Medieval shipwreck found outside Gotland.
The wreck of a ship that might (and the key word is might) have carried the plunder of Danish King Valdemar Atterdag, which he brought after having held Visby at ransom in 1361, has been found on the seabed outside Gotland. According to one of the divers who found it, Richard Lundgren, the discovery is nothing short of a sensation.

“We don’t necessarily believe that it is the wreck of this ship,” Lundgren says. “According to the legend, the Danish king brought three barrels of gold, silver and other treasures from Visby. But either way, it is an interesting, sensational ship.” The wreck is 25 meters (82”) long and 7 meters (22”) wide and was found between the islands Stora and Lilla Karlsö, in the Baltic Sea situated west of Gotland.

It had sunk into the dregs, and is well kept. “A big ship for its time,” explains Lundgren. Many people have looked for medieval shipwrecks in this region hoping to find the one that carried the Visby treasure. Says marine archeologist Göran Ankarlilja: “It looks like a bullet from a cannon went through (this ship), there’s no other explanation. The ship looks intact, and the wreck hasn’t been damaged by trawling.” He adds that it’s good news that the wreck is so old yet so well preserved. No cargo has been found and it is unclear whether or not the ship had any cannons of its own.

Gotland celebrates a Medieval week every year during the second week of August. The whole town is involved in creating tournaments, theater and music inspired by the fight against Atterdag and the subsequent release from the siege. More info, see Så började Medeltidsveckan (in Swedish only)