The Vikings are infamous for taking no prisoners, relishing cruel retribution, and priding themselves on their bloodthirsty skills as warriors. But their prowess in battle is only a small part of their story, which stretches from their Scandinavian origins to America in the West and as far as Baghdad in the East.
As the Vikings did not record their own history, we have to discover it for ourselves, and their tale, as Neil Oliver reveals, is an extraordinary story of a stalwart people who came from the brink of destruction to develop awesome seafaring power that reached a quarter of the way around the globe, building an empire that lasted nearly two hundred years.
Drawing on discoveries that have only recently come to light, Oliver follows the Vikings’ trail to uncover what drove them to embark on such extraordinary voyages more than 1,000 years ago.
An epic tale of one of the world’s great empires, The Vikings will fascinate all history buffs interested in finding out more about these real-life adventurers.
New York Times bestselling historian Ian Grey threads his way through these turbulent centuries, his focus on the private lives of the tsars themselves, the rulers whose personal histories are entwined with the history of the empire. He brings to life the passions, rages, intrigues, and greatness of the remarkable men and women who guided the destiny of Russia and changed the world.
In all this, the Vikings took untold treasures, but they weren't just barbarians, content to plunder and burn. They were builders of cities, founders of states, writers of poetry, and makers of laws. The Vikings also were bold and tenacious explorers who ventured across oceans to discover new territories - including the New World. Indeed, not since the golden age of the Roman Empire had any people so powerfully influenced the Western world. Here, from award-winning journalist Robert Wernick, is their dramatic story.
Noirmoutier, France, 9th century AD
Beginning in 789AD, the Vikings raided monasteries, sacked cities and invaded
western Europe. They looted and enslaved their enemies. But that is only part
of their story. In long boats they discovered Iceland and America (both by
accident) and also sailed up the Seine to Paris (which they sacked). They
settled from Newfoundland to Russia, founded Dublin and fought battles as far
afield as the Caspian Sea.
A thousand years after their demise, traces of the Vikings remain all the way
from North America to Istanbul. They traded walruses with Inuits, brought
Russian furs to Western Europe and took European slaves to Constantinople.
Their graves contain Arab silver, Byzantine silks and Frankish weapons.
In this accessible book, the whole narrative of the Viking story is examined
from the eighth to the eleventh centuries. Arranged thematically, Vikings: A
History of the Norse People examines the Norsemen from exploration to religion
to trade to settlement to weaponry to kingdoms to their demise and legacy. But
today questions remain: what prompted the first Viking raids? What stopped
their expansion? And how much of the tales of murder, rape and pillage is myth?
Illustrated with more than 200 photographs, maps and artworks, Vikings: A
History of the Norse People is an expertly written account of a people who have
long captured the popular imagination.
The Allied powers had met twice before, engaging in the cordial horse-trading of properties and promises, to perpetuate a united military front against Germany. Potsdam, however, was different. With Germany defeated, the Allies knew victory in the Far East was imminent. The objective was no longer how to unite for victory, but how instead to divide the spoils and create a new balance of power. In The Deal, Charles L. Mee Jr. demonstrates how, with national self-interest the primary motivation, peace was destined to be sacrificed to deliberate discord. If Allied harmony would stand in the way of expanding "spheres of influence," then it would become necessary to maintain the political expedient of aggression. What did each power want and were these objectives of sufficient importance to warrant forfeiting peace? Would the outcome have been different had Churchill's rhetoric been less powerfully disruptive, had Stalin been surer of domestic calm, had Truman been more open? Would the history of the last seventy years have been the same?
Through logbooks, eyewitness accounts, and conference transcripts, Mee vividly reconstructs this moment in history, when three men came together to forge a peace and a new face for Western Europe and left with a tri-partite declaration of the Cold War.
Lonely Planet Iceland is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Splash around in the Blue Lagoon's geothermal water, catch a glimpse of the celestial Northern Lights, or take a boat trip among the icebergs; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Iceland and begin your journey now!
