Tuesday, 21 February 2012
The Vikings appeared to have taken over York's Mansion House! When I visited at the weekend, the city was in the throes of a Viking Festival, celebrating that part of York's rich history.
York started life as Eboracum, an important Roman city. After the Roman Empire disintegrated, the city was settled by Germanic immigrants, Anglo-Saxons, but little is known about this period. In 866 Vikings from Scandinavia attacked and took York. They settled in the area, the city became known as Yorvik and it was a Viking city for two hundred years, until 1068 when the Norman king, William the Conqueror marched with his army from the south, determined to subdue the rebellious north.
For some reason York seems to have a particularly rich archeological heritage and there have been many remarkable finds within the city's walls. The Viking period is explained and celebrated in a famous visitor attraction called the Yorvik Viking Centre, which is well worth a visit.