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Danish seamen, painted mid-twelfth century.

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A Viking (pron. /ˈvəɪkɪŋ/) is one of the Norse (Scandinavian) explorers, warriors, merchants, and pirates who raided and colonized wide areas of Europe from the late eighth to the early eleventh century.[1] These Norsemen used their famed longships to travel as far east as Constantinople and the Volga River in Russia, and as far west as Iceland, Greenland, and Newfoundland. This period of Viking expansion is known as the Viking Age, and forms a major part of the medieval history of Scandinavia, Britain and Ireland and Europe in general. A romanticized picture of Vikings as Germanic noble savages emerged in the 18th century, and expanded during the Victorian era Viking revival.[2] In Britain it took the form of Septentrionalism, in Germany that of "Wagnerian" pathos or even Germanic mysticism, and in the Scandinavian countries that of Romantic nationalism or Scandinavism. In contemporary popular culture these clichéd depictions are often exaggerated with the effect of presenting Vikings as caricatures.[2]

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1 Etymology 2 The Viking Age 3 Viking expansion 4 Decline 5 Weapons and warfare 6 Archaeology o 6.1 Runestones o 6.2 Burial sites o 6.3 Ships 7 Genetic legacy

"Viking colony".[4] The term Varangians made its first appearance in Byzantium where it was introduced to designate a function. but also to the entire period. In Old English. The word disappeared in Middle English. In the Byzantine sources Varangians are first mentioned in 1034 as in garrison in the Thracian theme. víking refers to an overseas expedition (Old Norse fara í víking "to go on an expedition"). be it for raiding or trading. and víkingr. generally referring to medieval Scandinavia. "Widsith". The Persian geographer Al Biruni has mentioned the Baltic Sea as the Varangian Sea and specifies the Varangians as a people dwelling on its .1 Horned helmets o 9. and to refer to the Scandinavian population in general. In Russia it was extended to apply to Scandinavian warriors journeying to and from Constantinople. warriors or navigators.[3] The word appears on several rune stones found in Scandinavia. to a seaman or warrior taking part in such an expedition.4 Reenactment o 8. the word is used in expressions like "Viking age". the term Viking is applied to the people who went away on Viking expeditions.      8 Historical opinion and cultural legacy o 8. the term refers to a pirate. somewhat confusingly. the word was used more as a verb than as a noun. which probably dates from the 9th century. the meaning of the term was expanded to refer not only to the raiders. although that term is properly applied to the whole civilization of Old-Norse-speaking people.1 Icelandic sagas and other texts o 8. During the 20th century.2 Skull cups o 9.2 Modern revivals o 8.. and connoted an activity and not a distinct group of individuals. it is now.3 Uncleanliness 10 Vikings of renown 11 Notes 12 References 13 External links Etymology In Old Norse. and is not a name for a people or a culture in general. and was reintroduced as Viking during 18th century Romanticism (the "Viking revival").3 Nazi and fascist imagery o 8. etc. "Viking culture". with heroic overtones of "barbarian warrior" or noble savage. As an adjective. used as a noun both in the original meaning of raiders. The preChristian Scandinavian population is also referred to as Norse. In current Scandinavian languages. and in the writings of Adam von Bremen.5 In popular culture 9 Common misconceptions o 9. Regardless of its possible origins. To "go Viking" was distinctly different from Norse seaborne missions of trade and commerce. In Old English. the word wicing appears first in the Anglo-Saxon poem. the word is spelled víkingr. In the Icelanders' sagas.

had Danish ancestors. and Faroe Islands. According to Icelandic Njalssaga from the 13th century.[5] The word Væringjar itself is regarded in Scandinavia as of Old Norse origin. Norway. the last Anglo-Saxon king of England who was killed during the Norman invasion in 1066.[7] Many of these lands. resulting in the foundation of independent settlements in the Shetland. parts of Mercia.coasts. The first datable use of the word in Norse literature appears by Einarr Skúlason in 1153. possibly due to . perhaps on the basis of the accounts of sailors who had seen land in the distance. Norway and Sweden). the institution of Varangian Guard was established by 1000.[citation needed] Geographically. Iceland.[citation needed] They also may well have been deliberately sought out. The Greenland settlement eventually died out. The Normans. In that respect. In the Russian Primary Chronicle the Varangian is used as a generic term for the Germanic nations on the coasts of the Baltic sea that likewise lived in the west as far as the land of the English and the French. may have been originally discovered by sailors blown off course. descendants of the Vikings continued to have an influence in northern Europe.[6] and L'Anse aux Meadows. however. and East Anglia. formerly the Kingdom of Northumbria. but also to territories under North Germanic dominance. circa 1000 A. mainly the Danelaw.[citation needed] Viking navigators opened the road to new lands to the north. Many of the medieval kings of Norway and Denmark married into English and Scottish royalty and occasionally got involved in dynastic disputes. west and east. a "Viking Age" may be assigned not only to Scandinavian lands (modern Denmark. specifically Greenland and Iceland. Likewise. Greenland. Orkney. King Harold Godwinson. The period from the earliest recorded raids in the 790s until the Norman Conquest of England in 1066 is commonly known as the Viking Age of Scandinavian history. The Viking Age Main article: Viking Age The Gokstad Viking ship on display in Oslo.D. cognate with the Old English Færgenga (literally. were descended from Danish Vikings who were given feudal overlordship of areas in northern France — the Duchy of Normandy — in the 8th century. a short-lived settlement in Newfoundland. an expedition-goer).

