Horny Vikings

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Longship and horned helmet are not optional.

"We come from the land of the ice and snow,
from the midnight sun where the hot springs flow.
The hammer of the gods
Will drive our ships to new lands,
To fight the horde, singing and crying:

Valhalla, I am coming!"
Led Zeppelin, "Immigrant Song"

(For extra effect, try listening to this while reading this page.)

The more "metal" cousins of the Pirate, native to Dark Age Europe, who spend a lot of their time cruising in their dragon-headed longships, pillaging and burning any hapless peasant villages that happen to get in their way.

Vikings in fiction tend to incorporate elements of The Berserker (fitting, as the medieval Scandinavians were the progenitors of this fighting style and remain its most iconic users) and Proud Warrior Race Guy, and always wear those spiffy horned helmets. Vikings are always quite hairy, with long beards and hair (with Braids of Barbarism) flying in the ocean breeze. Being Nordic, most of them are blonde or red-headed.

The trope name is a pun on Vikings' reputation for raping and pillaging, and the horned helmets that they never actually wore except for ceremonial occasions. (The myth that they wore them at all times started with the Romans; they sometimes suggested winged helmets as well, which were actually worn by the Celts, also only for religious ceremonies.)

Originally a West European stereotype of Norse people (since the few pirates and mercenaries were remembered more than the many peaceful merchants, or the majority of Norsemen who remained in Scandinavia), contemporary Scandinavians have embraced the Vikings; see Mexicans Love Speedy Gonzales.

Examples of Horny Vikings include:

Anime & Manga

  • Jessie and James dressed up like these guys in the Pokémon the First Movie: Mewtwo Strikes Back. They even had Meowth acting as the figurehead on the bow. Thanks to Woolseyism: "I didn't know Vikings still existed." "They mostly live in Minnesota." (See Sports).
  • Vinland Saga of course, though none of the vikings wear horned helmets. The fact that no living viking has been recorded to wear one is perhaps a testament to Vinland Saga's more realistic depiction of vikings than most other works-see Real Life below.
  • Vicky the Viking, a 1970s German/Japanese colab about a viking boy who prefers to use brain instead of brawn to work out problems. The young viking in question is known as Wickie in Germany, Bikke in Japan, and Vicky in English-speaking countries. The ultimate origin of Vicky, however, is a Swedish children's book series called Vicke Viking from the 1960s.[1]
  • One Piece: Word of God states that Vikings, (the ones in Vicky the Viking in particular) were the initial inspiration. They make in-story appearances in the form of the Giants of Elbaf.
  • Honey Honey no Suteki na Bouken: Honey and the gang encounter Vikings once in their journey across Europe who dress like this.

Comic Books

  • Marvel Comics' The Mighty Thor embodied many Viking cliches. Except the helmet. Thor's helmet is winged, not horned. Thor's step-brother and nemesis Loki takes this up to eleven. He has huge horns.
  • DC Comics had a Norse character, the aptly-named Viking Prince. Also the Viking Commando, a Viking warrior transported through a rift in time to World War Two where he fought the Nazis.
  • Asterix and the Normans has Vikings who "don't know fear"—as in, are they are unable to experience it, though they've heard of it. They sail to Gaulia to find someone to teach them how to do it. Specifically, they've heard the expression "fear gives you wings", and believe that by learning this "fear", they too will be able to fly.
  • Mortadelo Y Filemon: Parodied where it turns out that the Vikings they encounter are victims of one of Dr. Bacterius's experiments Gone Horribly Wrong, and the horns are really attached to their heads.
  • Strontium Dog has Vikings are much like this, though only one of them has horns on his helmet.
  • In the Doctor Who Storybook 2010 comic strip Space Vikings!, the Space Vikings have horned helmets, which the Doctor notes is completely wrong.

Sven: (seeing "Valhalla") It's unbelievable!
Doctor: Unbelievable is right, they've even got Valkyries! It's like they've done no historical research at all!



  • Played for laughs in the Capital One commercials. "What's in your wallet?", indeed. Especially the one involving them spotting Hollywood actors dressed as Roman legionnaires and chasing them.
    • The Roman Empire fell hundreds of years before the Vikings came on the scene. The Capital One barbarians are generic.
    • This troper read somewhere that they were Goths, not Vikings. Takes a lot of fun out of it, but does explain why they chased the "Romans."


