Andirons from the Iron Age

Andirons from an Iron Age settlement at Smidstrup in Northern Funen. The andirons are now at Møntergården in Odense. Photo: Jens Gregers Aagaard.


In a settlement from c. year 0, near Smidstrup on northern Funen, andirons have been found by the house’s hearth where they held spits or supported cooking pots.

A place to live The lay-out of dwellings has changed over time, but it has always met people’s basic requirements: a roof over their heads and a place to sleep and eat. In the past, home and work were one and the same, but nowadays most people of Funen live far away from their place of work. Iron Age house, c. 500 BC – AD 775 The walls of an Iron Age house were made of wattle and daub. The house had living quarters in the west and a byre for the livestock in the east. It was situated to reduce exposure to the harsh westerly wind as much as possible and to face towards the south and the sun. Household items from the Iron Age, c. 500 BC – AD 375 Vessels for cooking and cups and bowls for serving were common in an Iron Age household. Spoons were made from cow horn, wood or clay, and knives were made of iron. Forks came into use much later, in the 17th century. Various clay supports could have been used to hold the roasting spits that were placed around the hearth.

This location is part of the exhibition 'Funen – at the centre of the universe', at Møntergården in Odense. Read more about the exhibition on our website.