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Vikings in World History


The Legacy of the Ting: Viking Justice, Egalitarianism, and Modern Scandinavian Regional Governance

Ellen A. Ahlness


     World historians have helped established the importance of global or trans-regional influences in human history. However, ever since Fernand Braudel's pioneering work, The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II (1949), they have recognized the value of regional studies when studying world history. The following study set out to examine influence of law upon Scandinavian regional politics and society and made an interesting discovery: that the Scandinavian legal system from the Viking Age to modernity exhibits a persisting social emphasis on local political power. Through discussions of local autonomy and identity in Scandinavia, this article suggests how a regional approach can help students gain an understanding of micro-organizational behavior and an appreciation for how communities have exerted—and continue to exert— political influence today.

     Prior to the proliferation of the Roman-derived judicial system, the European continent was home to many differing and drastic measures of court life and implementation of justice. Yet a tying theme, from the Germanic peoples to the Anglo-Saxons, was that disputes were solved primarily with blood-feuds. The importance of Roman-derived law was central to a new mindset in Europe, as it introduced new concepts in justice.1 In the Nordic countries, the system of law was much more similar to the Roman judicial system than many of its contemporaries—including through its consolidation and standardization of codes of law—even in the centuries predating the proliferation of Catholicism in the region. The Viking ting2 [pronounced thing] assembly was the prevailing legal system Scandinavia during the Viking Age (800–1066 CE). The system of law across Scandinavia and connected European Viking colonies was rooted in local standards, resulting in more significant region-centric characteristics than its contemporaries, which has influenced Scandinavian attitudes towards regional politics to this day. In addition to having many distinctive organizational features for its time, some of the Viking ting assembly's defining features would be familiar to contemporary audiences, include community assembly, swearing in, validity of witnesses, and the dismissal of leaders by vote. The existence of these features at regional assemblies set the course for persisting regional power and the importance of participatory politics in society. Combined with geographical barriers that challenged the feasibility of power centralization, a legacy of regional governance exists across the post-Viking age Scandinavian societies.

     While a number of elements have changed over the years, elements of the ting assembly still exist in the Scandinavian people's attitudes towards justice and political administration. Primarily, the attitudes of the ting assembly—of political power and decision-making being foremost a regional matter—prevail in Nordic society today. Regional governance is placed in high regard, resulting in incredible variation in national attitudes, labor union approval, and norms of political behavior from region to region within Norway, Sweden, and Denmark.3 Just as the regional ting assemblies were important in the Viking Age and colonial legacies, the regional councils' political decisions are important for contemporary Scandinavians, an influence that has persisted through the implementation of Roman law in Europe due to geographical barriers, effectiveness of the regional model, and the hierarchical nature of tings.4

The Origins of Tings

     The word 'ting' originates from the Old Norse, Old Frisian and Old English word þing (thing). Meaning "assembly," it is also the origin of the English word thing.5 Pre-Romanization and Pre-Christianization Scandinavian culture was largely clan-centric. Members of a family were obligated to avenge their family's honor through retaliation of injuries against living, dead, and injured relations. The adage "an eye for an eye" prevailed; blood was the currency of penance. In this blood-feud age, a balancing structure was needed to reduce the frequency and severity of clan feuds. Moreover, social revenge threatened the structured order required of a seafaring, trading peoples. The ting system arose to serve as a balancing structure. While feuds and blood honor remained legitimate forms of justice, they now were carried out through a community-supervised forum.

     The ting was an assembly of free men of a community or province (or in some cases, a national gathering, when called for). Ting assemblies were the earliest system of justice and administration in the Viking Age. Local disputes were resolved, and political decisions made at regional tings, while local tings were represented at higher-level tings in a hierarchy.6 Tings also functioned as religious sites and meeting places for commerce. They met at regular intervals, legislated laws, elected chieftains, and judged transgressors according to the law. The law was memorized and referred to by the Lawspeaker7, who also played the role of the judge. The oldest assembly is believed to have been established in Gulen, Norway, by Harald Fairhair, circa 900 CE. The Icelandic Alting is the longest consistent national assembly, convening since 930 CE.

Figure 1
  Figure 1: Althing in Session, William Gersham Collingwood, 1897 CE8
An imagining of the medieval Icelandic Althing in session by English artist William Gershom Collingwood.