Inside Lonely Planet's Iceland Travel Guide:Colour maps and images throughout Highlights and itineraries help you tailor your trip to your personal needs and interests Insider tips to save time and money and get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots Essential info at your fingertips - hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, prices Honest reviews for all budgets - eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, hidden gems that most guidebooks miss Cultural insights give you a richer, more rewarding travel experience - history, politics, landscapes, wildlife, literature, music, cinema, art, architecture, customs, cuisine. Free, convenient pull-out Reykjavik map (included in print version), plus over 37 maps Covers Reykjavik, the Westfjords, the Highlands, North Iceland, East Iceland, South Iceland, the Golden Circle, Southwest Iceland, the Eastfjords, Akureyri, Hunafloi and more
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The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Iceland, our most comprehensive guide to Iceland, is perfect for both exploring top sights and taking roads less travelled.Looking for a guide focused on Reykjavik? Check out Lonely Planet's Pocket Reykjavik, a handy-sized guide focused on the can't-miss sights for a quick trip. Looking for more extensive coverage? Check out Lonely Planet's Scandinavia guide for a comprehensive look at all the region has to offer.
About Lonely Planet: Since 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel media company with guidebooks to every destination, an award-winning website, mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveller community. Lonely Planet covers must-see spots but also enables curious travellers to get off beaten paths to understand more of the culture of the places in which they find themselves. The world awaits!
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Between the ninth and fourteenth centuries, Arab travellers such as Ibn Fadlan journeyed widely and frequently into the far north, crossing territories that now include Russia, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. Their fascinating accounts describe how the numerous tribes and peoples they encountered traded furs, paid tribute and waged wars. This accessible new translation offers an illuminating insight into the world of the Arab geographers, and the medieval lands of the far north.
True to its name, DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Top 10 Iceland covers all the country's major sights and attractions in easy-to-use "top 10" lists that help you plan the vacation that's right for you.
This newly updated travel guide for Iceland will lead you straight to the best attractions the country has to offer, whether you want to see stunning glaciers and geysers or the bewitching Northern Lights, visit its beautiful national parks, or experience the vibrancy of Reykjavik.
Expert travel writers have fully revised this edition of DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Top 10 Iceland.
+ Brand-new itineraries help you plan your trip to Iceland.
+ Maps of walking routes show you the best ways to maximize your time.
+ New Top 10 lists feature off-the-beaten-track ideas, along with standbys like the top attractions, shopping, dining options, and more.
You'll still find DK's famous full-color photography and museum floor plans, along with just the right amount of coverage of the country's history and culture.
The perfect travel companion: DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Top 10 Iceland.
From Harald Bluetooth to Cnut the Great, the feared seamen and plunderers of the Viking Age ruled Norway, Sweden, and Denmark but roamed as far as Byzantium, Greenland, and America. Raiders and traders, settlers and craftsmen, the medieval Scandinavians who have become familiar to history as Vikings never lose their capacity to fascinate, from their ingeniously designed longboats to their stormy pantheon of Viking gods and goddesses, ruled by Odin in Valhalla. Robert Ferguson is a sure guide across what he calls "the treacherous marches which divide legend from fact in Viking Age history." His long familiarity with the literary culture of Scandinavia with its skaldic poetry is combined with the latest archaeological discoveries to reveal a sweeping picture of the Norsemen, one of history's most amazing civilizations.
Impeccably researched and filled with compelling accounts and analyses of legendary Viking warriors and Norse mythology, The Vikings is an indispensable guide to medieval Scandinavia and is a wonderful companion to the History Channel series.
