Why Were They Buried?: A Comparative Study of Two Viking-Age Coin Hoards in Their Political Contexts

Jeffries, Sarah Catherine
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Viking-Age coin-dated hoards have been studied at length in terms of their insights into the historical and economic accounts of Vikings in Britain in the early tenth century. They are especially useful in contextualizing Viking activities since they allow large stores of wealth to be situated within a small range of dates. Due to this precision, hoards allow analysis in terms of political events concurrent with their burial. The goal of this thesis is to provide a comparison of two of the largest Viking-Age coin-dated hoards found in Britain—the Cuerdale hoard and the Vale of York hoard—in order to suggest that the burial of such large hoards was tied to important political events, typically militaristic. I will argue that the best explanation for the deposition of Viking-Age hoards as large as the Cuerdale and Vale of York examples is for the protection of wealth during times of political turmoil.

Vikings., Archaeology., Numismatics., Medieval Britain.