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Vestfold is known as the sunny holiday coast line. People from other parts of the country spend their summer vacations there. The coastline is a beautiful area; during the last Ice Age, this was were the end of the glacier polished the granite rocks, making them smooth and without any sharp edges. Boat lovers often travel the fjords and spend time on the islands. Midsummers Eve is a peak moment in Vestfold. Attendees move out to the beaches or into their boats and have barbecues, swim, playing games and await the grand finale at midnight when bonfires are lit all around the coastline.
Tjølling is the site of one of the oldest Viking settlement within Scandinavia. Kaupang was a big trading centre for the Vikings. There have been several earlier archaeological surveys and excavations at Kaupang. In 1867 Antiquarian Nicolay Nicolaysen mapped one of the grave-fields around the former town and excavated 79 grave mounds. He uncovered a cremation cemetery, largely dated to the 10th century. Charlotte Blindheim (1917-2005) started excavating in 1947 and completed her last publication in 1999. In 1997, Dagfinn Skre and his associates undertook a new program of work at Kaupang followed by a large excavation that ran over three years, from 2000 till 2002. Most recently it has been the site of post-excavation work conducted by the University of Oslo.
The site was apparently the location of a Thing for the district long before the introduction of Christianity. The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old church site (Tjølling kyrkje). The Old Norse form of the name was Þjóðarlyng. The first element is the genitive case of þjóð f 'crowd of people; assembly', the last element is lyng n 'heather' (here in the sense 'heath, moor').
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Tjølling kyrkje.|
- Skre, Dagfinn (2007) Kaupang in Skiringssal (Kaupang Excavation Project Publication Series) ISBN 978-87-7934-259-0
- Krohn-Holm, Jan W. (1970) Tjølling bygdebok (Tjølling Kommune:3 volumes) ISBN 82-990341-0-8
- Blindheim, Charlotte (1972) Kaupang: Vikingenes Handelsplass (Mortensen: Universitets oldsaksamling)ISBN 8252700551
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