Vikings in the South: Voyages to Iberia and the Mediterranean

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Bloomsbury Publishing, Aug 27, 2015 - History - 160 pages
In the ninth century, Vikings carried out raids on the Christian north and Muslim south of the Iberian peninsula (modern Spain and Portugal), going on to attack North Africa, southern Francia and Italy and perhaps sailing as far as Byzantium. A century later, Vikings killed a bishop of Santiago de Compostela and harried the coasts of al-Andalus. Most of the raids after this date were small in scale, but several heroes of the Old Norse sagas were said to have raided in the peninsula.

These Vikings have been only a footnote to the history of the Viking Age. Many stories about their activities survive only in elaborate versions written centuries after the event, and in Arabic. This book reconsiders the Arabic material as part of a dossier that also includes Latin chronicles and charters as well as archaeological and place-name evidence. Arabic authors and their Latin contemporaries remembered Vikings in Iberia in surprisingly similar ways. How they did so sheds light on contemporary responses to Vikings throughout the medieval world.
 

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Contents

Don Teudo Rico Defeats a Viking Raid
1
2 From the Encircling Ocean
15
3 So the Story Goes
29
4 A Mediterranean Adventure
47
5 Waiting for the Barbarians
65
6 The Wars of Santiago and Cordoba against Vikings
79
From Charter and Chronicle to Saga
95
APPENDIX 1 Glossary of Histories and Historians
105
APPENDIX 2 Timeline
109
Abbreviations
111
Bibliography
113
Index
131
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About the author (2015)

Ann Christys is an independent scholar. She completed her PhD, published as Christians in al-Andalus 711–1000 (2002), at Leeds and has published on the historiography of al-Andalus and on Christian–Muslim relations.

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