Saturday, July 20, 2013

"Secrets of the Viking Sword" Synopsis.


I came across an interesting documentary yesterday:

If you are at all interested in ancient technology, anthropology, Vikings, or ancient trade routes through the Far / Middle East, then I recommend this program.

Spoiler Alert!!!

The Ulfberht was a type of Viking sword that used technology 1000 years ahead of its time. Only a relative few have been found, all marked with the word "Ulfberht." This steel had comparatively few impurities and had a much higher carbon content than its contemporaries. The swords were often given ancestors' names, incorporating their power. Burnt bones from ancestors or powerful animals such as bears may have been used to add the very specific amount of necessary carbon and a mystical, magical power to these exceptionally strong and flexible blades. This type is steel is thought to have originated in Central Asia, known as "Damascus Steel" and later "Crucible Steel." As an interesting side-note, thousands of artifacts from the Far East, including a Buddha from India, and an exquisite ring with the word "Allah" engraved in it, have been found in Viking graves. Islamic coins were commonly traded during that era in Scandinavia. It is probable that the special steel originated in Iran, along the Volga trade route. The Vikings didn't know how to make this steel, and the swords disappeared from history once the Volga Trade Route ceased operation.