  • The 1958 Epic Movie The Vikings starring Kirk Douglas and Tony Curtis. While there aren't too many horned helmets, every other cliche is turned Up to Eleven (including throwing axes to trim the pigtails off a young lady, the burning ship funeral, and hundreds of people shouting "Odin!" as they attack or die).
  • Erik the Viking is set in the Viking world and mines it for laughs. And subverts and sometimes averts this trope. For instance, no horned helmets.
  • Pathfinder: The Vikings are portrayed as Exclusively Evil. The movie also turns their language into the Black Speech (in fact, they are speaking Icelandic, but in a very guttural fashion).[2] The whole movie is one giant viking Cliché Storm.
  • Beowulf touches on this trope, more in the film, since it's a legendary British work that's actually about Vikings set in Denmark. Complete with Badass Intro Music showing the hero standing astride his vessel in a raging storm.
  • The Lost World film Island at the Top of the World features explorers finding a lost Viking city in the Arctic. Oddly enough, horned helmets is pretty much the only cliche they didn't use.
  • Parodied in the History of the World, Part I segment "Viking Funeral," where the Vikings took off their helmets, revealing that the helmets weren't horned, the Vikings were. Everything up to the punchline was a clip from The Vikings mentioned above.
  • Outlander is set in ancient Norway. In lieu of seafaring and pillaging, there's warfare between two Viking clans, and hunting a giant alien lizard.
  • The 13th Warrior is about Vikings and one well traveled Arab vs. Neanderthals!
    • Only the author's notes to the book describe specifically Neanderthals. The films' antagonists look like plain savages.
  • How to Train Your Dragon has an entire village of Vikings fighting dragons instead of pillaging, while the main character trains a dragon. The main character gets a helmet Made out of his deceased mom's breastplate. His dad has the other half.
    • Also, all the adult Vikings speak with a Scottish accent, while all children speak with an American one. This is done intentionally, though.


  • The Long Ships, written in Sweden in the 1940s and set around the year 1000 is the definitive viking novel. Includes characters of myth and history, casual slavery, casual warfare, casual religion switching for pragmatic purposes and plenty of Black Humor.
  • The Ironborn of A Song of Ice and Fire are a Fantasy Counterpart Culture to the Vikings. Natives of a small group of islands with poor soil and rich mineral deposits, the Ironborn choose to reave and pillage rather than make their own wealth (indeed, to pay for something with money as opposed to to taking it by force is viewed as extremely dishonorable). To drive the point home, they live in the Northwest, somewhat roughly analogous to the real life location of Scandinavia, their homeland is cold (though not icy)and they have named like Gelmar, Ragnor, and Agarr. They're also the most war-like people in the setting and have arguably the most physically powerful warrior among their ranks and worship a God who's basically Odin + C'thulhu + Poseidon and their idea of an afterlife is basically Underwater Valhalla.
    • The Wildlings are the 'non-seaborn, settled Norse' version to an extent. With names like Tormund (who is sometimes called the King of a meadhall), Torreg, and so on. With a love for axes and living in the snow.
    • The Northmen are a proud warrior race of snow-dwelling, wolf-revering, honour loving sort of proto-Norman or settled Danish version of this in some respects. Their ancestors could be roughly considered to be the Saxon invaders who drove out/marginalized the original Celtic occupants of Westeroes who are known as the Children of the Forest. However, their religion is Celtic and they're thematically closer to medieval Northern England than Danish or Norman. (Though there are indeed Danish influences in the fomer, from an historical standpoint)
  • As are Tamora Pierce's Scanrans.
  • The Fjordlanders in Discworld.
  • In Christopher Stasheff's Warlock series, the Lost Colony of Gramarye eventually gets some neighbors in the form of "beastmen"—coastal raiders in horned helmets and dragon-prowed ships. The twist; they are actually genetically engineered psychic Neanderthals put there by time travelers as part of an Evil Plan to allow their faction to conquer Gramarye and prevent a future Utopia.
  • In Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Stories series they are almost always referred to as 'Danes' or 'Northmen'. Only when they actually start raiding coastal villages are they ever referred to as 'Vikings'. Horned helmets are absent, but they still possess beast-headed longboats.
    • The naming is accurate; "viking" was a specific term referring to Northmen who went out pillaging.
  • The Drawing Of The Dark by Tim Powers includes a small group of middle-aged Vikings who have improbably sailed their ship up the Danube River to Vienna, having sensed the possibility that the prophesied final battle of Ragnarok will take place here.
  • How to Train Your Dragon takes place in the Inner Isles where Viking tribes reign supreme. There is indeed seafaring, horned helmets, unsuccessful raids, not to mention the added inclusion of DRAGONS.
  • The Skaldi of Kushiel's Legacy have definite Viking elements. Their longboats are mentioned but never seen.
  • Harry Harrison's The Technicolor Time Machine is about a movie studio's attempt to use a time machine to make a viking picture with real vikings.
  • The Icelandic Sagas are prose stories written (mostly in Iceland, but not exclusively so) c. 1180-1350 AD, in which the medieval Icelanders fondly commemorated the life and times of their Viking Age forebears. Almost every fictional depiction of Vikings that is not locked in clichés draws inspiration from these texts. Sagas that are prominently concerned with Vikings:
  • Dragonships: Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman's novel series takes place in a fantasy world, the protagonist is from a Fantasy Counterpart Culture of Vikings.
  • Dreamscape: The Wanderer mentions the Langsyne; a race whose names and battle tactics are very similar to those of Vikings. No horned helmets though.
  • The short story The Haldenmor Fugue from the Doctor Who Storybook 2010.
  • Covers for H. Beam Piper's Space Viking tend to portray the high-technology Space Vikings wearing horned helmets ... including one clever variant in which the "horns" are actually communications antennae, and many viewers might never think of them as horns at all.