Readers will find themselves drawn into the timeless world of the gods and goddesses who dwell in Asgard, a magical realm reached by a rainbow bridge. Here unfold the exciting stories of how Frey won Gerda, the Giant Maiden, and how he lost his magic sword; how Thor and Loki fooled Thrym the Giant; the Dwarf’s hoard and the curse that it brought; Baldur’s doom; Sigurd’s youth; Brynhild in the House of Flame; the death of Sigurd; the twilight of the gods; and many more.
Enhanced with over 40 atmospheric illustrations by Willy Pogany, this charming volume will delight myth lovers with its rich selection of enduring legends.
On July 22, 2011, Anders Behring Breivik detonated a bomb outside government buildings in central Oslo, killing eight people. He then proceeded to a youth camp on the island of Utøya, where he killed sixty-nine more, most of them teenage members of Norway's governing Labour Party. In One of Us, the journalist Åsne Seierstad tells the story of this terrible day and what led up to it. What made Breivik, a gifted child from an affluent neighborhood in Oslo, become a terrorist?
As in her bestseller The Bookseller of Kabul, Seierstad excels at the vivid portraiture of lives under stress. She delves deep into Breivik's troubled childhood, showing how a hip-hop and graffiti aficionado became a right-wing activist and Internet game addict, and then an entrepreneur, Freemason, and self-styled master warrior who sought to "save Norway" from the threat of Islam and multiculturalism. She writes with equal intimacy about Breivik's victims, tracing their political awakenings, aspirations to improve their country, and ill-fated journeys to the island. By the time Seierstad reaches Utøya, we know both the killer and those he will kill. We have also gotten to know an entire country—famously peaceful and prosperous, and utterly incapable of protecting its youth.
For the reader's convenience, the work is organized into chapters covering all aspects life: domestic, economic, intellectual, material, political, recreational, and religious. It includes a historical timeline of Viking history, complementary pictures, illustrations, and maps, and a bibliography.
Take a journey into the Age of Viking Expansion where Ragnar Lothbrok, Rollo, Erik the Red, and many other famous Vikings take you on a ride into the very Halls of Valhalla.
Very interesting and worth the read to anyone interested in the Vikings or Norse history.
Explore knowledge and technology specific to a culture that was shaped by a people able to reach great distances beyond their homelands and seas. A battle ferocious people with shields, armor, and weaponry that was unmatched by their opponents.
A whole new world of understanding about the ancient vikings has been opened up by new archaeological discoveries and studies. New findings that lead to new questions.
Could some of the mythological tales about giants in the Norse Sagas have had some truth behind them? Researchers have found proof of giants and humans interacting together in our own DNA!
There are also many shared technologies between the Ancient Norse, Asians, the Inuit and other North American aborigines. Viking explorers have long interacted and traded with many people and cultures afar. Were ancient Norse already in contact with early Native Americans? Were these the people they referred to as "Skraelings?" Were they Proto-Inuits known by the ancients as Thule People?
See for yourself with new information about the Norse that was once lost in time.
Journalist Michael Booth has lived among the Scandinavians for more than ten years, and he has grown increasingly frustrated with the rose-tinted view of this part of the world offered up by the Western media. In this timely book he leaves his adopted home of Denmark and embarks on a journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover who these curious tribes are, the secrets of their success, and, most intriguing of all, what they think of one another.
Why are the Danes so happy, despite having the highest taxes? Do the Finns really have the best education system? Are the Icelanders as feral as they sometimes appear? How are the Norwegians spending their fantastic oil wealth? And why do all of them hate the Swedes? In The Almost Nearly Perfect People Michael Booth explains who the Scandinavians are, how they differ and why, and what their quirks and foibles are, and he explores why these societies have become so successful and models for the world. Along the way a more nuanced, often darker picture emerges of a region plagued by taboos, characterized by suffocating parochialism, and populated by extremists of various shades. They may very well be almost nearly perfect, but it isn't easy being Scandinavian.
