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The Vikings

Vikings and The Celts

During the Bronze Age, the Celts and Vikings were the largest groups to inhabit the northern world, and the fusion between the two was inevitable. The Celts inhabited northern England, Scotland, and Ireland but also spread to Northern Italy and Spain. Some think that due to similarity in language and culture there is a genetic connection between Vikings and Celts. The truth of the matter is that they were equally influenced by each other but had no genetic correlation. Celtic people were not seafarers and were more oriented in growing their own lands than pillaging others. 

The Celts and ancient Germanic people were neighbors before they decided to migrate and settle in separate lands during the Dark Ages. The Celts took to Ireland and Scotland from their Indo-European and Anatolian migration while the Germanic people mostly settled in Scandinavia.

During the Viking Age, the Celts had more influence on the Vikings in culture and language as they were already Christianized by the 5th century, whereas the Vikings contributed riches and the contact with foreign goods from trades. The Vikings landed in Ireland around the 7th century after having had some practice raiding and pillaging in East England and Scotland. They were incredibly important in the foundation of some major Irish towns known today, like Dublin and Cork. This clearly tells us that there was not solely violence, but some diplomacy and shared trade too.

Ancient Celtic tribes did not invent their own runic language; it was adopted from the Norse influence before and during the migrations, where both feuds and social interactions took place.

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Categories
The Vikings

Vikings and The Influence of Christianity

It was about the time of the turn of the millennium when the first seeds of Christianity began to be sewn into the Viking culture. In 995, King Olav Tryggvasson constructed the first church on Norwegian soil. He survived being gravely injured in battle, and then returned to Norway where he attempted to introduce Christianity to the region. He might have been amongst the first Viking converts to the religion. In the year 1000, Christianity officially arrived in Iceland and Greenland when a chieftain known as King Olav took it upon himself to try and proselytize and convert fellow chieftains. He imposed trade embargoes upon those who refused to convert.

Christianity was one of the major issues that affected the development of the Viking way of life and way of thinking. A king named Haakon the Good attempted to spread Christianity to the mainland Viking community after his experiences in England, but he was unable to make much headway. King Harald Greycloak attempted to force the Vikings to acknowledge the Christian God by destroying all Viking pagan temples, but he encountered strong resistance from the people and communities that he tried to convert.

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