Types of evidence

InkPart of the inkline on the Vinland Map

MATERIAL

Material evidence is scientific evidence which comes from studying the materials - here, the parchment and the ink. New techniques appear all the time, providing new data. The data are objective, meaning scientists, using the same equipment, will obtain the same results. The data are then interpreted to identify their significance for the Map.

Interpretation can be highly subjective. Two individuals can use the same set of data to draw very different conclusions. Here, you will see how McCrone argues from McCrone's results that the Map is not authentic, Cahill uses McCrone's same results to argue it could be authentic. Who is right?

Vikingboat
Typical Viking ship that sailed to Vinland around CE 1000

HISTORICAL

Historical evidence should establish a provenance, a day-by-day account of the Map's history from the day it was drawn until the present day. In practice this is like solving a mystery, a whodunit with, invariably, insufficient evidence to identify the culprit.

DOCUMENTARY

On the document, which is a map, VIKING SAGA
Viking saga (ca. CE 1100) recording the Viking voyages
is abundant documentary evidence (the map and the writing). Are the map and the writing consistent with it being a 15th century document? The issues raised here are not scientific but involve handwriting analysis (paleography), spelling (orthography), word usage, the history of cartography, and so on.