Vikings and Anglo-Saxons

Viking York!

The english city of York, known to the Vikings as Jorvik, became the capital of the large territorymconquered by a substantial Viking army between 865 and 874.It became a centre for Viking commerce and a base from which to attack the Anglo-Saxonsrulers who surrounded them.

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Viking Raiders

For the Vikings ,England was an easy target. It was one of the richest territories in all of Europe but it was politicly divided into seven different Kingdoms, referred to as the Heptarchy. If the Vikings faced resistence from one they would attack the lands of another until they had filled their long-ships with gold and slaves. Many of the early Viking attacks on Britain were costal attacks against undefended monastries. These monasteries were filled with gold oblects and other valuables.

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The Great Heathen Army and Viking conquests in Eng

According to Viking legend the Anglo-Saxon King of Northumbria, Aelle, successfully defeated a Viking raiding force in around 860. Their leader, Ragnar Lodbrok, was killed by being thrown into a pit full of venomous snakes. Although we do not have accurate sources about Ragnar Lodbrok or King Aelle, the most reliable source from the period explain how a large army of Norweigians and Danes sailed across the North sea in 865 to avenge Ragnar's death. This army was far greater than any viking force before and it was clear that its intention was not to plunder but to conquer.

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