The Vikings did not always set out with war in mind. Finds of large cargo ships and wealthy trading towns give a more nuanced picture of the period. It was a time in which trading in everything from slaves to silk and iron flourished. Finds of Arabic silver coins in Scandinavia and a small Buddha figure in Sweden testify to how distant the trading connections could be.
Viking long house with a stone-lined hearth in the middle. A fire was kept for cooking and heating and the smoke escaped through a hole in the roof. The hall was often smoky and smelly. The floor of the hall was made of hard-packed earth, covered with ree