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View Poll Results: Are Vikings Over-Romanticized?

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Thread: Are Vikings overrated?

  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    Did you ever find any references of Vikings in Island of Volin (Wolin), between current Poland and Germany.
    Yes of course Jomsburg, Joms-Wikinger

    J B Burry - Cambridge Medival History
    According to Iomsvikinga-saga, in the vicinity of the Slav sea and commercial town Volin (Slav), Winetha (Saxon), Iulin or Iumin (Danish), mentioned by Ibrahim and the German chroniclers, the Iomsburg, a sea fort, was built by Danish pirates about 970, and according to Orderic Vitalis (b. 1075) the German gods Wodan, Thor, and Frigg were worshipped in a district of the Lyutitzi at the mouth of the Oder.

    I have to check it up, but remember that the Joms-Vikings were saved? by a Polish King (pos. Boleslaw Chrobry) and part of the Joms nobility was Slavic; But Jomsburg is still very Mysterious;

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    It's interesting that we are all watching the same television series, almost as soon as it was released. U.S., Canada, and Ireland by the looks of it. Maybe many other countries also?

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    I don't think their braveness is up for discussion, they were clearly pretty badass. What some people seem to be bothered by is that their have been many tough people in history eg. Celts, Germanic peoples, Slavic tribes. I'm just wondering is there something about them that made them stand out so much more than the others (Just trying to keep the discussion going).

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    Combination of strength, intelligence, speed, classic "look".

    Some of the same reasons why the 1968 Ford Mustang is the ultimate muscle car. Some things rise to the top. Difficult to explain at times.

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    I don't think that the Vikings are overrated, quite the contrary. Their seamanship and international trade alone makes them one of the most influential groups in early medieval times. There is no doubt that Vikings were the first Europeans to reach North America, and if they can be believed, there are stories of them possibly reaching north eastern Australia, and looking at maps of the time, that is a possibility waiting to be proven.

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    Quote Originally Posted by toyomotor View Post
    I don't think that the Vikings are overrated, quite the contrary. Their seamanship and international trade alone makes them one of the most influential groups in early medieval times. There is no doubt that Vikings were the first Europeans to reach North America, and if they can be believed, there are stories of them possibly reaching north eastern Australia, and looking at maps of the time, that is a possibility waiting to be proven.
    This is true and there's no question to your claim, but some people seem to be more fascinated at the warrior aspect with the "horned helmets" (they didn't use those) and battle axe (often not used either), but why were they given these stereotypes, there must be a reason why it was them and not another group of people don't you think?

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    If they were seen as great sea farers and tradesmen. Or that they made very good ships and craftsmen and discovered many new settlements, then that would be fine and the fact that they were awesome warriors was a bonus. But there seems to be so much fixation on them as warriors that gets me that I feel other people throughout history acted similar but don't get the same recognition.

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    Possibly, if you're referencing Vikings, which is a Canadian show I believe filmed in Ireland, so it would make sense to be released there. America gets most shows, and GoT plays anywhere with HBO. Depends on the relevance of the genre to the area. Vikings in the British Isles I'm sure they're interested by it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nobody1 View Post
    Yes of course Jomsburg, Joms-Wikinger

    J B Burry - Cambridge Medival History
    According to Iomsvikinga-saga, in the vicinity of the Slav sea and commercial town Volin (Slav), Winetha (Saxon), Iulin or Iumin (Danish), mentioned by Ibrahim and the German chroniclers, the Iomsburg, a sea fort, was built by Danish pirates about 970, and according to Orderic Vitalis (b. 1075) the German gods Wodan, Thor, and Frigg were worshipped in a district of the Lyutitzi at the mouth of the Oder.

