Tag Archives: Norway

Burning rock! Experiments with fire setting at the Stone Age Melsvik chert quarries in Northern Norway

In the Melsvik Stone Age chert quarries near Alta in Northern Norway there are dozens of extraction marks that are difficult to explain by other ancient techniques than fire setting. Hence within the Melsvik archaeological project, run by the University Museum of Tromsø, last week we experimented with fire in order to substantiate that it actually formed an important method of breaking loose small and big pieces of stone. The idea was that it is not necessary with big fires and high temperatures, but that small, controlled “bonfires” are enough to create high shear stress and cracking. In this way high temperatures greatly reducing the quality of the chert for tool making are avoided. It works! Here’s a preliminary report with video. Continue reading

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When in Rome…

When in Rome… What else can you do than to discuss Norwegian archaeology!? So we did, at the beginning of this week, 30+ archaeologists and scientists at a workshop within the Norwegian Research Council’s network programme “Cooperative Research” (NO: Forskning … Continue reading

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The World Heritage Rock Art at Alta in Northern Norway

Earlier this week I attended a workshop on conservation of the prehistoric rock art at Alta in Northern Norway. This gave me the opportunity to take a closer look at the great Stone Age panels in the Hjemmeluft area, which … Continue reading

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Making medieval stone architecture: the use of slate in Central Norway

The use of slate has traditions back to the Neolithic in Norway. Stone that were easy to split could be used for anything from the erection of fine burial chambers to the production of knives – phenomena that have been … Continue reading

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Good stone doesn’t change its location!

There have been few new posts on my blog recently. But there is a very good reason for this apparent laziness, since I’m now writing a book about stone. Or, to be more correct, a book about the cultural history … Continue reading

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Nidarosdomens steinbrudd: Byggingen av Kristkirken (1070-1100)

Denne historien er en liten del av min bok “Nidarosdomens grunnfjell” (2015). Les mer om boken her. Tenk deg at du for nesten 1000 år siden er engelsk byggmester og har fått i oppdrag å reise en av Norges aller … Continue reading

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“Steinriket Bømlo”: Nettsted om steinbrytning i 10.000 år

Her forleden kom jeg over et særs interessant nettsted, nemlig “Steinriket Bømlo” som forteller historien om utnyttelsen av stein på denne ytterst steinrike øya – ytterst i havgapet på Vestlandet. Naturligvis står to av Norges flotteste steinalderlokaliteter i forgrunnen: Øksebruddet på Hespriholmen og pilespissbruddet på Siggjo. Continue reading

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International conference on millstone in Bergen – and the Hyllestad quarry landscape

Last week the Norwegian “millstone community” invited to an international conference in Bergen – “Seen through a millstone: Geology and archaeology of quarries and mills”. It included an excursion to the Hyllestad quarries where the participants got to know a … Continue reading

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De gamle jerngruvene i Neskilen ved Arendal

Neskilen var fra slutten av 1600-tallet et av de viktigste jerngruveområdene i Norge, stort i Norge og stort i “Arendalsfeltet”. Jerngruvedriften var svært viktig for Arendalsområdet og har vært med å prege den historiske utviklingen. Denne artikkelen gir en oversikt over et fortsatt velbevart gruvelandskap. Her var det drift i 200 år fra slutten av 1600-tallet – og her lekte vi som barn ved dype gruveåpninger… Continue reading

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Experimental archaeology: The traditional way of quarrying soapstone

Experimental archaeology in old building stone quarries is a rare activity. But not so for Norwegian stone carver Eva Stavsøien. She asked herself how soapstone was extracted in the Middle Ages. Bringing handmade pickaxes, she went to an abandoned quarry … Continue reading

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