U 1125
The old man in Krogsta

Runic inscription

Front: m w s ï e i j -

Back: s ï a i n a z

The runes should be read from right to left.

When the stone was erected in the Krogsta burial ground 1,500 years ago, the older rune line of Old Norse runes was used.

The runes are so difficult to interpret that on the website "Runes" they have chosen to believe that they are chiffer or code runes on the front. On the back, it is somewhat easier to interpret the runes and it probably says "stone".

The runestone, which is from the 6th century, is among Uppland's oldest and it stands in its original place.

Ever since the 16th century, the rune stone has been a favorite among researchers, and in Uppland runic inscriptions, no less than 34 pages are devoted to the rune stone. (Only in Swedish)
(See links below).


The Krogsta runestone stands in its original place in a burial field in Krogsta 30 km NE of Old Uppsala.

In the burial ground there are about 25 round graves built of stones and covered with earth and peat, height only 10 to 50 cm. In the burial ground there are also rows of stones and a terrace.


At first meeting, the old man looks like a simple child's drawing. At the second and third meeting, the motive grows and you easily become good friends with the old man in Krogsta.

If granite is difficult and hard to process during the Viking Age and even today, it was several times more difficult in the 6th century. Hardening a chisel to exact hardness is difficult and the question is whether the stone was cut directly with a sledgehammer or an even harder type of stone? The cutting grooves are wide and shallow.

The risk that pointy ends of chopping grooves that meet may break has been avoided here by precisely avoiding sharp parts, the placement of the fingers is a good example.

I'm thinking a bit...

The runestone is so old, several hundred years before the Viking Age, so it is very difficult to interpret both the runic inscription and the function of the rune stone.

My first encounter with the runestone.
I had known about the runestone for a long time, read about it and seen it in pictures, but when I came over the hill of the burial field and met the old man in Krogsta face to face, it was really like meeting an old friend.

It's like he was looking at me through a 1500 year old time window, from his time to my time and me back.

I felt welcomed and greeted back with a cheerful -Hello!

I think the old man in Krogsta is there as a guard and to meet visitors to the burial ground. I think he wants to say that we are welcome as long as we are humble and show respect for both the place and the ancestors who are there.

Visit the runestone?


There is no designated entrance or sign to the runestone. You park where you can by the roadside and step over electric fences, the old man in Krogsta and the burial ground is inside a paddock.

The back of the runestone


Upplands runinskrifter > page 477-510
Lots of good information but only Swedish.

Runor > - Riksantikvarieämbetet
Map and runic inscription.

Google map > Find the runestone

Contact: kalle@runristare.se
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