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Supplement to the Antiijuitates American*. 19 Of these St. Laurence’s or, as it is now called, Oster Lars Church may perhaps he the most deserving of our atten- tion here, on account of an inner round building in the same; but respecting the construction of which I am for the present unable to give a detailed account for want of correct drawings1. “For what use was this Ante-Columbian building originally intended?” is a question naturally suggested by the first view of it. That the primary and principal ob- ject of its being erected was to serve as a watch tower, is what I cannot admit2, although very possibly it may have been occasionally used as a station from whence to keep a look out over the adjacent sea. On the contrary I am more inclined to believe that it had a sacred desti- nation, and that it belonged to some monastery or Chri- stian place of worship of one of the chief parishes in Vinland. In Greenland there are still to be found ruins of several round buildings in the vicinity of the churches. One of this description, the diameter of which is about 26 feet, is situate at the distance of 300 feet to the eastward of the great church in Igalikko; another of 44 ]) Some of the round churches in Great Britain arc deserving of mention here, such as, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Cambridge built about 1122; see Arclncologia Vol. VI p. 173. — 2) Any such watch tower must have been defended by a rampart raised round about it (vi'gi or virki) consisting of an earthen mound or of several rows of pallisadcs, the intermediate space between which was tilled up with stones, clods, or liveturf; but of such we find no trace. A skidgardr, or wooden paling, would scarce!}’ have sufficed, although Thorfinn Karlsefnc in the year 1008, when he apprehended an attack of the Skr.-clings (Esqui- maux), contented himself with raising such a fence about his house in Vinland (Icvir gera skid gard ramligan um bos sinn, ok bjuggust urn).
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Supplement to the Antiquitates Americanæ