The Hammer and the Cross

The Hammer and the Cross A New History of the Vikings

Hardback (05 Nov 2009) | English

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Synopsis

For those living outside Scandinavia, the Viking Age effectively began in 793 with an attack on the monastery at Lindisfarne. The attack on Lindisfarne was a characteristically violent harbinger of what was in store for Britain and much of Europe from the Vikings for the next 300 years, until the final destruction of the heathen temple to the Norse gods at Uppsala around 1090.

Robert Ferguson is a sure guide across what he calls 'the treacherous marches which divide legend from fact in Viking Age history'. His long familiarity with the literary culture of Scandinavia - the eddas, the poetry of the skalds and the sagas - is combined with the latest archaeological discoveries and the evidence of picture-stones, runes, ships and objects scattered all over northern Europe, to make the most convincing modern portrait of the Viking Age in any language. The Hammer and the Cross ranges from Scandinavia itself to Kievan Rus and Byzantium in the east, to Iceland, Greenland and the north American settlements in the west. Beyond its geographical boundaries the book takes us on a journey to a misty region inhabited by Hallfred the Troublesome Poet, Harald Bluetooth, Ragnar Hairy-Breeches, Ivar the Boneless and Eyvind the Plagiarist, in which literature, history and myth dissolve into one another.

About the Publisher

Allen Lane

Allen Lane

In 1967 Penguin's founder started an eponymous hardback imprint under the name of Allen Lane. This now has a dynamic, growing list and publishes accessible and quality non-fiction books of lasting value.

Book information

ISBN: 9780713997880
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Imprint: Allen Lane
Pub date:
DEWEY: 948.022
DEWEY edition: 22
Language: English
Number of pages: 450
Weight: 783g
Height: 240mm
Width: 162mm
Spine width: 42mm