Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/23/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Located about halfway between Norway and Iceland, Faroe Islands show proof of colonization

The Faroe Islands, located halfway between Norway and Iceland, are proof that ancient Europeans dared to cross the Atlantic to the Americas long before the Vikings. Archaeologists say the Faroes arrived 300 to 500 years before the large-scale Viking colonization. A windblown sand deposit containing patches of burnt peat ash discovered on the islands bear witness to human activity.

It's not yet known who these newly discovered settlers were. Likely candidates may include religious hermits from Ireland, late-Iron Age colonists from Scotland or pre-Viking explorers from Scandinavia.

It's not yet known who these newly discovered settlers were. Likely candidates may include religious hermits from Ireland, late-Iron Age colonists from Scotland or pre-Viking explorers from Scandinavia.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/23/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Faroes, Faroe Islands, Vikings, archaeology


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic online) - The islands served as the first stepping stones beyond the Scottish archipelago of the Shetlands. The Vikings discovered continental North America in the 11th century, about 400 or 500 years before Christopher Columbus crossed the sea.

Scientists previously believed the Vikings undertook the first major settlement of the Faroes in the ninth century. There was evidence there might have been earlier arrivals there. One example which occurred about 825, when the Irish monk Dicuil in the court of Charlemagne wrote of Irish hermits settling islands beforehand that may have been the Faroes.


Scientists have discovered firm archaeological evidence "for the human colonization of the Faroes by people some 300 to 500 years before the large-scale Viking colonization of the ninth century, although we don't yet know who these people were or where they came from," researcher Mike Church, an environmental archaeologist at the Durham University in England said in an interview.


This ash in the burnt peat ash contained barley grains burnt in domestic hearths, which carbon dating showed was pre-Viking. Barley is not indigenous to the Faroes, so it must have been either grown or brought to the islands by humans.


"This is the first archaeological evidence that proves there were humans there at the Faroes prior to the big Viking colonization event," Church said.


It's estimated that the mysterious settlers may have spread these ashes onto the sands during the fourth to sixth centuries and sixth to eighth centuries. This practice was often seen in the North Atlantic region among Europeans during this period to stabilize the dunes and keep the wind from eroding them away.


"The majority of archaeological evidence for this early colonization is likely to have been destroyed by the major Viking invasion, explaining the lack of proof found in the Faroes for the earlier settlement," Church said.


It's not yet known who these newly discovered settlers were. Likely candidates may include religious hermits from Ireland, late-Iron Age colonists from Scotland or pre-Viking explorers from Scandinavia. 


"Maybe these were intrepid explorers arriving from each of those areas," Church said, adding that the findings raise more questions than they answer.


"Although we don't know who the people were that settled here and where they came from, it is clear that they did prepare peat for use by cutting, drying and burning it, which indicates they must have stayed here for some time," researcher Símun Arge, of the National Museum of the Faroe Islands, said in a statement.


---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for June 2015
Universal:
That immigrants and refugees may find welcome and respect in the countries to which they come.
Evangelization: That the personal encounter with Jesus may arouse in many young people the desire to offer their own lives in priesthood or consecrated life.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Green

TIME TO ACT: Vatican's Secretary of State says world leaders must heed Pope's encyclical Watch

Image of Cardinal Parolin spoke on the importance of

By Elise Harris, CNA/EWTN News

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican's Secretary of State, has expressed his hope that Pope Francis' recent environmental encyclical will have a strong impact on the United Nations' three major gatherings this year, and will inspire global powers not only to ... continue reading


DWARF Cows: Are they the answer to farmers' climate change problems? Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Summer months bring an intense heat to farmlands and drought stricken parts of the world. The heat from the sun can damage not only crops that need regular water supply, but will also cause sickness, dehydration and death to farm animals. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES ... continue reading


San Francisco hit with a stinkier side of the California drought as sewer pipes deteriorate Watch

Image of [Mike Koozmin/S.F. Examiner file photo]

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The severe drought in California has recently alarmed residents of San Francisco, as its century-old sewer system takes a serious hit. Contrary to the popular belief that the drought might give the sewers a break, as it is expected to facilitate less water, it ... continue reading


Mysterious fireball of space junk flies over the South Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A mysterious object lit up in the sky on June 29 in the southeast. The source has since been confirmed as a space junk passing by and reentering our atmosphere. Sightings of the "fireball" were taken to social media, where people tried to guess whether it was a ... continue reading


Californians struggle to find 'normal life' without water Watch

Image of The lack of a sufficient water source in parts of California damages agricultural farmlands

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A normal life remains to be far-fetched for residents in the town of Monson, CA, located 200 miles from the northern part of Los Angeles. Residents in the area have already spent four gruesome months without running water in their homes. The four years of drought ... continue reading


NEW FURRY CRITTER: Hairy-chested crab found trolling at over 7000 feet deep in Antarctic hydrothermal vents identified Watch

Image of The Kiwa tyleri must spend its days in observance of these delicate laws of nature. If they get too close to the vent they will be scalded, but if they stray too far they freeze.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Kiwa tyleri is a furry breed of crab that is only found in the hydrothermal vents in Antarctica. The species can only thrive in water that is between 945 and 104 degrees in Antarctica - making it rare indeed. Growing to only two inches in length, the Kiwa ... continue reading


What ALL Americans need to know about the California drought Watch

Image of California grows and exports a majority of the fruits and nuts eaten by the rest of the country, so water shortages there affect food supply everywhere.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The water shortage in California, now dragging into its fourth year is being categorized as "extreme to exceptional drought." Everyone, including all western U.S. states is now expected to conserve - and not just in California. Below are the facts that everyone in the ... continue reading


Scientists discover amazing corals that adapt to climate change Watch

Image of The Coral Reef Southern Red Sea near Safaga Egypt.

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Scientists have cross-bred corals coming from different latitude with variety of temperatures underwater and found that there are some corals that adapt better in climate change than others. With the rapid decline of coral reefs, experts are hoping that this new ... continue reading


Life on Mars: Are humans one step closer to living on Mars? Watch

Image of Is this the future home for humans?

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With the pressing idea that humans have to find suitable life outside Earth in mind, many projects and experiments are being conducted to find a livable environment on Mars. The planet is not yet suitable to live on but a new project suggests that they may have the ... continue reading


Scientists literally could not make heads or tails of bizarre organism of Cambrian age Watch

Image of Researchers have since learned after using sophisticated imaging techniques that at the end the Hallucigenia's head long and slender neck resembling a hose-like tube.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A spiny little organism rightfully called the Hallucigenia sparsa - so hallucinogenic was it in appearance, had scientists scratching their heads, literally unable to make heads or tails of it. Living in the Cambrian age of 508 million years ago, the ... continue reading


All Green News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 2:19-22
19 So you are no longer aliens or foreign visitors; ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 117:1, 2
1 Alleluia! Praise Yahweh, all nations, extol him, ... Read More

Gospel, John 20:24-29
24 Thomas, called the Twin, who was one of the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 3rd, 2015 Image

St. Thomas
July 3: St. Thomas was a Jew, called to be one of the twelve Apostles. ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter