(Spoilers are eternal. They are also present within this post.)
Hello everyone! Today, I am going to do another post on Vikings, this time on episode 4. This was a fairly good episode all around, and it was certainly dramatic, with several large fight scenes scattered throughout the episode and a few smaller ones as well. Furthermore, the plot advanced significantly, setting up the final confrontation between the jealous Earl Haraldsson and Ragnar Lothbrok, the protagonist. In terms of historical accuracy, this episode wasn’t the worst yet; as always, however, there are some things to talk about.
- As previously mentioned, the raid which was depicted in this episode was historically quite short; the Vikings slew the sheriff, as they did at the end of the previous episode, and then immediately left. They did not raid a nearby town. (Obviously, I understand that that would have been boring; however, if I excused historical inaccuracies for plot reasons, I wouldn’t have much to talk about, would I?)
- Furthermore, it appears that the specific raid depicted (i.e., on the village) was not a historical raid, or at least I could not find any trace of it if so. (for a theoretically complete list of viking raids, see here)
- As previously stated, the fact that few slaves were captured in the raid is slightly inaccurate; historically, slaves were a major source of income for viking raiders.
- While it is possible that a (another, counting Athelstan) priest in Northumbria would have spoken Norse at this point in history, I don’t know how likely it is; I have been unable to find any sources on the matter, however. (Although this site does talk about the spread of Norse to England, it doesn’t give enough dates)
I am going to talk about some of the things the episode did well after the link. (Also, see references there, as usual)