Norse culture is so much more than what’s being presented in pop culture, it’s extremely unique and diverse, with so much to learn about! From all kinds of myths about gods, deities, and how they correlated with the world around them, to the incredible innovations and way of life lived by the ancient Norse people. So here are some incredible facts about the Norse culture!
Gods and days of the week
A fun fact that not a lot of people seem to clock, is that day of the week care called after various Norse gods! With Thursday being named after the god of war, Thyr, Wednesday was named after Odin, the raven god, Thursday was named after the god of thunder, aka the famous Thor!
No horned helmets
A lot of people have a certain image in their minds when thinking about Vikings, but in most cases they are wrong! They’ve actually never worn that kind of style of helmets, they were later added by other people and their interpretations of the Vikings. But Vikings themselves did not wear horned headsets and the ones that were discovered over the years further point the fact!
Viking ships are probably one of the reasons why Vikings were so powerful, both onshore and on the water! The unique design and construction of the ship itself were meant to make the ship go faster and be easily navigated – making it extremely efficient regardless of the weather. They were often large and long, with both sides being identical – allowing the crew to easily change the direction of the ship if trouble occurs! These ships were also used both in battle and in different trades!
The incredible innovations
Apart from being great boat makers, Vikings invented a lot of things that helped them have immense power! One of those things was a unique fluid that helped them carry fire wherever they go – they used a fungus and mixed it with urine, creating the perfect flammable concoction!
Various ancient symbols
Like any other culture, Norse culture is filled with all sorts and kinds of mystical symbols and crests that hold deep meaning to them. To understand a Viking symbol, you need to be aware of how spiritual the people were, incorporating a lot of spiritual themes into their designs. Some represented certain gods and what they stand for, whilst others are used as good luck charms and are believed to be a protection talisman.
Unique burial style
A popular fact that a lot of people know is that Viking buried their loved ones in a specific burial style. Now, this doesn’t mean that they didn’t go the regular way, but excellent warriors and noble people were honored by being laid to rest in one of the ships. This also has other connotations and meanings, as their bodies will continue to float into the afterlife, with their beloved weapons and goods surrounding them.
The impact of gods
Arguably the most famous gods of Norse mythology are Odin, Thor, and Loki, not to mention their appearance in pop culture in recent years, only making them even more popular. With that being said, there’s more to them than what the media presents, as they are not two-dimensional characters! But with that being said it’s important to note that Nordic people didn’t actually look up to their gods and fear them like many other cultures, but rather incorporate them in their complex society!
Women had rights
It’s safe to say that women’s rights came a long way since the old days, but we can’t forget the fact that Nordic women were in fact way ahead of their time! Vikings had a specific understanding of gender roles and shared work, but their women had more free time than other females in surrounding areas, as well as the ability to inherit property and even divorce. Even if the society was male dominant, women still had responsibilities and held an important role in the household, especially when their husbands were absent!
People were not as blonde
Funny thing is, a lot of people think that Vikings were all-natural blondes, but that’s actually not the case at all! Even though they did have predominantly light features, they would oftentimes try to lighten their hair and beards using certain ingredients. They took great care of their hair, with color, different hairstyles, and all sorts and kinds of braids!
Vikings weren’t just warrior’s only thinking about bloodshed, they enjoyed farming quite a bit! This is probably why they were so powerful with a solid society, having a balance between waging war and enjoying a peaceful lifestyle and growing goods for the village! The versatility of both men and women is what forged their success!
It’s safe to say that the Norse culture was way ahead of its time, from the rich mythology and useful innovations that helped them be so powerful, to human rights and way of life. All-in-all Norse culture is extremely distinct and unique and remains one of the most interesting cultures to learn about!