In relating this dramatic story, Kathleen Stokker draws upon her many interviews with survivors of the Occupation and upon the archives of the Norwegian Resistance Museum and the University of Oslo. Central to the book are four “joke notebooks” kept by women ranging in age from eleven to thirty, who found sufficient meaning in this humor to risk recording and preserving it. Stokker also cites details from wartime diaries of three other women from East, West, and North Norway. Placing the joking in historical, cultural, and psychological context, Stokker demonstrates how this seemingly frivolous humor in fact contributed to the development of a resistance mentality among an initially confused, paralyzed, and dispirited population, stunned by the German invasion of their neutral country.
For this paperback edition, Stokker has added a new preface offering a comparative view of resistance through humor in neighboring Denmark.
Denmark is the country of the moment. Recently named the happiest nation in the world, it’s the home of The Killing and Noma, the world’s best (and most eccentric) restaurant. We wear their sweaters, watch their thrillers, and covet their cool modern design, but how much do we really know about the Danes themselves? Part reportage, part travelogue, How to Be Danish fills in the gaps—an introduction to contemporary Danish culture that spans politics, television, food, architecture, and design.
The Norsemen eventually penetrated all of England and Scotland, founded cities in Ireland, gained a powerful province in France, controlled Frisia and the modern Netherlands, and raided lands around Spain, passing into the Mediterranean to attack Italy and North Africa. They established the first Russian kingdom, challenged Constantinople, and provided a personal guard for the Byzantine emperor. They settled Iceland, where they developed Europe’s first republic, founded two colonies on Greenland, and explored parts of North America five centuries before Christopher Columbus landed in the Americas. Then, like the abrupt end of a summer thunderstorm, their adventures ceased.
Here is their dramatic story.
Iceland is known for being one of the most beautiful and untouched places on earth, and a burgeoning destination for travelers lured by its striking landscapes and vibrant culture. Iceland is also home to an utterly unique and captivating food scene, characterized by its distinctive indigenous ingredients, traditional farmers and artisanal producers, and wildly creative chefs and restaurants.
Perhaps no Icelandic restaurant is as well-loved and critically lauded as chef Gunnar Gíslason’s Restaurant Dill, which opened in Reykjavík’s historic Nordic House in 2009. North is Gíslason’s wonderfully personal debut: equal parts recipe book and culinary odyssey, it offers an unparalleled look into a star chef’s creative process. But more than just a collection of recipes, North is also a celebration of Iceland itself—the inspiring traditions, stories, and people who make the island nation unlike any other place in the world.
From the Hardcover edition.
The key aim of the work is to identify the conditions for cooperation, stability and peace in the Arctic and to reach beyond simple description and expectation in order to explore in depth some of the main factors that will determine the future of international relations in the region. Furthermore, it addresses key topics such as the geopolitical significance of the Arctic and the importance of oil and gas resources in the Arctic. The book also investigates what the main characteristics of governance in the Arctic are, and how institutions and regimes can promote stability and security in the region. The volume maintains two layers of focus. The first relates to the dynamics within the Arctic and the second to developments outside the region, highlighting that we cannot understand the Arctic in isolation from global developments such as energy markets, security conflicts and NATO-Russian antagonism.
This book will be of much interest to students of Arctic politics, security studies, geopolitics, Russian and Scandinavian politics, and international relations in general.
A journey through the epic landscapes of mysterious Iceland. In his first photo book, photographer Paul Weeks shares photographs and descriptions from his travels around the magical land of ice and snow. Each page features large colorful photographs and detailed accounts of the epic landscapes that Iceland has become known for in recent years. This beautiful photo book will inspire a sense of awe, and encourage the reader to discover an adventure of their own.
The author uses archaeological, literary and historical evidence to analyze the Vikings' overseas expeditions and their transformation from raiders to settlers. Focusing on the period from 800–1050, it studies the Vikings across the world, from Denmark and Sweden right across to the British Isles, the North Atlantic and the New World.
This edition includes:a new epilogue explaining the aims of the book updated further reading sections maps and photographs.
