Aarhus Universitetsforlag

From Goths to Varangians

Communication and Cultural Exchange Between the Baltic and the Black Sea

A part of the series Black Sea Studies (15) , and the subject area

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418 pages ill.
ISBN 978 87 7934 537 9

Edited by
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With contributions by
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About the book

In late Antiquity, archaeology demonstrates lively and far-flung exchange along the river Dniester, through current Poland to the Baltic. By the 11th century the former Barbaricum had been transformed into a string of Christian kingdoms and principalities, whose parallel histories are as conspicious as their differences. From the legendary (if possible real) migrations of the Goths in Antiquity to the Varangian guard at the imperial court of Byzantium in the late Viking Age, trans-cultural interaction complemented important historical development. This book is about aspects of the changing interactions from late Antiquity to the High Middle Ages, from Goths to Varangians, and from the Baltic to the Black Sea. The history and archaeology of these connections have been poorly exposed and investigated in modern times. The papers presented in this volume are a selection of those presented during a series of four meetings organised 2007-2009 by the "Varangian Network", an interdisciplinary network for archaeological and historical research on relations between the Baltic and the Black Sea from late Antiquity to the medieval period.

Table of contents

The Russian controversy over the Varangians

At the watershed between the Baltic and the Pontic before Gnezdovo

Networking in north-eastern Barbaricum: a study of gold imitations of Roman coins

The Herulians are coming!

Byzantium and the Scandinavian world in the 9th-10th century: material evidence of contacts

Chasing gold threads: auratae vestes from Hellenistic rulers to Varangian guards

Finds of Byzantine origin from the early urban centre Gnezdovo in the light of the contacts between Rus' and Constantinople (10th - early 11th centuries AD)

Scandinavians in the East of Europe: in search of glory or a new motherland?

Viking warriors and the Byzantine Empire: was there a transfer of nautical technology?

Mental maps of the Old Russian chronicle-writer of the early twelfth century

Darkness in the East? Scandinavian scholars on the question of Eastern influence in Scandinavia during the Viking Age and Early Middle Ages

The journey of St Clement's cult from the Black Sea to the Baltic Region

Royal family connections and the Byzantine impact on Danish Romanesque church frescos. Queen Margareth Fredkulla and her nieces



Sanne Lind Hansen


MA in ethnography and classical archeology and trained at the Danish School of Journalism. Sanne primarily works with anthropology, archeology and early history. She is also responsible for foreign sales and commission agreements, and she was once employed at the National Museum (Antiquities).

Sanne Lind Hansen


Telephone: + 45 53 55 07 59


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