Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 43707
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Hedenstierna-Jonson , Charlotte, Neil Price, and Torun Zachrisson,
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Viking Warrior Women? Reassessing Birka Chamber Grave Bj.581
  • Source: Antiquity 93, 267 ( 2019): Pages 181 - 198. Available open access from Cambridge Core: https://doi.org/10.15184/aqy.2018.258
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Journal Article
  • Subject (See Also): Archaeology Birka, Sweden Burials Grave Goods Vikings Warfare and Warriors Weapons
  • Award Note:
  • Geographic Area: Scandinavia
  • Century: 10
  • Primary Evidence:
  • Illustrations:
  • Table:
  • Abstract: The warrior woman has long been part of the Viking image, with a pedigree that extends from the Valkyries of Old Norse prose and poetry to modern media entertainment. Until recently, however, actual Viking Age evidence for such individuals has been sparse. This article addresses research showing that the individual buried at Birka in an ‘archetypal’ high-status warrior grave—always assumed to be male since its excavation in 1878—is, in fact, biologically female. Publication, in 2017, of the genomic data led to unprecedented public debate about this individual. Here, the authors address in detail the interpretation of the burial, discussing source-critical issues and parallels. [Reproduced from the journal page on the Cambridge Core website: https://doi.org/10.15184/aqy.2018.258]
  • Author's Affiliation: University of Uppsala [Price and Hedenstierna-Jonson] and Upplandsmuseet [Zachrisson]
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 2019.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 0003598X (print); 17451744 (online)