Did Germanic seafarers reach Easter Island?

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Erno Wiebeck

In 1639 a golden horn, dated circa 400 A.D., was excavated near Gallehus (South of Danmark). In the 20th century scholars showed again interest in the Gallehus-horn, because on its upper end two rows of characters were discovered, showing a surprising similarity with corresponding signs of the Easter Island script. The possibility of early maritime contacts between these two locations (Gallehus - Easter Island), having a distance of about 20000 km, forms a riddle.

Based on a scenario, composed of theories, hypotheses and facts connected with the Gallehus-horn, relevant real and/or possible maritime activities were analysed and evaluated, to support future researches on the Gallehus-riddle.

The analysis of relevant maritime activities revealed, that

* in the period from 5th to 16th century maritime contacts between India/Sri Lanka and New Zealand/Easter Island already existed or from the then existing level of shipbuilding and navi-gation might have been possible,

* intense maritime interrelations between India and the Roman Empire existed around the begin-ning of the Christian era,

* sporadic early trade relations between India, Rome and northern Europe are provable.