This is only the 14th known Thor’s hammer found in Norway. (Photo: Nord-Trøndelag County Authority)
Recently, Magne Øksnes found something quite unique with metal detector on the Flekstad farm in Steinkjer, Central Norway: A beautiful Thor’s hammer Viking Age pendant of silver in excellent condition.
The silver hammer is dated to about 800-950 AD, is 34 millimeters (1.34 in) long, 24 millimeters (0.95 in) wide and weighs 5.6 grams (0.2 oz).
Previously there is only made 13 known findings of Thor’s hammers in Norway, only half made of silver. Magne Øksnes’ unique discovery is the first known in Central Norway, Trønderavisa newspaper reports.
In comparison, there are found approximately 3,500 Viking swords, which puts the hammer into perspective.
Archaeologist Lars Forseth at Nord-Trøndelag County Authority confirms that the discovery is exceptional.
– This is the first time I am documenting the discovery of a Thor’s hammer, says Forseth.
Metal Detecting Norway (Norges Metallsøkerforening) also writes that the hammer is very rare, and describes it as beautiful:
The hammer, with the name Mjölnir, is the historically most famous image of the Iron Age’s Old Norse belief. Mjölnir was forged by the dwarfs Sindri and Brokk, and was a gift to Thor from Loki. Thor was the God of Thunder and his most powerful weapon against the jötnar giants was Mjölnir (…).
The hammer is decorated with different rings, half rings and small squares stamped into the silver. The decor could at first sight appear random, but study it and then you see that it is beautiful and thoughtful. The shape of the hammer is also beautiful (…).
After the Vikings came in close contact with Christianity, Thor’s hammers often were used as a statement that the carrier still followed Thor and the Old Norse Religion, Ásatrú, and that he repudiated the “new belief”.
- See also: Thor’s Hammers Disguised as Crucifixes
Text by: Thor Lanesskog, ThorNews