In the year 860 the Vikings strike
The Vikings couldn't resist the city's riches. In 860 they plundered
Constantinople for the first time. They cut down everything that stood in their
way, set fire to churches and houses, plundered and robbed. The emperor was
forced to offer them some gold so that the citizens would be left in peace.
Later the emperor had to pay the Vikings tribute for many years in order to
avoid further plundering. But he didn't trust them very much anyway. If they
wanted to trade in the city they had to go through a certain gate followed by
the emperor's men. They had to leave their weapons outside the city walls and
couldn't be more than 50 at a time.