Archaeologists have unearthed an intriguing piece of the puzzle of the legendary Streard Boke, reports the New York Times this past weekend. A letter from one of his many admirers has been found in a Nordic grave site. Could this be evidence that Streard Boke, unlike many of his cohorts, was literate? Who was the woman who wrote the letter and did he ever return to her as she’d hoped? Further research will be necessary in order to find out, but this is a very exciting find indeed, and hopefully one that will lead historians to delve further still into the mystery of this great man with the beard that broke a thousand hearts. The text of the letter is below:
My darling Streard Boke,
You have only just set sail early this morn with your fellow Viking ruffians, and yet I already miss the soft touch of your glorious beard on my skin. It is no doubt that I shall spend the entirety of your absense in longing. Father says I must forget you and consider the suitors he has set before me, but I shall not. You are the one I love, and I will weep for you bitterly while you are away. In truth, I must shamefully admit that late last night, I stole away with one of your combs. I venture to guess you shall not miss it, as you have many, and this was the least ornate of the lot. I hope you will forgive me, my love, as I require something with which to remember the intoxicating scent of your lovely beard while you are away. Of course, I will surrender it to you upon your return. Please do return, my love. I allow that life upon the sea must be exciting, but I promise you that if you return to me, our lives together will be equally as fulfilling. Do not let yourself be swayed by the whisperings of your awful crewmate, Vile Kyle, who I fear hopes to tear us assunder. All I have need of in this world is to see you safely home (and yes, you may call this home) to me. I know what the other vikings say, my love, that you are no true viking if not plundering and raping, but you are different. I can see it in your eyes, and in that beautiful, velvet-soft beard.
I await your return, my viking prince. Please do not forget me.