Viking longship sets sail for North America

Jörgen AskMy main computer is down, so I’m on my laptop, which is not as amenable for writing, so for the present, posts will be rather simpler than normal.

But since yesterday was Norwegian Constitution Day, we’ll start with some history from the Northland.

The Draken Harald Hårfagre (Dragon Harald Fairhair, named after the first King of Norway), an ocean-worthy Viking longship, set sail early this morning from Norway on a daring voyage that will retrace the steps of great explorers like Erik the Red and his son Leif Erikson, the first European to cross the Atlantic and set foot on the American continent.

Dragon-Harald-Fairhair-under-construction..

Warship to Warship. The Viking ship Draken Harald Harfagre,the World's largest Viking Longship,alongside the Royal Fleet Auxhiliary replenishment ship Fort Rosalie,berthed in West Float,Birkenhead,were the Draken has been berthed at Liverpool Victoria Rowing Club during it's stay. The ships departure was cancelled from Sunday and will now leave Monday 4th August weather permitting.

Warship to Warship. The Viking ship Draken Harald Harfagre,the World’s largest Viking Longship,alongside the Royal Fleet Auxhiliary replenishment ship Fort Rosalie,berthed in West Float,Birkenhead,were the Draken has been berthed at Liverpool Victoria Rowing Club during it’s stay. The ships departure was cancelled from Sunday and will now leave Monday 4th August weather permitting.

Sponsored by Norwegian businessman Sigurd Aase, construction on the vessel began in 2010 in Haugesund, Norway. It isn’t an exact replica of an extant Viking ship. While replicas of excavated ships have been made, they don’t work very well on the ocean because the originals were burial ships. They could be rowed, but they weren’t meant for the ocean voyages that took the Vikings across half the world. So instead of relying exclusively on archaeological remains, the builders of the Draken Harald Hårfagre combined traditionalNorwegian boatbuilding knowledge, a living craft with deep roots going back to the Viking era, with archaeology — the 9th century Gokstad shipwas one particular inspiration — and descriptions in the Norse sagas. It is an open clinker-built ship with an oak hull, Douglas fir mast, hemp rigging and a silk sail. At 115 feet long, 27 feet wide with 50 oars and a 3,200-square-foot sail, the Draken Harald Hårfagre is largest Viking ship built in modern times.The aim from the beginning has been to create an operating Viking ship. That means roughing it in a serious way. There’s no under deck where the crew can rest and take shelter from the elements, just a large tent where 16 people at a time sleep in four hours shifts. The only space underneath the deck is a shallow space just large enough to carry ballast and food. The food is cooked is an open air kitchen on the deck, the ancestor of the galley discovered on the 15th century Dutch cog that was raised earlier this year.

via The History Blog » Blog Archive » Viking longship sets sail for North America

And even a video! Of the Dragon Ceremony!

Now that strikes me as very neat. Looks pretty shipshape to me, and likely to work just as well, as the ones a thousand years ago, when my ancestors were the terror of the world, from Vinland to Constantinople, and beyond. Or have you forgotten The Varangian Guard was mostly comprised of Vikings, at least until William the Conquerer supplemented its recruiting amongst Anglo-Saxons.

And speaking of 1066 and all that, in France they are attempting to establish whether Rollo, the first Duke of Normandy (although he was referred to as the Count of Anjou) came from Norway or Denmark.

Scandinavian researchers have exhumed the bones of two direct descendants of Rollo, the 10th century Viking founder of the Duchy of Normandy, in an attempt to answer the long-debated question of whether Rollo was Danish or Norwegian.

Historians have differed on the matter of Rollo’s national origins since at least the 11th century. Norman historian Dudo of Saint-Quentin (ca. 965-1043) said in his Historia Normannorum that Rollo was the son of a “Danish” king who was exiled and made his way to France, but at the time Dudo was in the employ of Richard II of Normandy who was allied to the Danish king Sweyn Forkbeard. He had a dog in the hunt, as it were, and cannot be considered reliable on this question. Goffredo Malaterra, a monk in Sicily writing in the late 11th century, said Rollo hailed from Norway. In the 13th Norwegian-Icelandic sagas Heimskringlaand Orkneyinga, Rollo appears as Ganger-Hrólf, the son of Rognvald Eysteinsson, yarl of Møre in western Norway. (Rollo is a Latinization of Hrólf.)

With these conflicting and vague sources, historians have argued the point for centuries. It matters because of how important Rollo was to European history. His raids along the Seine so bedevilled Charles III, aka Charles the Simple, King of Western Francia, that he finally bought Rollo off with huge tracts of land between the city of Rouen and the mouth of the Seine in exchange for him switching from raider to protector. He appears in only one primary source: a charter from 918 which mentions the lands ceded to Rollo and his “Northmen on the Seine.” It seems Rollo ruled those lands as Count of Rouen until at least 927 after which his son William I Longsword acceded to what would become known during his rule as the Dukedom of Normandy, after the Norsemen who founded it. William Longsword’s son was Richard I of Normandy. Richard I’s son was Richard II. Richard II’s son Robert I was the father of William the Conqueror.

More at: Descendants of Rollo, Viking founder of Normandy, exhumed

You’ll notice that whether Rollo was Danish or Norwegian, and simply because of my background, I hope for Norwegian, paying him the Danegeld didn’t work all that well for Charles the Simple, in any case, nor did it ever in England.

Advertisements

About NEO
Lineman, Electrician, Industrial Control technician, Staking Engineer, Inspector, Quality Assurance Manager, Chief Operations Officer

9 Responses to Viking longship sets sail for North America

  1. the unit says:

    I enjoy your history blogs. But get names straight…Leif Hussein Erikson, first to set foot in the Americas 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. the unit says:

    Congratulations on your Northland ancestry. According to Fr. Robert, of all the names I’ve thrown out… I’m just English. But we meet here, all assimilated.

    Liked by 1 person

    • NEO says:

      Well, the originals came mostly from East Anglia, and vicinity, and the rest of the Danelaw! 🙂

      Like

  3. the unit says:

    “Sometimes you have to turn on the lights for other people, sometimes they have to turn on the lights for you — Lizzie Velasquez.
    My cooper ancestry was easy to figure out. Fr. Robert helped with the Varnell. Mom always said her grandmother was PA Dutch, but I never had a name. Then there is the Jeter part…settled with Derek. I was always so athletic. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • NEO says:

      🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. the unit says:

    Ok I know it’s not PC to manspread, maybe against the law now. But we been anatomically constructed historically for that.

    Imagine manspreading over a long boat to stay topside and not overboard in a Atlantic storm. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • NEO says:

      Exactly, it doesn’t look much like cruise ship!

      Like

  5. Pingback: My Article Read (5-18-2016) – My Daily Musing

  6. Pingback: My Article Read (5-18-2016) – Br Andrew's Muses

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s