winners. They once were the serpents of the seas.

This blog post is going to discuss Top 3 Greatest Viking Ships in the Viking ancient time.

Oseberg Ship

The Oseberg is probably the most well-known Viking ship to many of you. If you have been reading pieces of writing about Viking age, you might catch sight of the Oseberg ship.

Image of Oseberg excavation
Oseberg ship excavation

In 1903, a farmer from Oskar Rom dug up a burial mound on his land. He came across a remains of a ship. Many days later, the ship was confirmed to date back in the Viking age. Becoming one of the greatest Viking Ships, the Oseberg ship attracted much attention from the public. The task of excavating the ship lasted 3 months but it took 21 years to preserve the Oseberg ship.

When excavating the Oseberg ship, the archaeologists came across two skeletons of women. One was around her fifties when dead while the other around 70-80 years old. The valuable goods in the grave indicated that the both or one of the women had a very good social status. The broken collarbone of younger woman’s skeleton indicated that she had been injured days before her death. But there was no sign of her death cause. Meanwhile, the skeleton of the older woman indicated that that woman suffered many illnesses, especially cancer. She must have been in great pain in her final days.

Image of artifact goods from Oseberg ship burial
Wagon cart in the Oseberg burial
Image of Oseberg one of the greatest Viking ships
Oseberg Viking ship

Overall, the Oseberg ship is considered to be the exceptional Viking woodwork. The ship possessed more decorations than any other Viking ships that we have excavated. 

Gokstad Ship

The Gokstad ship has been the best preserved Viking ship across the globe by far. On a boring day,  two teenage sons set out to dig their land to change their bored mood. Luckily, the digging excited the sons for they found out a ship. That happened in the autumn 1879. Around spring 1880, archaeologists came and studied more about the ship. Cool thing was that the ship rest on a burial mound.

Image of Gokstad ship
Gokstad ship in the museum

After studying the construction of the Gokstad ship, the archaeologists concluded that the ship was suitable for the voyage of both raiding and trading. It could travel through the high seas.

There was also a grave in the site of the Gokstad ship. The skeleton belonged to a Viking male. He was around his forties when he died. The man had a very good body with the height of 183 cm. The cutting signs in both legs showed that the man died in battle. But the death cause was the knife wound on the right thigh.

Image of Gokstad ship excavation
Gokstad ship excavation

The man in the Oseberg ship was buried with many valuable goods. One noticeable thing was the peacock which presented that he had some international relationships. The burial the man received greatly indicated that he possessed a very high social rank. Probably a chieftain or a royal descendant.

Tune Ship

Tune Ship was the first Viking ship ever to be excavated. This ship was unearthed around 1867 on the island of Rolvsøy, near Fredrikstad. The burial site that rest the Tune ship was among the Norway’s largest burial sites. There were traces that the ship was excavated before because the mound had been opening. So the oxygen might have been sneaked into the burial mound and rotted the artifacts.

Image of tune ship Viking ship
Tune Ship

The Tune Ship was fast and a type of sea-going ship. The ship must have transported people and things from this place to another at great speed. Tune Ship was not likely to carry heavy goods. Rather, it might have carried light things like fur or glass.

Another skeleton was found in the Tune burial site. He was buried with many gifts and three horses. Though many things in the grave site might have been stolen, the remains indicated that man had a high stand in society. Three horses accompanied him to his afterlife. One inside the ship while the other guarded at the gate.

Greatest Viking Ships in a nutshell

Overall, ships were among a list of why we should respect the Vikings. The ship burial sites have been proving useful for us in this day and age. We are interested in archaeology because we are interested in the past. That’s why we delight at the findings of Greatest Viking Ships.

They are not merely rotten wood or rusty metal. What we’ve found in Oseberg ship, Tune ship, Gokstad ship, and other Viking ships give us an vivid account of the Viking culture. Along with literal materials, we can imagine how life of the Viking once was. We can understand the relationship among the Vikings and their gods, the influence of social rank to a Viking man, and the funeral ritual that the Vikings offered to the dead. To conclude, the findings of Greatest Viking Ships are of the most awesome achievements we have experienced.

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