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The Vikings were not the first colonizers of the Faroe Islands.

Church, M. J. and Arge, S. V. and Edwards, K. J. and Ascough, P. L. and Bond, J. M. and Cook, G. T. and Dockrill, S. J. and Dugmore, A. J. and McGovern, T. H. and Nesbitt, C. and Simpson, I. A. (2013) 'The Vikings were not the first colonizers of the Faroe Islands.', Quaternary science reviews., 77 . pp. 228-232.


We report on the earliest archaeological evidence from the Faroe Islands, placing human colonization in the 4th–6th centuries AD, at least 300–500 years earlier than previously demonstrated archaeologically. The evidence consists of an extensive wind-blown sand deposit containing patches of burnt peat ash of anthropogenic origin. Samples of carbonised barley grains from two of these ash patches produced 14C dates of two pre-Viking phases within the 4th–6th and late 6th–8th centuries AD. A re-evaluation is required of the nature, scale and timing of the human colonization of the Faroes and the wider North Atlantic region.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:Faroe Islands, Earliest human settlement, 14C Dating.
Full text:(AM) Accepted Manuscript
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Publisher statement:NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Quaternary science reviews. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Quaternary science reviews, 77, 1 October 2014, 10.1016/j.quascirev.2013.06.011.
Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:25 July 2016
Date of first online publication:October 2013
Date first made open access:No date available

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