the center of the Islamic Empire. the Norwegians expanded to the north and west to places such as Ireland. and the Swedes to the east. due to the more centralized Islamic power.[8] The Norse regularly plied the Volga with their trade goods: furs. Jorvik. Vikings also explored and settled in territories in Slavic-dominated areas of Eastern Europe. Varangian mercenaries in the service of the Byzantine Empire. Important trading ports during the period include Birka. which went hand in hand with their Christianization. notably Harald Hardrada. Hedeby. were similar in culture and language. By 950 AD these settlements were largely Slavicized. although distinct. Thus the end of the Viking Age for the Scandinavians also marks the start of their relatively brief Middle Ages. A reconstructed Viking Age long house From 839. Iceland and Greenland. Only after the end of the Viking Age did the separate kingdoms acquire distinct identities as nations. The names of Scandinavian kings are known only for the later part of the Viking Age. settling in the Danelaw (northern/eastern England) and Normandy. However. Jerusalem. campaigned in North Africa. There is archaeological evidence that Vikings reached the city of Baghdad. Kaupang. These nations. Novgorod and Kiev. tusks. Staraya Ladoga. Viking expansion Main article: Viking expansion . seal fat for boat sealant and slaves. the Danes to England and France.climate change. they were far less successful in establishing settlements in the Middle East. and other places in the Middle East.[citation needed] Generally speaking.

and mercenaries. Green denotes areas subjected to frequent Viking raids.[citation needed] Finally. Another explanation is that the Vikings exploited a moment of weakness in the surrounding regions. reached North America. reaching south to North Africa and east to Russia. For instance. it made sense to expand overseas in the face of a youth bulge effect. and with the rise of centralized authority and the development of more robust coastal defense systems. as looters. and was relatively easy prey given the proximity of many towns to the sea or navigable rivers. cultural impulses flowed from the rest of Europe to affect Viking dominance.Map showing area of Scandinavian settlement in the eighth (dark red).[citation needed] For a coastal population with superior naval technologies. Lack of organized naval opposition throughout Western Europe allowed Viking ships to travel freely. Vikings under Leif Eriksson.[citation needed] England suffered from internal divisions.[citation needed] The expansion of Islam in the 7th century had also affected trade with western Europe. the destruction of the Frisian fleet by the Franks afforded the Vikings an opportunity to take over their trade markets. One common theory posits that the Norse population had outgrown agricultural potential of their Scandinavian homeland. The decline in the profitability of old trade routes could also have played a role.[image reference needed] The Vikings sailed most of the North Atlantic. and set up a shortlived settlement in present-day L'Anse aux Meadows. .[citation needed] Decline Following a period of thriving trade and Viking settlement. Constantinople and the middle east. ninth (red). raiding or trading as opportunity permitted. Canada. traders. the Vikings profited from international trade by expanding beyond their traditional boundaries. However. The motives driving the Viking expansion form a topic of much debate in Nordic history. tenth (orange) and eleventh (yellow) centuries. Christianity had an early and growing presence in Scandinavia. It should be noted that sea raiding was easier than clearing large areas of forest for farm and pasture in a region with a limited growing season. the Danish Vikings were aware of the internal divisions within Charlemagne's empire that began in the 830s and resulted in schism. colonists. Newfoundland and Labrador. this theory does little to explain why the expansion went overseas rather than into the vast. Viking raids became more risky and less profitable. Trade between western Europe and the rest of Eurasia suffered a severe blow when the Roman Empire fell in the 5th century.[citation needed] Trade on the Mediterranean Sea was historically at its lowest level when the Vikings initiated their expansion. No such rise in population or decline in agricultural production has been definitively proven. heir to Erik the Red.[citation needed] By opening new trade routes in Arabic and Frankish lands. uncultivated forest areas on the interior of the Scandinavian Peninsula.

