Viking Britain Viking Britain

Viking Britain

A History

    • 3.4 • 7 Ratings
    • £5.49
    • £5.49

Publisher Description

A new narrative history of the Viking Age, interwoven with exploration of the physical remains and landscapes that the Vikings fashioned and walked: their rune-stones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields.

To many, the word ‘Viking’ brings to mind red scenes of rape and pillage, of marauders from beyond the sea rampaging around the British coastline in the last gloomy centuries before the Norman Conquest. It is true that Britain in the Viking Age was a turbulent, violent place. The kings and warlords who have impressed their memories on the period revel in names that fire the blood and stir the imagination: Svein Forkbeard and Edmund Ironside, Ivar the Boneless and Alfred the Great, Erik Bloodaxe and Edgar the Pacifier amongst many others. Evidence for their brutality, their dominance, their avarice and their pride is still unearthed from British soil with stunning regularity.

But this is not the whole story.

In Viking Britain, Thomas Williams has drawn on his experience as project curator of the British Museum exhibition of Vikings: Life and Legend to show how the people we call Vikings came not just to raid and plunder, but to settle, to colonize and to rule. The impact on these islands was profound and enduring, shaping British social, cultural and political development for hundreds of years. Indeed, in language, literature, place-names and folklore, the presence of Scandinavian settlers can still be felt, and their memory – filtered and refashioned through the writings of people like J.R.R. Tolkien, William Morris and G.K.Chesterton – has transformed the western imagination.

This remarkable book makes use of new academic research and first-hand experience, drawing deeply from the relics and landscapes that the Vikings and their contemporaries fashioned and walked: their runestones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields, poems and chronicles. The book offers a vital evocation of a forgotten world, its echoes in later history and its implications for the present.

About the author

Thomas Williams was a curator of the major international exhibition Vikings: Life and Legend in 2014 and is now Curator of Early Medieval Coins at the British Museum. He undertook doctoral research at University College London and has taught and lectured in history and archaeology at the University of Cambridge.

GENRE
History
RELEASED
2017
7 September
LANGUAGE
EN
English
LENGTH
416
Pages
PUBLISHER
William Collins
SIZE
25.8
MB

Customer Reviews

Blind sailor ,

Superb in every respect.

Without doubt the best, most readable, informative and entertaining book on Vikings and their impact on on dark age England.

I have read a great many books over the years and two stand head and shoulders above the rest, The Viking Spirit and this one.

I can not recommend it highly enough to anyone interested in the Dark Ages and Vikings.

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