Women in the Viking Age

Women in the Viking Age

Judith Jesch


Boydell Press



Through runic inscriptions and behind the veil of myth, Jesch discovers the true story of viking women.
Well-illustrated, closely argued and fascinating. GUARDIAN

This is the first book-length study in English to investigate what women did in the Viking age, both at home in Scandinavia and in the Viking colonies from Greenland to Russia. Evidence for their lives is fragmentary, but Judith Jesch assembles the clues provided by archaeology, runic inscriptions, place names and personal names, foreign historical records and Old Norse literature and mythology. These sources illuminate different aspects of women's lives in the Viking age, on the farms and in the trading centres of Scandinavia, abroad on Viking expeditions, and as settlers in places such as Iceland and the British Isles. Women in the Viking Age explores anunfamiliar aspect of medieval history and offers a new perspective on Viking society, very different from the traditional picture of a violent and male-dominated world.

JUDITH JESCH is Reader in Viking Studies at the University of Nottingham.


October 1991
248 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
ISBN: 9780851153605
Format: Paperback
Boydell Press
BISAC HIS037010, SOC003000, HIS045000
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Well-illustrated, closely argued and fascinating.THE GUARDIAN

A coherent, tangible and convincing picture of the age as a whole. HISTORY

This excellent study gives a thorough and learned survey of the subject of the title, assembling evidence from a wide range of sources. SCANDINAVICA

A fine example of the interdisciplinary nature of both viking and women's studies... the study demonstrates the author's mastery of an impressive array of linguistic and methodological tools. JEGP (US)

A lively and compelling book...the author's particular strengths lie in her study of literature. Judith Jesch has captured the spirit of Viking women. Her book is a fitting tribute to them. MEDIEVAL ARCHAEOLOGY

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