Vikings – a generation known as the Norse Seafarers who were better recognized of their war skills and were highly feared across the Europe due to their fearlessness and the power they held. This was almost in the late 8th to late 11th century. The Vikings used unorthodox ways of punishments and aggressive behaviors. They had a unique style to fight the battles and were fast and ferocious. This ancient generation was used to attack quickly and would flee as soon as the work was done before more backup could arrive at the stage. They were used to make their weapons and armor by themselves and had the strange type of arms.
The Viking Women
As women empowerment, has been the talk of the day, there has been an urge to know what life was like before for women. It is understood that in some places in history, women were just a tool of satisfaction and leisure but there is just something different about the women of this age, especially the civilization of Vikings. It has been heard and read throughout the history, that the Scandinavian women of the Viking age had more freedom and were not powerless as compared to the other women of that day. They were given rights, not equal but they had their role to play in the history of time and are now regarded as the most powerful women of all time.
Vikings women as warriors
As the research, has grown, it is said that the women of the Viking age even used to travel alongside their men and even participate in wars and enjoyed all other perks, just like men did. Those women used to be the right hand of their men and were trusted with the power of decision-making and were also taught to fight against their enemy and were used to give high ranks in their military.
Image Courtesy: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/355643701809330498/?lp=true
These Viking warriors were not just famous for their brutal attacking and fearless behavior but they were also known for their trade routes that they had established all over the world. But like many conventional societies, Viking generation was patriarchal, the men were responsible for all the outgoing tasks and women’s lives revolved around their homes yet they were provided freedom through different means. Viking women could own properties, separate from their men and ask for dowries back in case their marriage ended. So, it is possible to say that these women were a lot different from other women of that day. They knew what their rights were and they had the ability to fight for that. You can read about the lives of women in the ancient era here.
Viking Warrior’s Dug Up Grave
In 1889, near the town of Brika, Sweden, a grave was dug up and was thought to be the remains of a Viking warrior since there were other things found in the grave, that were 2 horses, a sword, a spear, arrows and a gaming board that was used to determine the strategies. A detailed osteological examination was done on the corpse but an early assumption was made that it was the grave of a male warrior because of the other belongings it contained. Viking warriors used to bury their warriors along with their war tools if the warrior had acquired a high grade in the battle but later, what the scientists discovered about the grave was even more surprising than anybody could have thought.
When the results of the osteological test came in, the scientist provided the possibility of the remains could have been that of a woman. As the anticipation went on, a team of Swedish scientists decided to conduct a DNA analysis of the skeleton and put rest to the confusion and curiosity once and for all.
The researchers said “the skeleton was found at highly remarkable burial place and the possession of the armors it had, that led to the believing of the skeleton being a male warrior due to the preconceptions of the Viking traditions” but as they conducted the analysis, the researchers found out that the skeleton had two X chromosomes and no Y chromosome which no doubt resulted in the remains being of a woman. A further strontium test was analyzed to understand whether the body had traveled or not. The test was conducted at the Stockholm and Uppsala Universities and the details were published in the American General of Anthropology. The researchers further described the women being a part of a very remarkable society, where they could stand equally with men. The women’s grave possessing those armors indicates towards the possibility of women holding high rankings in wars during the Vikings reign.
Details on the dug up grave
The study was demonstrated as the first proof of the skeleton being a woman warrior. The researcher said that this is also an indication of her being a high ranked officer, someone who knew how to lead her troops in the battlefield and was a woman of strength and mind. It is not some kind of Valkyrie but indeed a reality of the late 10th century. This is not the first female burial they’ve found but there also have been findings in the region of Denmark and UK.
This is not the first discovery of women buried on a high rank. In 2005, a female mummy in Peru was discovered and she was called “Lady of Cao”, which means that women attaining higher ranks in early civilizations is not just limited to Vikings, in fact, women held high statuses in other ancient civilizations as well.
Image Courtesy: https://i.pinimg.com/564x/8a/14/50/8a14508c87dcf1cb35cd7305c4005057.jpg
This changes the perspective of thoughts altogether. Women empower is not just a phenomenon of today but has been in our history since the beginning of time itself. As it was previously considered that the patriarchal society of the early ages had women to their toes, the discovery of this Viking warrior, changes that perspective and brings in a new possible demonstration and could be a beginning of new research. As the scientists say, every new discovery leads to another one, this phenomenal and indisputable result can conclude more assumptions about the ancient ages and has a long way to go.