The Vikings

Articles on the culture, history, and peoples of the Viking Age


Viking Occupations: What Did Vikings Do When They Weren’t Raiding?

Viking Occupations: What Did Vikings Do When They Weren’t Raiding?

Our modern-day conception of the Vikings is of groups of fearsome warriors out for plunder. Taking ship, they’d sail for the nearest unprotected town or monastery and there overcome any resisters, killing and looting. They’d take everything of value—including people....
Viking Law and Government: The Thing

Viking Law and Government: The Thing

For more information on counter-intuitive facts of ancient and medieval history, see Anthony Esolen’s The Politically Incorrect Guide to Western Civilization.   During the Viking Age, the Norse had an oral culture and only rune writing existed....

Viking Society: Nobles, Freemen, Slaves

In the early Viking Age, no national kings existed. There were three broad social classes: the nobles or jarls, the middle class or karls and the slaves or thralls. As the Viking Age progressed, power began to centralize in the hands of a few strong leaders, who...
Viking Games and Entertainment: Life Wasn’t all Work

Viking Games and Entertainment: Life Wasn’t all Work

While Vikings worked hard, they also played hard. From grave goods and the sagas, we learn that Vikings played board games avidly, carved wooden dolls and toys for their children, played dice and gambled and played rough sports at their feasts and gatherings. The...
Life on a Viking Farm

Life on a Viking Farm

Life on a farm during the Viking Age required lots of hard, constant work. Most Viking farms raised enough crops and animals to sustain everyone who lived on the farm, human and animal. Most Vikings were farmers, even if they also traded or fished part of the time....
The Viking Longhouse: A Crowded, Cozy Home

The Viking Longhouse: A Crowded, Cozy Home

Vikings lived in a long, narrow building called a longhouse. Most had timber frames, with walls of wattle and daub and thatched roofs. Where wood was scarce, as in Iceland, longhouses were made of turf and sod. Two rows of high posts supported the roof and ran down...
Viking Clothing: Warm and Durable

Viking Clothing: Warm and Durable

Very little fabric survives 1,000 years, but surprisingly, some has. What we know of Viking clothing comes from archeological finds, although we also glean some clothing descriptions from the sagas. Vikings all wore the same basic clothing styles: for men, a thick...

ads middle 2

place ad here
A Viking Feast

A Viking Feast

Vikings held feasts for a variety of reasons including seasonal feasts such as Winter Nights and Jul, harvest festivals such as Mabon, religious rituals and for more personal reasons such as a wedding or a celebration of a successful raiding voyage. Religion among the...
What Did Vikings Eat?

What Did Vikings Eat?

For more information on counter-intuitive facts of ancient and medieval history, see Anthony Esolen’s The Politically Incorrect Guide to Western Civilization.   The Vikings farmed crops, grew gardens and raised animals. They ate what they produced...
Why Did the Viking Age Happen?

Why Did the Viking Age Happen?

While the Vikings had the runic alphabet, they didn’t have written history. Thus, we don’t know exactly why the Vikings began raiding in A.D. 793. Scholars have many theories about the reasons why the Scandinavians began leaving home on extensive raids, trading...
Page 3 of 4
1 2 3 4