Oldest picture in Iceland found by archaeologists

The oldest picture in Iceland has been found by archaeologists at the archaeological site Stöð in East Iceland, a longhouse believed to predate the country’s permanent settlement.

The picture is a sandstone carved with a Viking ship, which is believed to be the oldest picture ever found in the country.

Stöð was first explored in 2015, with archaeologists continuing to excavate the site each summer.

Speaking with Iceland Revew, Bjarni F. Einarsson, Manager at The Archaeological Office, explains,
“The longhouse is among the largest found in Iceland, 31.4m [103ft] long. In Scandinavia, only chieftains’ farms had longhouses larger than 28m [92ft]. It is also the richest longhouse ever excavated in Iceland. We have found 92 beads and 29 silver objects, including Roman and Middle Eastern coins.”

While excavating the site of the longhouse, archaeologists discovered an even older longhouse, estimated to date back to around 800 AD.

“My theory is that the older longhouse was a seasonal hunting camp, operated by a Norwegian chief who outfitted voyages to Iceland to gather valuables and bring them back across the sea to Norway,” commented Einarsson.