‖ As the new quasi-feudalistic system became entrenched in Scandinavian rule. pictorial representation.Blar a' Bhuailte. replaced with serfdom at the bottom rung of Medieval society.[10] Runestones . all free Norse men were required to own weapons. The Húscarls. which eventually led to Danish and Swedish participation in the Baltic Crusades during the 12th and 13th centuries. though sporadic activity continued for a few decades beyond the Norman conquest of England. with others he (Saint Olaf) cut off their hands or their feet or extirpated their eyes. According to custom. Weapons and warfare Main article: Viking Age arms and armor Our knowledge about arms and armor of the Viking age is based on relatively sparse archaeological finds. The Church took a position that Christians should not own fellow Christians as slaves. Olaf chapter 73. Bows were used in the opening stages of land battles. Vikings were relatively unusual for the time in their use of axes as a main battle weapon. others he ordered hanged or decapitated. These arms were also indicative of a Viking's social status: a wealthy Viking would have a complete ensemble of a helmet. so chattel slavery diminished as a practice throughout Northern Europe. shield. site of the Vikings' last stand in Skye Snorri Sturluson in the saga of St. outright slavery was outlawed. Eleventh-century chronicles note Scandinavian attempts to combat the Vikings from the eastern shores of the Baltic Sea. (Discuss) With a distinct lack of totally reliable written sources on the topic. as well as permitted to carry them at all times. and most also carried a seax as a utility knife and side-arm. It also contributed to the development of the Hanseatic League. A typical bóndi (freeman) was more likely to fight with a spear and shield. much of the historical investigation of the Viking period relies on archaeology. but tended to be considered less "honorable" than a hand weapon. chainmail shirt. and at sea. describes the brutal process of Christianisation in Norway: ―…those who did not give up paganism were banished. Archaeology It has been suggested that this section be split into a new article. the elite guard of King Cnut (and later King Harold II) were armed with two-handed axes which could split shields or metal helmets with ease. and sword. This took much of the economic incentive out of raiding. and to some extent on the accounts in the Norse sagas and Norse laws recorded in the 13th century. but did not leave unpunished any of those who did not want to serve God (…) he afflicted them with great punishments (…) He gave them clerks and instituted some in the districts.[9] One of the primary profit centers of Viking trade was slavery. Eventually. organized opposition sealed the Vikings' fate.

[16] Serkland (i.[14] Italy (as Langobardland). Many runestones in Scandinavia record the names of participants in Viking expeditions.[11] Greece. the Muslim world). P H: 1997). a World Heritage Site Oseberg.[19] Some examples of notable burial sites include:         Gettlinge gravfält. especially from the tenth and eleventh century. ship outline Jelling. among them the around 25 Ingvar Runestones in the Mälardalen district of Sweden erected to commemorate members of a disastrous expedition into present-day Russia in the early 11th century. As well as providing information on Viking religion. Denmark. Hulterstad gravfält.[17] England. Other runestones mention men who died on Viking expeditions. The items buried with the deceased give some indication as to what was considered important to possess in the afterlife.[15] London. Horten. Borrehaugene. Öland. Sweden. Gamla Uppsala. Gokstad. The runestones are important sources in the study of Norse society and early medieval Scandinavia. .Main article: Runestone The vast majority of runic inscriptions from the Viking period come from Sweden. Norway. burial sites also provide information on social structure.[12] Khwaresm. Sweden. Sweden. Norway Tuna. Sweden.e. on display at the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde. Norway. such as Bath.[18] and various locations in Eastern Europe. ship outline of standing stones Ships Miniatures of two different types of longships. such as the Kjula Runestone which tells of extensive warfare in Western Europe and the Turinge Runestone which tells of a warband in Eastern Europe. Denmark. The word Viking appears on several runestones found in Scandinavia. not only of the 'Viking' segment of the population (Sawyer. Öland.[13] Jerusalem. near the villages of Alby and Hulterstad. Burial sites See also: Viking funeral There are numerous burial sites associated with Vikings. Runestones attest to voyages to locations.

deeper draft and limited number of oars (used primarily to maneuver in harbors and similar situations).[citation needed] It is also common near the southern Baltic and North Sea coasts. was designed for speed and agility. The remains of these ships can be found on display at the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde. Denmark and Sweden. in order to facilitate landings and troop deployments in shallow water. and rounded ears. Main article: Viking ship There were two distinct classes of Viking ships: the longship (sometimes erroneously called "drakkar".[20] Longships were used extensively by the Leidang. thus protecting the city. as well as a shallow draft. the longship and the knarr. These five ships represent the two distinct classes of Viking ships. intended for warfare and exploration. canines. Genetic legacy Studies of genetic diversity provide some indication of the origin and expansion of the Viking population. It was designed with a broader hull. Longships are not to be confused with later-period longboats. has a dog's nostrils. The ships were scuttled there in the 11th century to block a navigation channel. This mutation occurs with the greatest frequency among Scandinavian males: 35 percent in Norway. The longship had a long and narrow hull. and peaking at 40 percent within western Finland. It was common for Viking ships to tow or carry a smaller boat to transfer crews and cargo from the ship to shore. The knarr was a dedicated merchant vessel designed to carry cargo. The Haplogroup I1 (defined by specific genetic markers on the Y-chomosome) is sometimes referred to as the "Viking haplogroup". however. possibly because of its romantic associations (discussed below). One Viking innovation was the beitass. and was equipped with oars to complement the sail as well as making it able to navigate independently of the wind. which was then the Danish capital. The longship. . from seaborne assault. excavated from nearby Roskilde Fjord in the late 1960s. however. In Roskilde are the well-preserved remains of five ships. a corruption of "dragon" in Norse) and the knarr. and then successively decreases the further south geographically.Viking ship head of dragon. the Scandinavian defense fleets. The term "Viking ships" has entered common usage. a spar mounted to the sail that allowed their ships to sail effectively against the wind.

