Viking Ships // Building

Boats and ships were a major importance in everyday Viking life and they were a symbol of wealth and power. Vikings were advanced in wood carpentry and it is mentioned often that Viking ships were lighter, slimmer and faster. However, there is little proof to suggest that those statements are true. There are very few whole Viking ships that remain to serve as a basis for theories. The best way to test theories is to reconstruct and experiment based on information that we do know. This information comes from literature, art and archaeology. Quite a lot of descriptive information that we know about Viking vessels comes from societies that were raided by the Vikings. Other information came from Viking art that depicted the ships such as gold coins, the Gotland stone and the Bayeux tapestry. Archaeology plays a major role in learning about Viking vessels; the major discoveries include the Mästermyr tools, the Skuldelev vessels, the Oseberg ship, and the Gokstad ship.

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