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Resource: Historic Viking Replicas

Using Viking battle axes and brut strength, the Vikings conquered far east of the Europen shores

The Ancient Vikings of Scandinavia are commonly perceived as little more than a bloodthirsty horde of barbarians, raiding villages and monasteries, stealing the gold and other valuables and pressing any survivors of their vicious attacks into slavery. While it’s true that the warriors who expanded into Western Europe have a well-documented legacy of violence and brutality, the Vikings also expanded East. There is considerable archeological evidence, much of it in the form of exotic coins in long-buried treasure hoards, that the Vikings traveled as far East as Persia, India, and the Byzantine Empire!

Most of our modern images of the Vikings come from the written accounts of monks in England and France, and it’s not a very pretty picture. The Vikings were pagans, and were usually there to swing their Viking battle axes, kill the monks and steal their gold. The Arabs of Baghdad left some written accounts with a more moderate view, and if they’re to be believed, these Vikings were less interested in killing and conquering than trade and exploration. They brought furs, amber, and occasionally Viking swords, and traded them for coveted silver coins. From time to time, they established settlements along the rivers and intermarried with the local population. As we sift through the sands of history, seeking insight in the past, we do well to remember that most ancient cultures were as diverse and multi-faceted as our own. No one account of a people or place can give us the whole story.

Source:Historic Replicas Blog