     Many scholars have described tings as the "Viking cradle of democracy" because of their function in bringing a kind of judicial assembly to Scandinavia.9 By establishing regional tings, communities created an early representative system where conflicts could be settled by their peers in a neutral setting, rather than by revenge and blood-feuding. The Gulatingslova (Gulating Code of Law) is the oldest compilation of laws from the Nordic countries. The oldest manuscript discovered is from approximately 1250 CE. The laws regulated religion, contracts, slave rights, matrimonial and inheritance law, and criminal defense and punishment. An interesting feature found in the Gulating Code of Law is the relatively high amount of autonomy that was given to regions in deciding punishments and enforcement, especially in enforcing general rules. Because the Code of Law was made up of laws established over a long period of time, there is evidence of a number of different legal provisions and traditions within ting regulations, evidencing that regions handled matters differently from one another in a form of regional self-determination. It was not until the Gulating Code of Law's printing—which intersected with the Christianization of the Nordic countries—that procedure and rulings were standardized.

Efficiency of Ting Organization

     Between the years of 900 and 1100 CE, several alternative forms of assembly found footholds in Franco-Germanic societies, including tribal governance, less-formal arbitration, self-judgement, formal duels, and blood feuds. However, these alternatives to ting assembly did not last, nor did they grow to encompass the local, provincial, and kingdom-levels of organization in the same way that ting assemblies did. The efficiency of the ting model is comparable to the success of the nation-state form today. Emerging in 990 CE, three forms of political-social organization formed in Europe as the prime models of social, political, and economic organization. The territorial state, city-state, and city-leagues emerged as powerful centers of authority, yet within several hundred years most of Europe converged on the model of the sovereign, territorial state as a unit of political structure.10 Convergence is a result of efficiency, coercion, and compliance. Tings effectively organized society among these principles, just as the nation-state unit did across the European continent centuries later.

     Regional assemblies were a necessity in Scandinavia, given geographical constraints and the difficulty of transportation in the mountainous regions of Northern Europe. Region-centric organization was also an effective way of maintaining legal authority during trade expeditions. Norse settlers arriving at new settlements (e.g. Iceland, Normandy) would bring their legal systems in addition to their customs. This allowed settlers to come to political decisions and uphold laws while separated from their ruling core. The Viking Age voyages were independent endeavors. Settlers travelled to Shetland, Orkney, Greenland, the Faroe Islands, Finland, and parts of Ireland and Scotland.11 As evidenced by Viking runes carved into the Hagia Sophia church during the Byzantine era (circa 850 CE), Viking expeditions even made it as far as Istanbul.12 The ting model succeeded because of its transferability. Resting upon the rulings of freemen, the decentralized model allowed for expedient, consistent and legitimate legal rulings despite distance from the political center.

Figure 2
  Figure 2: A depiction of a Germanic ting drawn on the Column of Marcus Aurelius. 193 CE13  

     Coercion, the ability to make citizens adhere to political and legal rulings, was a key feature of tings given their hierarchical nature. Regional tings constrained the behavior of individuals; however, the local assemblies themselves were subordinated through the centuries under provincial and national gathering. Alting (everyone's gathering) assemblies, usually taking place at the regional level, typically allowed any free man to vote. Regional altings were represented at higher-level provincial or kingdom-based tings. A failure to adhere to the ruling of lawtings (higher-level interpretation and implementations of the law) would have serious economic and political consequences for members of a lower regional ting. Compliance is, unto itself, borne of social acceptance and legitimacy. The Heimskringla saga details Þorgnýr [Torgny] the Lawspeaker reporting to Swedish king Olof Skötkonung14 that the people, not the king, held power in Sweden. King Skötkonung recognized the power the ting had, and abided by its existence and decisions.15

Figure 3
  Figure 3: Þorgnýr the Lawspeaker, Christian Krogh, 1899 CE16  

     Iceland stands out as a unique case in the coercion aspect of ting effectiveness. The Icelandic Alting had no king until the 13th century, when it came under Norway's crown. Until this time, the mutually agreed upon powers of the ting allowed the assembly, sans king or hierarchical power, to set taxes, negotiate property disputes, investigate criminal proceedings, and marital affairs. This was all done among a community of freemen.17 Community cooperation in law formation and implementation to this degree was highly unusual for the time. The main social strata comprised independent farmers. There was no government, no elite, no hereditary ascension.18 Even when absorbed in the larger Scandinavian kingdom, tings prevailed as a means of regional and inter-level organization.

