• Norway edition
 
'I've found hidden king's tomb': hobby historian
Photo: Marit Hommedal/Scanpix (File), Morten Dreier

'I've found hidden king's tomb': hobby historian

Published: 24 Apr 2012 23:25 GMT+02:00
Updated: 25 Apr 2012 09:17 GMT+02:00

History buff Gunnar Rosenlund enlisted the help of independent research group SINTEF to aid in his search for King Magnus VI's long lost sarcophagus.

Using georadar, the researchers said they were 90 to 95 percent certain that the church’s 900-year-old walls contained metal objects of some kind.

In their report, the researchers said: "Although one cannot be sure what's inside the wall, the measurements are consistent with a sarcophagus containing the metal from, for example, a suit of armour."

Rosenlund believes the mystery find lends credence to his theory that Magnus VI's heavily decorated royal coffin has been hidden for centuries in the thick cathedral walls.

”They have found the sarcophagus of Magnus the Law-mender. It can’t be anything else,” he told broadcaster NRK.

As the cathedral is a listed building, Rosenlund must now await the opinion of the Directorate for Cultural Heritage before deciding how to proceed.

With the directorate’s permission, he hopes researchers will be able to drill a hole in the wall to see what lies within.

”It’s a miracle that this coffin has survived all this time. The church has burned down three or four times, along with the town, and has been subjected to numerous pirate raids,” said Rosenlund.

Born in 1238, Magnus VI ruled as king of Norway from 1263 to 1280. Known also as Magnus the Law-mender for his efforts to improve the legal code,  the regent died in Bergen after a short illness in 1280.

Although Magnus VI is known to have been buried at Bergen Cathedral, his tomb has never been found.     

But not everybody shares Rosenlund’s conviction that the tomb is now close to being uncovered.

Øystein Ekroll, an archaeologist and royal expert, said the practice of burying royals in the walls of churches remained common a century earlier but had lost its appeal by the time of Magnus VI’s death.

“There could be a lot of things inside the wall, but I don’t believe it’s a king’s grave,” he told NRK.

According to Ekroll, the king’s tomb likely disappeared during one the many renovations carried out on the church over the centuries.

The Local (news@thelocal.no)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Russia-Norway tensions at liberation ceremony
Børge Brende and Sergey Lavrov at the liberation celebration. Foto: Berit Roald / NTB scanpix

Russia-Norway tensions at liberation ceremony

Foreign Ministers Børge Brende and Sergey Lavrov joined Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg and King Harald to mark the 70th anniversary of Russia's liberation of East Finnmark from Nazi occupation on Saturday. READ  

Explore Norway
10 best places to visit in North Norway this winter

10 best places to visit in North Norway this winter

Northern Norway this month made the Lonely Planet's Top 5 list for best regions for travellers to go to in 2015. The Local takes a tour of one of Europe's most scenic destinations and reveals some of the coolest places to see and things to do in the Arctic Circle and beyond. READ  

Norway's terror alert bill to get more cash aid
Finance Minister Siv Jensen with Justice Minister Anders Anundsen. Photo: NTB scanpix

Norway's terror alert bill to get more cash aid

The Norwegian government on Friday said it wants to earmark an extra 74.6 million kroner ($11 million) to cover the costs from handling the terror threat against Norway this summer. READ  

Norway's seriously ill to get their own doctor
Norway's Health Minister Bent Høie. Photo: Cornelius Poppe / NTB scanpix

Norway's seriously ill to get their own doctor

The Norwegian government will give seriously ill patients in Norway their own dedicated doctor, it was announced on Friday. READ  

Norway set to axe Saturday postal service
Posten Norge, Norway's postal service, may make changes. Photo: Berit Roald / NTB scanpix

Norway set to axe Saturday postal service

Posten Norge, the national postal service, may stop Saturday mail delivery after the government allowed the move this week in Parliament. READ  

