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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Centuries-old "Viking death squad" graves reveal 54 skeletons, severed heads

    In the long run - though really not long afterward - the English were worn down from fighting Vikings, and the Conquerer slipped in.

    The Viking death squads who got a taste of their own medicine: Mass grave shows how the Anglo-Saxons hit back at invaders
    A mass grave found in Dorset contains the bodies of an elite ‘hit squad’ of invading Viking warriors, experts claim.

    All decapitated and buried alongside their severed heads, the 54 skeletons were discovered in 2009 by workmen digging a road.

    Archaeologists dated their bones to around the year 1,000 but had few other clues as to the identities of the men who met such a sticky end.
    ---
    So - who exactly might these particular Vikings have been??
    They either were, or modelled themselves on, the Jomsvikings – a hit squad founded by Harald Bluetooth, the Norse king who died around 970 who masterminded a stream of vicious raids on the south coast of England.

    Named after their stronghold at Jomsborg on the Baltic coast, their history is shrouded in myth but at a time the Vikings were feared across Europe, they were regarded as the most terrifying of all.

    But on this occasion, the men, barely into their twenties, were ambushed by the local Anglo-Saxon villagers.
    ---
    more of the story, with skeletons & severed heads pics, at Daily Mail link above

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Ah - what the heck. There just aren't that many "plundering Vikings run amok on English shores" threads on WS and I've always loved this song:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nqv4sYKlOSM
    lyrics
    Last edited by KateB; 06-09-2015 at 05:33 PM. Reason: removed embed tag/no media

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    Cajun Country, Louisiana
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    7,598
    I love history! I've read so much about Vicking invasions on Britain, so this is very interesting to me. Thanks for the link!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    30,165
    Quote Originally Posted by kgeaux View Post
    I love history! I've read so much about Vicking invasions on Britain, so this is very interesting to me. Thanks for the link!
    You're welcome! I love it too. My initial comment - about the Vikings wearing down the English and eventually allowing William of Normandy to conquer England - was really literally true; if English King Harold had not have had to fight King Harald III Hadrada's invading force from Norway (co-led by Harold's own brother, Tostig Godwinson; the English defeated the Norwegian king and Tostig at Stamford Bridge), then immediately moved his army hundreds of miles south when he heard that William's forces had invaded, the outcome of the latter fight might have been far different. The Conquerer did conquer, but was lucky that he faced, in 1066, a tired English army in order to do so.



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