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"U 194 in Väsby has been erroneously attributed to Frögärd.
Uppland Runic Inscription U 203 beside "Angarn Church in "Uppland

Frögärd Ulvsdotter i Ösby (11th century) was a Swedish norse woman. She was is according to a common misconception believed to be a "Viking Age female "runemaster. This notion is based on Erik Brate’s [1] erroneous interpretation of runestone U 203. As early as 1943, "Elias Wessén convincingly demonstrated that the sequence in question cannot be read as a carver’s signature.[2] Also, the place name uisby should be read Väsby rather than Ösby.

U 203 was raised by Ale (or Alle) in memory of his son Ulv, “father to Frögärd in Väsby”. Ale (Alle) is also responsible for runestone "U 194, which he raised in memory of himself while he was still alive. According to this inscription, Ale (Alle) received a share of "Canute the Great’s "Danegeld in 1017. Thus, Frögärd was probably a member of a wealthy family and the only beneficiary of her father’s and grandfather’s inheritance. Birgit Sawyer suggests that Ale’s (Alle’s) purpose with U 203 could have been to take care of his underage granddaughter’s inheritance.[3]

Both "U 194 and U 203 are carved by "Åsmund Kåresson.

An actual Swedish female Viking Age "runemaster was "Gunnborga.


  1. ^ "Erik Brate: Svenska runristare (Swedish runmasters) (1925), p. 13 (in Swedish)
  2. ^ Upplands runinskrifter 1, s. 307 ff.
  3. ^ Birgit Sawyer (2000). The Viking-age Rune-stones: Custom and Commemoration in Early Medieval Scandinavia. Oxford University Press. p. 58 n., 65. "ISBN "978-0-19-820643-9.
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