Viking Symbols and their Meaning - Viking Style. Symbols played an important role in Norse culture. Vikings considered them to change their lives. How. Viking Tattoos are very popular among men and women, because it carries a mystical meaning. Vikings were famed for their courage, be it bravery in battle or the. - Erkunde andys Pinnwand „viking symbole“ auf Pinterest. Weitere Ideen zu wikingersymbole, nordische symbole, wikinger tattoo.
Wikinger tattoo symboleViking Tattoos are very popular among men and women, because it carries a mystical meaning. Vikings were famed for their courage, be it bravery in battle or the. - Erkunde andys Pinnwand „viking symbole“ auf Pinterest. Weitere Ideen zu wikingersymbole, nordische symbole, wikinger tattoo. Vikings used a number of ancient symbols based on Norse mythology. Symbols played a vital role in the Viking society and were used to represent their gods.
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Geographically, the Viking Age covered Scandinavian lands modern Denmark, Norway and Sweden , as well as territories under North Germanic dominance, mainly the Danelaw , including Scandinavian York , the administrative centre of the remains of the Kingdom of Northumbria ,  parts of Mercia , and East Anglia.
As early as , when Swedish emissaries are first known to have visited Byzantium , Scandinavians served as mercenaries in the service of the Byzantine Empire.
Traditionally containing large numbers of Scandinavians, it was known as the Varangian Guard. In these years, Swedish men left to enlist in the Byzantine Varangian Guard in such numbers that a medieval Swedish law, Västgötalagen , from Västergötland declared no one could inherit while staying in "Greece"—the then Scandinavian term for the Byzantine Empire —to stop the emigration,  especially as two other European courts simultaneously also recruited Scandinavians:  Kievan Rus' c.
There is archaeological evidence that Vikings reached Baghdad , the centre of the Islamic Empire.
Scandinavian Norsemen explored Europe by its seas and rivers for trade, raids, colonization, and conquest. In the Viking Age, the present day nations of Norway, Sweden and Denmark did not exist, but were largely homogeneous and similar in culture and language, although somewhat distinct geographically.
The names of Scandinavian kings are reliably known for only the later part of the Viking Age. After the end of the Viking Age the separate kingdoms gradually acquired distinct identities as nations, which went hand-in-hand with their Christianisation.
Thus the end of the Viking Age for the Scandinavians also marks the start of their relatively brief Middle Ages. Colonization of Iceland by Norwegian Vikings began in the ninth century.
The first source mentioning Iceland and Greenland is a papal letter of Twenty years later, they appear in the Gesta of Adam of Bremen.
It was not until after , when the islands had become Christianized, that accounts of the history of the islands were written from the point of view of the inhabitants in sagas and chronicles.
They raided and pillaged, traded, acted as mercenaries and settled colonies over a wide area. Later in their history, they began to settle in other lands.
This expansion occurred during the Medieval Warm Period. Viking expansion into continental Europe was limited. Their realm was bordered by powerful tribes to the south.
The Saxons were a fierce and powerful people and were often in conflict with the Vikings. To counter the Saxon aggression and solidify their own presence, the Danes constructed the huge defence fortification of Danevirke in and around Hedeby.
The Vikings witnessed the violent subduing of the Saxons by Charlemagne , in the thirty-year Saxon Wars of — The Saxon defeat resulted in their forced christening and the absorption of Old Saxony into the Carolingian Empire.
Fear of the Franks led the Vikings to further expand Danevirke, and the defence constructions remained in use throughout the Viking Age and even up until The south coast of the Baltic Sea was ruled by the Obotrites , a federation of Slavic tribes loyal to the Carolingians and later the Frankish empire.
Because of the expansion of the Vikings across Europe, a comparison of DNA and archeology undertaken by scientists at the University of Cambridge and University of Copenhagen suggested that the term "Viking" may have evolved to become "a job description, not a matter of heredity," at least in some Viking bands.
Researchers have suggested that Vikings may have originally started sailing and raiding due to a need to seek out women from foreign lands.
Due to this, the average Viking man could have been forced to perform riskier actions to gain wealth and power to be able to find suitable women.