    I have to check it up, but remember that the Joms-Vikings were saved? by a Polish King (pos. Boleslaw Chrobry) and part of the Joms nobility was Slavic; But Jomsburg is still very Mysterious;
    Not much about this in polish history, just picked up on it recently. I think it was a particular combination of Slavs and Vikings in this area.
    They also found this dated 10th century.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolin
    It looks more like Swiatowit, the Slavic deity than Thor or Wodan. Perhaps is from pre Viking era.
    Nevertheless very interesting twist in history, at least for me.
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

  10. #35
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    Viking migrations were surprisingly extensive into Eastern Europe. Just on he top of Poland it seems and pretty well all the way down if you go more east 793px-Viking_Expansion.svg.jpg

  11. #36
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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Balder View Post
    I think its supposed over-romantization today is due to the impact left by some nationalist English historians of Victorian era when they rediscovered the Icelandic sagas and (which idolized them as 'supernatural- warriors' in literature)..
    But why do you, a Portuguese, care about it, a thing too distant for you? Such one worshipping sounds harmless to me.
    curious remark of you, no?
    why a stranger would not have some interest in other ethnic groups or in other countries history? everybody would have only right to question his own origins and nothing else?
    no offense, of course...

    concerning Vikings, I think they showed a very good sense of trade, political strength rapports and organization sense too, without speaking about their physical courage...

  12. #37
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    I'm just wondering is there something about them that made them stand out so much more than the others (Just trying to keep the discussion going).
    Perhaps their higher percentage of paleolithic European blood gave them higher testosterone, a larger frame, bigger bones, larger muscles, etc.

  13. #38
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    Overrated...probably not...over-popularized...definitely.
    'Wise men speak only of what they know' - J.R.R. Tolkien

  14. #39
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    Overrated yes defintaley, but that started by 19th century nordic romanticists.

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    Viking overrated?!?!? Try one Mr Christopher Columbus

    Viking in America



  16. #41
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    I was looking for a thread to put my "egg":
    maybe this post could be transferred to a genetic one? but it concerns history too and the place made to Vikings in Britain
    this is a Britain DNA map (up to date I think, and through their methods - the post I received was not too precise (commercial approach) but I think the results are based upon autosomals (what discrimination criteria? I don't know) because the Y-HGs distribution are different in Scotland where Hebrides Islands had more Viking male than female when Orkney Shetland had a more equilibrated "package")

    just for information (if it is valuable)

  17. #42
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    Shetland 29,2%
    Orkney 25,2%
    N Highlands Caithness 17,5%
    NW Hebrides Skye Lewis 11,3%
    E Hebrides NW Highlands 9,9%
    W Highlands Argyle 5,8%
    NE Grampians 4,9%
    C + CE Scotland Aberdeen 2,2%
    SW Scotland Ayr Galloway... 3,2%
    SE Scotland Edinburgh 2,7%


    N + NW England 4,0%
    Yorks 5,6%
    East Anglia 3,6%
    C CW England 2,6%
    W + SW England + Cornwall 1,6%
    SE England 1,9%


    Wales 1,0%


    Uslter 1,4%
    Connaught 1,2%
    Munster 1,3%
    Leinster 1,0%

    Caithness, Zetland and Orkney are considered as equilibrated concerning males and female Vikings
    Hebrides are considered as having known almost only male Vikings
    as a whole these estimations seem sensible
    skaal!!!

  18. #43
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    I think in some places they are overrated.

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    The R1b Vikings were definitely over-rated, IMO. However, the proper I1 Vikings were, if anything, under-rated.

    Seriously though, I doubt it's possible to over-rate the Vikings. They founded the Russian monarchy, served as soldiers in Byzantium and conquered large parts of Europe. They ruled England briefly, under King Canute, and held the Danegeld for centuries. And they conquered Ireland and ruled it for a time until the Celts defeated them at Clontarf. People in large parts of western Europe used to regularly pray "From the fury of the Northmen, oh Lord, deliver us!"

    As for the modern over-popularization, with the fake horned helmets, I think that came about because much of western Europe had been fascinated with Vikings for centuries. When the Victorians discovered those old tales about the ferocious Vikings, the last wave of Pagan warriors to be unleashed on the farming population of Europe, it made for a good story, one that would have been undercut if the story tellers had presented a more balanced version of events that discussed the skill of the Northmen as traders and settlers. So 19th century Europe, especially the English, romanticized the more brutal aspect of Viking culture, and those stories were just sitting there waiting for Hollywood to exploit. I once watched a very bad American "Viking" movie that featured Eric the Red being played by someone with a thick Texan accent. Hilarious.

