Archaeologists have uncovered a Viking Age grave in Skaun, Norway that most likely contained the remains of a warrior. The person died in circa 950 AD and was buried with their weapons, which included a well preserved sword and shield boss.
The wooden part of the shield had decayed and disappeared in antiquity but the metal boss survived. It contained a strike mark on its surface, most likely delivered by an axe or sword, indicating that it had been used in combat. More surprisingly, the shield boss also contained a number of Islamic coins, which had been hidden inside a leather bag.
According to archaeologist Ingrid Ystgaard, the coins may indicate ‘that this person visited the eastern part of the Viking world, possibly a town such as Holmgard in what today is Russia‘.