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HLAF-MASS MASSACREE

Thanksgiving! What does that have to do with the English and the Norse!

Okay, let’s call it Harvest Festival. Or maybe Lammastide. Or Loaf Fest. Or Freyfest. Or, yes, Thanksgiving.

Harvest celebrations are traditionally celebrated in many cultures. Important to any culture for whom agriculture and the harvest was of great importance, and that included most cultures. Most persons, even those as important as kings, were involved in agriculture. After all, harvest would decide whether they would live, or at least be moderately comfortable, until the next year.

Though Lammas is traditionally 1 August—customarily between the summer solstice and autumn equinox—the celebrations traditionally occurred between then and 1 September, and the later American Thanksgiving was, of course in November, though the first Thanksgiving seemed to have taken place somewhere between the end of September and the beginning of November.

The ancient Lammastide, in the words of an historian, “was a way for farmers to ease their way into autumn and to set their minds upon the harvest, and first fruits of their diligent labor of the soil.” In heathen times, it was a custom to bring a loaf of bread made from the grain harvested, and even after Christianity achieved a prominence, that load was blessed by the priest and divided into four loaves, each quarter being set in the corner of the barn to protect the grain. The English called the time hlaf-mass, or the “loaf mass.” early church documents, the ritual was referred to as the “feast of first fruits.” Christians also have church processions to bakeries, where those working therein are blessed by Christian clergy. Lammas coincided with St. Peter’s miraculous deliverance from prison. Today, many heathens celebrate Lughnasadh about the same time. It was a Gaelic festival marking the beginning of the harvest season. It is mentioned in some of the earliest Irish literature and was a heathen festival that was widely observed throughout Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man.

The hlaf-mass was blessed in the early English church and was afterwards employed in protective rituals. In fact, a book of Englisc charms may be the origin of placing a quarter of the loaf at the corners of a barn.

What the harvest festival was called by the Norse or how it was celebrated by the heathen is most conjecture. After all, no purely Heathen name has survived for this festival, any more than most aspects of the heathen religion is known except what can be imputed by occasional verses and runestones. However, modern heathen writers then go on to describe how the first fruits of harvest were brought to the temple as gifts and in Norse tradition, the “First Sheaf was often bound and blessed as an offering to Heathen deities or the spirits of the field at the beginning of harvest, just as the Last Sheaf was at its end. English folk custom also includes the decoration of wells and springs.” // https://www.theasatrucommunity.org/freyfaxi //

For both the Norse heathens and the Englisc heathens as well as the early Christian themselves, all that can be definitely said that the amount of food was great, especially after a period that might have seen starvation and little or no food. Some food could not be preserved at the time and actually had to be eaten at the time. So we can almost intuitively note that the people—both Christian and he then—gathered together in large, convivial and warm company, and stuff themselves! May you approach Thanksgiving with the same plans and have a great holiday!


DIRT BALL

I was fascinated when I read about the dirt balls found in the Galloway Hoard in Archaeology Magazine. I’m still searching for information on them, but there were apparently dirt balls in Greenland, Scotland and Denmark, as well as elsewhere in the Viking world. The dates are ambiguous, but they are from the Christian era.

A supposition—that seems very logical to me—is that the dirt balls were souvenirs. Not quite pilgrims’ medallions, but the idea is close. They show you—and others—that You Were There. They were scooped up and rolled into balls from holy sites and then rolled against reliquaries, picking up gold dust from the reliquary. Were they produced in an industry, or did pilgrims o out and scoop them up themselves? For that matter, I am uncertain of how frequently they were made during the time, but there are suppositions that they dried and crumbled away. Those found in the Galloway Hoard lasted because they had ben put into air-tight containers that kept them safe.

Doing research into making some, Roland Williamson repeated something that I had already considered: Make them out of clay to insure their longevity. I ended up getting some air-dryable clay. The white seemed a little too pristine and brilliant white. I wondered if I could assume an adequate color by dyeing it with tea. I still do not know. I may experiment later, but this time I bought some terra cota-colored clay. I liked the hue it was, even if it was a lot darker than the relic! Ah well, reenactment is always very absolutely thenty… :\

I ordered ten ounces of dirt containing gold dust. Uncertain how much gold dust. Some buyers said it wasn’t filled with enough gold since they seemed to expect to retire to Mara-Lago on gold contained. I think the seller just went and scooped up a shovelfuls of dirt from an era where gold was found. They even included a free prospecting pan! 🙂 It was, I decided, good enough for my purposes. (yes, I did do Walter Huston’s prospector dance when it arrived 🙂 )

I rolled the clay into balls. Not spherical or smooth because I tried to mimics the Galloway balls. Dome cracks and fissures. Then I spread out some of the dirt that allegedly—or perhaps hopefully—contained gold. The dust covered the balls, and they actually sparkled in the sun, sine they seemed to have flecks of gold—or pyrite at least.

Then, wanting to see what drying would do to it, I set the dirt balls for a few days, an they dried into a very satisfying hardness.

The results were great!

In period, were the dirt balls carried around like a crucifix? Were they kept in a single, stationery place like replicas? How were they kept safe? The answers may pop up, but I will not be waiting for hat information.

When I feel safe to do shows again, I plan to trot out a dirt ball. The dust can easily be rubbed off, so MoPs probably will not be allowed to handle them. But for that matter, the dust might be rubbed off in transit and storage, so I am using boxes and packing foam to keep them safe!

I have no idea what the reaction will be. I hope that MoPs are fascinated by them and have never herd of them before. Aren’t those the main reasons we do re-enacting to start with?


PROJECTS FOR THE PANDEMIC X: SEALS

Seals were used in the earliest civilizations and were very familiar by the early middle ages. Wax seals were being regularly used by the end of the tenth century. The practice of sealing in wax gradually moved down the social hierarchy from royalty, nobility and high-ranking ecclesiastical individuals to minor knights by the twelfth century and to commoners by the middle of the thirteenth century.

By the middle of the eleventh century, the seals were attached to charters by a length of parchment that was cut from the charter itself. The modern pouring of wax to “seal” an envelope was not yet used. I determined that a seal should not be used on the computerized charters that I produced and ordered some actual parchment—my supplier suggested goat parchment—that could be used and sealed.

After looking at historical and available seals, I decided to design my own. I decided on the circle shape, made the circular text “FOLCIVSÞEGNMICELFOLCLOND✠. The center would conventionally have the head of a person, but I decided to go with Michael, the mascot of Micel Folcland, in the center. In deference to my skills at carving the seal, I decided to replace the crane with a triskelion design that appealed to me. As it turned out, I could have kept Michael since I had the seal carved by a professional. I ordered a professional seal out of brass but did eventually carve a seal myself out of faux ivory, but I did not have the skill to do it veery well. I plan to work on another in my spare time.

