Sites & cities that bear the name of Skiringssal


Today in : Norway
First trace of activity : ca. 8th century C.E
Last trace of activity : ca. 9th century C.E
Recorded names : Skíringssalr, Huseby, Tjølling

Description : Skiringssal (Old Norse Skíringssalr) was the name of a Viking Age hall which stood at a site now known as Huseby, about 0.73 miles (1.2 km) south-west of Tjølling, a settlement a little over 3 miles (5 km) east of Larvik, in the south of the Norwegian county of Vestfold. By extension the name also referred to the local bygd, or settlement area, and in the 15th century it was probably used synonymously for the ecclesiastical parish of Tjølling. Skiringssal is mentioned in several early medieval sources, including the Ynglinga saga, the Fagrskinna and the Sögubrot af nokkrum fornkonungum. The name last occurs in 1445, in the form "Skirisall", in a hospital register from Tønsberg. This and other documents from earlier in the 15th century associate Skiringssal with locations in the parish of Tjølling. Archaeological excavations at Huseby have shown that a large hall was built there in the mid-8th century and went out of use by about 900. Excavations at Kaupang, near the shoreline south-west of Tjølling, have shown that this was the location of a trading place from about 800 to the late 10th century. The hall at Huseby may have been established by the first Norwegian members of the Yngling dynasty, the trading place at Kaupang would have been established and continued under the control of the chieftain at Huseby, and Tjølling probably began as a site for public assemblies, or things, a role which it continued to play in the 16th century.

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