Archives for October, 2007

Per Widerström called me today and told me he’d just found a picture stone. This is breaking news, mainstream media not yet alerted. Photographs courtesy of the finder, and I hope to get some shots in horizontal lighting too where the relief scenes will be visible. Scandinavian 1st Millennium art isn’t very rich in figural…

Freedom of religion wasn’t formally codified in Sweden until 1952, but for decades Swedish law has forbidden religious teachings in schools. Children are required to attend a government-approved school, and one of the criteria for approval is no religion. This of course refers to the teaching of religion, not teaching about religion: comparative religion studies…

Archaeobooks Blowout 27 October

My part-time employer, the Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, has been publishing books for over two centuries and rents a huge storage space for books in central Stockholm. Most of the stock isn’t moving very fast. In fact, a lot of it hasn’t moved at all since Queen Victoria’s diamond jubilee. Storage is expensive. The…

In the autumn issue of Antiquity is a fine debate piece (behind a pay wall) by William Meacham of Hong Kong about the Russian Baptist science fraudster Dimitri Kouznetsov. In 1989, 1996 and 2000, Kouznetsov managed to trick three peer-reviewed journals to publish papers full of faked data, references to non-existent journals and thanks at…

Psychic Data on Djurhamn Sword

A letter sent to me on 8 October. I translate: I write to you because of the sword find I had the opportunity to watch on ABC-nytt together with my mother. [...] Please take the following for what it is worth. As it touches upon the sword you found, I write to you and leave…

Mutating Genre Meme

A blogging and scientific experiment. There are a set of questions below that are all of the form, “The best [subgenre] [medium] in [genre] is …”. Copy the questions, and before answering them, you may modify them in a limited way, carrying out no more than two of these operations: You can leave them exactly…

Peps Persson is both one of Sweden’s heaviest blues men and the single most authoritative reggae artist the country’s produced. The sleeve of his 1975 hit album Hög standard parodies the sleeve from a likewise excellent ABBA album released earlier the same year. Yet the music is intricate studio-built stuff, far from the lo-fi live…

The twenty-fifth Four Stone Hearth blog carnival is on-line at Remote Central. Tim is celebrating the carnival’s first birthday, yay! Archaeology and anthropology to make you and take you for the ride of your life. The next open hosting slot is on 5 December. All bloggers with an interest in the subject are welcome to…

Unsworded by Find-Conservators

Yesterday by train to Gothenburg with the Djurhamn sword sitting in its package on the hat rack above my head. I spent much of the trip in the pleasant company of the Realm’s Herald, numismatist Dr Henrik Klackenberg, who happened to be on his way to a church excavation near Skara where he was going…

Mats P. Malmer 1921-2007

My number one archaeological hero, professor Mats Peterson Malmer, died on 3 October aged 86 minus 15 days. I knew him a little starting in the mid-90s, read most of what he ever wrote with avidity, sent him most of what I wrote, tweaked bits of some work of his in a paper published only…