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Ideology and Power in the Viking and Middle Ages

Gro Steinsland, Jón Viðár Sigurðsson, Jan Erik Rekdal & Ian Beuermann

Ideology and power are central elements in the political, social, religious and cultural development of the North during the transition from the Viking to the Middle Ages. While the medieval European Christian ideology of rulership has been widely discussed, an analysis of the Nordic pre-Christian ideology, and of its confrontation with the new European ideals has so far been lacking. This book examines the concepts and practices associated with chieftains, earls and kings from the ninth to the thirteenth century: the myths and rituals surrounding their position in a northern European warrior culture. The analysis seems to indicate that important elements of the pre-Christian ideology of rulership survived into the Christian Middle Ages, either transformed or even simply transferred.

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: BRILL (April 21, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9004205063
  • ISBN-13: 978-9004205062

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