MAP The age of the Vikings started around the 8th century and it lasted for 300 years. Their homeland was Scandinavia, which is modern day Norway, Sweden and Denmark. They slowly migrate from their homeland to England and Scotland and begin to settle there.
BACKGROUNDThe Vikings came from Denmark, Sweden,and Norway. These three countries werecalled the Scandinavia.The age of the Vikings was around AD700 to 1100. During this time, manyVikings left Scandinavia, and migrate toEngland, Scotland, and countries that theyexplored by using their longships. SomeVikings settle in new lands as farmers,craftsmen, and traders, but some raid andsteal treasure from the shores of NorthernEurope. The Vikings used their longshipsto travel as far as Constantinople, whichwas amazing because the capital of theEastern Roman Empire is at the other sideof Europe. They also traveled toGreenland, North America, and Iceland.They were outstanding warriors, soNorthern Europe cannot stop them fromraiding their treasure.
SOCIAL STRUCTUREOn the top of the Viking’s society, therewas a small group of nobles or Jarls.Archaeologist believed that their physicalappearance was stronger and taller thanpeople in other level of the society. Whenthere was war, the power of the Jarls wasraising, and they commanded the armies,control the raid parties overseas. In themiddle were the karls, which was thelargest group, and was made up offarmers, craftsmen, merchants andtraders. These people had the rights toown and equip weapons. In the bottom ofthe vikings society, there was slaves thatwere called ”Thralls”, they had no rightsand unable to carry arms. They did all thelabouring and heavy lifting. Most of themwere taken captives as prisoners fromraiding, and they were sold by themerchants.
HOUSING Many houses of the Vikings were set up as small farm buildings, and the Vikings and their animals lived together in it. The houses of the Vikings were called “Longhouses” because they were wider in the middle than at the end. A normal Viking house was built out of wood, wattle, stone and turf, but mostly they used wood as their preferred material to build their houses. A Typical Viking house have only one room with a fire in the middle, and all activities would take place around the fire. A thatched roof is built on top of the house with a hole to let smoke out. Most Vikings built a bench around the inner walls, and put animal skins or furs on it for sitting and sleeping. Wealthier Vikings have much bigger houses which consist more than one room, and they build up a second level rather than restricting themselves to one floor designs.
FOOD The Vikings usually ate two meals a day instead of three. They ate bread, buttermilk, and porridge in the morning and since they don’t eat lunch, they have a large, meat- based dinner in the evening with huge amounts of beer. Even though it is a meat-based dinner, the Vikings stays healthy by putting vegetables such as beans, peas, carrots, and turnips. In Scandinavia, most of the meat came from far animals such as cows, wild animals like reindeers. The Vikings in other areas adopt the local environment and hunted for other animals. The Vikings also ate cheese, a variety of fruits, nuts, and many other food that they find in the wild.
FAMILY LIFEViking men were in charge of the family.Almost every Viking men werehandymen, and some have special skillssuch as boat builders, potters, leatherworkers and smiths. Every Viking menmust knew how to handle a boat andfight to protect their family for help theirchief. Women baked bread, milked cow,made cheese, and cook meals for theirfamilies . They also span and weaved toturn wool in to clothing for their family.,and looked after the children. Thechildren did not go to school, they helptheir parents’ work, but they still learnedViking’s history, religion and law fromtheir parents. The information waspassed down in spoken tales, not books..When the children is 15 or 16 years old,they were adults, and they wereexpected to have every skill that every
MARRIAGEViking girls were married when theywere 12 to 15 years old, so they mustknew how to run the household as theyreach the age of marriage. Themarriage was agreed between the bothfamilies and the Vikings looked at thismarriage as an alliance for protectionand help. The girl did not have muchright to choose her own husband. Thegirl brought clothe of linen and wool, aspinning wheel, a loom, and a bed asher contribution to this marriage.Women that came from rich families her husband’s family, she still was a partbrought also gold or silver jewels, some of her own family, so if her husbandfarm animals, a part of a farm or even a treated her very badly and didn’t run thewhole farm. All these dowry that the girl farm well, the woman could call anbrought were still her belongings, not divorce. To get a divorce, the womanher husband’s, and then her children need to have a couple witnesses overinherit her dowry after she died. The and declared divorce in front of thewoman did not become a member of couple’s bed.
