Hardangerfjord and the Columbia River Gorge

I have always liked the Columbia River Gorge area. It’s an area which reminds me of Hardangerfjord in Norway. The Columbia River Gorge is a canyon of the Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest of the United States bordering Oregon and Washington. Now, there are no real comparisons to the fjords of Norway (best place on Earth). But the Columbia River Gorge is the closest I have ever found in the United States. The deep cold waters and the scenery are nearly the same in these two areas. They are also both well known…

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Paganism vs Heathenism, is there a difference?

Where do the terms pagan and heathen come from and what’s the difference? The word pagan is a Latin term which means “nonparticipant” (paganus) or more accurately, “country dweller” or “civilian” in contrast to being “Soldiers of Christ”. “Pagan” was used by Christians in Anglo-Saxon England to describe non-Christians.  Latin was the spoken and written language of the Christian Church at the time, so it is of no surprise they would use a Latin word to refer to those not members of their church or religion. It wasn’t until the…

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When does ‘The Last Kingdom’ season 2 start in Netflix?

When does ‘The Last Kingdom’ season 2 start somewhere I can actually watch!? The epic historical drama, dubbed “the real Game of Thrones”, is currently airing on Thursdays at 9pm on BBC Two. However, that’s a station most American subscribers do not get. Not to mention, most watch it on Netflix anyways. So when does ‘The Last Kingdom Season Two’ start for those of us who do not get BBC2? Netflix has joined forces with the BBC to co-produce the second season and will release season two in the US on May 5, 2017.…

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The largest witch trial in Swedish history

The Torsåker Witch Trials were the largest of all the witch trials in Swedish history. It is also one of the largest mass killings of witches in recorded history.  In total, there were 71 people accused and killed as being witches. A total of 6 men and 65 women. More profoundly, it was roughly a fifth of all women in the region who were beheaded and burned in a single frenzied day. The frenzied witch trials took place in Torsåker, a village located in central Sweden from 1674 – 1675 AD. Unfortunately,…

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The Hidden Hollow gets an awesome trailer! The Rise in Viking Themed Fiction

trailer hidden hollow

The Hidden Hollow, a Norse-themed historical fiction-fantasy, will be released this coming September and Spangenhelm Publishing just released an awesome trailer to promote it. In the trailer we see footage of someone running through Scandinavian forests, Viking warriors marching to battle, longships sailing through fjords, and what appears to be a huldra from Norse folklore hiding behind a tree. These are just some of the many things featured in The Hidden Hollow. With risk of further spoilers, it’s also revealed that it features some drama behind a vengeful draug – Vikings just won’t stay dead! Sadly, not many spoilers appear…

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The Hidden Hollow

The Hidden Hollow by Njord Kane Awakened late in the night, his life is changed forever. The events that follow propel him on a journey that only the foolhardy or desperate would risk. He is led into the forest and up the mountain – into a whole world of secrets in itself. This is only the beginning of his adventures. Something is stirring in the forest, something more ominous than the rising threat across the seas. Fearful travelers whisper of a darkness breathing in the forest, disturbing it, corrupting it.…

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Hjalmar’s Holmgang against 12 Berserkers for Love

The legend of Hjalmar and his Viking Duel against the twelve berserker sons of Arngrim for the hand of princess Ingeborg in marriage. Hjalmar was a might viking warrior who had never lost a battle.  He was one of the mythical Swedish King Yngvi‘s housecarls at Uppsala. Yngvi was a legendary Swedish king of the House of Yngling. He was hailed as a great warrior who always won his battles, the master of all exercises, generous, happy and sociable. He was both loved and famous.  Gamla Uppsala is a parish and a village…

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Gaelic-Irish vs Norse-Gaels in The Battle of Clontarf

The Battle of Clontarf was a battle which took place in 1014 AD at Clontarf on the coast of Ireland between the forces of the High King of Ireland and a Norse-Irish alliance. When the Viking Age began, Norsemen began carrying out raids on the Gaelic Irish in the late eighth century.  These raids continued over the following decades and the Vikings had founded a number of settlements along the Irish coast.  By 838 AD, these Vikings had firmly established themselves in Dublin when they built a fortified longphort. A longphort (plural longphuirt) is a term…

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Naglfar, the Giant(‘s) Ship of Nails

Naglfar

It was foretold that during the events of Ragnarök, a massive ship called Naglfar will carry an army of jötnar to a large field called Vígríðr to host a battle between the forces of the gods and the forces of Surtr (a jötunn). Naglfar (also Óskópnir or Naglfari), means “nail ship” in Old Norse. It is a massive ship which was foretold that will ferry hordes to do battle with the gods – and it is not held together by timber and iron nails, but by finger and toe nails! Yo-ho-yuck is right!   It’s a ship made entirely from the…

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Homosexuality in the Viking World

The Norse Sagas and poems have absolutely no mentioning of any homosexual relationships whatsoever. But that does not mean that there weren’t any gay or lesbian relationships amongst the people of the North. It also does not mean that gay, lesbian, or bisexual relationships weren’t tolerated either. Christian influence, along with other male dominated cultures that came into the Norse world, frowned greatly upon homosexuality in any shape or form.  This stigma has carried itself into the present day as there continues to be a tendency for people to retain some of their prejudices and attitudes towards…

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