One common theory posits that Charlemagne "used force and terror to Christianise all pagans", leading to baptism, conversion or execution, and as a result, Vikings and other pagans resisted and wanted revenge.
However, this time period did not commence until the 10th century, Norway was never subject to aggression by Charlemagne and the period of strife was due to successive Norwegian kings embracing Christianity after encountering it overseas.
Another explanation is that the Vikings exploited a moment of weakness in the surrounding regions. Lack of organised naval opposition throughout Western Europe allowed Viking ships to travel freely, raiding or trading as opportunity permitted.
The decline in the profitability of old trade routes could also have played a role. Trade between western Europe and the rest of Eurasia suffered a severe blow when the Western Roman Empire fell in the 5th century.
Raids in Europe, including raids and settlements from Scandinavia, were not unprecedented and had occurred long before the Vikings arrived.
The Jutes invaded the British Isles three centuries earlier, pouring out from Jutland during the Age of Migrations , before the Danes settled there.
The Saxons and the Angles did the same, embarking from mainland Europe. The Viking raids were, however, the first to be documented in writing by eyewitnesses, and they were much larger in scale and frequency than in previous times.
Vikings themselves were expanding; although their motives are unclear, historians believe that scarce resources or a lack of mating opportunities were a factor.
The "Highway of Slaves" was a term for a route that the Vikings found to have a direct pathway from Scandinavia to Constantinople and Baghdad while traveling on the Baltic Sea.
With the advancements of their ships during the ninth century, the Vikings were able to sail to Kievan Rus and some northern parts of Europe.
Jomsborg was a semi-legendary Viking stronghold at the southern coast of the Baltic Sea medieval Wendland , modern Pomerania , that existed between the s and Its inhabitants were known as Jomsvikings.
Jomsborg's exact location, or its existence, has not yet been established, though it is often maintained that Jomsborg was somewhere on the islands of the Oder estuary.
While the Vikings were active beyond their Scandinavian homelands, Scandinavia was itself experiencing new influences and undergoing a variety of cultural changes.
By the late 11th century, royal dynasties were legitimised by the Catholic Church which had had little influence in Scandinavia years earlier which were asserting their power with increasing authority and ambition, with the three kingdoms of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden taking shape.
Towns appeared that functioned as secular and ecclesiastical administrative centres and market sites, and monetary economies began to emerge based on English and German models.
Christianity had taken root in Denmark and Norway with the establishment of dioceses in the 11th century, and the new religion was beginning to organise and assert itself more effectively in Sweden.
Foreign churchmen and native elites were energetic in furthering the interests of Christianity, which was now no longer operating only on a missionary footing, and old ideologies and lifestyles were transforming.
By , the first archbishopric was founded in Scandinavia, at Lund , Scania, then part of Denmark. The assimilation of the nascent Scandinavian kingdoms into the cultural mainstream of European Christendom altered the aspirations of Scandinavian rulers and of Scandinavians able to travel overseas, and changed their relations with their neighbours.
One of the primary sources of profit for the Vikings had been slave-taking from other European peoples. The medieval Church held that Christians should not own fellow Christians as slaves, so chattel slavery diminished as a practice throughout northern Europe.
This took much of the economic incentive out of raiding, though sporadic slaving activity continued into the 11th century. Scandinavian predation in Christian lands around the North and Irish Seas diminished markedly.
The kings of Norway continued to assert power in parts of northern Britain and Ireland, and raids continued into the 12th century, but the military ambitions of Scandinavian rulers were now directed toward new paths.
In , Sigurd I of Norway sailed for the eastern Mediterranean with Norwegian crusaders to fight for the newly established Kingdom of Jerusalem , and Danes and Swedes participated energetically in the Baltic Crusades of the 12th and 13th centuries.
A variety of sources illuminate the culture, activities, and beliefs of the Vikings. Although they were generally a non-literate culture that produced no literary legacy, they had an alphabet and described themselves and their world on runestones.
Most contemporary literary and written sources on the Vikings come from other cultures that were in contact with them. The most important primary sources on the Vikings are contemporary texts from Scandinavia and regions where the Vikings were active.
