Wraps come off warship for Vikings exhibition

THE longest Viking warship will go show in the UK for the first time tomorrow in a Vikings exhibition at the British Museum.

Roskilde 6, excavated from the banks of Roskilde fjord in 1997, appears alongside a steel replica of the ship in its heyday.

It is the first time the vessel has been put on display because its scale and fragility meant that without the museum’s new facilities it could not be exhibited. Only 20 per cent of the ship’s timbers survive and its construction has been dated to about AD 1025.

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This was the high point of the Viking age when England, Denmark and Norway were under Cnut’s rule and it is believed Roskilde 6 was almost certainly a royal warship.

Also going on show is the Vale of York Hoard discovered in 2007 and jointly acquired by the museum and York Museums Trust.

Consisting of 617 coins, six arm rings and bullion and hack-silver, items come from Afghanistan, Russia, Scandinavia and continental Europe.