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    I notice that the poll actually asked whether Vikings are over-romanticized. I voted yes to that, but it doesn't mean I think Vikings are over-rated, which is what is asked in the title of the thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    They founded the Russian monarchy, served as soldiers in Byzantium...
    Where the hell did you get this BS? For a while all tested memebers of Rurik clan have only clades typical for Eastern Europe and Southern Baltic. Y-dna clades typical for Scandinavia are very very scarce in Russia and other Eastern European countries and in opposite we have a lot of Y-dna haplos typical for Eastern Europe in Scandinavia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GloomyGonzales View Post
    Where the hell did you get this BS? For a while all tested memebers of Rurik clan have only clades typical for Eastern Europe and Southern Baltic. Y-dna clades typical for Scandinavia are very very scarce in Russia and other Eastern European countries and in opposite we have a lot of Y-dna haplos typical for Eastern Europe in Scandinavia.
    Here are a few excerpts from a Wikipedia entry about the origins of Russia. Yah, I know, Wikipedia. But it matches what I've read in actual history books.

    The Rus' (Slavic: Русь; Greek: Ῥῶς) — ancient people who gave their name to the lands of Russia and Belarus. Their origin and identity are much in dispute. Russian scholars, along with some Westerners, consider the Rus to be a southeastern Slavic tribe that founded a tribal league - the Kievan state. Ibn Khordadbeh, a Persian geographer of the 9th century also believed the Rus people are Slavic. Traditional Western scholars believe them to be a group of Varangians — diverse groups of Norsemen.[1][2][3][4] According to the Primary Chronicle of Rus', compiled in about 1113 AD, the Rus' had relocated "from over sea", first to northeastern Europe, creating an early polity that finally came under the leadership of Rurik. Later, Rurik's relative Oleg captured Kiev, founding Kievan Rus'.[5][6] The descendants of Rurik were the ruling dynasty of Rus' (after 862), and of principalities created in the area formerly occupied by Kievan Rus', Galicia-Volhynia (after 1199), Chernigov, Vladimir-Suzdal, Grand Duchy of Moscow, and the founders of the Tsardom of Russia.[7]


    According to the most prevalent theory, the name Rus', like the Finnish name for Sweden (Ruotsi), is derived from an Old Norse term for "the men who row" (rods-) as rowing was the main method of navigating the rivers of Eastern Europe, and that it could be linked to the Swedish coastal area of Roslagen (Rus-law) or Roden, as it was known in earlier times.[1][8][9] The name Rus' would then have the same origin as the Finnish and Estonian names for Sweden: Ruotsi and Rootsi.[1]


    Having settled Aldeigja (Ladoga) in the 750s, Scandinavian colonists played an important role in the early ethnogenesis of the Rus' people and in the formation of the Rus' Khaganate. The Varangians (Varyags, in Old East Slavic) are first mentioned by the Primary Chronicle as having exacted tribute from the Slavic and Finnic tribes in 859. It was the time of rapid expansion of the Vikings in Northern Europe; England began to pay Danegeld in 859, and the Curonians of Grobin faced an invasion by the Swedes at about the same date.
    Due largely to geographic considerations, it is often argued that most of the Varangians who traveled and settled in the eastern Baltic, Russia and lands to the south came from the area of modern Sweden .[16]
    The Varangians left a number of rune stones in their native Sweden that tell of their journeys to what is today Russia, Ukraine, Greece, and Belarus. Most of these rune stones can be seen today, and are a telling piece of historical evidence. The Varangian runestones tell of many notable Varangian expeditions, and even account for the fates of individual warriors and travelers.
    The Vikings allegedly had some enduring influence in Rus, as testified by loan words (these ones persist from Glagolitic script at Adriatic prior and out of any Vikings), such as yabeda "complaining person" (from æmbætti, embætti "office"), skot [17] "cattle" (? from skattr "tax") and knout (from knútr, "a knotty wood").[citation needed] Moreover three Nordic names of the first Varangian rulers also became popular among the later Rurikids and then among the East Slavic people in general: Oleg (Helgi), Olga (Helga) and Igor (Ingvar).

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    The R1b Vikings were definitely over-rated, IMO. However, the proper I1 Vikings were, if anything, under-rated.

    Seriously though, I doubt it's possible to over-rate the Vikings. They founded the Russian monarchy, served as soldiers in Byzantium and conquered large parts of Europe. They ruled England briefly, under King Canute, and held the Danegeld for centuries. And they conquered Ireland and ruled it for a time until the Celts defeated them at Clontarf. People in large parts of western Europe used to regularly pray "From the fury of the Northmen, oh Lord, deliver us!"

