Clues embedded into ancient Norse sagas have led a team of archeologists to discover a long-lost stone hearth in a remote peninsula in Newfoundland, Canada, which could have been used by Viking explorers who came to North America centuries ago.
The scientists believe that if the site proves to be the work of Norse people from an earlier time than previous discoveries, it could mean that the Vikings had a far longer period of activity in the New World than what was initially thought.
Sarah Parcak, an archeologist and National Geographic Fellow, led a team of researchers in finding an ancient Viking settlement in secluded peninsula in Newfoundland called Point Rosee.
Guided by long-form stories known as sagas, which include information about the history of Norse people, Parcak and her team were able to locate a stone hearth, which is used by early people to cast iron. It is surrounded by what appears to be a wall made of turf.
While the researchers still don’t have enough evidence to prove that the hearth was built by Vikings since there were also other ancient people that lived in the region at the time, some experts remain optimistic that it could indeed be the work of Norse people.
Douglas Bolender, an expert in Norse settlements, explained that the Point Rosee site could provide more information about the first attempts of Vikings in colonizing not just Newfoundland but the entire North Atlantic region as well.
Watch the NOVA PBS episode Vikings Unearthed below