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The Penguin Historical Atlas of the Vikings (Hist Atlas)
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Top Customer Reviews
I liked the maps that conveyed additional info. There is one showing the last great expedition to reopen the trade routes with the Arabs, an expedition which ends in disaster for the Swedish adventurers.
The Khazars from Jewish history (a south Russian tribe that may have converted to Judaism) even make an appearance. It seems the Khazars gave the Vikings permission to loot their neighbors in exchange for half of the proceeds. But the Vikings were so brutal that the Khazars reneged on the deal and massacred the Norsemen on the way back from pillaging.
The Vikings eventually got even though, and their revenge led to the demise of the Khazar empire.
Reading this book is like leafing through a series of magazine articles on the general theme of the Vikings. By changing topics so often the book holds the interest of the casual reader who finds the Vikings strange and mysterious.
I enjoyed this book, and I recommend it.
History needs maps. An historical atlas is very useful if a reader wants to keep track of all Viking raids and pillages around the coasts of northern Europe, but also as far today Russia and Central Asia. Vikings gave the name to Russia, being Rus the name Finns gave to Swedish Vikings in that area, which means "oarsmen". So this historical atlas provides plenty of information through maps and entertaining captions that help to understand how far-reaching Viking influence was. However, this atlas, as a previous reviewer has noted, is too centered on Viking presence in British islands and Ireland.
At the beginning of the X century, Charles III of France gave Normandy (the land of Norse) to the Vikings, who in turn offered their allegiance. These settled Vikings became known as Normans, who took part to new adventures: William, the Duke of Normandy, led the conquest of England, Robert the Guiscard seized Sicily from Muslims in the Mediterranean, and took part in the Crusades. This by-product of the Viking saga is almost completely left out.
All in all, this atlas provides a visual history of Vikings, that is appropriate and easy to read for students and the general reader. Recommended to all who share an interest in Medieval history of Northern Europe.
To readers who are interested in overall Viking history but simply cannot decide which book to start with, this work is an ideal choice.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very easy to follow. Broken down into segments that allow for looking up individual subjects. Follows a chronologically logical order. Read morePublished 3 months ago by JST
My husband is a Vikings history buff. He thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.Published 4 months ago by SLB
Nice colored maps, history was very interesting especially for someone who did not know a lot about the Viking eras. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Robert D Freel
This is the best book if you are researching the Vikings or doing ancestral research. It's really well done with loads of maps & descriptions, very valuable information, all in one... Read morePublished 7 months ago by swannee
Very good book with lots of great maps. Has served as a great resource as I have read other books about the Vikings.Published 8 months ago by George F. Rice