    As for the modern over-popularization, with the fake horned helmets, I think that came about because much of western Europe had been fascinated with Vikings for centuries. When the Victorians discovered those old tales about the ferocious Vikings, the last wave of Pagan warriors to be unleashed on the farming population of Europe, it made for a good story, one that would have been undercut if the story tellers had presented a more balanced version of events that discussed the skill of the Northmen as traders and settlers. So 19th century Europe, especially the English, romanticized the more brutal aspect of Viking culture, and those stories were just sitting there waiting for Hollywood to exploit. I once watched a very bad American "Viking" movie that featured Eric the Red being played by someone with a thick Texan accent. Hilarious.
    Well according to genetic testing those people who founded Russia were rather Scandinavians - non -viking people.
    You can see that is plenty of Scandinavian admixture in average Russian,but paternal lines from Russia,compared to Scandinavia,are not that closed,instead,the paternal lines from Russia are closed to Baltic countries.
    I do not think all Scandinavians who were good fighters were vikings,I think rather the people from the Western Coast of Scandinavia were Vikings.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by mihaitzateo View Post
    Well according to genetic testing those people who founded Russia were rather Scandinavians - non -viking people.
    You can see that is plenty of Scandinavian admixture in average Russian,but paternal lines from Russia,compared to Scandinavia,are not that closed,instead,the paternal lines from Russia are closed to Baltic countries.
    I do not think all Scandinavians who were good fighters were vikings,I think rather the people from the Western Coast of Scandinavia were Vikings.
    But arent those genetic testings based on two Russian brothers (of nobility) that simply claim direct descent/lineage from Rurik? The way i understood it is that their Y-DNA Hg is thus taken as representative for Rurik and the Varangians/Rus'; Now i seriously have my doubts whether these brothers are actual (let alone direct) descendants of Rurik to begin with; Data from actual Varangians/Rus' need to be obtained for a proper picture;

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by mihaitzateo View Post
    Well according to genetic testing those people who founded Russia were rather Scandinavians - non -viking people.
    You can see that is plenty of Scandinavian admixture in average Russian,but paternal lines from Russia,compared to Scandinavia,are not that closed,instead,the paternal lines from Russia are closed to Baltic countries.
    I do not think all Scandinavians who were good fighters were vikings,I think rather the people from the Western Coast of Scandinavia were Vikings.
    I'm going to once more commit the cardinal sin of using Wikipedia as a reference, simply because the passage I'm going to quote accords with what I've read on the subject and I can't be bothered to comb through my own library or go to the university library to look for a suitable quote from a more credible source. But, basically, the Swedes who travelled afar to trade and raid were vikings.

    "The Swedish Viking Age lasted roughly between the 8th and 11th centuries. It is believed that Swedish Vikings and Gutar mainly travelled east and south, going to Finland, the Baltic countries, Russia, Belarus,Ukraine, the Black Sea and further as far as Baghdad. Their routes passed through the Dnieper south to Constantinople, on which they carried out numerous raids. The Byzantine Emperor Theophilos noticed their great skills in war, and invited them to serve as his personal bodyguard, known as the Varangian Guard. The Swedish Vikings, called Rus are believed to be the founding fathers of Kievan Rus'. The Arab traveller Ibn Fadlan described these Vikings as follows:
    I have seen the Rus as they came on their merchant journeys and encamped by the Itil. I have never seen more perfect physical specimens, tall as date palms, blond and ruddy; they wear neither tunics nor caftans, but the men wear a garment which covers one side of the body and leaves a hand free. Each man has an axe, a sword, and a knife, and keeps each by him at all times. The swords are broad and grooved, of Frankish sort.[25]
    The adventures of these Swedish Vikings are commemorated on many runestones in Sweden, such as the Greece Runestones and the Varangian Runestones. There was also considerable participation in expeditions westwards, which are commemorated on stones such as the England Runestones. The last major Swedish Viking expedition appears to have been the ill-fated expedition of Ingvar the Far-Travelledto Serkland, the region south-east of the Caspian Sea. Its members are commemorated on the Ingvar Runestones, none of which mentions any survivor. What happened to the crew is unknown, but it is believed that they died of sickness.

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