HOME

TheInfoList




The trade route from the Varangians to the Romans was a medieval
trade route A trade route is a Logistics, logistical network identified as a series of pathways and stoppages used for the commercial transport of cargo. The term can also be used to refer to trade over bodies of water. Allowing Good (economics and accountin ...
that connected
Scandinavia Scandinavia; Sami Places * Sápmi, a cultural region in Northern Europe * Sami, Burkina Faso, a district of the Banwa Province * Sami District, Gambia * Sami, Cephalonia, a municipality in Greece * Sami (ancient city), in Elis, Greece * Sa ...

Scandinavia
,
Kievan Rus' Kievan Rus' ( orv, , Rusĭ, or , , "Rus' land") or Kyivan Rus', was a loose federation A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a ...
and the
Eastern Roman Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn ...

Eastern Roman Empire
. The route allowed merchants along its length to establish a direct prosperous trade with the Empire, and prompted some of them to settle in the territories of present-day
Belarus , image_map = , map_caption = , capital = Minsk Minsk ( be, Мінск , russian: link=no, Минск) is the capital and the largest city of Belarus, located on the Svislach (Berezina), Svislach and the now subterranean Nyamiha, Niam ...

Belarus
,
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
and
Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also shares borders with to the north; , , and to the west; and to the south; and has a coastli ...

Ukraine
. The majority of the route comprised a long-distance
waterway A waterway is any navigable A body of water ( Lysefjord) in Norway Norway ( nb, ; nn, ; se, Norga; smj, Vuodna; sma, Nöörje), officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic countries, Nordic country in Northern Europe whose ...

waterway
, including the
Baltic Sea The Baltic Sea is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean, enclosed by Denmark Denmark ( da, Danmark, ) is a Nordic country The Nordic countries, or the Nordics, are a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that a ...

Baltic Sea
, several rivers flowing into the Baltic Sea, and rivers of the
Dnieper } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major list of rivers of Europe, rivers of Europe, rising in the Valdai Hills near Smolensk, Russia, before flowing through Belarus and Ukraine to the Black Sea. It is the longest river of Ukraine and ...

Dnieper
river system In geomorphology incised into shale at the foot of the North Caineville Plateau, Utah, within the pass carved by the Fremont River (Utah), Fremont River and known as the Blue Gate. Grove Karl Gilbert, GK Gilbert studied the landscapes of this ar ...
, with
portage Portage or portaging (Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Canada, ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, