Vikings and Americaby Erik Wahlgren
Did Vinland, that mysterious "land of grapevines" that the Viking Leif Erikssondiscovered and christened almost a thousand years ago, ever exist? Do the clues in the sagas of a North American location point to a specific place on a modern map? How much more of the New World may these pre-Columbian adventurers have explored? Drawing upon the clues found in ancient manuscripts and a deep knowledge of the historical and archaeological evidence, Wahlgren addresses these questions in a marvelously readable account. Excavations at L'Anse aux Meadows in northern Newfoundland show that the Vikings did indeed reach the North American continent around A.D.1000, presumably from their base in Southern Greenland. Other supposed Viking discoveries such as the Kensington Stone are dismissed as frauds, but legitimate finds from Arctic Canada to New England suggest Viking exploration far to the north and the south. Eventually, a worsening climate and attacks by native peoples ended the first European presence in the New World.
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