Most contemporary documentary sources consist of texts written in Christian and Islamic communities outside Scandinavia, often by authors who had been negatively affected by Viking activity.
Later writings on the Vikings and the Viking Age can also be important for understanding them and their culture, although they need to be treated cautiously.
After the consolidation of the church and the assimilation of Scandinavia and its colonies into the mainstream of medieval Christian culture in the 11th and 12th centuries, native written sources begin to appear in Latin and Old Norse.
In the Viking colony of Iceland, an extraordinary vernacular literature blossomed in the 12th through 14th centuries, and many traditions connected with the Viking Age were written down for the first time in the Icelandic sagas.
A literal interpretation of these medieval prose narratives about the Vikings and the Scandinavian past is doubtful, but many specific elements remain worthy of consideration, such as the great quantity of skaldic poetry attributed to court poets of the 10th and 11th centuries, the exposed family trees, the self images, the ethical values, that are contained in these literary writings.
Indirectly, the Vikings have also left a window open onto their language, culture and activities, through many Old Norse place names and words found in their former sphere of influence.
Some of these place names and words are still in direct use today, almost unchanged, and shed light on where they settled and what specific places meant to them.
Viking influence is also evident in concepts like the present-day parliamentary body of the Tynwald on the Isle of Man.
Some modern words and names only emerge and contribute to our understanding after a more intense research of linguistic sources from medieval or later records, such as York Horse Bay , Swansea Sveinn 's Isle or some of the place names in Normandy like Tocqueville Toki's farm.
Linguistic and etymological studies continue to provide a vital source of information on the Viking culture, their social structure and history and how they interacted with the people and cultures they met, traded, attacked or lived with in overseas settlements.
It has been speculated that the reason for this was the great differences between the two languages, combined with the Rus' Vikings more peaceful businesses in these areas and the fact that they were outnumbered.
The Norse named some of the rapids on the Dnieper , but this can hardly be seen from the modern names. The Norse of the Viking Age could read and write and used a non-standardised alphabet, called runor , built upon sound values.
While there are few remains of runic writing on paper from the Viking era, thousands of stones with runic inscriptions have been found where Vikings lived.
They are usually in memory of the dead, though not necessarily placed at graves. The use of runor survived into the 15th century, used in parallel with the Latin alphabet.
The runestones are unevenly distributed in Scandinavia: Denmark has runestones, Norway has 50 while Iceland has none. The Swedish district of Uppland has the highest concentration with as many as 1, inscriptions in stone, whereas Södermanland is second with The majority of runic inscriptions from the Viking period are found in Sweden.
Many runestones in Scandinavia record the names of participants in Viking expeditions, such as the Kjula runestone that tells of extensive warfare in Western Europe and the Turinge Runestone , which tells of a war band in Eastern Europe.
Other runestones mention men who died on Viking expeditions. Among them include the England runestones Swedish : Englandsstenarna which is a group of about 30 runestones in Sweden which refer to Viking Age voyages to England.
They were engraved in Old Norse with the Younger Futhark. The Jelling stones date from between and The older, smaller stone was raised by King Gorm the Old , the last pagan king of Denmark, as a memorial honouring Queen Thyre.
It has three sides: one with an animal image, one with an image of the crucified Jesus Christ, and a third bearing the following inscription:.
Runestones attest to voyages to locations such as Bath ,  Greece how the Vikings referred to the Byzantium territories generally ,  Khwaresm ,  Jerusalem ,  Italy as Langobardland ,  Serkland i.
Viking Age inscriptions have also been discovered on the Manx runestones on the Isle of Man. The last known people to use the Runic alphabet were an isolated group of people known as the Elfdalians , that lived in the locality of Älvdalen in the Swedish province of Dalarna.
They spoke the language of Elfdalian , the language unique to Älvdalen. The Elfdalian language differentiates itself from the other Scandinavian languages as it evolved much closer to Old Norse.
The people of Älvdalen stopped using runes as late as the s. Usage of runes therefore survived longer in Älvdalen than anywhere else in the world.
