Derek McLennan, a retired businessman, uncovered the 100 items in a field in Dumfriesshire, southwest Scotland, in September. Credit: Derek McLennan/PA

A great Viking treasure hoard has been found in Scotland. It has been described as one of the most important ever unearthed in Scotland.

With over a 100 items found, the treasure hoard includes a bird pen, bracelets, solid gold jewelry, brooches, armbands and silver ingots. Also found amidst the jewelry were a Christian silver cross dated to around the years 800 to 900’s CE with some unusual enameled decorations. And probably the largest Carolingian silver pot ever found with its lid still attached, engraved with animals. It will are to be X-rayed to having its interior revealed.

A silver cross. Credit: Derek McLennan/PA.

The items have been identified as having originated from very different geographical places in Europe; from Ireland, Scandinavia and from Central Europe. And the discovery is deemed the largest and the most important Viking treasure found in Scotland in a very long time. In 2007 a 10th-century Viking treasure hoard was found in northern England and in 1840 over 8600 items were found in northwestern England.

A large silver alloy Carolingian lidded vessel. Credit: Treasure Trove Unit/PA

It had long been known that the Vikings raided this part of the coast, but they also traded in the area, some also settled and this treasure surely provides a much more tangible view of the imprint the Vikings had on the British Isles.

It was the retired businessman Derek McLennan who found the treasure in September 2014 using a metal detector. It is however not McLennan’s only finding of ancient treasures, last year he and a friend unearthed around 300 medieval coins in the same area of Scotland.

Since the hoard falls under the Scottish law of treasure trove, there will be a reward to the finder, and the Church of Scotland, since they as the landowners have reached an agreement with McLennan about an equitable sharing of any proceeds.