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Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 2 months ago

why does the media depict vikings as fierce blonde haired warriors when most of them were just farmers?

their communities weren't structured that much different than native americans.

stop with the whole viking superiority propaganda

7 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Like the Native Americans?

    And do you doubt that the Native Americans were seen as fierce?

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    And how does the media depict Native Americans?

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  • 2 months ago

    Fierce warriors make for far more interesting movies than subsistence farmers.  Reality is very often different from the movies, or stories!

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  • 2 months ago

    Norse/Scandinavians were mostly settled down agrarian societies, but the Vikings were a particular group among them who went aboard their longships to trade with and raid other lands, occasionally to quite distant places.

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  • Andrew
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Why are cowboys romanticized? Cowboys had one of the most boring jobs you could possibly imagine. Most of what they did consisted of herding cattle and doing menial tasks around the ranch, repairing fencing, etc. It was only in the 20th Century that people who produce fiction decided to revamp their image and make them out to be these manly men who bridged the gap between civilization and the wilderness and fought off savage Red Indians and got into gunfights with outlaws. Why would they do that? Because it's a more interesting story, it's a more appealing idea, and it sold, that's why. 

    Anybody who knows anything about history knows the difference between the Vikings and the Norse, and while all Vikings were Norsemen, not all Norsemen were Vikings. Scandinavia was a hardscrabble place to live a thousand years ago. The climate isn't as mild as it is elsewhere in Europe, so the growing season is short, not to mention that the soil is extremely rocky, so there isn't much arable land suited for agriculture in large parts of Scandinavia - and things were worse back then because many of the dense forests and extensive bog-lands that would be cut down and drained or filled in later were still in existence. 

    Without enough land on which to grow food, you can't support a large population. And because there wasn't enough land to go around, there wasn't enough food to feed large numbers of people. The obvious solution was to find land someplace else, and many people decided to do that. The Norse who left to settle elsewhere were not looking to rape and ravage, to pillage and to murder. They were looking for someplace to set up a farm. And initially they were content to go to places where there weren't any indigenous inhabitants to contend with or compete with. When the Norse arrived in places like the Faeroe Islands and Iceland, those places were uninhabited, though there is some evidence to support the theory that hermits from Ireland had actually made landfall on both places and may have been there when the Norse arrived. 

    The Viking raiders were compelled to attack coastal settlements in different parts of Europe for a very different reason - because the political situation in Scandinavia at the time was very volatile. The concept of statehood did not exist at that time, so petty chieftains warred with one another for control of different territories. If you want to raise an army to fight, you've got to be able to pay them, and you're not going to fund an army by farming or fishing, so they set sail for the coasts of Europe and set upon the people, taking whatever they fancied and in the process, killing people and burning their homes to the ground. Over time, they even began to travel upriver, so that it wasn't just places on the coast that were being targeted. And then, after about 250 years, the Viking Age suddenly came to an end. For 250 years people had nervously watched the coast, prepared for the defense of their settlements, coordinated with neighbouring towns and formed alliances and pacts promising to come to one another's aid, but the longboats never came back. Why? 

    Well, by that time most of the Viking raiders had realised that they weren't really making out on the deal. They were required to cede most of what they took to the chief who had sponsored and arranged the voyage. So it wasn't a very lucrative profession, not to mention how dangerous it was. And keep in mind that the Norse warriors were only raiding part of the time - they all had farms back in Scandinavia and the raids were performed because they were required to assist their chieftains, or because it was a decent second job in the off season. While Vikings are often seen as these invincible berzerkers who were never defeated in battle, the truth is that the defender is always going to have his own advantages, and many Norse warriors didn't come back. And as it is with every situation in history where people get a taste of the other slice of life, it wasn't lost on many of them that life in the settlements they were raiding was a lot better than the life they were going back to in the North. And because the biggest hauls came from raiding abbeys, they knew that Christianity and wealth went together. Slowly the chiefs of many of the Northern territories were converted to Christianity and in turn forbade their people from slaughtering fellow Christians and ransacking Christian institutions. 

    People have always exaggerated, embellished, and outright fabricated the finer details of everything when it comes to history for all sorts of different reasons - to make somebody look good, to make somebody look bad, to make somebody more interesting, there are heaps of different motivations. 

    The point is that anybody who gets his history from the media is doing himself a disservice. If you truly want to understand a historical period, then you have to read about it, and get your information from multiple, unbiased, reputable sources.   

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    they were just more stupid barbarians from the North.

    • Tim D
      Lv 7
      2 months agoReport

      Who were able to navigate across vast distances with surprising accuracy.

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  • 2 months ago

    That's how they thought of themselves and it goes down the line. The ancient Egyptians were the worst for that, apparently they won every battle they fought. While it's useful that they kept detailed records so we even know their names and all about them, they've chucked a few lies in too.

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