Whatever Happened to the Vikings?


You’ve probably asked yourself this question at least once: What ever happened to the Vikings? If you still have no clue if they all died or if they were conquered then keep reading this blog post to find out if those assumptions are correct or not. 

End of Viking Age

The Viking age started between 793 and 1066. A lot of raiding and pillaging happened during this period in time and it’s safe to say that their impact on Europeans at that time was very big. They instilled massive fear not just in Scandinavia but other places in the continent where they came from. There’s no denying that they truly made a mark in history and were a force to be reckoned with, but if they were known to be fierce warriors who were capable of total chaos and destruction then whatever happened to them?

The truth  is nothing happened to them. They weren’t conquered. They simply stopped raiding because most of them couldn’t do it because of certain circumstances. We all know that nothing is permanent in this world except change and it just so happens that a lot of changes took place across Europe that made raiding not so desirable and profitable than it used to be.

At the start of the Viking age, Viking men couldn’t just leave their farms unless someone could look after it and it was definitely not the same case by the end of it. Raiding used to be a part time occupation and most of them saw this act as a means of acquiring capital for a farm, ship and other business investments. It became popular as time went by not just for those with an entrepreneurial mindset but for those looking for new places to settle in.

After a while it dwindled down and the balance in what used to be an egalitarian society had changed. Times have changed and that resulted in a lot of Viking men with no lands to their name. These men had no choice but to stay in the lands they were working in just to pay their fees and make ends meet for their respective families. This is the reason why they were not capable and available to go on raids anymore. The wealthy ones by the end of the Viking age were not in their prime so they also couldn’t do it as well and they really didn’t  need to because they were already privileged and could survive without the need to do so.      

This is what happened to the Vikings. The raids eventually stopped and they weren’t labelled as Vikings anymore. They were known as Norwegians, Swedes and the original places where they came from. They simply just continued living their lives and weren’t conquered as other people assume.            

Reference: http://www.hurstwic.org/history/articles/society/text/what_happened.htm

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