Vikings Historian's View
Discover more about the history and legends that inspired VIKINGS.
From around A.D. 800 to the 11th century, a vast number of Scandinavians left their homelands to seek their fortunes elsewhere. These seafaring warriors–known collectively as Vikings or Norsemen (“Northmen”)–began by raiding coastal sites, especially undefended monasteries, in the British Isles. Over the next three centuries, they would leave their mark as pirates, raiders, traders and settlers on much of Britain and the European continent, as well as parts of modern-day Russia, Iceland, Greenland and Newfoundland. Read More
Crusading to JerusalemUshered in with raids on Christian monasteries, the Viking Age came to an unlikely close centuries later. Read More
The Raiding of IrelandIreland has always been an enigmatic land, and it was no different for the Vikings who attempted to conquer it. Read More
To the Gates of ParisThere was nothing romantic about the Vikings’ visits to Paris in the 9th century, but their journeys transformed an island market town into the capital of France. Read More
The Quest for ConstantinopleThe Vikings coveted Constantinople but could never breach its walls. Only by becoming the personal bodyguards of the Byzantine emperor did the Nordic warriors grab a piece of its wealth. Read More
Viking Boat Burial Reveals its SecretsArchaeologists have provided a glimpse into some of the mysteries a rare Viking burial reveals. Read More
Navigational Tool FoundA discovery from the wreckage of a 16th-century ship may finally prove that legendary “sunstones” really existed. Read More
Viking-Era Ring UnearthedA court announced its ruling that the discovery of a metal bracelet was in fact a rare artifact--a Viking arm ring from the 10th century. Read More
Hiker Discovers 1,200-Year-Old Viking SwordViking sword blade dating back more than 1,200 years was found in Norway. Read More
Chief Buried in Boat FoundThe first intact Viking boat burial site to be found on the British mainland was discovered recently in Scotland. Read More
The name Viking came from the Scandinavians themselves, from the Old Norse word "vik" (bay or creek) which formed the root of "vikingr" (pirate).