Historical knowledge

The North Mound and the South Mound

The two large mounds at Jelling are called the North Mound and the South Mound. In the North Mound, which is the earliest, a burial chamber was built in 958-59 AD. The core of the North Mound consists of a much older mound from the Bronze Age, which was enlarged in the Viking Age – either to make the construction work easier or perhaps because the ancient mound had a special significance? All of the contents of the North Mound’s burial chamber, as well as remains of the dead, were removed in a robbery during the Viking period. The South Mound is the largest of the two, measuring 10 m in height and 70 m in diameter, and was constructed around 970. It did not contain any burials. Hidden underneath the mounds lie the remains of the oldest monument at Jelling: a huge, ship-shaped stone monument or ‘ship-setting’. With a length of c. 360 m it is the largest known example in Scandinavia.

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