Most of the seals were on disks that the parchment was attached to, and I found a suitable mould, the top to a cannister of pills. I melted wax, placed the end of the strip of parchment and placed more wax on top. It popped out of the mould with no problem, and I was pleased with the result.

I used simple red wax, which was of dubious authenticity, and I mixed up more accurate waxes, combining powdered and then crushed rosin with beeswax (2/3 to 1/3).

I have a lot goat parchment, and I intend to keep trying to make a very satisfying result. But then good living history is a never-ended experiment!


PROJECTS FOR THE PANDEMIC VII: MAKING A PAINT BRUSH

How important were paint brushes during the period? We are familiar with the pens, but pictures of paint brushes are more rare. With the help of the guidance of Gary Golding, I have been busy this last year to accumulate–generally making–scribe tools: pumice stone, prickers, burnishers, straight edges and clothlets, as well as pens and scrapers. When they were all finished, there was no way to delay even more. No matter how much the process intimidated me, it was time to make a brush.

I began by reading DIY articles on making brushes. I cannot say that the brushes were entirely accurate, but I was able to take what seemed to work. And I did several, so I was able to take several different approaches. Some of the results I was not satisfied with, but they were not entirely dismaying!

Brushes were made from boar bristles or from squirrel fur. I was able to secure both, but the squirrel fur was intimidated me too much, so I still have a whole squirrel’s tale. I may use it someday, but I did find the boar bristles very easy—if frustrating at times—to work with.

I took the boar bristles and cut them to the desired sizes. They were cut a little longer than what the final result would be simply to be able to cut them down. I would take about twelve bristles, bend them double and bind them at the bend with hemp thread. Then, there were bent double. The bristles were obstinate, and this was not as easy as it sounds!

The handle part was a bit more iffy. I tried a wooden handle, and it was adequate but not satisfying. For the most part, handles were made of the quills—just like the quills used in making the quills—and vulture feathers were recommended. And then I discovered that vulture feathers were expensive! I bought one and used it. But frankly, I did not find that it was any more useful than the goose quills that were much less expensive. So most of the brushes I made were made from goose feathers.

The goose and the vulture feathers were treated in the same way. The feathery parts were stripped, which is actually a very simple thing to do. Pinch the barbs of the feather at the base of the shaft and just pull. It will usually zip off easily. Both sides must be stripped off. Then the open end must be reamed so that it is entirely empty. Some people say it must be soaked, but I found that a bit of overkill.

I took the bristle bundles and stuck them into the empty end. Ideally, you want to do so with about six benches, but the size of the quill opening determines how many are used for a brush. After a while, I discovered that a drop of glue in the empty space helped keep the bristles under control.

Then taking hemp thread, I would wrap the bristles. There is actually no way to describe what needs to be done to make it secure. You just see and feel it. I discovered that coating the thread in glue helped. Cheating? Maybe, but glue is my friend! It eliminated the need for knotting or otherwise securing the cord. I then put another coat of glue over the bound bristles just to make it more secure.

I was then able to trim the bristles to the desired size. I must admit that the bristles sometimes would not work together, so I needed to keep them together with little glue. The result was pleasing visually, and I used one a little but did not use any a lot. But for display, it was veery satisfying!


PROJECTS FOR THE PANDEMIC VIIII: CLOTHLETS

The clothlet was a piece of cloth impregnated with pigment (generally a vegetable dye), used to hold vegetable pigments in a dry format. A portion of such cloth, when soaked with a little gum arabic, releases its colors into the medium and produces an artist’s pigment. Clothlets were convenient way of carrying or shipping vegetal pigments, and they were especially popular from the fourteenth century on, with the growth of the textile trade, though they seemed to have existed in earlier times.

An early appearance of the clothlet was in the tenth-century Mappæ Clavicula. The earliest copy of the Mappae was a manuscript in the Benedictine monastery of Reichenau, dated to 821-822. The manuscript is no longer in existence. But later copies speak about a variety of colors derived from organic sources.

Production of clothlets is simple but time consuming. Basically, a pot of vegetable color is made by boiling the vegetable source of the dye in water. It must not be too watery. I made several batches, include woad, madder and weld. Several different colors could be made from a solution depending on the density of the solution. For example, these organic colors could produce blue, red, green and yellow. Experiment with the solutions

Gary Golding, who guided me in the production of clothlets, notes that “A clean linen cloth is dipped in pigment and allowed to air dry, then dipped and dried again and again until it’s impregnated with pigment.” The cloth is soaked in the solution and brought out to dry. I hung them from rods and allowed them to dry. I did this about twelve times for each piece. I used squares of white linen. These would be stored until needed, and a piece would be cut off. It could be soaked in glair or gum. In the morning, you should have a wash that is ready to use. Gary adds that “Organic pigments have poor coverage compared to mineral ones. Such pigments tended to have poor coverage and lightfastness and so were typically used as highlights or washes on other colors. This would then be used to highlight or wash the stronger mineral pigments…” These washes were often used to enhance other colors in a book illumination, since they created a rich, glowing, and transparent effect.

In period, clothlets were often stored in books. I have found that blank pages are recommended, since colors rub off onto the paper!


REGIAL PURSUIT VII

How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. Leicestershire
    A. Loncastre
    B. Lundenwic
    C. Lægreceastr
    D. Leòdhas
  2. The name of the most important Viking town in England was
    A. London
    B. Canterbury
    C. Jorvik
    D. Nottingham
  3. The poem “Beowulf” takes place in
    A. Iceland
    B. England
    C. Denmark
    D. Russia
  4. Sårkland was in Old Norse
    A. Muslim lands
    B. A fish farm
    C. A fallow field
    D. Scotland
  5. Blæland was in Old Norse
    A. Muslim lands
    B. A fish farm
    C. A fallow field
    D. Scotland
  6. Grænland was in Old Norse
    A. Greenland
    B. Greece
    C. Gotland
    D. Constantinople
  7. Miklegård was in Old Norse
    A. Greece
    B. Iceland
    C. Cathay
    D. Constantinople
  8. Undoubtedly real evidence for Norse in North America was
    A. The Vinland Map
    B. The Kensington Stone
    C. “Pathfinder”
    D. L’Ans Aux Meadows
  9. Grikkland was in Old Norse
    A. Poland
    B. Greece
    C. Serbia
    D. Sicily
  10. Ireland was in Old English
    A. Armagh
    B, Ísland
    C. Grænland
    D. Leprekhan
  11. The Mediterranean Sea was in Old English
    A. Heahsæ
    B. Wendelsæ
    C. Hierusalem Sæ
    D. The Middle Sæ
  12. Kent was in Old English
    A. Clarke
    B. Krít
    C. Camri
    D. Cent

answers: 1-C. 2-C. 3-C. 4-A. 5-A. 5-A. 6-A. 7-D. 8-D. 9-C. 10-A. 11-B. 12-D.