Both male and female descent studies show evidence of Norwegian descent in areas closest to Scandinavia. the attack on Lindisfarne demonized perception of the Vikings for the next twelve centuries.[26] Until the 19th century reign of Queen Victoria. public perceptions in Britain continued to portray Vikings as violent and bloodthirsty. and Olof Rudbeck of Sweden were the first to set the standard for using runic inscriptions and Icelandic Sagas as historical sources.[25] In Scandinavia. those who lived there before the years of industrialization and population expansion. have demonstrated that the Vikings settled in the British Isles as well as raiding there. and linguistic enthusiasts started to identify the Viking-Age origins for rural idioms and proverbs. Pioneering scholarly editions of the Viking Age began to reach a small readership in Britain. a wingedhelmeted Viking was introduced as a radiator cap figure on the new Rover car. marking the start of the cultural rehabilitation of the Vikings in Britain. [23] Recent research has revealed that the Scottish warrior Somerled. such as the Shetland and Orkney Islands. Inhabitants of lands farther away show most Norse descent in the male Y chromosome lines. up to 50 percent of males who belonged to original families. the history of the Viking Age was largely based on Icelandic sagas.[citation needed] Until recently. High percentages of Norse inheritance – tracked through R1a1 haplotype signatures – were also found among males in Wirral and West Lancashire. archaeologists began to dig up Britain's Viking past.[24] The first challenges to anti-Viking sentiments in Britain emerged in the 17th century.[citation needed] More than any other single event. Although few scholars still accept these texts as reliable sources. historical scholarship in Scandinavia became more rational and pragmatic.[citation needed] The chronicles of medieval England had always portrayed them as rapacious 'wolves among sheep'. who drove the Vikings out of Scotland and was the progenitor of Clan Donald.[citation needed] During the Age of Enlightenment and the Nordic Renaissance. The new dictionaries of the Old Norse language enabled the Victorians to grapple with the primary Icelandic sagas.Genetic studies in the British Isles of the Y-DNA Haplogroup R1a1. seen also across Scandinavia. The devastation of Northumbria's Holy Island shocked and alerted the royal Courts of Europe to the Viking presence. Not until the 1890s did scholars outside Scandinavia begin to seriously reassess the achievements of the Vikings. recognizing their artistry. the 17th century Danish scholars Thomas Bartholin and Ole Worm. the Russian Primary Chronicle and the The War of the Irish with the Foreigners.[citation needed] Historical opinion and cultural legacy In England the Viking Age began dramatically on 8 June 793 when Norsemen destroyed the abbey on the island of Lindisfarne.[citation needed] In 1920.[21] A specialized surname study in Liverpool demonstrated marked Norse heritage. "Never before has such an atrocity been seen. disciplines that have made valuable contributions toward understanding the period. Alcuin of York." declared the Northumbrian scholar. historians nowadays rely more on archeology and numismatics. as witnessed by the works of a Danish historian Ludvig Holberg and Swedish historian Olof von Dalin. was himself of Viking descent – a member of Haplogroup R1a1.[22] This was similar to the percentage of Norse inheritance found among males in the Orkney Islands. technological skills and seamanship. the history of the Danes written by Saxo Grammaticus.[citation needed] .

g. and later texts were reliant upon the writings and transcriptions of Christian scholars. appeared in the 16th century. and many brief mentions by the Fosio bishop from the first big attack on the Byzantine Empire. which had been lost in 1809 during the war between Sweden and Russia. The . The 200-year Viking influence on European history is filled with tales of plunder and colonization. The pace of publication increased during the 17th century with Latin translations of the Edda (notably Peder Resen's Edda Islandorum of 1665). These pirates.Icelandic sagas and other texts Norse mythology. The Viking. the Battle of Maldon between Viking raiders and the inhabitants of the town of Maldon in Essex. In 991. 1555). Ibn Fadlan chronicles. sagas and literature tell of Scandinavian culture and religion through tales of heroic and mythological heroes. pay tribute to the Danish king" in the fourth volume of his Gesta Hammaburgensis Ecclesiae Pontificum. and the majority of these chronicles came from western witnesses and their descendants. are the Viking chronicles that originated in the east. written at the beginning of the 19th century. early transmission of this information was primarily oral. The word Viking was popularized. and most of them. e. who wrote "There is much gold here (in Zealand). though equally relevant. were preserved there after the Middle Ages due to the Icelanders' continued interest in Norse literature and law codes. Modern revivals See also: 19th century Viking revival A modern reenactment of a Viking battle Early modern publications. Less common. Historia de gentibus septentrionalibus (Olaus Magnus. who had very little to do with the historical Viking culture. However. Other chroniclers of Viking history include Adam of Bremen. Ibn Ruslan chronicles. dealing with what we now call Viking culture. Novgorod chronicles. including the Nestor chronicles. This renewed interest of Romanticism in the Old North had political implications. England was commemorated with a poem of the same name. by Erik Gustaf Geijer in the poem. accumulated by piracy. idealized naval warriors. and Ascomanni by our own people. and the first edition of the 13th century Gesta Danorum of Saxo Grammaticus in 1514. which are called wichingi by their own people. with positive connotations. A myth about a glorious and brave past was needed to give the Swedes the courage to retake Finland. The word was taken to refer to romanticized. Many of these sagas were written in Iceland. even if they had no Icelandic provenance. including the Icelanders Snorri Sturluson and Sæmundur fróði.

