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Timewatch: Viking Voyage

Updated Thursday 20th December 2007

On July 1st 2007, 61 men and women set off on an extraordinary voyage. Their goal - to sail the world's largest reconstructed Viking ship from Denmark to Ireland.

Viking ship sailing Copyrighted image Icon Copyright: Used with permission

Their ship, the Sea Stallion from Glendalough, is a meticulous reconstruction of a 30 metre longship discovered under the sea. It’s taken more than 40 years of preservation, research and painstaking construction work by archaeologists, historians and boat builders. The aim of the voyage is to discover whether they’ve got it right.

On the way, the crew face rough seas and arduous physical challenges. On board ship, they have less than a square metre each in which to work, live, eat and sleep. The ship is completely open, so the crew have to brave the elements and the open sea with no shelter. The Sea Stallion and its crew are pushed to the limit when they encounter larger waves and stronger winds than they’ve ever faced before.

This film follows the entire 7 week journey. The international crew has members from 18 countries including Britain, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, Holland and Ireland. The youngest is 18, the oldest in his 60s. For the crew it’s an emotional journey as well as a physical one. Through the journey, we gain a new insight into how the Vikings achieved mastery of the sea.

Take it further: Books

The Vikings in England: Settlement, Society and Culture
Dawn Hadley, Manchester University Press

 

Viking Weapons and Warfare
J. Kim Siddorn, NPI Media

 

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