10 years of research has shown that ‘Viking’ is a job for a living and many other surprises, perhaps we need to update history books.

There is one word to describe the new research: this is the “ field of fiction ” written by genetic code, with the potential to rewrite how history often viewed Vikings – as blue-eyed, blond men. The muscular, muscular boat often uses boats to plunder coastal villages.

Pictures of Vikings on film.

In 2008, construction workers working on a secluded Estonian beach discovered more than 40 skeletons of people who once were very powerful. They were buried AD 750 in two boats, flanked by Viking weapons and jewels; It was initially speculated that this was the result of a failed raid or loot. DNA from the bones of the deceased indicates a traumatic truth: 4 men are buried shoulder to shoulder, holding hands tightly holding their swords are 4 siblings. It was not clear whether this was a raid or a mission of friendship, but had a bloody end: the men on board were brutally killed, then buried with customary only for warriors. This archaeological site is the first evidence that the Vikings went out into their own territory.

The new research data is the result of an attempt to re-map the Viking genes across Europe. The new results, published in Nature magazine, showed that the Vikings spread across Europe from their native Scandinavian, and then there were people of other backgrounds who followed Viking customs. “Vikings” are not necessarily Scandinavian, they could come from any other country.

The panoramic story is in line with what is still told by historians and archaeologists”Commented Erika Hagelberg, an ancient DNA specialist, who is not collaborating on the new study. “This is a detail that shows the curiosity of the regions [khảo cổ]“.

10 years of research has shown that Viking is a job for a living and many other surprises perhaps we need to update history books | Explore

A famous Viking warrior will be buried like this solemnly.

The archaeological site in Estonia, for example, has found solid evidence of the close relationship of the group of people buried, suggesting that they are more likely to come from a village or small town together. “The fact that the four brothers were buried together was new and unique… it opened up a new perspective for us.“, Cat Jarman, archaeologist working at the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo said; Mr. Jarman is not one of the study authors above.

After 10 years of extensive research, a team of experts led by geneticist Eske Willerslev collected samples from all over Scandinavia, dating from the Viking age circa 750 AD to 1050 AD; Along with them are older and newer archaeological specimens. The team also collects human remains from burial sites around Europe, tombs containing Viking-style furniture, or buried according to Viking customs.

We have access to any archaeological site believed to be related to the Vikings”, Said Willerslev. After a long period of sampling, they created 442 genomes from the Viking Age, from specimens in Italy, Ukraine and Greenland.

10 years of research has shown that Viking is a job for a living and many other surprises perhaps we need to update history books | Explore

A body is buried according to Viking customs in Sweden.

Research results depict colorful stories of individuals, such as two people of the same blood buried in England and Denmark, separated by hundreds of kilometers of sea. Even, the genomes reveal surprising details about the Viking, including their appearance: the Scandinavian people of the Viking Age often wore black hair, not the yellow color that we assigned them for so long. Genetic comparison, archaeological factors in different regions showed that in some Viking groups they considered “Viking” as a job, not a lifestyle passed down from the previous generation. .

Viking-style tombs on Orkney Island, England contain individuals who do not carry Scandinavian DNA, but some people buried in Scandinavia have Irish and Scottish fathers or mothers. Some remains in Norway were buried according to Viking customs, but their genes indicate that these individuals were Saami, a group of indigenous inhabitants living near East Asia and Siberia.

The identities of these people are not heterogeneous according to genetic factors or ethnicity or religion. They are a common community. We have DNA as solid evidence to support this claim“.

The researchers wrote that the new discovery showed that the complex community of loot and trade caused Viking groups to have many different ancestors. The analysis even showed that the Vikings had genetic diversity before the Viking Age, said Martin Sikora, who led the new study and is currently working at the Center for Geographic Genetics and University. Copenhagen.

We found that the Vikings were not only of Scandinavian descent, as genetic analysis revealed traces of DNA from Southern Europe and Asia. Many Vikings, both inside and outside of Scandinavia, do not have an indigenous origin, showing genetic pathways across Europe.“.

10 years of research has shown that Viking is a job for a living and many other surprises perhaps we need to update history books | Explore

Description of the Vikings in the upcoming Assassin’s Creed game.

The research results also refute misconceptions surrounding centuries-long controversies, about the geographical elements of the Viking raids and robberies. Stories, initial statements written centuries after the first expedition show: Vikings from certain regions were inclined to plunder certain areas, but many learned. Suppose that the Vikings owned the waters, so everyone had the same opportunity to loot / trade.

With irrefutable evidence of DNA, researchers tracked distant Vikings back to their Scandinavian origins for the first time. They found that the Vikings of present-day Sweden advanced, reaching the Baltic regions, Poland, rivers of Russia and Ukraine; The Vikings moved from present-day Denmark to the West, where it is today Great Britain. The Norwegian Viking was more likely to go north of the Atlantic, colonizing Ireland, Iceland and Greenland.

These are details that cannot be deduced with archaeological data alone”, Says Professor Willerslev.

The team was amazed that there was not much evidence of genetic mashups in Scandinavia. Although many coastal areas and villages are hotspots for genetic diversity, inland Scandinavian populations have remained genetically stable for centuries. “We can clearly define which are Norwegian, what are of Swedish descent and what is Danes”, Said Søren Sindbæk, an archaeologist from Aarhus University and co-author of the study.

10 years of research has shown that Viking is a job for a living and many other surprises perhaps we need to update history books | Explore

In the 19th century, German painter Hugo Vogel depicts the Viking King Olaf Tryggvesson’s raid in AD 994.

New research in DNA also opens up additional questions. Jette Arneborg, co-author and archaeologist working at the National Museum of Denmark, said that the DNA taken from the Greenland burial sites showed that the genetic mix between Scandinavian men (now Norway) and women came from what is today Great Britain. However, the artifacts accompanying the dead and the burial custom belong entirely to Scandinavia. “These DNA will make us think more about what happened in the past“, Expert Arneborg said.

Besides, there are other mysteries: Viking living areas in the Americas have not given any bone samples to redraw the genetic map, so it is not known whether the first Europeans to go to America have. What role. And besides, adding research samples means realizing the influence of the Vikings when coming to Europe.


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