and Viking Scandinavians. though many smaller groups exist in Europe. Instead. This trend still holds true today (see also fascist symbolism). The remains of that ship and four others were discovered during a 1962 excavation in the Roskilde Fjord. the romanticism of the heroic Viking ideal appealed to the Germanic supremacist thinkers of Nazi Germany. the runic emblem of the SS utilized the sig rune of the Elder Futhark and the youth organization Wiking-Jugend made extensive use of the odal rune. Anglo-Saxons. A focus for early British enthusiasts was George Hicke. The crew tested how the long. especially the Northern Baltic region. British interest and enthusiasm for Iceland and Nordic culture grew dramatically. and Australia. of which Geijer was a member.Geatish Society. For example. expressed in English translations as well as original poems. While the earliest groups had little claim for historical accuracy. Political organizations of the same tradition. rising to a peak during Victorian times. North America. which became widely popular in the Nordic countries. who published a Linguarum vett. The Viking legacy had an impact in parts of Europe. On 1 July 2007. of the Germans. This multi-national experimental archeology project saw 70 crew members sail the ship back to its home in Ireland. speed and maneuverability of the ship on the rough open sea and in coastal waters with treacherous currents. extolling Viking virtues and increased interest in anything Runic that could be found in the Danelaw. the United Kingdom and Germany. However. and a few have Vikingstyle ships or boats. septentrionalium thesaurus in 1703 – 05. The Sea Stallion arrived outside Dublin's Custom House on 14 August 2007. who wrote a modern version of Friðþjófs saga ins frœkna. they resorted to the historical and ethnic fact that the Vikings were descendants of other Germanic peoples. Another Swedish author who had great influence on the perception of the Vikings was Esaias Tegnér. Ireland. there has been rising enthusiasm for historical reenactment. all these peoples also had traditions of Germanic paganism and practiced runelore. used Viking symbolism and imagery widely in its propaganda. popularized this myth to a great extent. and cultural and linguistic traits. narrow.[27] began a journey from Roskilde. This common Germanic identity became . such as the former Norwegian nationalist/fascist party. the seriousness and accuracy of reenactors has increased. Nazi and fascist imagery Main article: Nazi mysticism Similar to Wagnerian mythology. the Nazis did not claim themselves to be the descendants of any Viking settlers. The purpose of the voyage was to test and document the seaworthiness. Reenactment Since the 1960s. In particular.and still is . the UK. flexible hull withstood the tough ocean . Many reenactor groups participate in live-steel combat. but in no way was the Viking experience particular to Germany. this fact is supported by the shared ethnic-genetic elements. New Zealand. renamed Sea Stallion. During the 18th century. Nasjonal Samling. The largest such groups include The Vikings and Regia Anglorum. the reconstructed Viking ship Skuldelev 2. Tests of the original wood show that it was made of Irish trees.the foundation for much National Socialist iconography. Denmark to Dublin. member of the Geatish Society.

Popular bands that contribute to this genre include Turisas. the formal close-quarters style of Viking combat (either . Led by the operas of German composer Richard Wagner. In popular culture A giant Viking welcomes visitors to the town of Dannevirke in New Zealand. Falkenbach. The genre of Viking metal shows persisting modern influence of the Viking myths. Ensiferum. such as Frans Gunnar Bengtsson's The Long Ships (which was also released as a 1963 film). The expedition also provided valuable new information on Viking longships and society. This style is notable for its lyrical and theatrical emphasis on Norse mythology as well as Viking lifestyles and beliefs. Amon Amarth. Common misconceptions Horned helmets Main article: Horned helmet Apart from two or three representations of (ritual) helmets – with protrusions that may be either stylized ravens. The ship was built using Viking tools. such as Der Ring des Nibelungen. has horns. Michael Crichton's Eaters of the Dead (movie version called The 13th Warrior) and the comedy film Erik the Viking. Valhalla. snakes or horns – no depiction of Viking Age warriors' helmets.waves. In fact. originating in the early 1990s as an off-shoot of the black metal sub-genre. Týr. Vikings appear in several books by the Danish American writer Poul Anderson. founded by 19th Century Scandinavian settlers. It was a popular sub-genre of heavy metal music. and historical fantasies such as the film The Vikings. Vikings and the Romanticist Viking Revival inspired many creative works. and no preserved helmet. Einherjer. These included novels directly based on historical events. and Enslaved. materials and much the same methods as the original ship.

