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The excavation showing the burial chamber
(click on the images to enlarge)

The Gokstad Ship was excavated in 1880. The excavations revealed a male human skeleton lying on a bed inside a timber-built burial chamber. The skeleton was aged between 40 and 50 years old, and had been a powerfully built man, between 181 and 183 cm tall.

He had been buried with twelve horses, six dogs, and one peacock which were laid out around his body. Other grave-goods included three small boats, a tent, a sledge, and riding equipment. No weapons or precious metals were found, and it is likely that the burial mound had been looted at some time.

The Gokstad mound as it looks today

An illustration showing the excavation in the mound from the 1890s
Image: Smithsonian Institution

Reconstructed burial chamber, two of the small boats and tent boards

Two of the small boats