By Robert Ferguson
For these dwelling open air Scandinavia, the Viking Age successfully all started in 793 with an assault at the monastery at Lindisfarne. The assault on Lindisfarne used to be a regularly violent harbinger of what used to be in shop for Britain and masses of Europe from the Vikings for the following three hundred years, until eventually the ultimate destruction of the heathen temple to the Norse gods at Uppsala round 1090. Robert Ferguson is a yes advisor throughout what he calls 'the treacherous marches which divide legend from truth in Viking Age history'. His lengthy familiarity with the literary tradition of Scandinavia - the eddas, the poetry of the skalds and the sagas - is mixed with the newest archaeological discoveries and the proof of picture-stones, runes, ships and items scattered everywhere northern Europe, to take advantage of convincing glossy portrait of the Viking Age in any language. "The Hammer and the Cross" levels from Scandinavia itself to Kievan Rus and Byzantium within the east, to Iceland, Greenland and the north American settlements within the west. past its geographical limitations, the e-book takes us on a trip to a misty quarter inhabited via Hallfred the complicated Poet, Harald Bluetooth, Ragnar Hairy-Breeches, Ivar the Boneless and Eyvind the Plagiarist, during which literature, background and delusion dissolve into each other.
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Extra resources for The Hammer and the Cross: A New History of the Vikings
On each part arrows sped and blood flowed. With the arrows mingled the stones hurled by means of slings and war-machines; the air used to be full of them. The tower which have been outfitted through the evening groaned less than the strokes of the darts, town shook with the fight, the folk ran hither and thither, the bells jangled. the soldiers rushed jointly to protect the tottering tower and to repel the fierce attack. between those warriors , a count number and an abbot, passed the entire relaxation in braveness. the previous was once the redoubtable Odo who by no means skilled defeat and who always revived the spirits of the tired defenders. He ran alongside the ramparts and hurled again the enemy. On those that have been secreting themselves with the intention to undermine the tower he poured oil, wax, and pitch, which, being combined and heated, burned the Danes and tore off their scalps. a few of them died; others threw themselves into the river to flee the bleak substance… in the meantime Paris was once discomfort not just from the sword open air but in addition from a pestilence during which introduced loss of life to many noble males. in the partitions there has been now not floor within which to bury the lifeless… Odo, the longer term king, used to be despatched to Charles, emperor of the Franks, to implore aid for the bothered urban. at some point Odo all at once seemed in splendour in the middle of 3 bands of warriors. The sunlight made his armour glisten and greeted him sooner than it illuminated the rustic round. The Parisians observed their loved leader at a distance, however the enemy, hoping to avoid his gaining front to the tower, crossed the Seine and took up their place at the financial institution. however Odo, his horse at a gallop, received earlier the Northmen and reached the tower, whose gates Ebolus opened to him. The enemy pursued fiercely the comrades of the count number who have been attempting to stay alongside of him and get shelter within the tower. forty eight The siege went on for roughly 8 months. by the point it ended Sigfrid had already accredited a paltry ransom in silver and led his males away. two times Odo had controlled to slide throughout the Viking traces and urge Charles the fats to come back to the rescue of the Parisians. in the summertime the rest Vikings, weary of the wait, their morale ebbing, made one other determined try and breach the partitions. while it failed, nonetheless extra of them gave up, dispersed and set approximately looting the encompassing nation-state. Charles arrived in October with the imperial military and surrounded the rest strength. The stand-off lasted till the spring of the subsequent yr, whilst Charles’s supply of seven-hundred kilos of silver was once permitted. Deposed in 887 and lifeless in 888, Charles used to be changed as king of the western Franks via the heroic Odo and for the 1st time the crown handed out of the arms of the Carolingian dynasty. Over the following century it will move from side to side among the Robertians, named for Odo’s father Robert the robust, and the Carolingians, yet with the accession of the Robertian Hugh Capet in 987 the good dynasty eventually and completely misplaced its carry on strength. The Vikings didn't reason this break-up of Charlemagne’s empire and the dying of his dynasty.