e. The general misconception that Viking warriors wore horned helmets was partly promulgated by the 19th century enthusiasts of Götiska Förbundet. based on the previous Vendel-age helmets from central Sweden. in which Danish warriors drinking ór bjúgviðum hausa [from the curved branches of skulls. but whether or not such helmets were used in Scandinavian culture for other. Sweden. made from hard leather with wood and metallic reinforcement for regular troops. [28]). Therefore historians believe that Viking warriors did not use horned helmets. from horns] were rendered as drinking ex craniis eorum quos ceciderunt [from the skulls of those whom they had slain]. They were probably used for ceremonial purposes. especially in depictions of Norse gods.[1] Non-Scandinavian Christians are responsible for most surviving accounts of the Vikings and. i. Horned helmets from the Bronze Age were shown in petroglyphs and appeared in archaeological finds (see Bohuslän and Vikso helmets). Uncleanliness The image of wild-haired. This helmet is made of iron and has been dated to the 10th century. This attitude is likely attributed to Christian misunderstandings regarding paganism. The rise of this legend can be traced to Ole Worm's Runer seu Danica literatura antiquissima (1636). The iron helmet with mask and chain mail was for the chieftains. This was done in order to legitimize the Vikings and their mythology by associating it with the Classical world which had long been idealized in European culture. such as the Scythians and Pechenegs. among others. The latter-day mythos created by national romantic ideas blended the Viking Age with aspects of the Nordic Bronze Age some shield walls or aboard "ship islands") would have made horned helmets cumbersome and hazardous to the warrior's own side. Viking tendencies were often misreported and the work of Adam of Bremen. and the vivid example of the Lombard Alboin. ritual purposes remains unproven. and sports uniforms such as those of the Minnesota Vikings and Canberra Raiders football teams have perpetuated the mythic cliché of the horned helmet. a strong possibility for bias exists. The only true Viking helmet found is that from Gjermundbu in Norway. Cartoons like Hägar the Horrible and Vicky the Viking. The skull-cup allegation may also have some history in relation with other Germanic tribes and Eurasian nomads. told largely disputable tales of Viking savagery and uncleanliness. Skull cups Main article: Skull cups The use of human skulls as drinking vessels is also ahistorical. consequently. dirty savages sometimes associated with the Vikings in popular culture[who?] is a distorted picture of reality.000 years earlier. Viking helmets were conical. They promoted the use of Norse mythology as the subject of high art and other ethnological and moral aims. made notorious by Paul the Deacon's History. The Vikings were often depicted with winged helmets and in other clothing taken from Classical antiquity. founded in 1811 in Stockholm.[29] .

Björn Ironside. Some modern historians have dubbed him the ‘Emperor of the North’ because of his position as one of the magnates of medieval Europe and as a reflection of the Holy Roman Empire to the south. There is another contender for the discoverer of Iceland: Naddoddr. a 9th c. Hastein. legendary Varangian conquerors of Kiev. Brian Boru. colonizer of Danelaw. king of England and Denmark. was possibly the greatest Viking king. grandfather of Canute the Great. a chieftain who raided in the Mediterranean. and of some of Sweden. "won the whole of Denmark and Norway and turned the Danes to Christianity". Ibn Rustah explicitly notes their cleanliness. Vikings of renown                   Askold and Dir. at Stamford Bridge in an unsuccessful attempt to conquer England in 1066.The Anglo-Danes were considered excessively clean by their Anglo-Saxon neighbours. who according to the Jelling Stones that he had erected. Canute the Great. Freydís Eiríksdóttir. king in Jutland who made peace with Louis the Pious and was possibly the first Viking to be granted Frankish land in exchange for protection. while Ibn Fadlan is disgusted by all of the men sharing the same. the first Nordic settler in the Faeroes. son of Harald Klak and pillager of the Low Countries and northern France. Godfrid. colonizer of Greenland. a Norwegian or Norwegian/Irish Viking who around 825 was. used vessel to wash their faces and blow their noses in the morning. Harald Bluetooth (Harald Gormson). a pillager of the Low Countries and the Rhine area and briefly a lord of Frisia. Ingólfur Arnarson. Guthrum. Eric the Victorious. Only a fraction of the invasion force is thought to have made their escape. Gardar Svavarsson. To this day. and grandson of Harold Bluetooth. Egill Skallagrímsson. the discoverer of Iceland. son of Ragnar Lodbrok. Erik the Red. a king of Sweden whose dynasty is the first known to have ruled as kings of the nation. Ibn Fadlan's disgust is probably motivated by his ideas of personal hygiene particular to the Muslim world. at the same time it recorded that they did wash every morning. originally from Sweden. Grímur Kamban. Harald Hardrada. he was a member of the dynasty that was key to the unification and Christianisation of Denmark. colonizer of Iceland. "washing day" in the Scandinavian languages. Harald Klak (Harald Halfdansson). along with his men. and there is a strong sauna/bathing culture in Scandinavia to this day. Godfrid Haraldsson. As for the Vikings in the east. due to their custom of bathing every Saturday and combing their hair often. Icelandic warrior and skald. pillaged in Italy. a Norwegian king who died. Brodir of Man. Duke of Frisia. according to the Færeyinga Saga. Norway. Father of Sweyn Forkbeard. Saturday is referred to as laugardagur / laurdag / lørdag / lördag. . While the example intended to convey his disgust about the customs of the Rus'. (See also Egils saga). a Norwegian/Faeroese Viking explorer. It is possible he was king of Denmark for a time. a Danish Viking who killed the High King of Ireland. a Viking woman who sailed to Vínland. Icelanders were known to use natural hot springs as baths. such as running water and clean vessels. A son of Sweyn Forkbeard.

