Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 56.djvu/170

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160
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

VINLAND AND ITS RUINS.
SOME OF THE EVIDENCES THAT NORTHMEN WERE IN MASSACHUSETTS IN PRE-COLUMBIAN DAYS.[1]
By CORNELIA HORSFORD.

THE evidences that Northmen were in Massachusetts in pre-Columbian days are drawn from two sources, geography and archæology. The archæological evidence is found by comparing certain ruins in Massachusetts with ruins of the Saga-time in Iceland, and also with the native and early European ruins on the coast of North America. The geographical evidence is found by

PSM V56 D0170 House plan of eric the red.png
Plan of the House of Eric the Red in Iceland.

comparing the descriptions of the country called Vinland in Icelandic literature with the coast of North America.

The geographical data for this paper are taken from each and all of the three oldest manuscript versions of the story of Vinland, because they complement each other where the descriptions vary in detail. These are called the Flat Island Book, Eric the Ked's Saga, and Thorfinn Karlsefni's Saga.

If the coast of North America should repeat the same geographical features, it would obviously be impossible to determine the site of Vinland by geography alone. Let us see if this is so. It is stated in Eric the Red's Saga that Karlsefni's party, which

  1. A paper read before the Viking Club of London on December 16, 1898; also before the Section of Anthropology of the American Association for the Advancement of Science at the Boston meeting, August, 1898.