Death, Destruction and Commemoration

Death, Destruction and Commemoration

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Wessman, Anna
Death, Destruction and Commemoration. Tracing ritual activities in Finnish Late Iron Age cemeteries (AD 550–1150)
Finnish Antiquarian Society
Iskos 18
Tammisaari 2010, 214 pp.


The thesis is connected with death, memory and ancestor commemoration during the Merovingian Period, the Viking Age and the beginning of the Crusade Period (AD 550–1150) in Finland. During this time, cremation was the dominant burial rite. Three different burial types 1) cremation cemeteries below level ground, 2) inhumation burials and 3) water burials are discussed in five articles. This thesis shows that it is possible to claim that both artefact and site re-use is a much more widespread phenomenon than has previously been thought in Finnish archaeology. It is also a conscious and deliberate behaviour that can be related to an ancestor cult and commemoration of the dead.


ISBN 978-951-9057-78-1
ISSN 0355-3108