Skancke and the Isle of Man

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Revision as of 11:23, 18 April 2016 by Alvestrand (talk | contribs) (G. V. C (Barney) Young)
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This page is created based on a debate in the Geni discussion fora about the relationship (or lack of proof thereof) between the following historical persons:

The claim being made is that Harald was the father of Torlack, who was the father of Hallstein. The counterclaim is that there isn't enough evidence available to support either of those linkages.

The arguments being cited are:

  • Use of the Triskelion (three legs joined at the hip) by both the Skancke family and the kingdom of Man
  • Matching dates
  • Oral traditions

Evidence of the Legged Triskelion

On the Isle of Man

In the Skancke family

The name "Skancke" means "leg" or "shank". Whether it's singular or plural is debatable; in contemporary Danish, it's a plural.

The most commonly seen coat of arms for the Skancke family has a single leg, often wearing armor (as quoted from the Noregian Wikipedia). The examples seen with three legs are:

  • Iver Hirtzholm's book of arms (1670ish), claiming as its source a letter from 1303 related to Erling Amundsen. The legs here are bare.


  • The Flag of Sicily has a triskelion of bare legs and a gorgon. Pliny the Elder (AD 23-79) mentions this symbol and relates it to the shape of the island. (Source: English Wikipedia)

Evidence of traditions

Authorities cited

G. V. C (Barney) Young

George Vaughan Chichester Young (1921-2006) was born in Londonderry, educated in law in Belfast, served in the Royal Navy, qualified as a solicitor in 1946, and has worked in the Isle of Man in various legal posts since 1973. (Source: introduction to "From the Vikings to the Reformation: A Chronicle of the Faroe Islands up to 1538" - Google Books), obituary)

Quote from "Young, G.V.C.: A Brief History of the Isle of Man, The Mansk-Svenska Publishing Co. Ltd., Peel, Isle of Man, 2001: p. 12":

The rebellion {of 1275} was, however, abortive and resulted in some members of the royal family emigrating to Norway, where their descendants are still to be found in the Norwegian family of Skankes, the Swedish family of Skunck(e)s and the Danish family of Barfods. The emigrants took with them as their Arms "the three legs", which had been the Royal Arms of the Sudreyan Kings since about the middle of the thirteenth century. These Arms (a modification of the ancient Indo-Germanic sun symbol) were simplified in Norway and Sweden to one leg and in Denmark to three bare feet, and later to one bare foot

This has been cited by the Skanke Association.

P. A. Munch

Nils Gabriel Ahnlund

"Jämtland og Härjedalens historia", he wrote that Hallsteins sigill was similar to both Isle of Man and Sicily. (Quoted by Remi)

Roger de Robelin

Rejects the relationship between the Skanckes and the Isle of Man on pages 10, 12 and 384 in his book about the Skanke family. (Quoted by Remi)

Popular sources

These are non-authoritative; the interesting part is where they claim to have information from.

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