Tuesday, 26 April 2016

V = Viking in Swedisch and Viking in English

We all know, who Vikings were?
Right? You know, those wild men with horns on their head ? (Sorry to say, but they didn't have any horns, it is just very big misunderstanding.)

Vikings, were warriors and pirates, mainly from the Nordic countries. They had a hand in boat looting and war expeditions in Europe and western Asia from 793 until the 1100's. Also known as the late Iron Age last period, and they were called Vikings. The Vikings took on extensive trade as well.

But I want talk about something more. I will talk about rune stones.
What are rune stones?
Rune stones are raised for people who have died, and although they may sometimes stand next to a graveyard, they are not gravestones. More accurately, is to call them memorials. There is no explanation as to why it was so common to carve and raise these rune stones during the Viking period  in memory of a dead in Sweden.

Almost all of the rune stones from the Viking Age, have texts with the same basic content. What did the Vikings wrote on rune stones?
There is always a certain order in the text.

For example, say "Torsten and Frögunn". Then comes "erected the stone," "let the chopping appliance after", "let carving runes after" or something similar. After that the name of the dead, for example, "John" or "Zoom". Finally we get to know how the dead were relatives of those who had the stone. The most common is that it says "his father", "his brother", "her son", "his mother," "his sister" and so on. Sometimes also ends the text with a prayer. A common runic text is then, as it is on a rune stone in Knivsta south of Uppsala: "Halfdan had this stone for Joger, his brother, and Gudfrid for his son. God help his soul."

Some rune stones have longer texts. They tell about the diseased "journeys" to Greece or England for example. Sometimes it says that those for who was the stone erected had also built a bridge or a road.

We have ca 40 rune stones here in Uppsala.

Welcome to Sweden!