Vektloddene fra Hamarkaupangen – en studie av middelalderens vektloddtyper og preg

  • Anne Kathrine Bakstad Anno Museum, Domkirkeodden


The weights from Hamarkaupangen - a study of medieval weight types and ornaments. 

The contents of 313 weights found at the medieval diocese in Hamarkaupangen provides a rare opportunity to introduce a rich amount of weight categories and their ornaments, found in a medieval setting. The study introduces the weight types and the weight system found in the collection, but deals mainly with the use of an ornamented gothic minuscule h, found on 78 out of 313 weights. Four different methods have been used to create this motif. Two out of four methods, representing nearly 30 % of the weights, are well-suited for mass production. The similarities between the ornament h, found on both medieval Norwegian coins and weights, indicate that the coin ornament h has been copied, when hand engraved, on nearly 70 % of the 78 weights. This research implies that the ornament h found on weights can be related to the only Norwegian king who used exactly this symbol as his monogram, Håkon V. Magnusson (1299-1319). King Håkon V was well known for his efforts to control the standard of weights and coins in Norway. His monogram is also present on one of the blacksmith’s tools found in Hamarkaupangen. This may point in the direction of a well-organized, official plan for adjusting weights.  

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