Vikings existed between the years 800 and 1050 AD in modern-day Denmark, Norway, and Sweden.
Today, Vikings are part of popular culture with various TV shows and movies portraying these fierce warriors. But are these elections accurate?
Read on for 5 surprising Viking facts.
1. Vikings Loved to Ski
People tend to think of Vikings are running into battle and raiding unsuspecting towns. While that is true to an extent, it’s also true that Vikings used skis as a main source of transportation.
Think about it. Scandinavia winters are snowy. It makes sense that they would turn to skiing as both transportation and recreation.
In fact, Viking royals held skiing competitions and gave out prizes to the winner.
Skiing also made its way into their mythology. Thor’s stepson, the god named Ullr was the god of skiing, hunting, and bow and shield.
2. Women’s Rights Were a Thing
This is one of those Vikings facts that is sure to surprise people.
Viking women had almost equal rights as Viking men. They could get a divorce, buy and manage lands, and go on explorations in long-boats if they chose.
Though the Viking society was dominated by big, burly men, women certainly had more freedom than their European counterparts.
Viking women could be traders, warriors, or farmers. Also, if a marriage wasn’t working out, a female could get back some of her dowry and keep it.
Certainly, this was leagues more advanced than other societies of the time.
3. Vikings Named Their Weapons
Nowadays people name their cars, so it shouldn’t come as a big shock that Vikings named their weapons.
It’s true. The Vikings were in the habit of giving names to their axes, swords, and other weapons. This was especially true of unique and well-made weaponry.
Swords that did well in battle could also earn a name. Such is the case for the swords Brynjubítr and Gullin Hjalti. They earned the names “Mail-Biter” and “Golden-Hilt”.
Why did they name weapons, you ask? Scholars don’t know for sure but it likely has to do with the important roles weapons played in Viking society.
Not only warriors but all men were required to be armed to protect themselves, their families, and their land.
If you love the idea of naming a weapon, look for a viking axe for sale and pick a suitable Norse name for it.
4. Vikings Travelled Further Than You Think
People commonly believe that Vikings traveled by long-boat across the British Isles and Europe.
Yet, researchers have found evidence that Vikings actually traveled as far as North Africa, Israel, and North America.
In fact, it is said that Vikings discovered America long before Columbus.
5. Vikings Weren’t One Unified Group
Modern people lump the Vikings as one group of people like Romans or Greeks. But the truth is that the Vikings were not a unified people.
Vikings lived in tribes led by chiefs. These tribes fought against each other for territory and other commodities.
Now You Know 5 Viking Facts
There you go! 5 fascinating Viking facts to add to your memory bank. Now you’ll just have to find ways to bring up Vikings in order to show off your newfound knowledge to your friends.
Come back again soon for more interesting articles.