Chronicles of the Vikings
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Chronicles of the Vikings

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  20 ratings  ·  2 reviews
This book brings the Vikings to life, showing them as they saw themselves, portrayed in their own writings or in the reports of people who knew them closely. It comprises a series of new translations from primary sources: runic inscriptions left behind by the Vikings, poems of their official skalds, literary works that entertained them, the few prose historical accounts th...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published August 9th 1995 by University of Toronto Press (first published 1995)
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My first bit of preparatory reading for ASNC! Very informative and very interesting (which I guess shows I'm applying for the right course). I love how much of it is done by quotation from contemporary sources - the rune stones in particular are really interesting - as it really gives an idea of *how* modern historians have gone about reconstructing the past. Page is an entertaining narrator - I particularly like it when he refers to Auden's translation of the Poetic Edda with a sniffy, 'Yes, Au...more
I'm only on the first chapter so far, so this review will probably change. I bought this book thinking that it might be easier going than it actually is.

That said, it's very informative. There's explanatory text interspersed with large chunks from various Viking poems and runic inscriptions. Not that I have taken much of it in, but sttempting to understand poetry (well, blank verse I suppose) from an alien culture is often like that. Things seep in slowly.
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