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Old nature harbor

The war harbor at Stubbekøbing

is nowadays a bit hard to find because of dikes and fillings. But south of the old center in Stubbekøbing there was in the year of 1000 a fjord harbor – where the Viking ships were gathered in friendship and at war. In the nature harbor there could lie more than 1000 ships – sheltered from storms – before they sailed into the Baltic Sea or further into the inner waters.

The nature harbor was in suitable distance from the Baltic Sea to be protected against attacks – the sailing time has been about ½ hour from Grønsund to the nature harbor in Stubbekøbing. There is mentioned a watchtower in connection with the harbor – which could be manned in wartime.

There are many folk tales about this war harbor – which was the last harbor before the Baltic Sea. Saxo mentions the area as important for the gathering of the war ships. When a war fleet was gathered in the year of 1000 – it was with sail or oar – and it took time to gather a suitable war fleet – and thus the place was carefully selected.

In the 10th book you can read about the capture of King Svend Tveskæg outside the harbor – probably this war harbor. It were the Wends, who captured Svend Tveskæg – he was released after the Danes had paid the weight of the king in gold, as ransom.

The folk tales tell that the Vikings sailed the stolen ships to the rear end of the war harbor and rebuild the ships – where after they were sailed to the markets in Norway and Sweden, where they were sold.

In 1982 the first Viking ship findings were found – these were frames from clinker built Viking ships of up to 15 meters. This leads to a bigger excavation on the place and a shipyard from the Viking period was found. The excavation leader Jan Skamby Madsen from Roskilde Viking Museum said that:

“It was here – it happened!”


     By Bjørn Nielsen