A Viking longship

The Viking name is not called race, but the occupation of the warriors, who have taken influences from a variety

Folha do Sao Paulo - 19.set.In 2020, at 16: 00

Just about everyone has heard of the vikings, and almost all of those who have heard of them, they are able to draw a picture quickly of the subject: tall, blond, bushy-bearded, bloodthirsty, at times, heroic. But it is the most comprehensive portrait of the phenomenon of viking's done so far shows that they are much more complicated than the picture reveals.

In “the Children of Ash and Elm” (“children of the ash and the elm”, in the book, even without brazil), the british archaeologist Neil Price University of Uppsala (Sweden), to do justice to this complexity, tying up all the loose wires from a range of disciplines, from genomics to the language of geology to the study of religion (one of his specialties).

A visit to the set of 'Vikings'
A visit to the set of 'Vikings'

Viking carving of the God Odin

The emphasis is on producing such a comprehensive vision and from the “inside” of an ancient society begins, indeed, with the information is apparently encoded. This is the name of the trees in the Northern hemisphere, come the names of “Adam” and “Eve,” from the norse mythology, were created by the god Odin and his brothers, from the wood: Askr (ash-tree, the first man, and Embla (elm or, perhaps, the vine, the first women's).

The picture points out, in the first place, as the so-called Viking Age (conventionally defined as ages between 750 a.d. and 1050 a.d.) was the choice. And that's not just because of the ships of the norsemen carried the raiders for a large area, stretching from Ireland and Spain in the west to the Ukraine (and perhaps Egypt) to the east.

The thefts, the massacres, the rapes and the trafficking of slaves, are supposed to be the head of all those who are tempted to romanticize the vikings, says Price, but on the side he was often accompanied, or replaced, by a skillful strategies to trade, and diplomacy.

Part of this complexity has to do with the fact that no one in the viking age, from the moment of birth. The etymology of the word is disputed, but the fact is that it was not a designation of ethnicity. It's more of a technical term used to classify those who participated in the raids by the sea, something akin to “pirate” in the Portuguese language.

In addition to this, the largest study of DNA has already been made about the vikings, of which mr. Price has participated in, has shown that they accounted for genetic influences of the various parts of the world, of Europe and of the north-east.

The subjects were buried with their weapons and ornaments, are typical of the vikings, sometimes there were “pure blood” of the people, such as the celts. And there is at least one case where a woman is buried with the rubbish warrior.

“The collaboration between genomics and archaeology, it is becoming more fine-tuned. The important thing is to always keep in mind that the gene does not necessarily correspond to the cultural identity,” he said the Price of the Leaf.

Illustration of a viking funeral, the boat is on fire
Illustration of a viking funeral, the boat is on fire - Adams-Oak Tree

We have become accustomed to the dualism of body and soul, but the ancient norse had the four “layers” of the personality. On the outside, “such as a reflex”, it is the same in the body, by and large, but that could be changed in certain circumstances (which is why the belief in the warriors ' ability to take the form of a wolf or a bear). After that came “hugr”, something like “the mind” is essential.

The thing that is the most well-doesn't make sense, however, is the belief in the “hamingja”, the kind of spirit of the sort, and the “fylgja”, a body of female even when living in the body of a man who embodies something of the duties of the guardian angel and the spirit of the ancestors.

Also of interest is the study of the factors that made the success of the scandinavians as pirates and conquerors, settlers and traders. There is no simple explanation, " says Price. In the era of the invasions of the vikings begins in the period of political centralisation in the Scandinavian countries, in which small kingdoms vied for command of the land and sea routes.

In the rest of the world was in a phase of economic development and trade, the rise of the company in the actual Netherlands, Germany, England, and France; and, finally, States that are relatively small and weak in the south.

Viking carving art

The military forces in the land of the vikings, with less of a chance to fight at home, and incentives, in order to to the south, they set out in search of booty. Abocanharam areas of England, Scotland, Ireland, and France, in addition to the founding of the kingdoms that would rise in Russia and the Ukraine.

In this framework, it is combined in the book with the details of daily life: applications were made with a spell, with comments on the sexual evil; the smiths, they used the same mold for the manufacture of crosses, and charms, the hammer of the god Thor; wooden swords for the kids (and the chairs with the protection of infants, such as those of the present day). It's hard to get closer to a time machine that.

THE CHILDREN OF ASH AND ELM: A HISTORY OF THE VIKINGS

THE MONUMENTS AND FORTS
They made the hills and the artificial, to the kings (Gamla Uppsala in Sweden, a large, strong, circular (Trelleborg, Denmark) and temples, such as that of Uppakra (Sweden), packed with small gifts of gold,

STONE, PAINTED
With the probable mythological scenes, they were used as monuments for the dead, without the written (even though the vikings used runes for writing texts, for short)

BURIAL IN a SHIP
The funeral services of a member of the nobility, and could it happen in a ship semienterrados, such as the one from the Oseberg, Norway

Boat is a viking, of all of them are exhibited in the museum in Oslo is dedicated to the archaeological site where it was found; and the large, wooden boat that retains its shape, with the bow high, doing an arabesque, but it's in a building in white, with a barrel-vaulted ceiling, floor to ceiling windows along its entire length
Boat is a viking, of all of them are exhibited in the museum in Oslo is dedicated to the archaeological site where it was found - Heiko Junge 11.set.07/Scanpix Norway/AFP

SAVE VARANGIANA
Whether traveling to Eastern Europe, some of the vikings began to form on the Left Varangiana, who protected the byzantine emperors. One of them, the so-called Halfdan, he wrote his name in runes on one of the parapets of the former cathedral of byzantine style of the hagia Sophia in Istanbul

DAILY
They made wooden swords for the kids to play in, and these were sometimes in the teeth of the warriors, and maybe some of the women had had a status in the military as well


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