A Viking ship on Sydney Harbour – Australian Vikings

The Jorgen Jorgenson with the Oseberg style bow scroll in place.

The Jorgen Jorgenson with the Oseberg style bow scroll in place.

The Viking age reconstruction vessel Jorgen Jorgenson is nearing completion in time for the opening of the Swedish History MuseumMuseumsPartner exhibition Vikings – Beyond the legend at the museum on 19 September. The opening event will see the longship rowed into the museum’s wharves, at night, with a complement of Vikings on board!

Continue reading

A Viking ship on Sydney Harbour – sea chests

The Jorgen Jorgenson gets some 'teeth'

The Jorgen Jorgenson finally gets some ‘teeth’

As outlined previously, the transformation of the reconstruction of a Viking age karvi the Jorgen Jorgenson continues apace by the museum’s Fleet staff and Pyrmont Heritage Boating Club volunteers. Now that the insides have been prepared, the paintwork continues.

Theresa McKinley from Allpoints Shipwrights is leading the painting of ‘teeth’ along the top strake of the vessel. This pattern of yellow triangles can be seen in the reconstruction longship Gaia. Continue reading

A Viking ship in Sydney Harbour – restoration work continues

Ready to go back to the museum

Jorgen Jorgensen ready to go back in the water

As mentioned in my last blog post, the restoration of the Viking Age reconstruction Jorgen Jorgensen, is being spearheaded, so to speak, by the Australian National Maritime Museum’s Fleet staff. During the last week of July, Fleet and volunteers worked hard to finish the necessary work below the waterline and to paint the vessel while it was on the hard at Noakes Shipyards. Continue reading

A Viking ship on Sydney Harbour

Readers may have seen a rather strange looking bright green double-ended wooden vessel moored under the Anzac bridge at Pyrmont for several years now. On close inspection, there is no mast, an open deck and oar holes along each side. Although clinker built, it is not your traditional Australian wooden sailing vessel. But what is it?

The Jorgen Jorgensen at Pyrmont Bay, June 2013

The Jorgen Jorgensen at Pyrmont Bay, June 2013

The bow and stern are identical and rise sharply, and this is a clue. If you imagine a single mast and spar with a square sail, and perhaps a dragon head carving on the prow, you will get the picture – it is a Viking longship.

Well, not a longship technically. It is a reconstruction of the famous Gokstad vessel, which was actually a karvi – a ship used by Viking Age chieftains to cruise the Scandanavian coastal waters and rivers. A true longship, used for raiding overseas, would have been much larger, with possibly over 60 oars rather than the 32 on this vessel. Continue reading