Tings as a Regional Influence

     Today, anthropologists can identify many sites by their ting place names. Some examples include Gulating (Norway), Tingwalla (Sweden), Þingvellir (Iceland), Tinganes (Faroe Islands), and Dingwall (Scotland).19 The Gulatinget was one of the oldest and certainly the largest parliamentary assemblies in Norway, established between 872 and 932 CE.20. It was originally an Alting (a regional assembly that potentially dealt with a specific issue-area), however as it expanded it became a supra-regional assembly. Regional tings appointed representatives for the assembly. This model is still present today in in the Scandinavian states, particularly Norway, in the form of strong regional representation at the national level. Some of the powers that were given to regions in the Viking Age no longer remain in modernity. For example, local communities could gather together in the ting to interpret the law. Today, this responsibility is given to representatives at the national level. Even in settlements in England, Iceland, and North Continental Europe, tings created had a heavy emphasis on regional affairs and regional governance. Egil's Saga records the efforts of freemen to check the increasing political ambitions of King Harald Fairhair c. 890 CE by citing the legitimacy and authority of the ting over supposedly divine royal wishes.21 An emphasis on regional powers of self-governance and ability to check even kingly ambitions led some scholars to refer to the surprisingly un-barbaric practices of the Vikings: "they [had] no king except the law".22

     The regional nature of ting decisions is believed to have contributed to the postponing of the establishment of a universal punitive code in Scandinavia. Such a universal application of punishment was not established until the codification of the Gulating Code of Law, compiled in the 11th century in Norway. Within this code of law, all cases were private suits, and there were no public prosecutors. In the Viking Age, if someone did not want to take on a case, violations of the law could go unprosecuted. Today, the Scandinavian societies operate on the opposite side of the coin: if an individual is unable to afford defense, it is provided to them on behalf of the state. Ting regulations were complicated, which sought to ensure in every possible way that there could be no doubt of the justice of the outcome.23 The trend of presumed innocence continues to be important to regional politics today, and is a cornerstone of contemporary Western justice systems.

Regional Politics and Culture, A Necessary Commonality

     Viking Age members of society certainly felt more kinship with those in their region than "neighbors" hundreds of miles away. People in a community relied on each other for survival, contact, and protection. Regional assemblies had the most meaning for countrymen at that time, as they relied on the judgment and vote of those in one's own community. Who better to judge the conduct of an individual or their just punishment then those who had seen them grow up and had interacted with them every day of their life? Those who worked hard together deserved to pass verdicts on events within their community without relying on the decisions of alien interlopers. While assemblies were held at different levels of society (local, regional, and supra-regional), the most directly impacting to the average freeman was the regional ting.24

     Tings were sites of judgments that reflected cultural and regional values of the time. In Early Catholic Norway, if a man killed another man, he would be fined 15 marks. However, the Frostathing Law of that time detailed three places where a man would be punished with outlawry if he killed another. These were in church, during merrymaking (a wedding, baptism, confirmation, etc.), and at a ting. The punishment for killing or wounding a servant or slave at these places was also more severe than usual.25 The outlaw sagas emphasize the emotional and physical toll it took an outlaw to say alive, a trying punishment.26 The sanctity of the ting prevailed into the early Catholic era, adapting a reputation similar to the sacredness of the Church as a holy, sinless place. Tings, as a method of justice, were Christianized as assemblies that brought justice and carried out the will of the divine, and therefore could bring Catholicism to Norway's regions. This was possible because of the very nature of the ting. Its purpose was to provide justice for wrongdoing, rather than relying on feuding. Already fitting the court-centric model of conflict resolution, the ting was able to adapt its organization and survive. Values engrained in a regional culture are difficult to change, despite possible national-level value changes.