Faeroese. ^ a b Roesdahl. 2001 (in Icelandic). Son of Ragnar Lodbrok. introduced Christianity and Norwegian supremacy to the Faeroes in 999. The English king was forced into exile. and England. O. He forced thousands to convert to Christianity. founder of Normandy. as well as founder of Swansea ("Sweyn's island"). ^ a b Johnni Langer. and Sverrir Jakobsson "Hvaðan komu víkingarnir og hvaða áhrif höfðu þeir í öðrum löndum?". a Norwegian/Faeroese Viking explorer. The University of Iceland Science web July 13. *wik. a Faeroese Viking chieftain who. and in late 1013 Sweyn became King of England. published in 1892. king of Denmark. 1030. king of Norway from 995 to 1000. Oleg of Kiev. Viking-r. the Danes under Sweyn led a Viking offensive against the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of England. The University of Iceland Science web December 20. Naddoddr. P . p 25 ISBN 0199271100. Icel. captured Paris. and the Norwegian supremacy of. 2. Skeat. His great great uncle was Canute the Great. though he died early in 1014. 2006. Rollo of Normandy. founder of the Rus' rule in Eastern Europe. *Viking-r. n. Tróndur í Gøtu. a Viking chieftain who. He once burned London Bridge down out of anger because people were disobeying his orders (and this is conjectured to be origin of the children's rhyme "London Bridge is Falling Down"). Ivar the Boneless. Leif Ericsson. according to the Færeyinga Saga. Rorik of Dorestad. Rurik. was opposed to the introduction of Christianity to. bay. the Faeroes. Olaf Tryggvason. Visby (Sweden). the disabled Viking who conquered York. Clarendon press. 4. 9-22. despite having to be carried on a shield. "Hver voru helstu vopn víkinga og hvernig voru þau gerð? Voru þeir mjög bardagaglaðir?". discoverer of Vínland. "The origins of the imaginary viking". Sweyn Forkbeard. dez. The Principles of English Etymology By Walter W. defined Viking: better Wiking. patron saint of Norway. son of Erik the Red. ruler of Normandy and the victor at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. vik. In 1013. founder of Dublin. The University of Iceland Science web April 30. and the former king was brought out of exile to challenge his son. Ragnar Lodbrok. O. ^ The Russian Primary Chronicle: Laurentian Text Translated by O. belonging to Principles of English Etymology By Walter W. a creek. His kingship of England saw the end of the Anglo-Saxon era and the encroachment of continental magnates and the ideals of Christendom. "Er rökrétt að fullyrða að landnámsmenn á Íslandi hafi verið víkingar?". Thorgils (Thorgest). from Icel. St Olaf (Olav Haraldsson). Icel. Icel. Viking Heritage Magazine. a Viking lord of Frisia and nephew of Harald Klak. Skeat. Notes 1. a creek-dweller. according to the Færeyinga Saga. William the Conqueror. and king of Norway from 1015 to approx. Gunnar Karlsson. Gotland University/Centre for Baltic Studies. 5. Page 479 4. Sigmundur Brestisson. 2007.                Ingvar the Far-Travelled. p. led an offensive against Constantinople. ^ The Syntax of Old Norse By Jan Terje Faarlund. the leader of the last great Swedish Viking expedition to pillage the shores of the Caspian Sea. ^ See Gunnar Karlsson. Norway. with suffix -uig-r. 2002 3.

