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Who were the Vikings?

Viking expansion

The Vikings were venturesome seafarers. From Denmark, Norway and Sweden they spread through Europe and the North Atlantic in the period of vigorous Scandinavian expansion (AD 800-1050) known as the Viking Age.

Although they are often thought of primarily as raiders , the Vikings were also traders , explorers and settlers. Behind them they left a legacy not only of archaeological remains, but also of family names, place names and fieldnames. Their “remains” can be found in local dialects and customs, in folk tales and oral traditions, and of course in the genetic make up of the local people themselves.

The Viking Ship

The development of the Viking ship , made this expansion possible. With its flexible hull and its keel and sail, the Viking ship was far superior to ships and boats used by other peoples at the time.

Pagans – Christians

Originally pagan worshipers of Thor and Odin, many became Christians, and during the 10th century they brought Christianity back to Scandinavia.


Get to know the vikings!

What is myth? What is fact? Did the Vikings have horns on their helmets? Why not? What do we know about the Vikings? What have they left behind? The Viking Network Web tries to answer these and other questions.

Viking visits
The Vikings were great travelers, both raiding, trading and settling in other lands.

Everyday life
Of course the Vikings didn’t spend all their time raiding and trading. From the everyday life page you can find information on such things as what the Vikings ate, what games and sports they played, the clothes they wore etc.

Do the Viking Network Quiz
One of the best ways to explore these pages is to do the Viking Network Quiz. The answers to all the questions can be found from the Viking Network World Wide Web pages, but you’ll have to do a bit of searching and you’ll have to think hard where the answers are likely to be.