Live-Action TV

  • In the Doctor Who serial The Time Meddler, the TARDIS crew end up in Viking times and find one of their helmets. The companion asks whether that means there are Vikings around, and the First Doctor snarks: "What did you think it was, a space helmet for a cow?" There are only four Vikings seen, one of whom uttered the classic line to someone offstage: "The rest of you wait at the bottom of the cliff". There was also some Stock Footage of a Viking ship, actually taken from an old BBC Newsreel report about a 20th century Viking re-enactment.
  • A Concentration tribute to Scandinavia involved wearing horned helmets. Bob Clayton's helmet was the most historically accurate in the group.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus: The "Spam" sketch, set in a humdrum 1970's British cafe features an inexplicable group of Vikings, complete with shaggy coats, horn-ed helments and blonde braids. Who have an equally unexplainable fondness for a certain canned meat product.

"Spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam lovey spam, wonderful spaaaaam!"

    • Similar Vikings would appear in random cutaway moments to say an unnecessary word or two.
  • Eric Northman from True Blood isn't named like that for nothing, as we learn in a flashback where the mighty warrior lies dying from his battle wounds and discusses the joys of Valhalla with his two loyal companions. Until Godric shows up, that is.... But then again it should be obvious: dude is tall, well-built, blue-eyed and blonde. And speaks Swedish with his minions. And is a 1000 years old. Not to mention, he is played by Alexander Skarsgård, son of the famous Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgård. It's in the blood.

Being tall, blue-eyed, and blonde later allows Eric to pass for a Nazi. Being able to glamour people helps too.

  • This joke from Blackadder Goes Forth: "A war hasn't been fought this badly since Olaf the Hairy, high chief of all the Vikings, accidentally ordered 80,000 battle helmets with the horns on the inside."
  • The Muppet Show had Vikings show up a few times.
    • In the Rudolf Nureyev episode, Miss Piggy and Link Hogthrob dress as Vikings and sing a love duet from an opera by Wagner (that is, it's announced as being from Giuseppe Wagner's The Barber of Die Fledermaus, but actually it's from Mozart's Don Giovanni).
    • Then there's the episode with Roger Moore, which had a bunch of Vikings ransacking a village while singing "In the Navy" by the Village People.


  • The Vikings also have their own theme song: "Immigrant Song" by Led Zeppelin.

Our CEO's a legendary Viking entrepreneur
We're conquering the world with our self-assembly flatpack furniture

  • Pretty much every song ever written by Manowar.
  • Each song of the "Secret of the Runes" album by Therion chronicles a different level of Norse cosmology. Well, except for the ABBA cover.
  • Death metal band Amon Amarth, despite taking their name from Lord of the Rings is a viking themed band.
  • "Eric the Awful" by Ray Stevens, whose titular character even has "hairy hat, shaped like a big bullet with horns comin' out the sides"
  • Folk metal band Tyr bases their work on Norse Mythology.
  • And there is a whole subgenre called "Viking metal".
  • The music video for Jason Forrest's "War Photographer" features Vikings fighting a seaborne battle of the bands with tasty guitar licks and Humongous Mecha.
  • Tub Ring has "The Viking Song".
  • Zakk Wylde
  • "Swedish Pagans" by Sabaton.

