Geoarchaeological investigations at Sandhavn, south Greenland

Kirsty A. Golding, Ian A. Simpson, J. Edward Schofield, J. Andy McMullen

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2 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents preliminary results of fieldwork conducted in August 2008 at Sandhavn, south Greenland, within the 'Footprints on the edge of Thule: Landscapes of Norse-Indigenous Interaction' research programme. Sandhavn is located on the south coast of Greenland 3.5km west-north-west of Herjolfsnæs (59°59'N, 44°46'W; Figure 1). Evidence of Norse occupation comprises three ruin groups (Figure 2): Ø221 and Ø221a along the eastern shoreline within a sheltered bay which extends 1.5km north-north-west from the coast; and Ø221b 500m inland next to the river Maakkarneq. Indigenous (Inuit) occupation consists of dwellings and graves. The fieldwork was carried out to characterise the nature and extent of soil and archaeological sediment modification within a landscape where interaction between Norse and Inuit is likely. We anticipated detecting changes in land management, resource exploitation and site formation related to this cultural interaction.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number320
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2009

Bibliographical note

The authors gratefully acknowledge the Leverhulme Trust for financial support of the 'Footprints on the Edge of Thule: Landscapes of Norse-Indigenous Interaction' programme. We would also like to thank Hans-Christian Gulløv (SILA) and Kristine Raahauge (Nanortalik Museum) for their advice on fieldwork at Sandhavn, and the Greenland Museum and Archives for granting permission to re-excavate trench A-A within Inuit Structure 6.


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