REGIAL PURSUIT VI


How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. The center of medieval maps was generally
    A. France
    B. Jerusalem
    C. China
    D. Rome
  2. 3. A quern stone was used for
    A. Washing clothes
    B. Grinding grains
    C. Mortar
    D. Executions
  3. The horns on Viking helmets were
    A. A length denoting the rank of the wearer
    B. Five Inches
    C. Ten Inches or More
    D. Viking Helmets had no horns
  4. The first white man to set foot in North America (west of Greenland) was
    A. Christopher Columbus
    B. Saint Brendan
    C. Bjarni Herjolfsson
    D. Leif Eiriksson
  5. A person of the Viking Age most likely would eat
    A. A jalapeño pepper
    B. A carrot
    C. A turnip
    D. A banana
  6. The term “Viking” refers to
    A. A job
    B. A style
    C. A military force
    D. A race
  7. The most popular pet for people in the Viking Age was
    A. A horse
    B. A dog
    C. A dragon
    D. A cat
  8. The British king with a coin with an Islamic text was
    A. Offa
    B. Alfred
    C. Arthur
    D. Richard
  9. The early Norse call spectacles
    A. Magik Eyes
    B. Nothing at all; there weren’t any
    C. Lens
    D. Bifockels
  10. Englisc parliaments were known as
    A. Things
    B. Parlements
    C. Senates
    D. Moots
  11. An ard was
    A. A light plough
    B. An ox
    C. An ale
    D. A small longship
  12. A gerefa was
    A. A reeve
    B. A broom
    C. A pastry
    D. A stableboy

answers: 1-B. 2-B. 3-D. 4-D. 5-C. 6-A. 7-B. 8-A. 9-B. 10-D, 11-A. 12-A.


REGIAL PURSUIT V

How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. Medieval maps had what direction to the top
    A. East
    B. North
    C. South
    D. West
  2. The magnetic compass was introduced into Europe in
    A. Circa 800
    B. Circa 1200
    C. Circa 1300
    D 1492
  3. In Old Norse, a church was known as
    A A sulu
    B A kirk
    C A picard
    D A coy
  4. Commentary by the scribe in the margin was known as
    A. Marginalia
    B. Commentario
    C. Sidenotes
    D. Textblocks
  5. Books were commonly made in the middle ages from
    A. Parchment or vellum
    B. Paper made of hemp
    C. Metal sheets
    D. Papyrus
  6. Books were protected from being stolen by
    A. Keeping readers naked
    B. Poisoning the pages an keeping the antidote secret
    C. Being protected with a book curse
    D. Requiring another book to be left as hostage
  7. Right Hand pages were known as recto, and Left Hand pages were known as
    A. Leifto
    B. Verso
    C. Contra
    D. Buckram
  8. The movable type press was invented in Europe in
    A. The fourteenth century
    B. The fifteenth century
    C. The eleventh century
    D. The sixteenth century
  9. Books were hand written until
    A. Gutenberg invented movable type in the mid-fifteenth century
    B. Block books were invented in the early fifteenth century
    C. Paper was produced in Europe in the eleventh century
    D. Typewriters were invented in the sixteenth century
  10. Illustrations in books were also known as
    A. Cartoones
    B. Ditkos
    C. Illuminations
    D. Litabits
  11. A frilla was
    A. A large horse
    B. An Icelandic monk
    C. An Englisc queen
    D. A Norse concubine
  12. A Norse sleeping bag was called
    A. A blanket
    B. A hüdfat
    C. They had none
    D. Goksattad sack

answers: 1-A. 2-C. 3-B. 4-A. 5-A. 6-C. 7-B. 8-A. 9-B. 10-C. 11-D. 12-B.


REGIAL PURSUIT IIII

How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. Medieval Books were printed on
    A. Paper
    B. Skin
    C. Wool
    D. Horn
  2. A bound book was known as a
    A. Notebook
    B. Rune stone
    C. Scroll
    D. Codex
  3. The first books were bound in
    A. Circa 33
    B. Circa 300
    C. Circa 700
    D Circa 1455
  4. Right- and left-hand pages were known, respectively, as
    A. Dexter and Sinister
    B. Right and Left
    C. Recto and Verso
    D Kumquat and Plantain
  5. Paper was first used in Europe in
    A. Circa 100
    B. Circa 1100
    C. Circa 1350
    D Circa 1612
  6. In Europe, books were hand written until
    A. Circa 1000
    B. Circa 1400
    C. Circa 1455
    D. Circa 1583
  7. Pen nibs were made out of
    A. Feathers
    B. Steel
    C. Copper
    D. Reeds
  8. An individual page was known as
    A. Folo
    B. Folio
    C. Octavo
    D. Octavio
  9. Awls for boring holes were also known as
    A. Needles
    B. Gimlets
    C. Martinis
    D. Seaxes
  10. The movable type press was developed in Europe in
    A. Amerigo Vespucci
    B. William Caxton
    C. Johannes Gutenberg
    D. Marco Polo
  11. The name of the bribe paid to the Norse by the English was
    A. Hoard
    B. Blood Eagle
    C. Pouchware
    D. Danegeld
  12. The first Norseman who encountered Iceland was
    A. Naddoddr
    B. Leifr Eiriksson
    C. Thangbrand
    D. Snorri Sturlusson

answers: 1-B. 2-D. 3-B. 4-C. 5-B. 6-B. 7-D. 8-B. 9-B. 10-C. 11-D. 12-A.


REGIAL PURSUIT III

How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. The best cure against a head ache is:
    A. Drinking a hen’s egg, mixed in warm ale
    B. Lying on a dog’s head, burned to ashes
    C. Singing nine Pater Nosters
    D. Leeches
  2. In an Anglo-Saxon aphrodisiac, you would likely use:
    A. Deer testicles
    B. A carrot and two plums
    C. Oysters
    D. Leeches
  3. A hiccough is most likely caused by:
    A. Accidentally swallowing an elf
    B. Drinking too quickly
    C. An imbalance of the humors
    D. Fear of Viking Invasion
  4. Which is the best cure against warts?
    A. Applying some leeches
    B. A mixture of dog’s urine and mouse blood
    C. Pray the Pater Noster three times
    D. Cutting them off with a heated knife
  5. In case of severed sinews, apply:
    A. Leeches
    B. Hemp bath
    C. Earthworms
    D. The bark of a young and healthy tree
  6. Throwing a dung beetle over your shoulder and saying “Remedium facio ad ventris dolorem” three times will:
    A. Get rid off an annoying itch between your shoulder blades
    B. Give you the power to cure stomach aches for a full year
    C. Alleviate diarrhea in the entire village
    D. Get rid off the dung beetle
  7. A child has a fever, you:
    A. Apply leeches on its forehead
    B. Have him drink a potation with goat dung
    C. Put it on a rooftop in the sun
    D. Put it in an oven
  8. Against heart ache:
    A. Ribwort, boiled in milk, drink it for nine mornings
    B. Ribwort, boiled in milk, drink it for six mornings
    C. Ribwort, boiled in milk, drink it for three mornings
    D. Ribwort, boiled in milk, drink it for seven mornings
  9. Which one of these remedies is not an actual Anglo-Saxon remedy?
    A. None; They are all real
    B. Against madness, hit the patient with a whip made of dolphin skin
    C. Against a stomach ache, sleep next to a fat child
    D. Against misty eyes, rub the eyes with child’s urine and honey
  10. Your patient has a sore throat, you prescribe:
    A. Nine leeches
    B. Take the neck of a goose and wrap it around the patient’s neck
    C. Gargle with the spittle of a horse
    D. Drink heated honey with some herbs
  11. For a cold
    A. Drink Garlic tea
    B. Fry black snails in a hot pan and rub it to dust and let the man eat the dust
    C. Seethe nettle in oil. Smear and rub all over the body
    D. Take cannabis, pounded. with grease, lay it to the breasts.
  12. A physican was known as
    A. A doctor
    B. A laece
    C. A surgien
    D. A barbour