Traditionally regarded as a Swedish dialect,  but by several criteria closer related to West Scandinavian dialects,  Elfdalian is a separate language by the standard of mutual intelligibility.
Residents in the area who speak only Swedish as their sole native language, neither speaking nor understanding Elfdalian, are also common.
Älvdalen can be said to have had its own alphabet during the 17th and 18th century. Today there are about 2, native speakers of Elfdalian. The burial practices of the Vikings were quite varied, from dug graves in the ground, to tumuli , sometimes including so-called ship burials.
According to written sources, most of the funerals took place at sea. The funerals involved either burial or cremation , depending on local customs.
In the area that is now Sweden, cremations were predominant; in Denmark burial was more common; and in Norway both were common. There have been several archaeological finds of Viking ships of all sizes, providing knowledge of the craftsmanship that went into building them.
There were many types of Viking ships, built for various uses; the best-known type is probably the longship. The longship had a long, narrow hull and shallow draught to facilitate landings and troop deployments in shallow water.
Longships were used extensively by the Leidang , the Scandinavian defence fleets. The longship allowed the Norse to go Viking , which might explain why this type of ship has become almost synonymous with the concept of Vikings.
The Vikings built many unique types of watercraft, often used for more peaceful tasks. The knarr was a dedicated merchant vessel designed to carry cargo in bulk.
It had a broader hull, deeper draught, and a small number of oars used primarily to manoeuvre in harbours and similar situations.
One Viking innovation was the ' beitass ', a spar mounted to the sail that allowed their ships to sail effectively against the wind. Ships were an integral part of the Viking culture.
They facilitated everyday transportation across seas and waterways, exploration of new lands, raids, conquests, and trade with neighbouring cultures.
They also held a major religious importance. People with high status were sometimes buried in a ship along with animal sacrifices, weapons, provisions and other items, as evidenced by the buried vessels at Gokstad and Oseberg in Norway  and the excavated ship burial at Ladby in Denmark.
Ship burials were also practised by Vikings abroad, as evidenced by the excavations of the Salme ships on the Estonian island of Saaremaa.
Well-preserved remains of five Viking ships were excavated from Roskilde Fjord in the late s, representing both the longship and the knarr.
The ships were scuttled there in the 11th century to block a navigation channel and thus protect Roskilde , then the Danish capital, from seaborne assault.
The remains of these ships are on display at the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde. In , archaeologists uncovered two Viking boat graves in Gamla Uppsala.
They also discovered that one of the boats still holds the remains of a man, a dog, and a horse, along with other items. Dieser Part ähnelt Ranken, die den Wachstum und das Leben verkörpern.
Sie passen auch zu den Ursprüngen des berühmten Ragnar Lothbroks Travis Fimmel , der ein einfacher Bauer war, bevor er zur Legende wurde.
Hier und da hat sie kleine Risse und Abnutzungen, die auf zahlreiche Konflikte hinweisen. Experts hypothesize that the Valknut may depict the cyclical path between life and death that these warriors experience.
Others believe that the nine points represent the nine worlds of Norse mythology. Hrungnir was a fearsome giant — the only giant that was ever able to wound Thor — so in some ways Hrungnir may also symbolize death.
While the details are lost to time, the Valknut symbol now calls to mind courage, bravery, and destiny throughout this life and the next.
The Helm of Awe is mentioned in several of the Eddic poems as being used by both warriors and even dragons! The symbol itself survives from later Icelandic grimoire books of magic , penned well after the Viking Age but from an unbroken intellectual lineage to sea traveling Vikings of earlier times.
I never faced so many men that I did not feel myself much stronger than they were, and everyone feared me. The eight arms or rays emit from the center point of the symbol.
The arms themselves appear to be constructed from two intersecting runes. These are Algiz runes for victory and protection intersected by Isa runes, which may mean hardening literally, ice.
So, the hidden meaning of this symbol may be the ability to overcome through superior hardening of the mind and soul.
Vegvisir Viking Compass. The Icelandic symbol was a visual spell of protection against getting lost particularly at sea — something that would have been very, very important to the Vikings.
