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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site


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  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Description

    Lyre; wood lyre fragment with impressions of lyre; tiny traces of beaver hair.

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • early 7thC
  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Dimensions

    • Length: 11.1 centimetres
    • Width: 6.7 centimetres
  • Conservation

    See treatments 

    Treatment date

    28 February 2006

    Treatment proposal

    Consolidate if necessary fix back detached fragments and re pack.


    Wood fragments very fragile, losses in box would indicate that the objects are shedding and fragmenting.

    Treatment details

    Wood consolidation with 3% Paraloid B72 (ethyl methacrylate copolymer) in xylene was applied by pipette, loose or detached elements were reconstructed with HMG heatproof and waterproof adhesive (cellulose nitrate). Objects were placed within Plastazote (polyethylene) cut outs within clear polyester boxes.

    About these records 

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date


  • Acquisition notes

    Excavated 1939

  • Department

    Britain, Europe and Prehistory

  • Registration number


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Object reference number: MCS12443

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