The famous 8th Century Valsgarde helmet, found in one of the most important Swedish excavations, illustrates the amazing skills of the Scandanavian craftsmen of the period. This reconstruction replicates the original in exacting detail. Crafted in 14 gauge steel with brass details and fitted with a leather liner and chinstrap, this helmet provides regal head protection for the re-enactor.
The Vallsgärde farm on the Fyris river, is about three kilometres north of Gamla Uppsala, the ancient centre of the Swedish kings and of the pagan faith in Sweden. The present farm dates from the 16th century. The farm's notability derives from the presence of a burial site from the Swedish Vendel Age (part of the Iron age (c. 550–793) and the Viking Age); it was used for more than 300 years. The first ship burial is from the 6th century and the last graves are from the 11th century.
The site was found and excavated by archaeologists in the 1920s, and before this similar graves had only been found at Vendel, which gave its name to this period of the Scandinavian Iron Age. The graves are princely, and are almost identical to ones found later in England, at Sutton Hoo in East Anglia. There are several theories about the identities of those buried, ranging from the Ynglings (Scylfings) to powerful warriors within the Leidang system, or local strongmen who had enriched themselves through trade due to the area's strategic position between the fjord of Mälaren and the important region of Tiundaland. There are so many rich graves that it is unlikely that most of them were royalty.