October 12, 2018
Eight-year-old girl finds sword in lake
by Erica Huang
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:
The world is currently undergoing apocalyptic changes. Governments are corroding as we speak. Lives are lost to seismic climatic hysteria.
Suddenly, there is news of someone who’s pulled a sword out of a lake.
Can it be? Is it possible? Could this be the fabled return of the Once-and-Future King?
Jokes aside, the reports are somewhat true: eight-year-old Saga Vanecek has recently pulled out her very own sword from the depths of the Vidöstern Lake in Tånnö, Småland this summer.
Vanecek reflected on her myth-in-the-making story:
I was outside in the water, throwing sticks and stones and stuff to see how far they skip, and then I found some kind of stick. I picked it up and was going to drop it back in the water, but it had a handle, and I saw that it was a little bit pointy at the end and all rusty. I held it up in the air and I said ‘Daddy, I found a sword!’ When he saw that it bent and was rusty, he came running up and took it…
Originally estimated to be about one-thousand years old, the newfound sword was later confirmed by Jönköpings Läns Museum to be as old as fifth century AD, from Pre-Viking Age, inciting much excitement from the archeology community. About 85 centimeters long and encased in preserved wood and metal, the sword will have to spend at least a year in the hands of the conservation team before it can be publicly displayed to ensure proper preservation.
Mikael Nordström of the museum reports of further exploration of the lake turning up a brooch from the same period as the sword, and postulates that the site may be “a place of sacrifice.” A second search has also brought up an eighteenth-century coin, though less noteworthy.
Though the sword was found earlier in the year, Saga was prompted to keep the news to herself until museum conservatory could confirm its findings. Only last Thursday was she able to finally tell the rest of the world, to which she was awarded an ice cream party by her class as congratulations.
For now, further decisions on the case and Saga’s involvement has been handed over to the National Archives of Sweden, and her new role as Queen of Sweden is to be put off in lieu of Saga’s career plans in medicine and acting.
Apparently, even our New Age Arthur isn’t interested in saving the world. But, at least we have a sword for compensation—even if it isn’t quite Excalibur.
Erica Huang is an intern at Melville House.