The Vikings

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Social Studies

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The Vikings

Viking society was composed of three well distinct social classes: the jarlar, wealthy chiefs and earls that detained the power, the middle class, peasant freeholders and at the end of the hierarchy the thralls, or servants. These population valued courage, glory and military and political abilities, skills that were equally prized in women as well as men.

The Viking migrations from Scandinavia to Britain and Ireland

The Vikings were daring masters of the sea. Their swift wooden longships, equipped with both sails and oars, enabled them to raid the coastal monasteries and settlements of the British Isles, western Europe and beyond. Actual sea-battles were rare, and even then were fought close to shore. Ships were roped together in lines to face an enemy fleet and showers of arrows and missiles would have been exchanged. The aim was not to destroy enemy craft, but to capture them if possible.

The story of the Vikings in Britain, from 800 to 1066, is one of conquest, expulsion, extortion and reconquest. Their lasting legacy was the formation of the independent kingdoms of England and Scotland.

The Vikings


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