answers: 1-B. 2-A. 3-A. 4-B. 5-C. 6-C. 7-C. 8-A. 9-A. 10-D. 11-C. 12-B.


REGIAL PURSUIT II

How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. What was the meaning of the term “Viking”?
    A. Warrior from Scandinavia
    B. Barbarian
    C. Pirate
    D. Pirate/Trader
  2. What was the name of Arab envoy who wrote about Vikings?
    A. Abu ibn Battutah
    B. Ahmed ibn Fadlan
    C. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
    D. Hamza ibn Abdul-Muttalib
  3. What word did the Anglo-Saxons not use for “Knife”?
    A. Seax
    B. Cnif
    C. Knif
    D. Bill
  4. Who was the first Norse king of England?
    A. Sveyn Forkbeard
    B. Ivarr the Boneless
    C. Canute the Great
    D. William of Normandy
  5. What is the name of the first Viking ship found?
    A. Vasa
    B. Gokstad
    C. Tune
    D. Knarr
  6. What the Viking army in Constantinople called?
    A. The Varangian Guard
    B. The Vikings
    C. The Micel Here
    D. The Rus
  7. What was the name by which the game King’s Table was known?
    A. Drepa
    B. Hnefatafl
    C. Hnefatafl
    D. Merels
  8. The Norse-ruled part of England was known as
    A. North Country
    B. Danelaw
    C. Danegeld
    D. Wic
  9. What name was not used by Oðinn?
    A. Asagrim
    B. Hárr
    C. Gautr
    D. Olav
  10. When did Iceland convert to Christianity?
    A. 870
    B. 930
    C. 1000
    D. 1550
  11. A drakkar was
    A. A dragon in a saga
    B. A longship
    C. A minstrel
    D. A seaman
  12. A Faering was
    A. A law court
    B. A farmer
    C. A small boat
    D. A parliament

answers: 1-D. 2-B. 3-D. 4-A. 5-C. 6-A. 7-B. 8-B. 9-D. 10-C. 11-B. 12-C.


REGIAL PURSUIT I

How well do you know the Early Middle Ages? As we get back into the school year, these questions might be of interest to students, and to new or inexperienced reemactors!

  1. What race did the Norse call Serkirs?
    A. The Franks
    B. The Greeks
    C. The Moors
    D. The Eskimos
  2. What was Roggvarfeldr?
    A. Sowing the field
    B. Norman overthrow of the Danelaw
    C. King of Mercia 956–958
    D. Fake fur
  3. On what day did Eþelræd try to kill all Scandinavians in England?
    A. St. Christopher Day 999
    B. St. Bryce’s Day 1002
    C. St. Valentine’s Day 1013
    D. St. Callistus Day 1066
  4. Which had the first democracy since classical times?
    A. Danelaw
    B. Iceland
    C. United States of America
    D. Mercia
  5. What did the Anglo-Saxons call a belt?
    A. Balut
    B. Ard
    C. Windingas
    D. Belt
  6. What were Norse parliaments were known as?
    A. Things
    B. Stuff
    C. Assemblies
    D. Moots
  7. Who were the æðelings?
    A. Norse royalty
    B. Anglo Saxon royalty
    C. Anglo-Saxon carts
    D. English kings’ daughters
  8. What was the most common fabric used in Norse and Anglo-Saxon cultures
    A. Linen
    B. Silk
    C. Cotton
    D. Wool
  9. What was a scop?
    A. An Anglo-Saxon minstrel
    B. A device used by Vikings to bail out ships
    C. An Anglo-Saxon shovel
    D. An Anglo-Saxon spade
  10. What was the Norse farmer class called?
    A. Æðelings
    B. Bondi
    C. Serfs
    D. Haymadr
  11. The longest-reigning Englisc king was
    A. Alfred
    B. Ethelred
    C. Canute
    D. Harold
  12. For counting, the Norse used
    A. A decimal system
    B. A duodecimal system
    C. Only their fingers
    D. They never counted

answers: 1-C. 2-D. 3-B. 4-B. 5-D. 6-A. 7-B. 8-D. 9-A. 10-B. 11-B. 12-B.


A PLAGUE…I MEAN DESTRUCTION

I am no linguist. I am familiar with French and have translated books for my own use. I am conversant with Latin and several other archaic languages. But I am no Jackson Crawford by any stretch of the imagination.

This makes it very strange that I am fascinated by translations. Especially modern translations of words that were not use during the time. One is the word “tattoo” that was not created until the eighteenth century and is one of only a few words in English descended from a Polynesian word.

Another is plague, which descends from Latin.

Plague today has a specific meaning. At least in popular thought. It references to the Bubonic Plague, the Black Death, The Great Dying. Actually the term was not born until the fourteenth century. The Online Etymology Web page gives this source:

late 14c., plage, "affliction, calamity, evil, scourge, severe trouble or vexation;" early 15c., "malignant disease," from Old French plage (14c., Modern French plaie), from Late Latin plaga "affliction; slaughter, destruction," used in Vulgate for "pestilence," from Latin plaga "stroke, wound," probably from root of plangere "to strike, lament (by beating the breast)," from or cognate with Greek (Doric) plaga "blow" (from PIE root *plak- (2) "to strike").

In the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, the year 664 tell us:

Her sunne aþeostrode, & Earkenbriht Cantwara cing forðferde, & Colman mid his geferum for to his cyþþe. & þy ilcan geare wæs mycel mancwealm, & Ceadda & Wilferð wæron gehadode, & þy ilcan geare Deusdedit forðferde.

which is translated as:

This year the sun was eclipsed, on the eleventh of May; and Erkenbert, King of Kent, having died, Egbert his son succeeded to the kingdom. Colman with his companions this year returned to his own country. This same year there was a great plague in the island Britain, in which died Bishop Tuda, who was buried at Wayleigh—Chad and Wilferth were consecrated—And Archbishop Deus-dedit died.

