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Modern Representation of a Varangian Guard.

Varangian Guard: Bodyguards and Berserkers of the Byzantine Empire

Read Part 1 The tale of the Varangians continues in its prime in the form of the Varangian Guard, a prominent and selective Byzantine army arising in the 10th century. Composed of the Scandinavian...
Trove of ancient Viking coins recovered. Source: bukhta79 / Adobe.

Illegal Viking Coin Hoard Worth £500,000 Threatens To Rewrite English History

A hoard of Viking coins worth at least half a million British pounds has been recovered by police investigating the illegal trade of historic treasures and they tell a completely different story of...
Viking berserker

Viking Berserkers – Fierce Warriors or Drug-Fuelled Madmen?

Today, the word ‘berserk’ is used to describe anyone in an irrational, agitated state of mind who cannot or does not control his or her actions. The meaning of the word originates with the Viking...
Discovery of Viking shipwreck studied by experts.

Secrets of 829-Year-Old Post-Viking-Era Shipwreck Revealed

During the extension of the seaport of Wismar in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany, archaeologists discovered a number of shipwrecks . One of them, the last to be discovered, was resting in only...
Ragnar Lothbrok

Ragnar Lothbrok: A Real Viking Hero Whose Life Became Lost to Legend

Ragnar Lothbrok was a fearless Viking hero who ransacked England and France and fathered the Great Heathen Army. However the historicity of the man with “hairy breeches” is subject to debate. Where...
Vikings Heading for Land’ 1873 by Frank Dicksee (1853–1928).

Viking Blots, Beserkers and Barbaric Blood Eagles

Famed for their ruthless fighting skills and brave exploring little is written about Viking religion and their day to day ritual practices which were arguably a more central component in Norse...
Ivar the Boneless

Ivar the Boneless: Viking Warrior, Ruler and Raider

One would expect "boneless" to describe a man without a lick of bravery. Or perhaps a man without a shred of compassion in a heart of ice. Yet in the case of the infamous Ivar the Boneless, son of...
Left - Alfred the Great, painting in the Bodleian Gallery. Right - Alfred the Great at the Battle of Ashdown.

Why was Alfred the Great One of Only Two Kings Named ‘Great’ in English History?

Alfred the Great was the first king of the Anglo-Saxons and one of only two English rulers to have been given the epithet ‘the Great’. He may have earned this title in part by defending his kingdom...
Some of the Viking raids ended in death – for the Vikings.

Vikings in Ireland: Recent Discoveries Shedding New Light on the Fearsome Warriors that Invaded Irish Shores

As science progresses and archaeologists are forging new positive relationships with developers around Irish heritage, more secrets from Ireland’s Viking past are coming to light, and they are not...
Crazy Viking face (khosrork / Adobe Stock)

Eight Harsh But Hilarious Viking Nick Names and How They Came About

Before surnames became commonplace, a method was needed to differentiate between two or more people with the same name. Many surnames in the English language today are a result of this - John Smith,...
Formidable Viking in Armor with axe.

Ragnar Shaggy-Trousers and Eystein Foul-Fart: The Truth Behind Viking Names

Vikings are pretty trendy of late. Marvel’s Thor films, for example, gave Viking mythology the Hollywood treatment and plonked its characters in contemporary America. There have been multiple Viking...
The Slave Trade by Auguste-Francois Biard, (1840). As of June 2007 it hangs at the entrance to the "From Slavery to Freedom" exhibit at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Arthur St. Clair the Viking Descendant and Abolitionist Who Fought For America

The man who instigated the abolition of slavery in North America was born on March 23, 1734, in Thurso, a small fishing village on the north-east coast of Scotland. Arthur St. Clair would live a life...
Modern Icelandic horses are probably descendants from the horses that were buried by Viking.

Archaeologists Prove That Vikings Rode ‘Stallions’ Rather Than Mares, Especially into The Afterlife

More so than females, the male Norse explorers who took residence in Iceland more than 1,000 years were buried with their horses and new DNA evidence proves that the horses slaughtered to accompany...
On Left - Miniature of Egbert, first king of England. On Right Top - Coin of King Egbert of Wessex. On Right Bottom - The entry for 827 in the C manuscript of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle listing the territories he brought together to unite England.  Source: Left, Public Domain; Right Top, Public Domain; Right Bottom, Public Domain.

King Egbert of Wessex Conquers all to Become Bretwalda, the First King of a United England

King Egbert, later designated the first king of England, began his reign in the 9 th century, when England was fragmented into multiple small kingdoms and under attack by Norsemen. He was one of the...
A row of turf houses in Iceland.

Hidden in the Landscape: The Unique Architectural Heritage of Icelandic Turf Houses

Turf houses are a distinctive type of dwelling found in Iceland with origins dating back to the 9 th century AD, which are attributed to the country’s Nordic settlers. The development of turf houses...
Elfdalian, the Ancient Viking Forest

Elfdalian, the Ancient Viking Forest Language of Sweden, Set to be Revived

The ancient Viking language of Elfdalian has been almost entirely wiped out, with an estimate of only 3,000 people in a tiny forest community in Sweden currently keeping it alive. Now, people fight...

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