The Vikings may have had directional finding instruments of their own, such as the Uunartoq disc and sunstones; but most of their navigation came down to visual cues the sun, stars, flight patterns of birds, the color of water, etc.
Given the potentially disastrous consequences inherent in such sea voyages, however, it is easy to see why Vikings would want magical help in keeping their way.
The symbol comes down to us from the Icelandic Huld Manuscript another grimoire which was compiled in the s from older manuscripts now lost.
The exact age of the Vegvisir is therefore unknown. Triskele Horns of Odin. The Horns of Odin also referred to as the horn triskelion or the triple-horned triskele is a symbol comprised three interlocking drinking horns.
The exact meaning of the symbol is not known, but it may allude to Odin's stealing of the Mead of Poetry.
The symbol has become especially significant in the modern Asatru faith. The Horns of Odin symbol is also meaningful to other adherents to the Old Ways, or those who strongly identify with the god Odin.
The symbol appear on the 9th-century Snoldelev Stone found in Denmark and seen to the right. While the shape of this symbol is reminiscent of the Triqueta and other Celtic symbols, it appears on the Larbro stone in Gotland, Sweden which may be as old as the early eighth century.
On this image stone, the Horns of Odin are depicted as the crest on Odin's shield. The Triquetra or the Trinity Knot is comprised one continuous line interweaving around itself, meaning no beginning or end, or eternal spiritual life.
A similar design was found on the Funbo Runestone found in Uppland, Sweden seen to the right. Originally, the Triquetra was associated with the Celtic Mother Goddess and depicted her triune nature the maiden, the mother, and the wise, old woman.
The triple identity was an essential feature in many aspects of druidic belief and practice. Mjölnir me-OL-neer means grinder, crusher, hammer and is also associated with thunder and lightning.
When the Vikings saw lightning, and heard thunder in a howling storm, they knew that Thor had used Mjölnir to send another giant to his doom.
Thor was the son of Odin and Fyorgyn a. He was the god of thunder and the god of war and one of the most popular figures in all of Norse mythology.
Mjölnir is known for its ability to destroy mountains. But it was not just a weapon. Loki made a bet with two dwarves, Brokkr and Sindri or Eitri that they could not make something better than the items created by the Sons of Ivaldi the dwarves who created Odin's spear Gungnir and Freyr's foldable boat skioblaonir.
Then he gave the hammer to Thor, and said that Thor might smite as hard as he desired, whatsoever might be before him, and the hammer would not fail; and if he threw it at anything, it would never miss, and never fly so far as not to return to his hand; and if be desired, he might keep it in his sark, it was so small; but indeed it was a flaw in the hammer that the fore-haft handle was somewhat short.
Thor also used Mjölnir to hallow, or to bless. With Mjölnir, Thor could bring some things such as the goats who drew his chariot back to life.
Thor was invoked at weddings, at births, and at special ceremonies for these abilities to bless, make holy, and protect. Hundreds of Mjölnir amulets have been discovered in Viking graves and other Norse archaeological sites.
Some experts have postulated that these amulets became increasingly popular as Vikings came into contact with Christians, as a way to differentiate themselves as followers of the Old Ways and not the strange faith of their enemies.
This may or may not be true. Certainly, amulets of many kinds have been in use since pre-historic times. Interestingly, Mjölnir amulets were still worn by Norse Christians sometimes in conjunction with a cross after the Old Ways began to fade, so we can see that the symbol still had great meaning even after its relevance to religion had changed.
With its association with Thor, the protector god of war and the of nature's awe, the Mjölnir stands for power, strength, bravery, good luck, and protection from all harm.
It is also an easily-recognizable sign that one holds the Old Ways in respect. Da es aber auch eine Nähe zu dem keltischen und germanischen Kulturkreis gibt ist die Herkunft des Triquetra zwischen diesen beiden Kulturen nicht genau herzuleiten.
Wahrscheinlich wurde es ebenfalls als Schutz-Symbol genutzt, gesichert ist dies nicht. Die Triquetra kann auch einen rituellen oder religiösen Charakter gehabt haben, welcher uns heute nicht bekannt ist.