The term “mancwealm” or “man-cwalm” depending on the transliteration) may be translated as “plague,” but we have already noted that it does not since that definition was not known at the time. Rather, Christopher Grein in his Handy Anglo-Saxon Dictionary define it as “destruction” or “death,” which is similar to Plague but not the only definition. And certainly not will be in the casual reader’s mind when it is read!

How many modern translations are similar? This is an example of why the translation should not be accepted by the reader without further research. For many years, I have had a habit to place the untranslated text next to the translated, and that will give a good idea of how faithful the translation is! That is something I recommend to anyone dealing with a translated text!


New 2022 Edition of MEDIEVAL MOVIES uploaded

The new edition of _Films of the Viking Ages_ has been uploaded to Academia at https://www.academia.edu/85632130/2022_Edition_Medieval_Movies_Films_of_the_Viking_Age


HOW FARBY ARE YOU?

Look at yourself in a mirror and fill out this checklist. Give yourself a checkmark for everything you see.

Scoring:

If you have one to 48 points, you are a farb.

Note that if a piece of farb is concealed from the public and only brought out during an emergency, that is acceptable. We could have added in things such as lamellar armor, ancient Roman jewelry, Gotlandic box brooch and the like, but we have evidence that some were used by the Norse but that they were not available in vast quantities, so their farbiness is dependent on how many you have!


MEDIEVAL MOVIES VIII

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Ragnarok (2018)

The description makes it sound as if this was a science-fiction end o the world film. It is instead a film set in the world of Norse fantasy, using the horse we saw in the opening credit of “Deadwood.” Costuming is not accurate for the most part, including tall swashbuckler boots, and they use out of period armor. The scenery is quite attractive and not cluttered with modern cinematic interpretation of stone castles, and the music was and appropriately dirgelike. Very stylish and effective and proves you do not have to have expensive CGI. Incredibly bloody, but what more do you want for the end of the world? At least they have beautiful fur cloaks!

Ragnarok (2013)

aka Gåten Ragnarok

An amusing film about the end of the world, as they all are. The historical segments are dark, which seem to help disguise any inaccuracies. At least it has nice fury cloaks! Nice modern shots in the Oslo Vikingship Museum, and it has some very nice incidental shots of period objects, so actually there is no reason not to make certain items in the medieval sections, Science-fiction fans care about nothing more than the science fiction, which is based on tropes found in the literature before but which is very well done here, but anyone interested in the medieval Norse culture will not care that this is not Star Wars! At least the CGI might be good enough for them. It captures the obsession perfectly! The main character excitedly saying to his son, “Here s where Vikings walked a thousand years ago/; sums it all up so well! Not much to research, but it tells you so much about the process and about your obsession. With a few melodramatic thrills and comments on Nighthawkers along the way! And shows how resourceful and courageous archaeologists are!

Thor (1962)

Long considered lost, though there are rumors of pirated copies. The clip on a Youtube review of the 1990 “Captain America” is actually from the Hulk television show. If anyone discovers a copy, please let me know!

Almighty Thor (2011)

aka El todopoderoso Thor aka Thor – Der Allmächtige

Bad costuming, bad rip-off of a Marvel film, bad CGI…but at least you can see Thor use an uzi!

Ceremony of Innocence, The (1970)

Filmed for an NET television show. Simple costuming. Much seems accurate, though the use of broad-brimmed hats is more from later times, belts are much wider than they actually were, shoes are welted and cloaks, of course, are fur. And there is a dialog about how no man had ever sailed west and returned, when Iceland had been settled more than two centuries before, Greenland had been encountered close to a century before (and offered tusks, furs and more for trade) and Vinland was known well by this time. This was apparently a nod at Washington Irving’s invented ignorance. Most of the scenes are close-up, since the makers’ focus is on the brilliant, biting dialog—and a plot that deals with aspects of British history that are usually ignored—and not on how the film is being recorded. Yet the props are very satisfying, and the few “open” shots are very satisfying. An anonymous reviewer notes, “No other play better reflects the moral ambiguity of war than Ribman’s “Ceremony of Innocence.” The drama of why we fight and why we cannot stop fighting is painfully depicted.” Simple and effective, with no explosive special effects and no brutal violence but brilliant composition and lighting. Probably done fairly inexpensively, which indicates you do not need to heap money on a film project to make it be recommended by the any but the witless among us! Currently at the Library of Congress but unavailable for streaming; I had to find a DVD that had been withdrawn from a library. However you can obtain it, jump to it if you can!

Editorial Note

This has been the last of the new films. For them and much more, I will be downloading the book to Academia very soon and will tell folks where to see it!


MEDIEVAL MOVIES VII

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Olav (2021) (tv series)

A strange, delightful and effective mixture of modern and medieval, where Kristofer Hivju in modern day searches for him in the twenty-first century while there are segments from the eleventh. A portrayal and search for one of the greatest Norwegian heroes and allegedly Hijvu’s great hero. Costuming is mostly accurate, though the cloaks tend to be fur. The CGI is simple but more effective than many other productions. But so well detailing the man and the search that you do not really notice any errors. Combat scenes show that you can do very effective combat scenes without being too gristly or blood. The series is in three parts, and each part deals with a different part of Olaf’s life and the happenings after his death: Olaf’s life as a Viking, as a king and as a saint. I started watching just before midnight and had to finish the three-hour production!

Killian’s Chronicle: The Magic Stone (1995)

A fascinating and well-done story of the interaction between Irishman and skraeling, as well as heathen versus Christian The film-makers make the most of what the budget allows it is very satisfying. The magic stone is a sunstone, and there are many other details are part of little-known aspects of the culture. Costumes are more than adequate for the most part, and while there are waistcotes, there re no furry cloaks. The skraeling do call the Norse “bear people,” which might be a sly reference to bearsarks. Even the already dodgy character going combat mad after being treated with mushrooms after a being stuck by the porcupine he was tormenting makes a lot of sense but is never directly alluded to. Unfortunately, chess is frequently played though this was a time when the game had not been introduced to Europe. Why couldn’t it have been Fidchell?

Sword of Vengeance (2015)

aka Schwert der Rache aka La Spada Della Vendetta

Bad two-sword combat, plenty of bloody gore and really neat and cool explosions! Lots of running in bad costume and worse armor. Nice horns on their helmets!

Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands (2016) (TV Mini Series)

aka Beowulf

Bad armor, terrible costumes, bad weapons, incredibly bad CGI but enough blood and gore to keep the folks who love this stuff happy. Even the scenery is somewhat banal and sterile. Even the CGI creation of knotwork is pretty uninspiring compared to its primitive antecedents from Magnus Magnusson’s “Vikng” series from years ago. There are at least no stone keeps, but the wooden structures they present are no less inaccurate, though in a different way. The sets look as if they done by Frazetta on a really bad day. Lots of furry cloaks and black garments and armor, which is the best way they seem to think to prove they are being accurate. Incredibly pretentious as it screams out of be a comedy. Great furry cloaks though. Do not watch this in hopes of getting ideas for an accurate reenactment.


