When the sword descended on her head, the blade cut her to the bone. Scientists studying the broken skull of a woman Viking 1,000 years later are still not sure if the blow actually killed her – however, the path of weapons buried with her makes it clear that she is nonetheless died a warrior.
This Viking, who lived and died about 900 years ago, was first excavated by a farm in Solor, Norway, in 1900. Her head rested on a shield, a horse's skeletal bridge lay curved at her feet, and her body he has a sword, a spear, a battle ax and arrows in his box. When a quick analysis revealed the skeleton to be female, it was immediately interpreted as the first physical example of a shield girl ̵
Now, for the first time, researchers at the University of Dundee in Scotland have used facial recovery technology to recreate the look of this girl – including the wound that could have ended her career.
Related:  The Viking Warrior Is Actually a Woman
The results you can see above and in the new National Geographic documentary " The Viking Warrior Women ] ", show a woman about 18 or 19 with a strong jaw, swollen eye and forehead, showing a • good days. According to the analysis of the team of the warrior's skull, the girl suffered a serious head injury corresponding to the blow with the sword – however, the wound shows signs of healing and may not be her ultimate cause of death.
Whether or not the wound was fatal, the new reconstruction suggests that this skeleton may be "the first evidence ever found of a Viking woman with a combat injury," archaeologist El Al Shamahi told The Guardian . which hosts the new documentary, .
This is exciting news, especially for researchers who are trying to overturn the age-old assumption that Viking warriors are extremely male. This stereotype took its toll in 2017, when the Viking skeleton over the past 70 years was believed to be a man (since he was buried with a weapon) was proven to be a woman after DNA analysis.
Like the girl on the Sole shield, this woman is buried with an array of weapons and horses, plus a set of chess-like game figures suggesting a tactical ability commensurate with a senior military official, the researchers who made the discovery writes in a study . Not only is she likely to have been a warrior, but she may be a general.
"Our results warn against deliberate interpretations based on … prejudice," the researchers wrote in their 2017 paper. "Our results … suggest that [Viking] women were indeed able to be full members of realms with dominant men. "
If you want to pay tribute to the girlfriend of Sole's shield, you can find her concave skull and well-worn weapons on display at the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo, Norway until November 22. .
"Viking Warrior Woman," aired for the first time on November 3 on National Geographic Channel .
Originally published by Live Science .