A mythical crystal said to be used by Viking sailors to help them navigate might have actually existed.
The sunstone is referenced in Norse mythology as a magical crystal that when held up would point sailors in the direction of the Sun even when it was obscured by clouds. One Icelandic saga tells of how King Olaf used one of the stones to locate the position of the Sun during snowy weather. But were the sunstones bound purely to the myths of old or was there a basis for them in reality ?
A mysterious crystal recovered from the wreck of an Elizabethan ship sunk off the Channel Islands is thought to hold the answer. While not a Viking era find, there is strong evidence to suggest that the object is the same type of stone that the Vikings would have used. Made from a calcite substance known as Iceland spar, the stone was found to be a remarkably precise navigational aid.
"For centuries, it has been a crystal of legend locked in the verses of Norse myth with little or no evidence that it was ever real."
View: Full article | Source: Independent
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