Aber auch im keltischen Sinn als Erde, Himmel und Wasser. Oder Niederkunft, Leben sowie Tod. Das sogenannte Radkreuz bzw.
Mit jeder Drehung nehmen die Speichen des Sonnenkreuzes ihren alten Platz wieder ein, wie auch die Jahreszeiten oder die sogenannten Tierkreiszeichen bzw.
Ein fortlaufender, beständiger Kreislauf, den kein Mensch oder Gott entkommen kann, weil dieser Kreislauf unabänderlich ist.
Betrachtet man das Radkreuz waagerecht so stellt es die Erde als Scheibe, flache Erde da. He is married to Princess Judith, with whom he has a son, Prince Aethelred.
He dies by asphyxiation after being stung by a bee. Based on the historical Aethelwulf. A very religious warrior priest. He is eventually captured by Ivar who admires his skill as a warrior.
Heahmund fights for Ivar against Lagertha, but is captured in the initial battle. Having become smitten by Lagertha, he seduces her and switches to her side.
On his suggestion, Lagertha and her followers seek refuge in England. Through Heahmund's influence the Northmen are given sanctuary in return for fighting against other Viking raiders.
When Harald Finehair attempts to raid Wessex, Heahmund fights in the frontline. In the battle he is wounded by arrows and killed by Gunnhild.
Broadly inspired by the historical Heahmund. He is the protector of the heir to the Rus kingdom, Igor and brother in law of Igor's father Rurik.
Oleg is sadistic and uses his status as Igor's protector as a pretext for consolidating control over the kingdom.
He has successfully sacked Constantinople , but is critical of Rurik's eastward expansion. Oleg wants to conquer Scandinavia which he claims is the property of the Rus.
Oleg takes in Ivar, thinking him useful for his plan to invade Scandinavia. Oleg forms an uneasy friendship with Ivar after revealing that he murdered his wife after discovering her infidelity.
Ivar's similar experience with Freydis brings them closer. The character is based on the semi-historical Oleg the Prophet.
Jarl Olavsonn's wife. Harald becomes enamored with her, but after Olavsonn's death, she marries Bjorn Ironside instead.
As his wife, she becomes queen of Kattegat. A wanderer living in Iceland. His real name is Athelstan and he was a monk in England.
During one of his travels as missionary, he took the identity of the dying wanderer Othere and moved to Iceland.
He then sailed west and glimpsed the Golden Land. Ubbe asks him to sail again with him to find the new land. The following is a list of recurring characters, listed in the order that they first appeared on the show.
Daughter of Ragnar and Lagertha. She dies in a plague. Loosely based on Ragnar's unnamed daughters. Elderly Viking and one of Ragnar's warriors.
He has a wife, Elisef, and a son, Leif. He is an early supporter of Ragnar and is murdered by earl Haraldson. One of Ragnar's warriors and son of Erik and Elisef.
He offers himself as a sacrifice at Uppsala. Ruler of one of England's ancient kingdoms and the first to be attacked by Ragnar. He killed Ragnar by throwing him into a pit of snakes and was executed by Bjorn as retribution for Ragnar's death.
Floki's long-suffering lover and wife. Murdered by her own adopted daughter who shortly after committed suicide. A woman of Kattegat and Eyvind's wife.
She joins Floki's expedition to set up a colony. Her brother was killed by Kjetill's father prior to the events of the series. She is killed by Kjetill.
A powerful warlord of an earldom in Götaland. He has a wife, Torvi, and a son, Guthrum. He was killed by Ragnar with the Blood Eagle, for having attacked his people and his family.
King Horik's first son. He is cruel and spiteful. After the death of his father, he seeks vengeance against Ragnar and his family.
He ends up marrying Torvi and conspires with Kalf to ruin Ragnar. He is killed by Torvi after frequently threatening Torvi's son Guthrum.
Lagertha's second husband and Earl of Hedeby. He is killed by Lagertha after multiple incidents of abuse. An influential advisor at the court of King Ecbert.
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