An eight-year-old Swedish-American girl named Saga Vanecek has sealed her fate as a future queen of legend – in July, she pulled a possibly 1,500 year-old pre-Viking era sword from a lake in Sweden.
Sweden has been hit by an intense drought this year, which lowered the water levels in the Vidöstern lake where the epic weapon was discovered.
Saga’s father, Andy Vanecek, was putting out a buoy near the family’s summer house to warn passing boats of the dangerously low water levels, with Saga paddling in less than half a metre of depth when she found the artefact.
“I felt something with my hand and thought it was a stick, and then I lifted it up and it had a handle that looked like it was a sword and then I lifted it up and shouted at Dad: ‘Daddy I found a sword!'” she told Swedish news website Värnamo Nyheter.
Andy got in contact with Annie Rosén, an archaeologist at the Jönköpings Läns Museum, who along with colleagues made a preliminary assessment of the sword.
“The sword is in total 85 centimetres [33 inches] long and exceptionally well-preserved with a scabbard in wood and leather,” wrote museum head Mikael Nordström on the organisation’s website.
“It has been preliminarily estimated to be from the Iron Age, that is, at least 1,000 years, maybe even 1,500 years old.”
If it’s as old as the 5th or 6th century CE, the sword predates the Viking Age, which is commonly thought to have started in 793 CE.
Not that this is directly linked or anything, but we just have to mention that the 5th and 6th centuries were also when the legendary King Arthur, gifted the sword Excalibur from the bottom of a lake, is said to have reigned.
Saga isn’t the only girl singled out by an ancient sword for a potentially glorious future.
Last year, a seven-year-old British girl named Matilda Jones fished a sword out of the actual Excalibur lake in Cornwall. But that weapon turned out to have been thrown in by a man in the 1980s who was honouring Arthurian legend and the Celtic gods.
The Jönköpings Läns Museum asked the Vanecek family to keep their find quiet for a few months so archaeologists could examine the lake to see if they could find more artefacts.
“When we investigated the site in September together with the county administrative board, further prehistoric findings were made, including a brooch from the 3rd century CE,” Nordström wrote.
The sword won’t be on display for another year, because it will take conservationists a while to carefully clean and preserve the artefact.
As for whether Saga will receive a reward for the find, that will be up to the National Archives of Sweden, Swedish website The Local reports.
She also has not been inspired for a future career in archaeology, having more interest in medicine, becoming a vet, or going to Paris to become an actress. And we’re sure a Princess of Power can manage to do whatever the heck she wants.