Scandinavia--Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Iceland, and Finland--is blessed with five distinct, yet related, cultures.

Learn about the stories behind the legends, about the countries, and most of all about the people.


"We sailed our ships to any shore that offered the best hope of booty; we feared no fellow on earth..."
Saga of Arrow-Odd

What is Gjetost?
A town in Sweden.
Brown goat cheese.
The word for "hello" in

Roasted fish.
The word for ghost in

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OSLO - Norway

Clustered around the head of the 68-mile-long Oslofjord, Oslo is probably the most spacious city in the world. Its 175-square-mile metropolitan area consists of over 75 percent forests and five percent water. Its fine deep harbor, Pipervika, stretches into the heart of the city and from it leave ferries to Denmark and Germany.

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History: The Round Tower
Arts:   Vigeland Park, Oslo
          Georg Jensen
People: Henrik Ibsen    
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Edited by William W. Fitzhugh and Elizabeth I. Ward

ISBN: 1560989955

There’s a lot more about the Vikings than most people know. This excellent book not only tries to correct misconceptions about the Viking, but places them where they belong in world history. The Vikings set sail from Scandinavia during the early Middle Ages as famine ravaged their homeland. This and the promise of untold riches in far off lands encourage them to conquer parts of England, France, Ireland, Russia, and Turkey. The success of these new settlements made them seek other lands that lay farther to the west within the vast expanses of the Atlantic Ocean. Soon Vikings could be found in Iceland, Greenland, and along the northern shores of North America.

Nearly three dozen Viking experts contribute to The Vikings: the North Atlantic Saga. Each examines a facet of the new archeological evidence showing that the Vikings had settled in North America– if only for a brief time. During their stay they often had strained relations with the native inhabitants which they called skirelings or screamers. Throughout the book these experts compare this new archeological evidence with the content of sagas from that time. According to the editors, the Viking Age and its North American medieval extension stand out as one of the most remarkable periods in human history.

The book uses the history of the Vikings as a framework for a series of major events in world history, leading the reader through Scandinavian culture, art, religion and daily life and then to the Viking expansion into Europe and the Mediterranean. From there, the focus shifts to the North Atlantic where Viking raids preceded the expansion of Europe.

Lavishly illustrated with full-page in double-page photographs of Norse maps and charts and, including some showing routes to and settlements in North America, the book also contains photographs of Viking jewelry and implements.

This book is for everyone from novice, new to Viking history, and those who have been reading about it for considerable time. It’s not only informative but fun to read – a rare combination. Readers should read the entire book, not just parts of it, to get to complete picture.

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Every year about 95 000 people die in Sweden and, according to the law, everyone must be buried. There must be room for everyone in the cemeteries, therefore the future needs of space have to be predicted. Because of this funerals must be part of the planning process.

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In the early Middle Ages, driven by famine at home and the promise of wealth to be had in other lands, the Vikings set out from Scandinavia to conquer parts of England, Ireland, France, Russia, and even Turkey. Bolstered by their successes, the Vikings pushed westward, eventually crossing the North Atlantic and founding settlements in Iceland, Greenland, and Newfoundland in Canada.
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