Washington, Jan. 17: New archaeochemical evidence derived from samples inside pottery and bronze drinking vessels and strainers from four sites in Demark and Sweden have suggested that Scandinavians may have been drinking Nordic 'grog'.
Patrick E. McGovern, Scientific Director of the Biomolecular Archaeology Project at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, said that far from being the barbarians so vividly described by ancient Greeks and Romans, the early Scandinavians, northern inhabitants of so-called Proxima Thule, emerge with this new evidence as a people with an innovative flair for using available natural products in the making of distinctive fermented beverages.
He said that they were not averse to adopting the accoutrements of southern or central Europeans, drinking their preferred beverages out of imported and often ostentatiously grand vessels.
McGovern also said that they were not averse to importing and drinking the southern beverage of preference, grape wine, though sometimes mixed with local ingredients.
To reach their conclusions, the researchers obtained ancient residue samples from four sites in a 150-mile radius of southern Sweden and encompassing Denmark.
The oldest, dated 1500-1300 BC, was from Nandrup in northwestern Denmark, where a warrior prince had been buried in an oak coffin with a massively hafted bronze sword, battle-ax, and pottery jar whose interior was covered with a dark residue that was sampled.
The research has been published online in the Danish Journal of Archaeology. (ANI)