National Geographic look at the world of the Vikings

National Geographic takes viewers on a televisual roller-coaster ride to uncover ground-breaking new Viking discoveries revealing who the Vikings really were, in the intriguing new six-part documentary series “Vikings: The Rise and Fall” represented by Abacus Media Rights premiering on National Geographic at 9pm on Tuesday 21st June 2022.

For over 300 years the Vikings waged war from the seas with brutal effect. But were they blood-thirsty plunderers or cunning political operatives? Through National Geographic’s trademark premium lens, in the compelling new series we witness the Vikings’ first voyages beyond the Scandinavian coast, the sacking of York, and sieges of Paris, as we uncover the trade routes the Vikings developed as far east as Baghdad and West, to discover America. We hear the myths, meet the legends and witness the rise and fall of the greatest warriors in history.

Throughout history, Vikings waged war from the seas, notoriously ruthless and with their own set of rules. The Viking expansion was unprecedented in the veracity of its spread. Known for merciless bloodshed, the Norsemen became the most feared people in history. However, their story has always been told from a one-sided, Christian point of view and only now, after rigorous research through mythical sagas and bioarchaeological finds, can we uncover the truth about who the Vikings really were.

This fresh perspective on the Vikings, narrated by Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, is painstakingly pieced together by documentary producers with the help and onscreen input from 20 of the world’s foremost Viking experts. This includes Stefan Brink (Professor of Scandinavian Studies, University of Cambridge); Terry Gunnell (Professor of Folkloristics, University of Iceland); Anders Winroth (Professor of Medieval History, University of Oslo); Cat Jarman (Bioarchaeologist & Author of “The River Kings); Søren Michael Sindbæk (Archaeologist, Uni of Aarhus); Dr Clare Downham (University of Liverpool, Author of ‘Viking Kings of Britain and Ireland’) and many others.

Throughout history, tales of the dreaded Vikings evoke images of slaughter and terror, wanton pillage and savage bloodletting, but beneath the infamy of sordid violence lies a fascinating true story. The Vikings were fierce warriors, but they were also seasoned navigators, intrepid explorers, craftspeople, merchants, politicians, and poets.

Between the years 700 and 1100, these Norse warriors conquered Britain and Ireland, laid siege to Paris, built complex trade networks as far east as Constantinople and Baghdad and were the first Europeans to set foot on the wild plains of America before fading into obscurity. Tracing their rise and fall in this incredible new series involves an epic journey across the globe, starting with the 8th Century and a detailed look at who the Vikings were and why they first sailed beyond their own fair shores to raid monasteries up and down the coasts of Britain and Ireland.

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