     Regional identity was a sturdy form of solidarity. In contrast to mainland European medieval authority conceived from the top down, Viking power structures were organized from the bottom up.27 Because tings were less based on personal networks between political actors (e.g.: chieftains or patron-client relationships), it was less easily altered when power dynamics changed. This supports the longevity of regional political involvement prevailing across the Scandinavian mindset through the Middle Ages, Industrial Age, and into modernity. The Viking Age lasted approximately from 790—1050 CE. During this time, and even deep into the 13th century, farmers held a large amount of power at tings, as they provided for the region.28 Over time, as central power grew stronger, the regional tings wielded less political influence and fell into a minor political role, though the cultural-social legacy remained. Today, regional administration in the Nordic states wields significant influence and importance in determining municipal action, translating to region-based issue areas playing a large role in national politics. This is a striking pattern among 'small states' whose populations remains small, well under ten million people per Scandinavian country.29

A Partial Transition to Centralization

     As the royal lines gained more power in Scandinavia in the 1250s, the countries became more unified in political power along territorial lines, drawing boundaries recognizable today. Regional tings became less important and sovereignty slowly transferred to central powers. Those who supported higher levels of regional self-determination resisted unification, though tis resistance was not always successful or beneficial for communities. The removal and discrediting of local ting leader led to an uneven process of unification among municipalities. Localities that lost political leaders because of their resistance saw regional tings and self-determination undermined to a much greater degree due to the loss of leadership and organizational knowledge. Even in areas where there was less resistance to centralization, communities felt the blow of transition. The central power strategies used to control core areas were often inadequate for dealing with the political, agricultural, and social conditions in outlying regions.30 Norway's regional communities in particular were heavily segregated from outside influences and internally through topography and climate. The Nordic states had previously experienced successful organization of regional authorities who met only periodically to 'check in' on laws, punishments, trading and religious rites.31 Viking Age assemblies had the capability to meet on a centralized level, but were reluctant to do so under strict hierarchical conditions of a sovereign.

     The regional ting system was "extraordinarily voluntarist".32 High levels of social trust among the leaders and freemen in tings required high levels of assent among the community. All those who participated in the tings took part in making decisions and had the ability to depose their leaders. In times of conflict, chieftains could keep their authority until the danger or threat had passed or been taken care of, then were obligated to pass on their leadership. Regional tings demonstrate high levels of self-determination. This kind of code discouraged centralization and unification, contrary to the sovereign-centric models in Central Europe.33 While a centralized state eventually emerged, heralding the end of strict regional determination, regional interest and influence persisted.

Regional Determination and Cross-National Consolidation

     Regions and identity are often interconnected concepts. Regions are socially produced special categories defined by their political, social, economic, and cultural processes that change over time.34 Localities cannot be reduced to a simple history of events. They are defined by the practices and changes that occur over time. These elements give regions their historical importance and duration. Regional differences are reinforced by folk dress, art styles, songs and ballads, fairytales, and natural materials and exports. Even as regions became unified, they retain distinct traditions and involvement. The legacy of tings on political behavior is illustrated through Norwegian municipal-level voting. In the 2013 elections, over 64% of people voted for regional representatives. (Comparatively, voter turnout for local elections in the United States averages at 21%.) While some scholars consider this strong interest in regional political determination as an illustration of the new regionalism movement, this statement would be inaccurate. The new regional movement describes the tendency of states to change their scales of public action, moving features like government structures, economic politics, and welfare responsibility to the regional level.35 The Nordic states are not experiencing a surge of 'new' regionalism. Society never abandoned its emphasis on regional identity and importance, the legacy of the ting. While regional determination remains strong, tings strongly converged on practices and standards of law in the 14th century. Written codification played a significant role in standardizing and consolidating rulings.

     Despite the many features of tings that may be lauded as progressive or in-line with contemporary legal practices, it is problematic to assume that tings represent the first successful implementation of a representative, democratic society in Northern Europe. Tings as late at the twelfth century were neither democratic nor republican.36 A particularly non-civil-law element present in pre-Christianization tings was the way they recognized and perpetuated social stratification. The Norse myth The Lay of Rig discusses the mythical origins of social hierarchy. Different from other social origin myths, though, the story does not detail the binary difference between peasants and royalty. Rather, the god Heimdall sires three classes of humanity: serf, freeman, and earl.37 Freemen and earls could engage in regional politics (constituting the majority of members in a society or communities), though serfs could not. The consolidation of strata laws led to a shift to a strict system more similar to the class-based mainland European hierarchy. These shifts, taking place circa 1100–1300 CE, further reduced the egalitarian tendencies of ting assemblies, yet they are certainly no less foundational than other democratic developments of its time. Still present are personal, individual freedoms. So striking are these features that the distinctiveness of this enfranchisement is recognized in legal and saga sources of medieval Scandinavia and Iceland.38


