Norse Society: On The Causes Of Viking Expansion

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Violence, gore, and war engulf the Norseman’s way of life. Interchangeably known as heathens, pagans, Vikings (when raiding) and Norsemen, Europeans constructed various perspectives towards these individuals. Directly translated, Norsemen means people from the north, which refers to an immense group of people who spoke Old Norse. According to “On the Causes of Viking Expansion”, Dudo of St Quentin describes the Norsemen inhabiting Central and Southern Scandinavia, more specifically the area between the Danube and Scythian sea during the eighth Century. Adam of Bremen describes a drastic alteration of Norse society in “The Conversion of the Danes Under Harald Bluetooth” as individuals convert from pagans into Christian crusaders around twelfth…show more content…
Other factors that affect marriage are land, physical appearance, wealth and individual rank. In fact, fathers often denied their daughters the right to marry a man if he did not a high rank; for example, in “The Politics in Harald Finehair’s Norway”, Solveig’s dad denies Oliver Snubnose’s proposal to his daughter solely due to Oliver’s low rank. Many of these desired characteristics constitute the requirements for high status. In fact, land possesses such value that fathers and their sons often quarrel over…show more content…
The first of these intellectual pursuits includes science, which is shown through society’s Cosmographers. Vikings could calculate numbers such as the world’s mass. Science allowed them to voyage across great distances with the use of immense ships. Literature also played a role in Norse society, which includes love poems and historical data. Coinciding with this appreciation for literature is art. Different forms of art include tattoos imprinted on their bodies, which portray scenes of nature. Paintings serve as another piece of cultural evidence. These images depict merchant, war and ritual ships. They included the design of the ship and its fine woodwork and metalwork; the crafted dragon constructed on the front of the ship is among this art. This shows strong skills among the Viking classes. One can also analyze the difference between their various ships. The manuscript from Abbey of St. Aubin, France shows a Viking ship carrying hundreds of men with spears, armor and shields. Relative to warships, the merchant and ritual vessels are much smaller as shown in the manuscript of Snorri Sturluson’s Edda and Northumbria England. Merchant boats are also less decorative compared to ritual ships. Vikings are shown traveling in fleets when fighting in the manuscript of 1130 when they arrived in Britain. One impressive structure is the dragonhead on the front of the
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