in the runestone park
start from the north (U 11) and go clockwise
U 11
The king's runestone in Hovgården

Runic inscription in several parts:

Master the runes correctly. (Rathu runar ret).
A greeting and best wishes to the reader to decipher the runic inscription correctly.

2) Correctly had Tolir, bryte in Rod, carve them for the king.
Tolir, the king's right hand man (bryte) tells us that he is the one who makes sure that the runic inscription is carved correctly. (but also that the runecarver had to do the work).

3) Tolir and Gyla had these runes carved, husband and wife, after themselves as a memorial.
This part is the spouses Tolir and Gyla's inheritance document for their children and grandchildren. When kings change, the old spoil remains. He is a key person to the practical functioning of the royal estate. His office is inherited.

K U N U K I = Konungen = the king

4) Hakun asked for the carving
King Håkon asked, ordered and paid for the runic carving. This part is a clarification about which king it is that is mentioned in the 2nd part of the runic inscription. Since it was probably carved afterwards, it is in an extra loop on the inside.

5) Srni-?
Also on the right side there is an extra loop, perhaps to balance the ornamentation, double rows on both sides?

The runic inscription is incomplete and the 5th rune is only begun. Probably the runecarver noticed that if he cut further the runestone would break after the whole side and and then chose to just paint the rest instead.

Today, that particular piece is gone anyway and the interpretation of the runic inscription is unclear. It is probably neither a Christian prayer nor the rune carver's signature that was meant to be here. The initial runic inscription remains a mystery.

Image from 2014
(Cleaned and painted in 2011)


The ornamentation is advanced but traditional.

The rune carver had problems around the dragon's head where the carved grooves were too close together so he made an unusual choice: instead he carved in relief around the lower lip and above the nose towards the snake's head. He used the same technique on the dragon's back claw

The unusual method for runestones meant that these details were not noticed until 2016. It is not yet painted on the original in Hovgården (2024).



Upplands Runinskrifter > page 11-20
(Only in Swedish)

Kalle Runristare > More on the new details
(Only in Swedish)

Runor > - Riksantikvarieämbetet

Google map > Find the runestone.
Map and runic inscription.

If you want to be of help or have a question.

All runestones in the
Runestone Park
We start from the north and go clockwise

U 11 - Adelsö, Hovgården
The King's Runestone in Hovgården, Adelsö

U 3 - Hovgården, Alsnöhus
Found during an excavation in 1916

U 1 - Adelsö church
Former threshold stone to the sacristy. Now built into the wall in the sacristy.

U 2 - Adelsö church
Destroyed by fire around 1660. Former threshold stone to the church.

U 10 - Dalby Adelsö
Found in 1920 at Stora Dalby, northern Adelsö. Now built into the wall of the sacristy, Adelsö church.

U 6 - Björkö village on Birka
Several fragments as a puzzle. Now in the museum at Birka.

U 5b - Birka 2015 (New find 2015)
2024.03.10 Not yet documented or published.

Sö 141b - Aspa bridge (Sö Fv1948;289)
New find in 1937 with the name Svitjod (Sweden).

Sö 179 - The Gripsholm runestone 
Mariefred, the most famous of the Ingvars runestones.

U 887 - Skillsta runestone
One of the world's most beautiful runestones.

Vs 29 - Sala parish church
The runecarver Livsten's masterpiece.

U 1125 - The old man in Krogsta
1500 year old rune stone carved with the older runes, the Old Norse runes.

Uppdaterad 17 mars, 2024 av Kalle Runristare