By taking this new archaeological and primary research into account, the author provides a vital text for history students and researchers of this fascinating people.
Vikings are the lords of the northern seas. Fame, glory, and wealth await those who brave storms and enemy spears to plunder far and wide in foreign lands. Who wouldn’t like to come home laden with silver, earning a reputation that will live on long after lesser men have been forgotten?
This book tells you everything you need to know to become a successful Viking warrior in the tenth century.
How to join a Viking war band What to look for in a good Viking leader How to behave at a feast How to choose the right weapons and armor How to plunder a monastery and ransom a monk How to navigate at sea
Five hundred years before Columbus, a Viking woman named Gudrid sailed off the edge of the known world. She landed in the New World and lived there for three years, giving birth to a baby before sailing home. Or so the Icelandic sagas say. Even after archaeologists found a Viking longhouse in Newfoundland, no one believed that the details of Gudrid’s story were true.
Then, in 2001, a team of scientists discovered what may have been this pioneering woman’s last house, buried under a hay field in Iceland, just where the epic tales suggest it could be.
Joining scientists experimenting with cutting-edge technology and the latest archaeological techniques, and tracing Gudrid’s steps on land and in the sagas, The Far Traveler reconstructs a life that spanned—and expanded—the bounds of the then-known world. It also sheds new light on the society that gave rise to a woman even more extraordinary than legend has painted her, and illuminates the reasons for its collapse.
On a November morning in 1939, Soviet bombers began attacking Helsinki, Finland. In the weeks that followed, the tiny Baltic republic would wage a war—the kind of war that spawns legends—against the mighty Soviet Union, which was desperate for a buffer against Nazi Germany.
With “a well-balanced blend of narrative and analysis,” historian William R. Trotter tells the story of guerrillas on skis; heroic, single-handed attacks on tanks; unfathomable endurance; and the charismatic leadership of one of the twentieth century’s true military geniuses (Library Journal). This little-known but dramatic battle would be decisive in Finland’s fight to maintain its independence—and A Frozen Hell brings it to fascinating life.
Winner of the Finlandia Foundation Award for Arts and Letters
“We will not often find a book written with such authority as this one.” —The New York Times Book Review
Memoirs is Godwin's own account of Wollstonecraft's life, written with passionate intensity a few weeks after her tragic death. Casting aside literary convention, Godwin creates an intimate portrait of his wife, startling in its candour and psychological truth. Received with outrage by friends and critics alike, and virtually suppressed for a century, it can now be recognized as one of the landmarks in the development of modern biography.
Norse Myths takes a wide-ranging approach, examining the creation stories of the Norse world, the monsters and the pantheons of the deities, including such figures as Heimdall, Freya and Baldr. It looks at the sagas and the Prose and Poetic Eddas, which tell of real and imagined people, featuring both heroic tales and humorous escapades. The book also examines how Norse myths were interpreted in a Christianized Europe and how their motifs influenced medieval German writers and, in turn, were used in the modern world in very different ways, by the likes of composer Richard Wagner and in the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien.
Illustrated with 180 colour and black-&-white artworks and illustrations, Norse Myths is an engaging and highly informative exploration of a rich mythology that still resounds today.
Moss explored hillsides of boiling mud and volcanic craters and learned to drive like an Icelander on the unsurfaced roads that link remote farms and fishing villages in the far north. She watched the northern lights and the comings and goings of migratory birds, and as the weeks and months went by, she and her family learned new ways to live.
Names for the Sea is her compelling, beautiful and very funny account of living in a country poised on the edge of Europe, where modernization clashes with living folklore.
