Fortification and Settlement on Öland/Sweden
The Setting

Translated by Nils Stedt

Ulf Näsman & Erik Wegraeus

128 Blz., ISBN 91 7402 055 2     
Almqvist & Wiksell International Stockholm, 1979     

Eketorp Fortification and Settlement on Öland/Sweden presents the results of the archaeological investigations of the Eketorp ring-fort, which took place in the summers of 1964-1974 and were directed by late Mårten Stenberger. The research project, one of the biggest and most consistently executed in Scandinavia, was made possible with grants from, above all, the Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation (Stiftelsen Riksbankens Jubileumsfond).

The first volume, The Momument, was published in 1976. It gives a general introduction to the settlement fort Eketorp and a detailed description of the ring-walls and gateways and of the macro-structure of the three settlement levels.

This volume - The Setting
Is the second of six planned. It gives an archaeological survey of Öland during the Iron Age and the Early Medieval Period (11th-13th centuries) and a survey of the area around Eketorp, Gräsgård Härad, during the same periods. The sources treating the so-called turn-over places and the medieval harbours on Öland are discussed in a historical paper and related to trade routes in the Baltic. The shaping of the landscape of southern Öland is given a geological and hydrological survey. Finds of carbonized grain and weeds are discussed in a paper on agronomic practices in Migration Period Eketorp-II.

The ancient fortified village of Eketorp is situated in Gräsgård parish on southern Öland and is the southernmost of the 19 ring-forts on the island.
Inside a stout ring-wall, three different settlement phases, Eketorp-I, -II and -III, have been uncovered, one on top of the other. The first fortification, Eketorp-I, from the Late Roman Iron Age, ca. 300-400 A.D., was directly transformed to the bigger Eketorp-II, existing in the Germanic Iron Age, ca. 400-700 A.D. After being abandoned for some centuries the site was again inhabited in the Late Viking Age. This late phase in the history of the ring-fort, Eketorp-III, flourished in the Early Medieval Period and is dated to ca. 1000-1300 A.D. Only the collapsed ring-wall reminded later visitors of the lost significance of the Eketorp ring-fort.
The archaeological investigation has made possible a thorough study of the social and economic development of a society during nearly a thousand years and scientific investigations illuminate the environmental conditions on southern Öland during the Iron Age and Early Medieval Period.

(The above text comes from the back of the book)