Weapons chest and chain mail present in historical shipwreck off Sweden

Researchers exploring an historical shipwreck off the coast of Sweden found centuries-old relics, together with a weapons chest and items of armor.

The maritime archaeologists from Stockholm College and Södertörn College studied the wreck of the Griffin, which sank after a hearth aboard in 1495, based on a information launch from Stockholm College. The ship was the flagship of the Danish-Norwegian King John, also called Hans, who dominated from 1481 to 1513. The report revealed this month particulars their analysis.

The wreck is “partly disintegrated,” the information launch stated, however a few of the items that stay on the seabed are “very nicely preserved.” Archaeologists discovered ground timbers that supplied insights into the ship’s construction and army functionality, in addition to elements from elevated fight platforms that had been constructed on the ship. The discoveries have “supplied new knowledge for the continuing work of reconstructing and analysing the ship’s superstructure,” the information launch stated, and can permit reserachers to reconstruct the ship sooner or later.

Amid the wreck, the researchers discovered a “distinctive” ammunition-making device chest that contained lead plates and cans that will have held powder. Researchers had been conscious of the chest since 2019 however had not been in a position to carefully research it till final yr, once they used 3-D imaging to view the contents.

The weapons chest discovered. The strains present the estimated sides of the chest. The contents embrace lead plates (1), molds (2 and three), and the cans that will have contained powder (5).  

Photograph by Florian Huber, outlines and notes by Rolf Warming


“The contents of the weapon chest are undeniably one of the vital finds,” stated Rolf Warming, one of many lead maritime archaelogists, within the information launch. “It accommodates, amongst different issues, a number of totally different molds and lead plates for the manufacture of lead bullets for early handguns.”

The chest probably got here from German mercenaries on board the ship when it sank, Warming stated. Researchers additionally discovered two cannon carriages amid the wreck.

The armor fragments that archaeologists could also be from a mail shirt that may have had as much as 150,000 rings, based on the information launch.

The weapons and armor discovered have given researchers a glimpse into what fight at sea regarded like throughout this time interval, the information launch stated.

“The ship is a vital piece of the puzzle within the ‘army revolution at sea’ within the Early Trendy Interval, through which the first ways shifted from hand-to-hand fight to  heavy naval artillery hearth,” Warming stated, including that the ship is similar to different preserved wrecks together with the Mars and the Vasa, which has been on show in Stockholm, Sweden because the Nineteen Sixties after being salvaged from the ocean ground.

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