In addition to such well-known favorites as "Dapplegrim," "Katie Woodencloak," "Tatterhood," and "Legend of Tannhäuser," this collection also brings to light many gems difficult to find elsewhere. In "The Werewolf," a cruel stepmother thwarts a beautiful princess's marriage plans by transforming her fiancé into a hunted denizen of the forest. The hilarious "Such Women Are" proves the world is never without a sufficiency of fools, while "The Three Dogs" tells of a youth whose four-legged friends defeat a serpent with the nasty habit of devouring a town's young women. Among many other hard-to-find stories are "King Gram," "The Magician's Pupil," "The Outlaw," "Temptations," "The Widow's Son," "The Three Sisters Trapped in a Mountain," and "The Goatherd" (the inspiration for Washington Irving’s story of Rip van Winkle).
These stories preserve the ancient myths of Western Europe that have been passed down from generation to generation, but aside from their importance as seminal folktales, they are simply good reading — full of passion and excitement, magic, mystery, and sheer storytelling power. Popular Tales from Norse Mythology will delight any student or admirer of myths and mythology.
A separate thread tells the story of the Finland Swedes--"the minority within a minority" whose members were born in Finland but spoke Swedish and thus straddled two ethnic groups, belonging fully to neither. The book concludes with a personal narrative of Fred Torma (1888-1979), a miner and carpenter from Nashwauk, who describes establishing a Socialist hall, involvement in the 1907 Mesabi strike, and founding a cooperative boardinghouse and store. His is just one engaging example of the vibrant lives and legacy of Finnish Americans in Minnesota.
Arnold R. Alanen, professor emeritus of landscape architecture at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a third-generation Finnish A merican from Minnesota, has written extensively on the topics of landscape history, vernacular architecture, settlement patterns of Finnish A mericans, and cultural resource preservation.
Along the way he learns from the Marines how to survive sub-zero temperatures by eating for England, takes a white-knuckle drive along a treacherous 800-mile road that's a river in summer and, with great reluctance, strips off for a dip in the freezing Arctic waters - and that’s all before wrestling Viking-style with a sporting legend called Eva as part of an Icelandic winter festival.
Sharing the wonder of the Arctic in his inimitable style, Land of the Midnight Sun is a brilliantly entertaining travelogue that takes readers on an exhilarating and hilarious journey to the farthest reaches of the globe. Through his witty exploration of the region's remarkable landscape and lifestyle, and its even more remarkable people, Armstrong proves himself the ideal travel companion.
Based on detailed studies of northern Europe – and in particular the case of Denmark – the focus moves from the stone age, through the development of agriculture and trade, migration and exploration, medieval society and the renaissance, into industrial times and present-day debates around the transition to low-carbon forms of energy supply.
This riveting examination of a nascent field of study provides a new perspective for historians and those wishing to gain a deeper understanding of the background to present-day energy debates.
This innovative book looks beyond the experiences of these Icelandic immigrants to understand the context into which their reserve fits within the history of settler colonialism. Ryan Eyford juxtaposes the Icelanders’ experiences with those of the Cree, Ojibwe, and Metis people they displaced. By analyzing themes such as race, land, health, and governance, he draws out the tensions that punctuated the process of colonization in western Canada and situates the region within the global history of colonialism.
Geographically located between East and West, Finland has been influenced and ruled by both cultures. The King of Sweden ruled Finland until the early 19th century, when he lost the scarcely inhabited territory to the Czar of Russia. 100 years ago, when the last Czar was dethroned, Finland seized the moment, and became a sovereign state. It, however, meant the beginning of a civil war. Later, Finns fought for their independence in the Second World War.
History isn't about wars alone. The book describes how international relationships and a strong president can define a nation for decades. The concept of Finlandization can still be a touchy subject for Finns, but it is an elemental part of the nation's history.
Today, Finland is the home of some 5.4 million people, millions of Angry Birds, rock group Nightwish and Nokia. Finland is also renowned for its high rankings in global school system comparisons and for its economical competitiveness.
A Concise History of Finland starts from 1000-year old events, but the focus of the book is on the 19th and 20th centuries. The book is a perfect guide to Finland's past for travelers, students, business people, media, and everyone interested in history.