Both Viking men and women enjoyed wearing jewellery as an indicator of wealth and social status, wearing these pieces kept their wealth safe and secure. Jewellery held a second purpose; most Vikings would have preferred their jewellery to have been made from precious metals with the intention to be used as a currency for trade. Depending on the transaction, jewellery many have been broken up to accommodate for a more appropriate price/deal.
Pendants and amulets also held spiritual connections and were said to have bestowed the owner with protection and support such as the popular amulet of Thor’s Hammer. An elf shot pendant, such as this example, was used to warn off invisible elves from shooting arrows at the body or animals, resulting in internal shooting pains including cramping and arthritis. It was believed that men shot by these invisible arrows would not recover and soon die. There would be no physical evidence of the wounds on the skin resulting in the theory of the elves and arrows to be more credible. Therefore, pendants were highly valued for the protection granted to their owners.