For defense, Vikings used large circular shields. Usually, the size of the Viking shields varied between 30″ and 36″ (75 – 90 cm). The shield excavated at a Viking fortress Trelleborg (Denmark) in 2008 was 33,5″ broad. No less renowned are shields from Gokstad Viking ship burial (Norway). With the end of the Viking Age […]
Vikings were great warriors. Late in the 8th century they left their homes in Scandinavia and began their raids. It was the beginning of the Viking Age. Their weapons and warfare tactics terrified Europe. Contrary to the widespread misconception, Vikings did not wear horned or winged helmets. In battle, they valued usability, not visual effects. The only authentic extant Scandinavian helmet dating back to the Viking Age was found in Gjermundbu, Norway, and it has no horns. Also, massive double axe was not the preferable weapon of the Norsemen. Viking axes were rather light and used single-handed. The most valued weapons for Norse warriors were their swords. Vikings even gave names to them. They also used large round shields and long spears.
Photo: Viking weapons. Courtesy Steve & Jemma Copley. Used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike 2.0 Generic Licence.