By Jonathan Clements
'From the Fury of the Northmen bring us, O Lord'. among the 8th and 11th centuries, the Vikings surged from their Scandinavian fatherland to alternate, raid and invade alongside the coasts of Europe. Their impact and expeditions prolonged from Newfoundland to Baghdad, their battles have been as far-flung as Africa and the Arctic. yet have been they nice seafarers or determined outcasts, noble heathens or oafish pirates, the final pagans or the 1st of the trendy Europeans? This concise examine places medieval chronicles, Norse sagas and Muslim money owed along newer learn into ritual magic, genetic profiling and climatology. It contains biographical sketches of a few of the main recognized Vikings, from Erik Bloodaxe to Saint Olaf, and King Canute to Leif the fortunate. It explains why the Danish king Harald Bluetooth lent his identify to a twenty-first century instant expertise; which destiny saint laughed as she buried international ambassadors alive; why such a lot of Icelandic settlers had Irish names; and, how the final Viking colony used to be destroyed by means of English raiders. Extending past the normal 'Viking age' of so much books, "A short background of the Vikings" areas unexpected Scandinavian inhabitants stream in a much wider historic context. It provides a balanced appraisal of those notorious sea kings, explaining either their speedy enlargement and its meant halt. meant simply because, finally, the Vikings didn't disappear: they become us.
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Extra resources for A Brief History of the Vikings
The same is true of some aspects of the structure and organisation of the agricultural communities. Unlike the isolated hamlets of the highland regions, the Durham Priory parishes 78 79 80 81 82 83 B. M. S. Campbell, English Seigniorial Agriculture, 1250–1450 (Cambridge, 2000), pp. 249–302, 442–3. J. A. S. Watson and J. A. More, Agriculture: the Science and Practice of British Farming (Edinburgh, 1945), pp. 231–2. Campbell, Seigniorial Agriculture, pp. 276, 284–5, 442–3. Watson and More, Agriculture, p.
M. Page (Hampshire Record Series 16, 1999), pp. 273–81. I am grateful to Professor Paul Harvey for raising these issues with me. g. DCM, granator’s account 1415–16. In 1379–80 tithe peas and beans were used as fodder for the prior’s horses and for carthorses: DCM, bursar’s account 1379–80, Empcio avene fabarum et pisarum. In 1380–1 the bursar recorded that the tithe of Southwick was in hand and yielded 14 quarters of wheat which was ‘sold by the serjeant of the manor at 7s. 6d. per quarter’: DCM, bursar’s account 1380–1, Parochia de Wermouth.
Until the 1340s grain tithe receipts were recorded in manorial accounts. 51 None of the other shorter grain tithe series from other parishes fills this mid-fourteenth-century gap. The relationship between quantities of corn collected as tithe by the monks’ agents and total output might have been affected by reluctance to pay the tax on the part of those owing tithes. Court records reveal that non-payment and under payment of tithes did occur, in north-east England as elsewhere. 52 The level of tithe evasion presumably depended upon the vigilance of the tithe collector.
A Brief History of the Vikings by Jonathan Clements