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Gotlandic Picture Stones - The Online Edition

Archival material

A lot of documentation on Gotland's picture stones is kept at various archives, both on Gotland and in Middle Sweden, and we searched them all. The finds turned out to be more interesting and relevant than we had imagined. All the digitised documents are now available via this online edition.


From the very beginning, it was a central concern of the Ancient Images project to sift through this largely unpublished and unknown material and make it accessible. Between 2019 and 2024, the members of the project team, with the help of our Erasmus student from the University of Aberdeen Caroline Wilhelmsson, who completed an Erasmus internship with us in 2020, have been working on the following archives: the archives of Gotlands Museum in Visby, Antikvarisk-topografiska arkivet in Stockholm and the archive of Uppsala University Library. Various types of documents of great interest were collected in the process – find reports, old photographs, drawings and descriptions of picture stons, letter correspondence between institutions and researchers, newspaper articles and more, dating from the early 19th century onwards. Material of this kind is highly relevant in terms of research history, object biography, find circumstances et cetera. Occasionally, we even learn from archival material about the existence of picture stones we did not know before. So far we have collected and digitized more than 4000 files.


Documents and links


All our self-produced scans of archival material are available for download on this site, and what is more, wherever possible, we provide links to other databases, digitised collections, and archives that keep the originals. The digitisation of archive material is a rapidly ongoing process in Sweden and beyond, and much of what the project staff have scanned in recent years, is now already available online elsewhere. Consequently, in this online edition, links to the material already available in digital form are listed at the end of the entries on the individual stones. Archive material that is not yet accessible elsewhere on the internet is available in our database entries – see "More Media" for the scans made by us. It goes without saying that this is an ongoing process. In the long term, all relevant material should be available via links to the main digital collections, which is only a matter of time.


Unexpected valuable finds


The particularly valuable finds in the archives include the manuscripts for Sune Lindqvist's fundamental work "Gotlands Bildsteine" and the extensive collection of material on which this publication is based. The latter material, which, after decades of futile search, was discovered by Magnus Källström at ATA in 2020, was completely digitized at the initiative and expense by the project Ancient Images 2.0 and is now available in the ATA online archive:

There are also links to this material corpus in the entries for all the monuments that Lindqvist already published in 1941/1942.


Lindqvist's manuscripts are kept at the archives of the Uppsala University Library; they are part of the collections that have not yet been fully digitised. Within our project, we had them scanned, and now they are accessible in their entirety here (link[MH1] ). By clicking ”More Media” in any entry for stones that Lindqvist had considered, the corresponding pages from the manuscripts show up.


When Sune Lindqvist published his ”Gotlands Bildsteine”, less than 300 picture stones were known. Up til today, this number has doubled. This online edition is the first comprehensive edition of all the stones that includes all relevant archival material.



 [MH1]Henrik, kan vi länka till och inkludera Manus1 och Manus2 här? Just nu ligger dem här:

Men vi borde ha med manusen någonstans på vår online edition sida. Går det att lägga dem hit?