MEDIEVAL MOVIES VI

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Trees Grow on the Stones Too (1985)

Aka Flukt aka I Na Kamnyakh Rastut Derevya aka Dragens Fange

Rather bland photography and choreography, without much crispness, innovation nor artistic innovation. Scenes are rather static and old fashioned, and even the action is rather dull, with Vikings prancing delicately around. The combat scenes are rather staged and amateur, as if they were choreographed by a high-school drama teacher. And let’s not talk about over-acting. Which is too bad since the costumes are decent (though with the hoods of a later era, puttees that are indescribable, too many visible bags and belts that are much too wide), the props are accurate and I saw no furry cloaks or fur-lined caps for some time into the film. The word parts of this film is far better than the best parts of some later films, though, though it is not as enjoyable as some reviewers have said. It started out rather fine and goes downhill through much of the film. If I was able to get a translation, I might not be so critical, but I had to focus on what I saw. For example, they used plenty of buttons!

Stone Forest, The (1965)

aka Il Tesoro Della Foresta Pietrificata aka Treasure of the Petrified Forest

Viciously bad acting, typical Italian Viking costume and unusually sterile photography. It mentions Vikings by name and is a clever mash-up where the opera by Wagner is crossed with a Humphrey Bogart film! Not recommended for researching costume, though it is at least not a poor retread of Fritz Lang. The only reason to research thi is just to see how you should write a really really bad film. But the dry ice budget was probably a lot more than the costume!

El Príncipe Encadenado (1960)

aka King of the Vikings

A Spanish film adapted from a seventeenth-century play that presented Spanish culture as the best of all time but attempts to meld generic Viking culture with a the play. Costumes and armor is ludicrous and bright, possibly rejected by Italian Viking films, and seem more similar to those used in films of classical times than whatever time this is presending to be. Weapons are similar to Spanish or Muslim versions, and the scenerey is filled with castles and stone buildings, not even giving a token nod to period woodn buildings. It is amusing that, after a while, you recognize the scenery used in Spanish films as easily as that used by John Ford in Monument Valley. There are, of course, no drakkars, not even row boats with dragon prows.

Sweaty Beards (2010)

aka Die verrückten Wikinger—Die vergessene Wikinger-Legende

A Swedish comedy that is actually funny, inspired by Monty Python. Costumes are relatively accurate, unless the inaccurate costumes are meant to be amusing. Props are more accurate than they need to be, and the actions are often broad and burlesque.


MEDIEVAL MOVIES V

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

The Huntress: Rune of the Dead (2019)

A quiet film that is more Asatru than Christian using runes as developed in modern paganism, that uses subtle dark fantasy. A well-crafted film that is not the typical clash-boom Viking film. The violence slowly rises and becomes overwhelming but rapid. And in an amusing piece, a child plays with a top that is obviously a spindle whorl! Costume is good if not perfect, and we must deal with older women with long unbound hair, and a daughter wearing tunic and trews. Very well done, extremely effective and highly recommended!

Pagan Warrior (2019)

aka Vikings Vs Krampus aka Das Krampus Massaker 2

We are placed willingly into a Viking film that is so obviously bad that there is no way to recommend this as an historical film, but have every right to recommend it as a comedy. How else can you appreciate a film that is unable to delineate between 812 and 1812 and that includes twenty-first century scenes as well? Another deeply serious horror film that does not seem to recognize—or at least hopes you do not see—how incredibly stupid it is. Of perhaps, the is its selling point. In any event, just enjoy it and enjoy the sight of the Vikings and Krampus. Poorly acted, poorly costumed, poorly environed, but damn is it funny! Grab a mead and settle back! And if this is an example of a modern horror film, I’m not surprised that I haven’t seen a horror film since “White Zombie!” The ITV drug, by the way, budget must be monumental!

Viking: The Berserkers (2014)

aka Viking Berserkers aka Vikings—L’âme des Guerriers

A much better than it could have been, without bing a quality effort. Poor effects, but you can see what they are striving for, and they are so earnest that you feel sorry that they cannot get there. Homes seem temporary and ramshackle, though not intended in the film to be temporary. And the jail cage is incredibly flimsy. Good scenery, including forests and waterfalls, and a nice cart that seems related to the Oseberg waggon but consdierably simpler. The main sword is two-handed, but their mamnufacture of bows and arrows, while rather crude and ineffectual, sow that they checked with the historical method. Fairly accurate costuming, except for the fur cloaks and short sleeves, with hair shaved as if they were Normans a couple centuries later. The main female character wears trousers and armor, with no head coverings since this is a twenty-first century film. The berserks, the villains of the piece, were were fairly stereotypical villains in period works, and the berserks in this film are druggies and quite suitable, though many viewers probably think they were actual. They affect odd makeup white facs with dark circles around the fire. Not period but effective at being weird. They call the time the Dark Ages and seem to want to make everything as dark and subdued, so that even the daytime scenes are rather flat and dark, and some of the action is had to discern properly. What you can see is pretty suspenseful and well-done action if nothing new or innovative.

Arnljot (1927)

A lost film; if a copy is available or discovered, please let me know! Probably based on Wilhelm Peterson-Berger’s opera from 1910.


MEDIEVAL MOVIES IIII

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Erik, the Viking (1965)

aka Erik il Vichingo aka Vengeance of the Vikings

Another Italian Spaghetti Northern film. Filled with cheerfully anachronistic costume, props and storylines with a very tenuous connection to historical facts. There is little difference between this and other Italian Viking films, and if you re able to like one–and can forgive the errors and the over-acting, this will be another film you will love. I just think that it is funny that they reach Vinland without even mentioning Greenland or Iceland, though I love the cactus and tropical plants that grows in Vinland! And it is ironic that the clothing of the Inuit make that of the Vikings look super-thenty, and the clothing of the seem to come from a variety of eras. But the film is nicely written and the action is well choreographed. Grab a mead, pull on your furry vest and concentrate on details only if you are good at forgetting them.

Viking Legacy (2016)

aka Viking: Os Pergaminhos sagrados aka Viking: La fureur des Dieux aka Die Northmen-Saga!

I never heard anything good about this film except a reviewer who said the violence was okay. So I watched the film with trepedition. I should have paid more heed to the reviews, especially the IMDB reviewer who wrote, “you get the feeling that someone decided to make a movie on a Sunday and then shot the movie on Monday and finished it by Tuesday”. I could not say it better, though he should have added that they were probably high-school sophomores who stole daddys’ credit cards. Preposterous plot, hideous acted, dreadful costume, totally inappropriate props, forgettable scenery and laughable combat choreography. And the hiding ability of the chased is like holding a branch in front of you and hoping the bully playing hide and seek will avoid you. And I kept hoping the Vikings would just rip out Orlaith’s tongue! Not bad enough to be good, though some things—such as the aluminum canteen and the paperback Bible—come close! And if you re doing your serious research into Norse culture, you can forget it right now!

