This book provides an opportunity to learn how to make historic Viking replicas, including furniture, equipment, toys and accoutrements.
The Vikings originated in Scandinavia in countries now known as Norway, Denmark and Sweden. The Viking period covered from about the sack of Lindisfarne 793 CE to The Battle of Hastings 1066 CE. Viking were noted for being farmers, raiders, traders, slavers, mercenaries and explorers, using their advanced sailing, navigational skills and longships for exploring river systems and across the seas as part of military, mercantile and territorial expansion and settlement, and even for some serving in the Byzantine Emperor’s bodyguard called the Varangian Guard.
The geographical extent of the Viking travels included to the East – The Baltic, Kiev, Novgorod, Constantinople, along the river routes; and to the West – England, Ireland, Scotland, and various islands, Iceland, Greenland and Newfoundland (Canada).
Our knowledge of the Vikings is hampered because of the lack of recorded history, what we have got are rune stones, the writings of their enemies, the writings of the decedents in the 12th to the 14th century in the Sagas, linguistic and etymological studies, and the study of the artefacts from the Vikings themselves. Archaeological finds are being revisited and there are still more being made and all adding to our knowledge.
This volume contains a collection of knowledge amassed over 30+ years of trial and error in the pursuit of a better historical presentation. It sets out the why’s and wherefores, and highlights the traps and pitfalls for the unwary, so that you the reader can start or continue on the journey to a more accurate presentation for the purpose of living history, re-enactment, a display in a museum or just an interest of history. You will be making your own historic Viking replicas in no time.
This volume covers some of the basic information (from safety to the form and function of furniture, and chest fittings) and eight basic Viking projects:
- The Coppergate wooden mallet;
- The Lund stool;
- The Oseberg chest (no. 178);
- The Oseberg bed (no. 2);
- The Sala Hytta table;
- The Trondheim toy horse;
- The Gokstad candle holders;
- The Birka bag hanger.
This book assumes a basic level of experience with woodworking. As you complete the projects your skill will increase, however, safety is paramount. You should not use tools or equipment with which you have no experience or without the appropriate personal protective equipment. It is recommended that you obtain training from your local training institution or a more experienced worker of wood and metal. The subject of metalwork will be touched upon in more detail in regards to the manufacture, purchase and fitting of metalwork such as chest hinges, hasps and handles.
A definition of “Living History” is the pursuit by the current generation to understand those of the past by attempting to portray and carry out activities of the past without experiencing adverse outcomes. Those activities may involve the wearing of clothing (in some cases wearing armour as well) and the use of tools, equipment and weapons, which helps the participants to understand the past better and will hopefully prevent them from repeating the mistakes of the past.
Examples of historical sources range from:
- Extant remains (e.g. Oseberg and Gokstad ship burials);
- Stray finds (e.g. Hedeby chest);
- Illuminated manuscripts (e.g. Cantigas de Santa Mari´a);
- Wills, household accounts and other documents of the period;
- Written eye witness accounts or chronicles of the period;
- Tapestries (e.g. Bayeux Tapestry).
Some of the finds are not complete such as the chests from the Birka Cemetery (Grave number 639) , where only the metal fittings remain, from them you can work out the size and shape of the chest based on their position in the excavation. Often interpretation of the archaeology reports, drawings and photos is required and this will be covered later.
This volume will include the choice of materials and how to store them. The use of various joints and tools used will be covered separately when they appear in each project. So good luck, enjoy the journey, look back at what you have achieved and “Strive to be happy” with your own historic Viking Replicas.
Always in stock. “Printed On Demand” in Australia by Intertype