Newspaper Comics

  • Hagar the Horrible [3] is the title and the name of the main character of a syndicated comic strip by Dik Browne. If a Viking lies, his horns fall off.
  • The Far Side uses Vikings as a common subject.
  • In Pearls Before Swine, Pig has a set of viking action figures that are apparently sentient. They subvert the trope, however, from acting more like preteen girls than anything.
  • Prince Valiant: The Prince was the Viking prince of Thule.


  • The American football team the Minnesota Vikings. Their helmets have the horns painted on and their logo is a mustached, braided long haired blond man with a horned helmet. And in keeping with the pun title of the trope, the Vikings NFL team was caught in a major sex scandal aboard (what else?) a party boat.

Standup Comedy


George Carlin: We come from that northern European, basically the northern European genes, the blue eyes. Those blue eyes. Boy everybody in the world learned real quick, didn’t they? When those blue eyes sail out of the north, you better nail everything down. Nail it down, strap it down, or they’ll grab it. If they can’t take it home, they’ll burn it. If they can’t burn it, they’ll fuck it.


Tabletop RPG

  • The HERO Games catalog of alternate universes known as Champions in 3D included a brief description of Mad Viking World, where horned helmets, heavy drinking and incredible overenthusiasm were the order of the day, even when crossing the street.
  • The GURPS supplement GURPS Alternate Earths 2 included the alternate world of Midgard, where Vikings captured Greek Fire from the Byzantines and came to dominate the European world and a good part of America by the 15th century. No horned helmets here, but plenty of the other classic activities, especially fighting and raiding. (A joke in that world asks "How do you tell a Viking raider from a merchant? If you're armed, he's a merchant.")
  • The Space Wolves in Warhammer 40,000 are basically Super Soldier Vikings IN SPACE. No horns, though. Horned helmets are reserved for the Evil Super Soldiers.
    • According to Word of God, they were originally intended to be an amalgamation of all the berserk warrior types, Celts and Germans as well as the Vikings. Nobody notices, given the fact that they live on an ice world, are amazing sailors, and all have names like Ulrik, Bjorn and Ragnar...
  • The warriors of Chaos in Warhammer Fantasy Battle often come from Viking-like cultures living in the northlands along the border of Chaos Wastes. Basically demon Vikings in scary plate armour wearing capes of human skin.
    • The Norse, which are basically the Warhammer Fantasy Battles Fantasy Counterpart Culture for the Vikings. Raids by Norscan longships are a constant problem for the Empire and Bretonnia - though its worth pointing out that the Chaos-worshiping marauders are culturally diverse, and also include Mongol-like horsemen too. The Empire uses Norsemen as mercenaries, but Bretonnians invariably execute every Norseman when caught.
    • The dwarfs have a strong Scandinavian influence in their artwork, and feature both the stereotypical horned or winged helmets of the Vikings, as well as the more realistic "spectacle" helmet.
      • The background also mentions the Norse Dwarfs of Kraka Drak, who are a combination of the two. No Chaos involved, though.
  • In Pathfinder, the Lands of the Linnorm Kings are home to warriors who are actually called "vikings" in-universe. Horned helmets are a Defied Trope, though—the vikings only wear them in plays and ceremonial events because of how unwieldy they are.
  • The Northern Reaches in Mystara are very obviously based on medieval Scandinavia.

