Ancient Artefacts (Nearly) Lost In The Garbage In Iceland - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Ancient Artefacts (Nearly) Lost In The Garbage In Iceland

Published June 13, 2018

Photo by
Good Shepherd

MBL reports that the National Museum of Iceland received a peculiar phone call the other day, when they were asked to inspect a series of strange objects that had landed in one of charity shop Good Shepherd’s collection bins. The items in question, wrapped in toilet paper and placed in a plastic box, turned out to be priceless artefacts from antiquity.

Amongst the items discovered were spear points, axe heads, arrowheads and similar items, all of them obviously remarkably old.

Archeologist Vilhjálmur Örn Vilhjálmsson was amongst those who saw these objects on the news when the story was first reported. By his estimation, they are actually far older than the Dark Ages estimation that reporters were bandying about. Writing on his blog on the matter, he believes that the spear heads, for example, likely date to the time of Christ, or possibly even older.

But the story gets even weirder.

Arró Stefánsson wrote about the matter on Facebook and, as it turns out, he has a special connection to the items.

“Around 4AM last Sunday morning I was awoken by the incessant pinging of my phone getting flooded with messages from my family and friends asking if I knew anything about a particular news story that appeared in one of the weekend newspapers,” he wrote. “I almost had a heart attack when I read the article…in short, it said that a box containing various ancient artifacts had been found at one of the rubbish heaps in Reykjavík.”

Arró confirmed that his cousin had thrown the items away, the oldest item in the collection is 3,000 years old. He is currently in correspondence with the National Museum, who now have possession of the artefacts that were nearly lost to history.

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