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793: Vikings attack Lindisfarne
Transcript of 793: Vikings attack Lindisfarne
Who attacked who and when
On a January day in 793 the Vikings (also known as the Northmen) attacked a Christian monastery at Lindisfarne in Northumbria.
This was an English kingdom that was famous for the books, arts, and treasures in their monasteries.
How they attacked
On their first raids the vikings made surprise attacks on lonely places.
They knew if they attacked at Lindisfarne there wouldn't be a large English army to fight them.
English Kings were too busy fighting each other to notice the Viking's attacks.
There wasn't a navy to guard the coast so it was easy for them to land on a beach or sail up a river.
By: Mia Benton and Alex Ball
Would fight using long swords and axes
Didn't wear much armour but some chieftains
wore mail coats
Would rely on a wooden shield for protection
Wore helmets made of leather or iron
Good swords were passed down from father to son, but some Vikings would have their weapons buried with them when they died.
Random Facts about the Vikings
A common Viking saying was, 'Never leave your weapons behind when you go to work in the fields - you may need them'.
Vikings navigated using bearing dials, astronomy, lodestones, sunstones, and by releasing captured birds when they thought they were near land.
Christian Vikings believed that building bridges and roads helped your soul go to heaven.
Vikings wanted to die in battle in order to make it to Valhalla, the Norse afterlife for brave fallen warriors.
Most Viking boots were made of goatskin.
What the Vikings were after in the monastery
Vikings Attack In 793
The raid on Lindisfarne was either done by large ship or small fleet ships.
The number of ships was a maximum of three with no more than 25-40 Vikings a ship.
What the attack represented to the monks in the monastery at Lindisfarne.
For the monks, the attack represented the vengeance of Satan on the Christian outposts of Europe.
The monastery was a small, fortress-like place where the monks and the church centers could continue their studies and writing in peace. This terrible attack was an invasion of the sanctitude of Christ and their religion.
There have been outlaws. but having shiploads of huge vikings show up at the shores of Lindisfarne was their worst nightmare imaginable.
The Vikings Attacks
The first raid at Lindisfarne set the pattern for the Viking raids
The Vikings used the hit-and-run tatics, murdered or enslaved the locals, and stole all the treasures.
As the raiding increased and became more profitable, the Vikings established outposts. Dublin, Ireland is an example.
These settlements would serves as supply bases, trading posts, and footholds in occupied territories.
What happened on the attack at Lindisfarne
The monks believed in omens and were already aware that something tragic was going to happen because of some bad omens. Some of the bad omens were: immense flashes of lightening, fiery dragons seen flying in the air, and a great famine.
On June 8, 793, huge Vikings jumped off their ships onto the shores of Lindisfarne and attacked the monastery.
The raiders hacked the monks to death or dragged them into the sea and drowned them.
After the Vikings left, everything in the monastery was either bagged or destroyed.
The people of Lindisfarne would give the monastery gold and silver. They believed their souls would find peace through these gifts and the prayers offered because of those gifts.
On the island were golden crucifixes and coiled shepherd's staves.
There were silver plates for the bread and ivory chests in which reposed the relics of saints.
The walls were hung with shimmering tapestries.
In the writing room was some of the most beautiful illuminated manuscripts ever made.