Known for their vicious raids, love of treasure, and fierce warriors: the vikings were the most feared invaders of the Medieval period. For 300 years, they terrorized the world in their hunt for land and power, but they also had a rich culture in art, literature, and law. Packed with facts, maps, infographics, and photos, this is the perfect introduction to the most feared invaders of the Middle Ages. Covering where they came from and who they conquered, their commerce and culture (including their bloodthirsty stories), their travel and trade, and the reasons behind their demise, this complete guide provides a comprehensive exploration of who these peoples were – and who they were not. For while there is no doubt that some Vikings launched bloodthirsty attacks in this period, pillaging communities and plundering treasure, many more were peaceful traders and settlers. Going beyond the fearsome warriors, battles, and adventures we associate with Vikings, this detailed book provides an insight into the everyday life of the people, to examine how and what they traded, what Viking village life was like, and how they made and sailed their famous long ships. It explores the rich culture of the Vikings, including the beautiful art they created, the legendary stories they told, and the complex law systems they built to maintain a civilized society as well as how their culture and influence lives on in the world today.
About the Author
Philip Parker was born in Liverpool in 1965. He studied history at Trinity Hall, Cambridge and International Relations at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Bologna, Italy before working in the British Diplomatic Service. He has a particular interest in ancient and medieval political and military systems. He is the author of The Northmen’s Fury: A History of the Viking World (2014), The Empire Stops Here: A Journey Around the Frontiers of the Roman World (2009) and the DK Eyewitness Companion Guide to World History (2010).
Dr Shane McLeod is an Associate Investigator (2013), an Honorary Staff Member in the School of Humanities at the University of Tasmania, and was an Impact Research Fellow in the Division of History and Politics at the University of Stirling, UK. He has a BA and PhD from The University of Western Australia and a Master of Viking and Early Medieval Studies from Uppsala University, Sweden. His research focuses upon migration, ethnicity and identity and performative aspects of ritual within historic landscape settings during the Viking Age, particularly in Britain.