- Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
- Format: Hardback | 892 pages
- Dimensions: 158mm x 226mm x 53mm | 1,383g
- Publication date: 3 November 2003
- Publication City/Country: Cambridge
- ISBN 10: 0521472997
- ISBN 13: 9780521472999
- Edition statement: New.
- Illustrations note: 70 b/w illus. 15 maps 7 tables
- Sales rank: 868,951
This volume presents a comprehensive exposition of both the prehistory and medieval history of the whole of Scandinavia. The first part of the volume surveys the prehistoric and historic Scandinavian landscape and its natural resources, and tells how man took possession of this landscape, adapting culturally to changing natural conditions and developing various types of community throughout the Stone, Bronze and Iron Ages. The rest - and most substantial part of the volume - deals with the history of Scandinavia from the Viking Age to the end of the Scandinavian Middle Ages (c. 1520). The external Viking expansion opened Scandinavia to European influence to a hitherto unknown degree. A Christian church organisation was established, the first towns came into being, and the unification of the three medieval kingdoms of Scandinavia began, coinciding with the formation of the unique Icelandic 'Free State'.
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Knut Helle is Professor Emeritus of Medieval History at the University of Bergen.
"...this work is clearly designed to permit regular consultation in library collections for many decades. Essential." Choice "...a significant addition to the growing literature on Nordic history...an indispensable reference book for every major library. Thanks to good editing, it is highly readable and flows seamlessly from chapter to another. It is a volume not only for professional historians, but also a valuable research tool for college students and the general adult reading public." History
Table of contents
Introduction Knut Helle; Part I. The Geography and Prehistory of Scandinavia: 1. The Scandinavian landscape and its resources Ulf Sporrong; 2. The Stone and Bronze Ages Ari Siiriainen; 3. The Iron Age Bjorn Myhre; 4. Languages and ethnic groups Michael Barnes; Part II. From Vikings to Kings: 5. The Viking expansion Peter Sawyer; 6. Viking culture Else Roesdahl and Preben Meulengracht-Sorensen; 7. Scandinavia enters Christian Europe Birgit Sawyer and Peter Sawyer; 8. Early political organisation; 8(a). Introductory survey Thomas Lindkvist; 8(b). The making of the Danish kingdom Inge Skovgaard-Petersen; 8(c). The early unification of Norway Claus Krag; 8(d). The Norse communities of the western ocean Magnus Stefansson; 8(e). Kings and provinces in Sweden Thomas Lindkvist; Part III. Material Growth (to c. 1350): 9. Demographic conditions Ole Jorgen Benedictow; 10. Rural conditions Eljas Orrman; 11. Urbanisation Hans Andersson; Part IV. The High Medieval Kingdoms: 12. Towards nationally organised systems of government; 12(a). Introductory Survey Knut Helle; 12(b). The Danish kingdom; consolidation and disintegration Inge Skovgaard-Petersen; 12(c). The Norwegian kingdom: succession disputes and consolidation Knut Helle; 12(d). Sweden under the dynasty of the Folkungs Herman Schuck; 12(e). Growing inter-Scandinavian entanglement Knut Helle; 13. Church and Society Eljas Orrman; Part V. High and Late Medieval Culture: 14. Ideologies and mentalities Sverre Bagge; 15. Literature Lars Lonnroth, Vesteinn Olason and Anders Piltz; 16. Art and architecture Anna Nilsen; 17. Music Ingrid De Geer. Part VI. Late Medieval Society: 18. Population and settlement Jouko Vahtola; 19. The condition of the rural population Eljas Orrman; 20. The towns Goran Dahlback; 21. The nobility of the late Middle Ages Erik Ulsig; 22. Church and clergy Lars Hamre; Part VII. Scandinavian Unions (1319-1520): 23. The political system Herman Schuck; 24. Inter-Scandinavian relations Jens E. Olesen; Conclusion Knut Helle; Bibliography; Index.