978-0-415-06374-6 / 9780415063746

Dark Age Naval Power: A Reassessment of Frankish and Anglo-Saxon Seafaring Activity





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About the book:

"Dark Age Naval Power" offers a re-assessment of the evidence for Germanic seafaring before the Viking Age. The book questions many of the pillars of current archaeological orthodoxy - in particular, the assumption that the Vikings were unprecedented seafaring pioneers. As Haywood asserts, Germanic naval activity can be traced almost to the dawn of the recorded history of barbarian Europe. Demonstrating that an excessive concentration on ship-finds and a reluctance to cross historical boundaries has resulted in a distorted view of early Germanic seafaring, Haywood aims to present a more balanced original approach to the subject based on a synthesis of relatively neglected literary sources and archaeological evidence. It is shown that the enterprise and competence of pre-Viking seafarers has been underestimated and due prominence is given to the impressive maritime achievements of the Franks from the third century AD to the Carolingian period. This book should be of interest to students and teachers of archaeology, ancient history and classics.

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