You may have heard about Annika Larsson before. She published her theory about a ribbon from Birka containing the word ”Allah”. The news got spread all over the world while some us where really sceptical. And she soon got allot of critisism. Why? Because the way she ”found” the word was by adding patterns on the sides and mirroring it… I think anyone can understand why this is problematic.
Me and Johanna wanted to see the exibition in Enköping and see for ourselfs if she would give a better explination.
Here are two replicas of card woven ribbons with gold and silver thread inserts on wool warp.
Ps. Yes the ribbons have ”swastikas” on them. Its abviously not about nazism since its from the viking age ,so dont worry. This symbol accures textiles through the history all over scandinavia, baltic and slavic region. We dont use it anymore (exept for replikas) but we cant erase historical artifakts just because somone made it evil. Maybe its time to take it back?
The mirrored picture
Gold plated ”turtle brooches” (spännbucklor).
Nicely made replica of Embroidered silk collar from Valsgärde, Uppland Sweden.
Interpretation of a viking womans outfit.
Many things in this was really unclear. There where not enough information and datings on the items and some slightly hazy text about islam vs viking culture and heaven and so on. And then this:
This is clearly viking inspired clothing, but it she didnt say this in the information text?! We nerds can tell but regular people might not understand that this is fantasy. As a archeologist from a university you need to be really clear on these matters is you do an exibition on a museum!
Never less, the craft it beutifully executed, and its a fun mixture of different time periods.
Note the embroidery on the neckline! Similar to an embroidery in Birka Grave 735.
The last part of the exibition showed the line of styles we have had from viking age to modern time with all its influences from all over the world.
Traditional swedish kurbits flowers.
A persian (?) pattern printed on a pillow.
Enköping museum allso has some other objects. Found some pretty medieval chandeliers to admire.