Video Games

  • Lampshaded in Where in Time is Carmen Sandiego. When you are in the time of the Vikings, you'll find a helmet in one part of the level. Clicking it will have your guide mention this trope, and a nearby Viking will then scoff at the idea of having a horned helmet.
  • The Lost Vikings games.
  • Civilization: For some reason, the games often call the Scandinavian civ "The Vikings", even though not all Scandinavians actually went out on ships and raided hapless peasant villages.
  • Mace: The Dark Age: The Viking character from the old N64 game fitted this trope to a T. His name was Ragnar Bloodaxe.
  • The Vykrul in World of Warcraft are nine foot tall vikings who have allied themselves with the Lich King.
  • Age of Empires series.
    • The Vikings in Age of Empires II have the Berserker unique unit which sports the horny helmet.
    • In Age of Mythology Norse heroes, raiding cavalry and upgraded frost giants wear horned helmets. The rest of their units stick to more compact designs. Not to mention that they earn favor with their gods by killing.
  • Final Fantasy series
  • Although there aren't actual Vikings, you can stick a Viking helmet on some of the characters in The Sims 2.
  • One of the Soldier's unlockable hats in Team Fortress 2 is a Viking helmet that covers his eyes, with the left horn broken off about halfway down its length.
  • The Nords, as you could guess from the name, were the Viking Expys of The Elder Scrolls series. Sailors, fighters, berkserkers, drinkers, rapists and raiders, all (though not necessarily in that order). If you took the TES Orcs and made them corn-fed Caucasians, you'd have the Nords (which partly explains why they got along so well, when they weren't raiding each other).
    • Skyrim takes place in the titular Nords' homeland. The character in the trailers and on the cover is also a Nord dressed in furs and wearing a horned helmet (albeit with the horns curving downwards). And you even visit the "Hall of Valor", essentially Valhalla
  • Mount & Blade : The Fantasy Counterpart Culture, Nords, of are a subversion, being settled-down and more similar to Danish-like Vikings or proto-Normans. The "Sea Raider" type of bandits fill the niche of the more classical, northerner Vikings, being stereotypical Rape, Pillage and Burn Proud Warrior Race Guys. Both Nords and Sea Raiders use normal undecorated helmets, mainly the conical and "spectacled" Scandinavian-esque ones.
  • Cultures: This strategy game and its sequel are about (mostly peaceful) vikings. And they wear horny helmets.
  • The Fremennik people of RuneScape.
  • Standish from Dubloon. He even has a guitar to boot.
  • In Para World, the Norsemen tribe (if the name wasn't a giveaway) are, basically, Vikings with dinosaurs, sabretooths, mammoths, and tanks.

Web Comics

Web Games

Western Animation

  • Veggie Tales, "Lyle the Kindly Viking": Cutest. Vikings. Ever.
  • And The Backyardigans, "Viking Voyage", easily matches them. With a mermaid added in to boot!
  • In the Earthworm Jim cartoon, Santa Claus is one of these. (No, really.) In his youth, St. Nick was "Woden, Norse God of Justice", and while he's gotten a lot calmer and nicer in his old age, he's still willing to pull out the old pillaging suit and big sword if something really ticks him off. As Queen Pulsating, Bloated, Festering, Sweaty, Pus-Filled, Malformed Slug-for-a-Butt finds out when he breaks free of her mind control after she uses him to try and ruin Christmas.
    • Viking Santa isn't too far off the mark, actually. In Norse mythology, Odin traditionally went out hunting every Yule, and rewarded children who left out a bootful of sugar with toys and games. Hence, the modern traditions of the stocking and plate of cookies.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Apparently, Boromir from Bakshi's version is a viking. Certainly he has the helmet, shield, and ... uh ... battle dress (no pun intended). This, of course, runs face first into Fridge Logic, when you consider Gondor is A) except for the river, totally landlocked, and B) to the south.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: Spongebob encountered a tribe of underwater vikings, all of whom were named Olaf, and their leader, who was, of course, named... Gordon.
  • The Life and Times of Juniper Lee: Juniper has been possessed, along with all her friends and acquaintances, by a horde of dead Vikings.
  • The Secret of Kells features absolutely terrifying vikings, portrayed as huge hulking horned blocks with deep guttural voices, growling out their desire for gold and wealth.
  • Fanboy and Chum Chum: Fanboy and Chum Chum's friend Thorbold the Red, brother of Olaf, conquerer of Sweden and fifth-highest score on Whack-A-Dragon.
  • An episode of DuckTales (1987) "Maid of the Myth", the Vikings abducted Mrs. Beakley when she was an opera star.
  • In Kick Buttowski Kick's right hand man Gunther apparently hails from Nordic descent. In one episode Gunther's parents even open a viking themed restaurant, Battle Snax.
  • Gargoyles seems to avert this trope for the most part, the Vikings depicted in the cartoon being bereft of the stereotypical horned helms, axes and berzerker attitude, though they are still all about the pillaging.
  • The second Robbie the Reindeer special featured a lost tribe of pint-sized Vikings, all of them named Magnus.
  • Homestar Runner: Homestar wore a Viking helmet in at least two animations.
  • Atlantis: The Lost Empire: The "Viking prologue" deleted scene. What's unique about this deleted scene is the fact that it is actually the only colorized scene of its kind to ever be made specifically for an animated Disney film (all others, including the rest of the deleted scenes for this movie, are all done using a sketchy, simplistic artstyle). This opening was used for the film's tie-in video game (which is apparently supposed to be a prequel to this movie), however.
  • Modern day Vikings appear in the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles episode, "Northern Lights Out" when vacationing in Norway.
  • Tangled: The Snuggly Duckling thugs.
  • One episode of Total Drama World Tour was about Owen donning a horned Viking helmet and speaking like a pirate.
  • Some Transformers have horns on their helmets in robot mode, therefore giving them a Viking-like appearance.
  • An episode of The Care Bears had them dressed like this, trying to help empower a neurotic sea-serpent named Shaky, as well as fight the bad guys.
  • I Am Weasel had an episode where the main characters were vikings. Considering that they have been pretty much everything else, from egyptians to undead, this was inevitable. The King and Queen of Nopantsland kidnaps them because he wants to be pillaged, and they have to spend the entire episode teaching him how to put up a fight so they can pillage him properly. Seriously, this was a weird show.

