Massive carved runestones from the 10th century, found at the town of Jelling in Denmark. The older of the two rune stones was raised by King Gorm the Old in memory of his wife Thyra. The other was raised by Gorm's son, Harald Bluetooth in memory of his parents, his conquest of Norway and Denmark, and his conversion of the Danes to Christianity.

The Jelling stones stand in the churchyard of Jelling church. The stones are from the transitional period between Norse paganism and the Christianization of Denmark.

On the small runic stone we find the oldest words from a Danish king and for the first time in Denmark the name of the country is mentioned in writing. King Gorm died in 958 and his son Harold took over the throne just before 960. Gorm erected the stone in memory of his wife, who died some time before him. The stone was erected some time between 940 and 958. The inscription on the stone reads:

"King Gorm made this monument in memory of Thyra, his wife, Denmark's adornment."

The larger of the Jelling runic stones was erected by King Harald Bluetooth. The stone has a figure of Jesus on one side and a serpent wrapped around a lion on the other side. The inscription on the lstone reads:

"King Harald ordered this monument made in memory of Gorm, his father, and in memory of Thyra, his mother; that Harald who won for himself all of Denmark and Norway and made the Danes Christian."

To protect the stones from further erosion they have been built into protective glass casings with a climate system keeping them at fixed temperature and humidity.

The visitor and experience center at Kongernes Jelling - Home of the Viking Kings lies in the middle of the monument complex around Jelling Church. At the Experience Center we tell of the Viking kings Gorm and Harald, their rune-stones, the huge ship-setting and the gigantic palisade which was built over a thousand years ago. Admission is free.



Street address: 
Gormsgade 23, 7300 Jelling
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Destination Viking is a new travel experience concept. Partners from a number of countries have come together to develop a borderless tourism destination focusing on the Viking world.

Quality is a key word for Destination Viking - as a visitor you expect quality at every level, and we will deliver it. Quality means quality of activities, quality of presentations, quality of workmanship, quality of sites, quality of food, quality of souvenirs. In short: quality experience!