Rügen is not only rich in national parks and biosphere reserves, beautifully located Baltic beaches and lovingly restored Baltic seaside resorts. Since 2018, Rügen is also one of the treasure islands. Not far from the village of Schaprode, which is located in the northwest of Rügen, just opposite the island of Hiddensee, a silver treasure from the Viking Age was found. Silver coins about 1,000 years old, beads, braided hoops and so-called brooches, used to hold clothes and cloaks together, were found in an agricultural field. There was even a Thor's hammer, which in Germanic mythology represents a war hammer and magical weapon of the god Thor.
No professional treasure hunters were at work here, but the find was discovered by a student and an amateur archaeologist. The two were walking with a metal detector near a Bronze Age mound when the detector emitted the decisive signal. A short time later, the two knew that this was not worthless scrap metal, but archaeologically valuable material. A lucky coincidence was that one of the two finders is a volunteer helper of the state archaeology and therefore it was clear that they were not allowed to excavate the find themselves in order to obliterate valuable traces such as the position and arrangement of the pieces. Nevertheless, the two were not aware of the scope and magnitude of the treasure find at the time. This was only realized by the archaeologists, who were still busy with the recovery of the treasure for several weeks.
In total, more than 550 silver objects were found on a field area of approx. 500 square meters, which now have to be cataloged, examined in more detail and assigned. Only then can the exact value of the treasure be estimated. This much is already clear: Parts of the treasure originate from the Viking Age, especially silver coins from the time of Harald I. "Blauzahn" Gormsson can be assigned. Harald was king of Denmark and later also king of Norway and was feared when he invaded Normandy several times as a Viking leader at that time. In which exact connection the treasure stands with Harald, can be only assumed today. It is speculated that it was deposited on the island of Rügen at the time of his escape. That this treasure is connected with one of the many castles on Rügen is rather unlikely, since these are not old enough.