Women's Roles In Viking Society

585 Words3 Pages
The times know as the Age of the Vikings lasted for over 300 years. Their history is linked to their roles as masters of the sea. They were feared as pirates but that doesn’t complete the story of the Vikings. Their culture also consisted of poets, lawmakers, great artists, and perhaps the greatest ship builders of the time. Even if they were known abroad as ruthless pirates, at home they lived in a well balanced society, based on laws and democracy. Viking society was divided into three social levels: the wealthy with great economic power, free farmers with the right to bear arms and attend the general assembly, and slaves who had no rights. The Thing was a general assembly that was responsible for maintaining law and order, and is considered…show more content…
Wives made butter and cheeses, dried and smoked fish and meats, and were well versed in the knowledge of herbs in order to make medicines for the ill or wounded. In addition she was also the leader when the family held private religious rites inside the house. A wife also had the duty to run the farm when her husband was out on trading tours, raids or went out to fish or hunt. If she was of a rich family she had slaves and servants to help her. As a visible sign of her power, she received the keys to the house’s supply chests during her wedding. She carried the keys in a belt around her waist. The division between a woman’s and man's domain was established at the door step. The outside work belonged to the man and the inside work belonged to the woman. However, especially fit women could take on the cloth of armaments and be a warrior in the same way as the Viking men. These women were called shield maidens. There is much contention as to the extent that shield maidens actually participated in raids and battles. There have been discoveries of graves belonging to women that contained swords and other hand

More about Women's Roles In Viking Society

Open Document