På sporet av tingmennene - arkeologiske og antikvariske indikasjoner i tinglandskapet på Frosta
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionGunneria. 2017, 81 151-197.
On the Frosta peninsula, centrally located in the Trondheimsfjord-area in midNorway, the annual Frostathing law assembly was held for several centuries starting somewhere during the Iron Age (most probably during the end of the Viking-age period), and until the last thing-assembly in mid-16th century. In the assembly’s prime years and at least until the 15th century, a minimum of 485 men assembled here each year as local representatives from smaller thing areas. Sadly, this activity has left few traces in the landscape. This project was therefore initiated to perform a detailed archaeological study of the landscape at Frosta, to answer the following research questions: 1. What cultural historical information is available, and what does it tell us of the landscape and the thing-assemblies organised here? 2. How can geophysical methods contribute to increase the available knowledge of the area, by identifying and investigating structures and traces in the landscape relating to the thing-assemblies? To answer these questions, a detailed study of possible locational factors, antiquarian and historical sources such as old travel reports, statements and place names, as well as known archaeological sites and monuments was initiated. This work includes analysis of old maps, known sites and monuments, analysis of aerial photos and cropmarks, as well as geophysical surveys. The result of this work is a detailed overview of past activities in the landscape, where several hitherto unknown burial mounds were identified and settlement-areas were delimited. The possible presence of an Iron Age cooking-pit field, indicated by cropmarks, was also rejected. While new information led to improved knowledge of the thing-landscape, any traces which could be directly interpreted as deriving from the thing-assemblies themselves were not found. However, the analysis did help delineate areas within the landscape in which the assemblies were probably held