     The study of world history necessitates a keen understanding of how societies interact and how socio-political features spread and shape one another through these interactions. At the same time, it is critical for students of the field to acknowledge how regional values persist over time, shaping political structures hundred of years later as part of an organizational legacy. A recent surge in scholarly interest in participatory and local politics has meant that regional studies are increasingly considered an important approach in historical and governance studies, yet for many societies, regional political primacy is not new, merely making a resurgence. Regional assemblies and councils existed largely outside of the European sphere in the medieval period. European political authority was centralized to a greater degree than its contemporaries at this point. Instead, we see greater political similarity between Scandinavia and Central Asia Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan, all of which experienced strong regional organization through and beyond the middle ages.39 These regional assemblies mitigated problems of dividing geography, weak or nonexistent coercive capacity of sovereigns, and lack of legitimacy. Unlike Italian republics of Genoa and Florence, regional decisionmaking (even when subordinate in a lose hierarchy of assemblies) was resistant to civil wars and majority vote dismissal.

     In Scandinavia, regionalism is reflected in both the recent political debates on regional governance reform as well as in the creation of many regional organizations since the 1950s, each with distinct purposes. Organizations frequently address or serve the same community, but differ in function. A prime example of a community served by multiple organizations is the indigenous Sami people in Norway. Within the Karasjok municipality, the Sami community is served by the Reindeer Herding Association, The Sami Committee, the National Association of Norwegian Sami, The Norwgian Sami Union, Sami Broadcasting Association, the Sami Educational Council, The Sami Film Center, and the Sami Fisheries Association. In the nearly 800 years since the peak ting assembly and decision-making process, the idea that regions should have a measure of self-determinism in their political processes and decisions has prevailed across Scandinavia. The contemporary political environment has a much higher degree of political unity and centralization. The capabilities for centralization have grown, and economic development makes centralization a fiscally feasible option, but regional identity remains a cultural value. Regions are defined by the processes and developments occurring over time. The regional political processes of Scandinavia have been culturally preserved. The mindset of political power and decision making as a regional matter has continued beyond the ting while adapting to now-assumed values of equal representation and universal suffrage. Local councils and interest groups continue to enforce regional sovereignty as a legacy of the ting assembly and a functional component of political identity. While incapable of fully explaining the how and why the Scandinavian states have so fully embraced egalitarian social-political principles, a region-centered examination of legal systems offers a focal point to which we can rethink themes of path dependency, power dynamics, and most notably, regional identity. The influence and implications of regional heritage and political identity is visible in the way individuals behave as members of their community. Moreover, historical identities play a significant role in determining individual and community values, and affect how societies conduct themselves and prioritize values in their political lives.

Ellen Ahlness is an early career scholar in Political Science at the University of Washington and a Fellow with the Washington Institute for the Study of Inequality and Race. Her research examines the history and interactions of Arctic states and indigenous populations, with particular interest in wartime indigenous policy. A recent publication, "The Handshake that Made History: The Norwegian-Military Troop Exchange" is on file in the Norwegian Armed Forces archives, and she recently received several funding awards from the Sons of Norway and Synnove Lien Endowed Funds to conduct research abroad in Iceland and Norway. She can be reached at


1 David Johnston, Roman Law in Context (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 124.

2 Meaning assembly.

3 Sten Sparre Nilson, "Regional Differences in Norway with Special Reference to Labor Radicalism and Cultural Norms," Scandinavian Political Studies 10, no. 1 (1975): 123.

4 Local election voter turnout hovers around 63% in Norway, lower than its Swedish and Danish neighbors, yet far above the United States average of 21%. See Statistics Norway. Voter Turnout in Local Elections in Norway: Lower Voter Turnout than Sweden and Denmark. Voter Turnout in Parliamentary Elections and Municipal and County Council Elections (Oslo, Norway, 2016).

5 Jesse Byock, "The Icelandic Althing: Dawn of Parliamentary Democracy" in Heritage and Identity: Shaping the Nations of the North, ed. J.M. Fladmark (Donhead: The Heyerdahl Institute and Robert Gordon University, 2002), 17.

6Njord Kane, Norse Law, The Vikings: The Story of a People (Yukon: Spangenhelm, 2015).