Real Life

  • The Norse people enjoyed the peak of their power between the 8th and 11th centuries, in what is called the Viking Age. Real Vikings did not wear horned helmets into battle. In fact, only a single horned helmet has ever been excavated, dating several hundred years before the Viking Age, did not have cow-shaped horns, and was clearly ceremonial. At most, Viking helms often featured the distinctive "spectacle-guard" around the eyes and nose, a style common amongst the peoples in the region.

It would have been hard for genuine Vikings to wear horned helmets in battle—Viking warfare was based on the shield wall and other close-quarters styles of fighting (including naval combat which involved a lot of boarding actions), and horns would have put allies at risk of impaling an arm or hand on the protrusions. Or more likely, as any helmet is designed to deflect blows, putting horns and other ornamentation on a helmet would give a weapon something to snag and direct the force of the blow to the wearer's head, defeating the purpose of helmets.

The ancient Norse were also surprisingly civilized, although remembered mostly for their offenses towards women and monks in battle. When not raiding or pillaging, their interests immediately turned to trade and colonization. Areas under the Danelaw quickly became centers of industry and cultural exchange, thanks to wide-ranging Viking vessels.

And, of course, the direct ancestors of the Normans once the people further up the Seine realised it was easier to buy off these Danish hooligans with land at the mouth of the river, rather than have them raid what would later become Paris every once in a while. Viking lords really did have awesome names like Sveyn Forkbeard, Ivar The Boneless,[4] and Erik Bloodaxe.

It should also be noted that "viking" was a job description, more or less, rather than an ethnicity. It was a word for their method of raiding. (These warriors could be hired for a right price - just ask the Roman emperors in Miklagarðr). The vast majority of the people were farmers, craftsmen and traders. Population boom + limited farm land = lots of men with energy to burn. The solution? Have them amass wealth and status some other way. Also, far from being filthy and unbathed, their personal hygiene bordered on OCD (well, for the time, anyway). This makes sense as, when it's too cold to sweat ever, you definitely don't want any dirt or grime sticking to you for long periods of time.

  • Horned Helmets are surprisingly rare in Real Life, but it turns out that one of the few tribes that did have them was a biblical tribe that used cow horns, pointing downwards. They looked ridiculous.
  • Samurai did have the famed Horned Helmets. Likewise, The Teutonic Knights of Northern Europe (founded a century or so after the Vikings' raids ended, for the most part) frequently stuck horns on their elaborate helmets, along with wings, crests, spikes and lord knows what else. The best part? They knew full well that adding bells and whistles to their helmets was at best a hindrance in battle and sometimes even a liability. But it made them look badass, so what the hell. Rule of Cool, brüder.
  • The blind singer/composer known as "Moondog" used to walk the streets of New York City in Viking garb. I saw him once before I knew who he was. Amazing. You can look him up on his Wikipedia page.
  • Viking men did carry their weapons in normal life, even when doing the most routine everyday activities.
  • It is to be noted that there was no clear line between "viking" and "farmers, craftsmen, and traders" other then that the first were more specialized. At sea, and to a large degree on land too, there was no law and robbery was a decent way of getting an extra bit as long as you did it far enough away not to get in trouble with your nearest neighbors. For many whether or not they were robbers or traders depended simply on local factors(if the local jarl was strong enough to give you a pasting you traded, if not you robbed).
  1. The TV series was very successful both in Europe and in Japan and, at least on German TV, seems to be on the re-run regularly. It was never broadcast in the US, apparently.
  2. Oddly, the film is an In Name Only adaptation of a Norwegian film from The Eighties that had no Vikings.
  3. sometimes referred to as simply Hagar. Called Olaf el Terrible in Spanish-speaking countries
  4. it is possible that the intended meaning was legless (Old Norse had the same word for bone and leg, as do the modern languages which evolved from it)