Viking War, The (2019)

aka Berserker: Death Fields

I think it is adorable that we have a PC film of three Saxons, including a female swordsman, fleeing berserkers who obviously invaded a Renn Fair! Love the wonderful castle and the wildly out of period costuming. And that castle is the bees knees! Great review…from one of the actors…

Redbad (2018)

aka The Rise of the Viking

Frisia has been relegated to low importance in spite of their many importance contrbutions, appearing pnly as villains in “The War Lord.” Having said that, I must admit that there is little further worth in the film if you are looking for an accurate historical film. Though the cinematography is Brilliant, and some of the architecture is well done, though there are also stone castles with metal hand rails, the film centers around the King (or Duke) Redbad who is presented as a freedom fighter but who was instead a tyrant to his peoplw. The film itsel hinges on the tensions between the heathen and the Christian faiths, though not too well. For example,I never knew that baptism involved nerly drowning the heathen. The costuming is only maginally accurate, and mediocre, including shoes ith obviously modern with heels. The armor itself is laughably poor, and weapons are for the most part out of period. The architecture itself is mainly from another time altogether. Howr, tThe action is certainly bloody and violent, and isn’tht why peope watch films like this? Decent Viking drakkrs nearly a hundred years before their first real appearance, and siege engines used for defense thatare rather flimsy as they cast firey bags againstthe ships. The ships keep a healthy distance from the shoe as the warriors jump off to wade awkwardly onto the land to fight, and we see a prescient use of cavalry. And of course we have female warriors and double-bitted axes, while the shield walls reminded me of the Roman turtle formation, and the shield acrobatics is almost as good as displayng cards at college football games. There is little emotional engagement, and the film seems more concerned in presentig Frisian nationalism and bloody violence. Unless you are a die-hard Frisian, just ignorare the film! Or rather, films. This film was edited in 2019 into a miniseries released on Dutch television, with some extra footage as “The Legend of Redbad.”


MEDIEVAL MOVIES III

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Vikings: The Real Legend of Thor (2013)

aka Vikingdom

With the popularity of the Marvel Mighty Thor, there was a number of films which appeared trying to exploit the name Thor. Some might consider that an homage, and that is about the best that you can say about this film. It is afflicted with action taken from a Kung-Fu flick, plastic props, papier maché monsters and special effects probably engineered by a high-schooler. It features poor acting, worse wigs and costumes that are bad D&D togs that make most bad historical costuming seem brilliant. They brought in musicians from India to score the action scenes, and the Vikings of course go against castles from the fourteenth century. You’d almost think that it was filmed in Malaysia…ooops. It was!

Last King, The (2016)

aka Birkebeinerne aka Den Siste Konungen

Beautiful Norwegian winter scenery that leaves me shivering in very warm weather. Vicious, brutal and effective action, with a very appropriate Viking sense of humor (Torstein, having an arrow removed, says, “If I die, I will kill you!”). A delightful mixture of heathen and Christian beliefs. In many ways it is a standard wild western horse opera which is very appropriate. Very good props, with an incredibly nice jeweled book and a toy horse, and generally good costuming. However, the armor has things added, such as greaves and gorgets that look closer to a standard fantasy film than an historical film. and lamellar armor is frequently seen. In fact, some just resemble papier-maché egg crates rather than armor. Weapons include a lot of crossbows, a double-bitted axe and swords that seem from an earlier era.

Viking Siege (2017)

aka Kingdom of the Northmen: Les Guerriers Damnés aka Attack of the Tree Beasts

A funny film featuring poor CGI and incredibly poor costuming that must be seen to be believed. No need to care, because it is not really an historical film but a PC horror film in Viking drag, featuring what have to be visitos from other eras. There are even a few costumes that are close to accurate! Castles are featured, of course, as is a renaissance lute player. All this within the first six minutes of the film. After that, the film is lots of ominous shots of the moon, incredibly ominous music, incredibly coy cartoon music, what must b gunpowder and prisons just like they had at the time. During the party at a castle, a gang of vengeful women plot to massacre a monastery full of corrupt monks who sold their loved ones as slaves. Their plan comes unstuck when a gang of marauding Vikings arrive pursued by vicious, tree-like demons on their tail. The film features a hand-held crossbow, an ever so fashionable turtleneck and most of the “action” takes place in a couple rooms of the castle. It was probably filmed at a room at a LARP event, and they were darned proud of it! It is difficult to find any worthwhile part of this travesty beyond the unintended levity.


MEDIEVAL MOVIES II

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Pope Joan (1972)

aka The Devil’s Imposter

Set aside the fact that there was probably no actual Pope Joan, since it is of little more importance than the inaccuracies in any other historical film (see “The Adventures of Robin Hood,” “The Outlaw” or “Birth of a Nation”), the film is very well done. The cinematography is well done, and costumes are passable. Some details, such as pails, book closets and saddles, are well done and accurate. However, sexual aspects are rather unusual and somewhat uncomfortable, and her cross-dressing starts after a rape (though it is based in Joan’s previously established piety). The buildings are mainly the stone castles of about five hundred years later, but that is almost expected in a medieval film. And even the hovels of the poor are remarkably clean, spacious and hygienic, though they are shared with livestock. The film is rather jumpy and jerky. Events do not flow from one scene to another, and the music is rather cloying and sentimental. The film is not driven by the feminist ideology of the 2009 version, which some viewer might find disappointing and other relieving.

Pope Joan (2009)

aka Die Päpstin

Set aside the fact that there was probably no actual Pope Joan, since it is of little more importance than the inaccuracies in any other historical film (see “The Adventures of Robin Hood,” “The Outlaw” or “Birth of a Nation”), the film is very well done. The cinematography is well done, and costumes are passable. Some details, such as pails, book closets and saddles, are well done and accurate. However, sexual aspects are rather unusual and somewhat uncomfortable, and her cross-dressing starts after a rape (though it is based in Joan’s previously established piety). The buildings are mainly the stone castles of about five hundred years later, but that is almost expected in a medieval film. And even the hovels of the poor are remarkably clean, spacious and hygienic, though they are shared with livestock. The film is rather jumpy and jerky. Events do not flow from one scene to another, and the music is rather cloying and sentimental. The film is not driven by the feminist ideology of the 2009 version, which some viewer might find disappointing and other relieving.

Erik, the Viking (1965)

aka Erik il Vichingo aka Vengeance of the Vikings

Another Italian Spaghetti Northern film. Filled with cheerfully anachronistic costume, props and storylines with a very tenuous connection to historical facts. There is little difference between this and other Italian Viking films, and if you re able to like one–and can forgive the errors and the over-acting—this will be another film you will love. I just think that it is funny that they reach Vinland without even mentioning Greenland or Iceland, though I love the cactus and tropical plants that grows in Vinland! And it is ironic that the clothing of the Inuit make that of the Vikings look super-thenty, and the clothing of the seem to come from a variety of eras. But the film is nicely written and the action is well choreographed. Grab a mead, pull on your furry vest and concentrate on details only if you are good at forgetting them.