oklati (Sö160).341. see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 19. iursalir (U136G216.. krikum (Ög81A. ^ In the nominative: krikiaR (G216). References . In the accusative: kriki (Sö170). ^ Block. see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 18. iursala (U605†). onklanti (U241). Naval Institute Press. see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 13. ISBN 0140266534 10. G. see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 14. see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 12. eklanti (Sö46. ^ Roger Highfield. kriklontr (U374$). se(r)kl. 2002. Greece also appears as griklanti (U112B). ekla-s (Vs5). ^ iaursaliR (G216). 2003 23. U605. Ög81B. p.(U439). Current Biology.(U616$). 3 Dec 2007. ^ Vikings' Barbaric Bad Rap Beginning to Fade 9.. p. ^ eklans (Vs18$). U446†). ^ The Norse discovery of America 8. ^ The Northern Crusades: Second Edition by Eric ^ The Oxford Illustrated History of the Vikings By Peter Hayes SawyerISBN 0198205260 27. eklati (ÖgFv1950. ISBN 1557502099 21. Vg178. k--ika (U104). U201. 28. ^ James Randerson. krkum (U358).20. see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 17. iklanþs (U539C). ok*lanti (Vg187). ^ Williams. ^ Northern Shores by Alan Palmer. Sö165. Vol. U431). p. In the dative: girkium (U1087†). iklot (N184). by Dale Mackenzie Brown. kRkum (Sö82).-ti (Sm104). ^ The Fate of Greenland's Vikings. 20. kriklati (U540). In the genitive: girkha (U922$). The Guardian..(U785). (2001) How do we know about the Vikings? BBC. 7 December 2004. accessed 16 Nov 2008 22. p. eg×loti (U812). accessed 16 Nov 2008 24. Sm5C. Retrieved 14 November 2007. ^ The Viking Revival By Professor Andrew Wawn at bbc 26.. Leo. iklati (Sm77). Telegraph. 7 Apr 2005.. (Sö281). eklans (Sö83†). akla-. haklati (Sm101). "Vikings who chose a home in Shetland before a life of pillage". see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 15.. (Sö279). -klanti (Sm29$).6. ISBN 0719562996 25. U73.21. ^ Return of Dublin's Viking Warship. krikum (Sm46†. ^ Roesdahl. Capelli et al. "Proof of Liverpool's Viking past". ^ Roesdahl. ^ Karusm (Vs1). enklans (Sö55).22). kr. February 28. May 27. sirk*la(t). To Harness the Wind: A Short History of the Development of Sails. ^ baþum (Sm101). ailati (Ög104). Sö85. 16-22. anklanti (U194). Retrieved 14 November 2007. krikium (Sö163.. Vs9). Uncertain case krik (U1016$Q). onklati (U344). U136). enklanti (DR6C). Retrieved 14 November 2007. sirklanti (Sö131). The Straight Dope. U140). ^ A Y Chromosome Census of the British Isles. 2000 7. i.. 11. U518). 29. ikla-ti (Gs8). 20. Archaeological Institute of America. aklati (Sö166). 13. ^ Did Vikings really wear horns on their helmets?. iklans (Sö207).93. kirikium (SöFv1954. (Sö345$A). ^ lakbarþilanti (SöFv1954. ^ luntunum (DR337$B). kri(k)um (U792).. ki(r)k(i)(u)(m) (Ög94$). see Nordiskt runnamnslexikon PDF 16. iklanti (Vg20). sirk:lan:ti (Sö179). skalat. kirkum (U136). ^ serklat (G216). Sm27).

2006.     Downham.M. 2007. 2007. The Vikings in England: Settlement. Clare. Exploring the World of the Vikings. ISBN 0312013655 Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Viking Age External links        BBC: History of Vikings Encyclopedia Britannica: Viking. Else. Dunedin Academic Press. Thames and Hudson. ISBN 1903765890 Hadley. Peter.. The Vikings. ISBN 0719059828 Hall. 1972.wikipedia. or Norseman. ISBN 9780500051443 Roesdahl. or Varangian (people) Borg Viking museum. Society and" Categories: Vikings | Germanic paganism Hidden categories: Wikipedia semi-protected pages | All articles with unsourced statements | Articles with unsourced statements from November 2007 | Articles with unsourced statements from May 2008 | Articles to be split from September 2008 | All articles to be split | Articles with unsourced statements from July 2009 | All pages needing cleanup | Articles with specifically-marked weasel-worded phrases from September 2008 Views     Article Discussion View source History Personal tools  Log in / create account Navigation    Main page Contents Featured content . Viking Kings of Britain and Ireland: The Dynasty of Ívarr to AD 1014. ISBN 0140252827 Sawyer. Norway Ibn Fadlan and the Rusiyyah. by James E. 1998. Montgomery. Penguin. with full translation of Ibn Fadlan Reassessing what we collect website – Viking and Danish London History of Viking and Danish London with objects and images The Viking Answer Lady Webpage The Viking Rune: All Things Norse and Germanic Retrieved from "http://en. Richard. or Northman. The Age of the Vikings (second edition) Palgrave Macmillan. D. Manchester University Press.

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