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No. 48: Nov-Dec 1986

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The kensington stone: a mystery not solved

It is safe to say that the great majority of professional archeologists consider the Kensington Stone, with its runic inscription, to be a hoax. E. Wahlgren's 1958 book bears the title: The Kensington Stone: A Mystery Solved. This title reflects the professional attitude, although not the disdain, even contempt, with which academics now view this controversial artifact.

Two major challenges to the authenticity of the Kensington Stone are:

(1) Its use of Arabic number placement: that is, decimal placement, and (2) Its use of the symbol for 10.

Professional archeologists and epigraphers maintain that genuine runic inscriptions did not use these Arabic innovations.

In the present article, R. Nielsen, University of Denmark, demonstrates with actual, well-established runic inscriptions that the above criticisms are without foundation. Such notation and convention were employed. In fact, the use of Arabic innovations actually supports the authenticity of the Kensington Stone.

(Nielsen, Richard; "The Arabic Numbering System on the Kensington Rune Stone," Epigraphic Society, Occasional Publications, 15:47, 1986.)

Reference. For more on the controversy surrounding the Kensington Stone, see our handbook Ancient Man. Details at: here.

Kensington Stone

From Science Frontiers #48, NOV-DEC 1986. 1986-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987