Category Archives: History

Want To Know The Real Story Behind The Lagertha? Here’s The Series For You!

Have you been enjoying my recaps on History’s Vikings but have always wondered just how much of the show is based on historical fact?

Well, so have I.

As a result of this, I will be publishing a series of books tentatively called The Truth Behind that delve into the history of the Vikings as well as other key historical figures of the time  since my daughter insists I include King Ecbert and Queen Kwenthrith in this series.

The very first novel will be based on the historical literature and myths surrounding Lagertha. In modern culture, Lagertha is synonymous with being a headstrong female who can hold her own in battle. In Season 1 of History’s Vikings, Lagertha is already married to Ragnar Lothbrok. So how did they meet? Historically speaking, Ragnar Lodbrok first met her in brothel. The Truth Behind: Lagertha will delve into how this event occurred and how Lagertha and Ragnar ended up together.

If you think The Truth Behind: Lagertha will be just another history, you can think again. Each of The Truth Behind books will consist of two parts. The first part being the history behind each character. The second half, however, will be a novella of the historical figure’s life. So, if you are not so much about reading about history and prefer to get your history dose in much the same way History delivers Vikings, than Part Two will be just for you!

Currently The Truth Behind: Lagertha is at the planning stage and I have an awful lot of historical documents to get through before writing begins in earnest on this series. However, I just thought I would drop you a line to let you know what to expect, novel-wise, for me in the future.

The Truth Behind: Lagertha by Rachel Tsoumbakos
[Image by Morris Meredith Williams (1881-1973) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]
So far only a working cover and blurb is available on Goodreads, but please head on over there and show your support for my latest series by adding The Truth Behind: Lagertha to your reading list.

BLURB:

Lagertha was known to be one of the wives of the famous Viking, Ragnar Lodbrok. But did you know they first met each other at a brothel? And just how long did their marriage last? Was Lagertha really the revered shield maiden we see her as today? The Truth behind: Lagertha aims to unravel all these secrets.

The Truth Behind: Lagertha is so much more than a history book though. While Part One examines the historical facts, Part Two brings her whole story to life with an historically accurate novella of her life.

The Truth Behind series explores the historical fact from present day fiction in regards to the Vikings and other key historical figures that existed in the Viking era.

The Truth Behind: Lagertha aims to discover just how much of what we know of the shield maiden, Lagertha, in popular culture today is actually true.


Originally appeared on Rachel Tsoumbakos

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Confirmation that Viking Warriors Included Females

Shield Maidens such as Lagertha are a possible reality:

Katheryn Winnick stars as shield maiden Lagertha in History Channel's Vikings

Thanks to many archaeologists who assumed Viking bones buried with weaponry were male, the idea of shield maidens was shelved to the ‘myths and legends’ section of history. But not now! Thanks to new research conducted by Shane McLeod of the Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies at the University of Western Australia, it seems some of the assumed bodies buried with swords and knives are actually women. Thanks to some burials of Norse immigrants starting to turn up in Eastern England, McLeod suggested:

There is some archaeological evidence for early Norse female settlement, most obviously oval brooches, but this evidence is minimal. The more difficult to date evidence of place names, personal names, and DNA samples derived from the modern population suggests that Norse women did migrate to England at some stage, but probably in far fewer numbers than Norse men.

As a result of this, the burials were investigated using DNA evidence rather than the assumption that corpses buried with weapons were only male. This study concluded with the following results:

These results, six female Norse migrants and seven male, should caution against assuming that the great majority of Norse migrants were male, despite the other forms of evidence suggesting the contrary. This result of almost a fifty-fifty ratio of Norse female migrants to Norse males is particularly significant when some of the problems with osteological sexing of skeletons are taken into account,

While many people were quick to assume this means women were also raiding along with their male counterparts, this has not actually yet been confirmed – although we are indeed one step closer! In reality, this study shows that there was an even split of male and female Viking settlers in England after they initially invaded around the time of 800-900 A.D. What is exciting to note though the fact that the Vikings buried their women with weapons, which suggests that, in life, these women were considered heroic or competent with these items.

What do you think? Is Lagertha fact or fiction? Let us know by commenting below!

Source: USA Today – Invasion of the Viking women unearthed

(Photo Credit: History Channel, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.)