MEDIEVAL MOVIES I

Updating and correcting “Medieval Movies: Films of the Viking Era,” to include films released since the last edition. And discovered there were many other films as well…

I’ll be posting comments on some of the ones not covered before for the next month!

Red Mantle, The (1967)

aka Hagbard and Signe aka Den Røde Kappe

Poor costuming and poor acting, with antiseptic scenery that is found dynamic and romantic by some people. The plot is based on an ancient legend, concerning Hagbard, the son of a slain Norse king. The music is by an acclaimed Icelandic band but seem oddly out of place. Very nice scenery.

Hammer of the Gods (2013)

aka Martelo dos Deuses aka Tanr lar n Çekici

If they set out to create the ultimate farby fantasy dream of macho larpists, they could not have done better! Lamellar armor, fur cloaks, swords across the back, short sleeves, filthy barbaric fashion and ominous black outfits. A passing knowledge of controversial theory is shown, abs there is a questionable bisexual question, who Is disliked because he is cruel and dirty not because of his sexual likes. The CGI is rather pedestrian and certain clumsiness. The film as a whole has a certain violence that would-be stylish and reminds you of an incompetent Tarantino.

Viking Quest (2015)

aka Vikings aka Le Clan des Vikings aka The Viking

Are there no new Harryhausens, at least in films of this caliber? The story hinges about a version of the Greek myth of Perseus and the kraken, but the CGI is rather awkward. Farby costumes look like they were made of artificial fibers, and even the very acting seems uninspired and clumsy. It does feature tattoos, of course, and braided beards. And did they get a discount on the furs used in costumes? The central character, Erick, just a modern nerd misplaced in this Viking fantasy universe probably to appeal to the gamers that seem the primary audience, but it seems as if the writers just tried to throw as many stereotypes against the wall and hope that a couple stuck. I did love the earrings worn by Erick, the Viking Ben Franklin!

Hammer of the Gods (2009)

aka Thor: Hammer of the Gods

Not presented as anything but a farby fantasy film suitable D&D “epic” with a tendency to try to confuse this with the Marvel Comics version. Ludicrous overacting, well as more than ludicrous costume and armor. Terrible CGI and special effects, which can be the only redeeming aspect for a film of this kind, especially when the “action” scenes are so static and clumsy. Confusing, jerky and often too dark cinematography that at least hides the farbiness of some of the armor. The number of nasal guards are incredible, and I do not think any are accurate.

Viking Blood (2019)

aka Alma de Guerreiro aka Viking—L’anima del Guerriero

So much better than many of its companion films. Costumes are adequate though not overwhelmingly accurate, and there are many furry cloaks just because that is what some viewers expect to see. There is, of course, a female warrior with a sword across her back, but many of the sets and props are exceptional. The cinematography is pretty well done, and the film deals with the Conversion in a fresh and interesting way. Since so many films today are copied…homages to other films. This film reminded me of Sergio Leone’s Man with no name films, down to the Ennio Morriconesque music.


VIKING HIKING XVI

RESEARCH SOURCES

Literature

Breay, Claire and Joanna Story (Editors). Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms
Catalog from the British Museum Exhibition, well written with magnificent illustrations of artefacts.

Crawford, Sally. Daily Life in Anglo-Saxon England
An outstanding book dealing mainly with the physical culture, drawing on the latest research. One of Greenwood’s excellent “Daily Life Through History” series.

Cunnington, Cecil Willett and Phillis. Handbook of English Medieval Costume
According to some historical costumers, Cunnington is the single most valuable source for costumery.

Ewing, Þor. Viking Costume
Overview of aspects of Norse clothing, drawing from earlier sources, archaeological investigation and the author’s own conclusions.

Graham-Campbell, James. Viking Art
An introduction to the six main styles of Viking art, updated to reflect recent archaeological discoveries.

Heaney, Seamus(Translator). Daniel Donoghue (Editor). Beowulf: A Verse Translation: A Norton Critical Edition
A collection of pertinent artefacts along with what I consider to be the finest translation of the poem. And the translated text is a great source for stories to tell around the campfire!

Jesch, Judith. The Viking Diaspora
A recommended look at all aspects of the culture.

MacWelch, Tim. The Ultimate Bushcraft Survival Manual
Boy Scout manuals on camping as well as survivalist manuals on camping ar useful, but this is considered an excellent source. It examines how native peoples around the world and throughout history have made their own shelter, weapons, tools, and more. If you want to learn more about traditional ways of survival, this is a recommended single volume.

Mould, Quita. Craft, Industry and Everyday Life: Leather and Leatherworking in Anglo-Scandinavian and Medieval York
One of the profusely illustrated, phenomenal books from the York Archaeological Trust, showing finds from excavations in York, plans and small essays on the craft. This one features leather work, including shoes and scabbards of the time.

Owen-Crocker, Gail. Dress in Anglo-Saxon England, Second Edition
Excellent source on the details of Anglo-Saxon costume. Minimally useful as practical guide as most of the information is aimed at researching the entire kit. Highly recommended!

Williams, Gareth. Johnny Shumate, Illustrator. Weapons of the Viking Warrior
This deals most with the weapons of war but can be used as well to determine about utility tools.

Wolf, Kirsten. The Daily Life of Vikings
An excellent look at the Norse culture of the Viking Age, using the most current citations. One of Greenwood’s excellent “Daily Life Through History” series.

Web Pages

Coalcracker Bushcraft. “Flint and Steel Basics.” Accessed 15 December 2021.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xp1AnY00VlY

Connor Fitzgerald. “The 5 Best Campfire Lays and How to Build Them,” Accessed 8 December 2021.
https://www.cabinlife.com/articles/the-5-best-campfire-lays-and-how-to-build-them

“First Aid Manual.” Accessed 16 December 2021.
https://kuiyem.ku.edu.tr/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/American-College-of-Emergency-Physicians-ACEP-First-Aid-Manual.pdf

Hands on History. “Bedroll for Viking Hiking.” Accessed 15 December 2021.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBMD6dAMMro

__. “Clothes for Historical Trekking.” Accessed 15 December 2021.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xSrB7MK8R6c

__. “Sleeping Shelters aka Tarps.” Accessed 13 December 2021.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQegsfegPeY

“How to Tie 7 Basic Knots.” Accessed 12 December 2021.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1a2vrhhkIU

“Regia Anglorum—Basic Clothing Guide.” Accessed 6 January 2021.
https://regia.org/members/basclot/index.php

“Viking Games.” Accessed 21 December 2021.
https://www.shelaghlewins.com/games/viking_games.php