Viking swords are well-known for its unique design. We could claim they are easily recognizable. It is definitely complicated, to know the reasons behind the appearance of Vikings at the end of VIIIth century. The overpopulation in their lands, is one of the factors most accepted, a demographic explossion which took place in Denmark and Norway for the VIIth and VIIIth century.
Besides, the ongoing settling of a solid government in almost the entire Western Europe, specially in the continent after the Carolingian´s Empire foundation, it implied an increase in European commerce and unavoidably the piracy business.
The basic arms a Viking warrior carried were a sword or axe, spear and shield; but also most of the warriors carried a short knife tied to their belts. Among those weapons, sword was clearly the most popular and it was treated in a very reverential way, above all those who were delivered from generation to generation or as a looted treasure.
Viking is the name give to those who belong an ethnic group from Scandinavia, Nordic countries, living between the years 789-1100. They were descendants from some Germanic tribes that settled in this part of the world around 2000 BC.
Their irruption in European political was with the Lindisfarne monastery looting (793), in the North of Great Britain, which one preceded several attacks to other monasteries. Annals and chronnicles related to two following centuries are full of scary stories. Often in large groups, Vikings attacked with their ships European shores. Going down rivers from France, Germany and Russia, they conquered a huge part of the territory belonging to:
Slavonic nations from Russia. British Islands like Ireland and England. And they also devastated the Mediterranean zone.
Its violent personality terrified old communities, although they were used to fight in wars they felt unable to foresse an attack. Those raids had an enormous effect on the unstable period which provoked the political feudalism descentralization.
During the next centuries, Vikings had a huge influence in European History: In British Islands they ruled for many years until being defeated by the Normands, descendants form the Vikings; in Russia thay had a substantial contribution to the Russian state foundation, in France they received as domain the region of Normandy; in Italy they founded the Kingdom of Sicilian and even they took part in their raids in the Caliphate of Córdoba and the Byzantine Empire.
The last hostile bastion was represented by King Harald the heartless, who died in Stamford Bridge Battle in the year 1066 when he was trying to conquer some English territory. Viking Age ended in the year 1100 when every Viking invasion ended.