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The Vikings’ Astonishing Story

We may imagine the Vikings as simple pirates who plundered their way across Europe. But they were a wealthy culture of fine craftsmen, weavers, farmers, sailors, and merchants.  Their trade networks stretched east to exotic Byzantium and as far as China.  Silks from the Far East, coins from Arabia, and glass beads from the Caliphate have been discovered in ancient Viking villages.

Exquisite Longships were used to bury kings and chieftains. Runestones were carved with Celtic symbols. Their culture was rich in mythology.  One story, The Curse of Andvari’s Ring, was an epic that inspired Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. A host of gods and goddesses presided over natural events—when converted to Christianity they were often buried with a cross and the hammer of Thor. These are the ancestors of today’s Scandinavians. Immerse yourself in their world of nature’s wonderment.