Medieval treasures unearthed by amateurs on show at National Museum

Monedas de oro romanas, anillos, piedras preciosas y otros tesoros han sido desenterrados por “detectoristas” daneses. 

El  Museo Nacional de Dinamarca está rindiendo homenaje, no a los arqueólogos profesionales, sino a los aficionados con detectores de metales.

 Los curadores dicen que todo se debe a una ley danesa que obliga a los detectores de metales a informar y entregar sus descubrimientos a los museos, a cambio de una tarifa de búsqueda.

“Cuando apareció el detector de metales en los años ochenta, hubo algunos administradores de museos muy sabios que dijeron ‘necesitamos trabajar con estas personas'”, dice la curadora Line Bjerg.

Colaboración mutua

Hjalte Wadskjaer Molgaard es un aficionado que trabaja con el museo nacional de Dinamarca. Él consiguió el error de detección de metales desde una edad temprana. 

“Siempre me ha gustado la historia”, dice.

“Comenzó con la Segunda Guerra Mundial, la Primera Guerra Mundial y el Titanic, en realidad. Y luego, de repente, realmente me interesé en la prehistoria”.

One of his discoveries is on display in the exhibit – a golden medieval ring that features the face of Jesus Christ.

“I walked for like six hours in the rain without finding anything, but I was just really feeling happy,” he laughs.

Stunning discoveries

Ole Ginnerup Schytz is a novice metal detectorist who discovered what can be considered one of the greatest gold treasures in Danish history.

The Dane had only just acquired a metal detector and had been given permission to walk on a farmer’s field belonging to an old classmate. After a few hours, his metal detector began to beep, and he unearthed almost one kilogram of gold.

“Well, I didn’t know that it was gold when we found the first couple of items, we had no idea,” says Schytz.

“Actually, the only thing we knew it was not, that was gold. Because we knew that you hardly ever find gold as an amateur detector.”

Archaeologists now say the hoard, discovered in the village of Vindelev, near Jelling, had been buried for around 1,500 years. It contains almost one kilogram of gold, including large medallions the size of saucers and some Roman coins that had been made into jewellery.

The Vindelev Hoard is now going on display as part of the exhibit, the first time it’s been seen in Copenhagen, after a brief show in Veijle, not far from where it was discovered.

Curator Line Bjerg hopes the exhibit may inspire others to pick up a metal detector. She says it’s also an example of how history is being uncovered by ordinary Danes.

“I want the audience to understand that our museum is being built by ordinary people,” she says.

“La búsqueda de la historia danesa” se inauguró en el Museo Nacional de Dinamarca en Copenhague el sábado 4 de febrero y tendrá una duración de un año.

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