7 Lawspeakers were wise men capable of memorizing and reciting the law. Lawspeakers would preside over tings, work as judges, and formulate rules that had been decided upon by the people. At the ting, they were responsible for administration, the execution of decisions, speak on behalf of peoples and communities to the king (or the king's representatives) and safeguarding the rights of the people. They were appointed for life, and primarily came from powerful, landowning families. Their obligation in memorizing and reciting laws has a basis in Germanic oral tradition, and the title has evolved to denote, in Sweden, a president of a district court (lagmän), in Finland as the title of a chief judge of a district court or senior court of appeal judge (laamanni), and in Norway as a judge of a magistrate's court (lagmann).

8 Willian Gersham Collingwood. "Althing in Session," 1897, image in public domain. Accessed October 24, 2017.

9 Gro Steinsland, Jón Viðar Sigurðsson, and Jan Erik Rekdal, Ideology and Power in the Viking and Middle Ages: Scandinavia, Iceland, Ireland, Orkney, and the Faeroes (Leiden: Brill, 2011), 1-69.

10 Charles Tilly, Coercion, Capital, and European States A.D. 990-1992 (Cambridge: Blackwell Publishers, 1990).

11 Peter Sawyer, Medieval Scandinavia: From Conversion to Reformation, circa 800-1500 (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1993).

12 James E. Knirk, "Runer i Hagia Sofia i Istanbul [Runes in the Hagia Sofia in Istanbul]", Nytt om Runer [News on Runes]14, no. 1 (1999): 26-27.

13 Artist unknown. "Ting depiction on the Column of Marcus Aurelius" 193 CE, image in public domain. Accessed October 24, 2017.

14 Circa 980-1022.

15 Snorri Sturluson. Heimskringla: The Olaf Sagas. (New York: J. M. Dent & Songs, 1915).

16 Christian Krogh. "Þorgnýr the Lawspeaker." An illustration from the 1899 edition of Heimskringla, image in public domain. Accessed October 24, 2017.

17 Women were excluded from ting proceedings, except in matters of marital affairs or as victims of crime.

18 Byock, 20.

19 Steinsland, et. al.

20 Steinsland, et. al, 58.

21 Snorri Sturluson, Egil's Saga Skalla-Grimssonar 4.22 in Angus Somerville and Andrew McDonald eds., The Viking Age: A Reader (Toronto: University of Torono Press, 2014), 26-37.

22 Adam of Breman, Gesta Hammburgensis ecclesiae pontificum [Deeds of the Bishops of Hamburg].

23 William Short, "Viking-Age Laws and Legal Procedures," Hurstwick Viking Combat Training, 2007.

24 Alexandra Sanmark, "Administrative Organization and State Formation: A Case Study of Assembly Sites in Södermanland, Sweden," Medieval Archeology 53 no. 1 (2009), 201.

25 Sanmark, 232.

26 George Dasent (trans.), Gisla Saga, (Edinburgh: Edmonston and Douglas, 1866), 19; Vilhjálmur Finsen (ed. and trans.), Grágás: Islændernes lovbog i fristatens tid [Grágás, The Law of Iceland in the Time of Temptation (c. 1262) (Copenhagen: Brødrene Berlingsbogtrykkeri, 1870).

27 Steinsland, et. al, 9.

28 Sanmark, 221.

29 Norway: 5.2 million, Sweden: 9.9 million, Denmark: 5.7 million, Iceland: 334,000.

30 Tina Thurston, Landscapes of Power, Landscapes of Conflict: State Formation in the South Scandinavian Iron Age (Hingham: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2001), 4.

31 Thurston, vi.

32 Thurston, vi.

33 Thurston, 7.

34 Stein Frisvoll and Johan Fredrik Rye, "Elite Discourses of Regional Identity in a New Regionalism Development Scheme: The Case of the "Mountain Region" in Norway," Norwegian Journal of Geography 63, no. 1 (2009): 177

35 Frisvoll and Rye, 181.

36 Byock, 1.

37 The Lay of Rig, 1.5 (section, line) in Angus Somerville and Andrew McDonald eds., The Viking Age: A Reader (Toronto: University of Torono Press, 2014), 16-26.

38 Sturluson 4-5.2; Dasent, 25; Finsen, K.

39 Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Tajikistan: A Political and Social History (Canberra: Australia National University Press, 2013).

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