CHILDHOODViking children had to work along with their parents, so their childhood was very differentthan children in modern days. They don’t go to schools, but they learned Vikings history,religion and Before Viking boys reached five years old , they were raised by theirparents and grandparents. As they got past the age of five, they were sent to a uncle ora respected community member to learn skills that a Viking man should have. As thenext five or so years past, these boys every skill that a Viking man required, how to plantand care for crops, raise farm animals, how to fight using swords, spears, and axes. TheVikings were superb boat builders and every man was expected to build longships reallywell, so the boys must learn this skill. Viking girls stayed at home and learned how to runthe household from their mothers or grandmothers. They must knew how to cook mealsfor the family, and make yarn from wool to weave clothes. The girls were taught to tendfarm animals because their husbands often left their household to go trading and raiding.By 15 or 16 years old, Viking children turned into adults.
EDUCATION Since Viking children did not go to school, they learned the skills, traditions, religion, history, and laws of the Vikings from their parents’ tales and stories that were passed down from generation to generation. Viking boys learned how to fight, run the farm, and build boats. The girls were taught to run the house hold, prepare meals, and weave clothes.
RELIGIONThe Vikings believed in an old religion that had lots ofdifferent gods and goddesses like the Romans andGreeks. These gods only have little impact on the Vikings’daily life, the Vikings behaviour, and almost every thingthey did were based on a code of honor or ethics. Thegods each had their own personalities like human beings.People believed if they treated these gods well, theywould helped them fight against evil forces or spirits. Totreat the gods well, the Vikings made sacrifices called“Blot”, these sacrifices were mostly animals. The Vikingsoften worshipped their gods in open air, so they built thetemples called “Hov” in wild landscapes. The three maingods were Odin, Thor and Frey. Odin was the god ofwisdom and war and the ruler of the gods, and the Thor FreyVikings believed this god had many strange super powers.Thor was the strongest in all the gods and he was thegod of thunder and his weapon was a magic hammercalled Mjollnir, which was a powerful thunderbolt. Freywas the god of weather, generation, and fertility. Whenthe Vikings were married, they prayed to Frey to givethem many children. The Vikings slowly turned intoChristians around 1000 A.D because of the influence ofChristians in the lands they Conquered. But they did nottotally changed to Christians, they still kept some of their Odin
CLOTHING The Viking used wool and linen to make their clothes. These clothing were spun and weaved by the women, and they dye the clothes with mineral and plant dyes of red, green, brown, yellow, blue…… Viking men put on a long woolen shirt and cloth trousers that were held up by a drawstring. A three-quarter coat was worn on top. For footwear, the Vikings wore soft leather shoes or long leather boots. They wore mail-chains and iron helmets for battle. As for women, They wore a long, plain linen dress, and a woolen tunic like a apron on top of the dress. A typical Viking woman would also wear a shawl over the tunic. For footwear, the women wore soft leather shoes with woolly socks. In freezing weather, the Vikings wore fur or woolen hats and cloaks that were fasten by a pin.
ART AND MUSIC Viking artists were known of their woodcarving and beautiful ornaments of gild and silver. There are 3 styles of Viking art: Jellinge, Ringerike, Urnes. Each have very different styles of drawing. Ornament Music of the Vikings was passed down by mouth , so it changed from time to time. Archaeologists have found a variety of instruments in Viking times: Panflutes: made from cow horns and animals bones . Horn pipes: a bagpipe without the bag. Lyre: played by snapping the strings Rebec: an instrument like a violin Harp: most popular instrument in the Viking age. Lur: A long natural blowing horn without fingerholes.
CONCLUSION I had heard a lot about the Vikings, but I didn’t actually research and study about them. I learned almost everything about the Vikings by spending hours on this project, but it was worth it because the Vikings were a group of amazing people that I really enjoy studying. Overall, the Vikings were a great civilization to learn about.
INFORMATION BIBLIOGRAPHYBartlett, Mike “Viking Children”http://mrbartlett.wordpress.com/2007/02/21/viking-children/Hauge, Arild “Daily Life In The Viking Period”http://www.arild-hauge.com/elife.html“The Vikings”http://www.viking.no/e/index.html“The Vikings”http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/primaryhistory/vikings/“Vikings”http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ancient/vikings/“Vikings Religion”http://library.thinkquest.org/C003446/a.php?b=9“Viking Art”http://www.talktalk.co.uk/reference/encyclopaedia/hutchinson/m0023723.html
“The Vikings”http://home.freeuk.net/elloughton13/vcontent.htmWikipedia, “Viking”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VikingBook:Margeson, Susan. Viking. Great Britain: Dorling Kindersley Limited,1994Hatt, Christine. The Viking World. Chicago: Heinemann Library, 2005