Hungary to charge Norwegian NGO
Hungary's PM Viktor Orban's right-wing policies have stirred US and Norway. Photo: Shutterstock

Hungary to charge Norwegian NGO

Hungary said on Wednesday it will press criminal charges against a non-government organisation distributing grant aid from Norway, escalating a row with Oslo that has also drawn fire from the US. READ  

Norway's 'killer robot' technology under fire
Minister of Defence Ine Eriksen Søreide under fire about new autonomous missile technology. Photo: Torstein Bøe / NTB scanpix

Norway's 'killer robot' technology under fire

The Norwegian government is set to develop a new controversial robot-controlled missile for its fighter jets, but faces opposition from MPs and peace organizations claiming the technology may break international law. READ  

Missing English footballer found dead
23-year-old Thomas Andrew Morgan found dead in an Oslo river.

Missing English footballer found dead

An English footballer who played for a Norwegian second division side was found dead on Tuesday. READ  

Woman scoops Norway's second-largest lotto win
One lucky Norwegian won 127 million kroner on the National Lottery. Photo: Cornelius Poppe / NTB scanpix

Woman scoops Norway's second-largest lotto win

A woman from Kristiansund won 127 million kroner on the Norwegian Lottery on Wednesday, the second biggest win in the the history of the Norwegian Lottery. READ  

Russia's Lavrov to visit Norway for war event
King Harald speaks at the Bjørnevatn tunnel in Finnmark. Photo: Knut Falch / NTB scanpix

Russia's Lavrov to visit Norway for war event

Russia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov, will join Norwegians this weekend in commemorating the Russian army's liberation of Norway from Nazi rule. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Health
Norwegian Ebola victim free of virus
National
Kjell Inge Røkke tops Norway's Rich List
International
Surprise! Norway priciest for home comforts
National
Norway terror attacks to become TV drama
International
Malala: Youngest ever Nobel Peace Laureate
Society
Norwegian 'child bride' to marry in Oslo
Society
The fickle five: Meet the Nobel commitee
National
Norway celebrates 25 years of Sami politics
Business & Money
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
International
Norway best country for older people
Society
Queen Sonja of Norway's nephew jailed
National
Ex-Norway PM set to become head of Nobel
National
Muslim centre wanted on site of Munch Museum
Seaman Oliver Gee with his first lobster
Lifestyle
How to catch the first lobster of the year
International
Norway to send military staff in fight against IS
National
Father warns Breivik 'more extreme than ever'
Society
Norway's Princess of the Paranormal under fire
National
Four-year-old Norway girl sleepwalks 4km
National
Photo: Baby cliff edge shocker in Norway
Travel
Cruise line offers Northern Lights promise
National
10-tonne shark found dead off Norway coast
Culture
Britney to visit Norway for lingerie launch
International
'If Snowden wins Nobel Prize, arrest him!': MP
Culture
VIDEO: Swim ace does 'Pool Rubik's Challenge'
National
Norwegian man in 7,000 litre 'Ice Truck Challenge'
Society
Norwegian brewery pulls 'fart-smelling' beer
Sport
Ødegaard: Norway's youngest player ever
Features
Meet Norway's raining kings of fashion
National
Miracle cat survives 20 gunshots in Norway
National
Second death within hours at Chess Olympics
National
Norway and Sweden mark 200 years of peace
Culture
Interview: Helene Meldahl, selfie artist
Society
Now serving ... Norway's smallest bar
Travel
Floating Northern Lights hotel planned in Norway
National
Circus camel escapes again
National
Swiss bus driver charged with careless driving in fatal Norway crash
Society
Brit's charity tractor trek heads for Norway
National
Norway lifts Segway ban
Culture
GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway
Society
Høie promises to reform sex change law
Education
Norway fjord invaded by monster jellyfish
Culture
VIDEO: Norwegian anti-Facebook film goes viral
Culture
Norway pop duo hits number 4 on US charts
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

369
jobs available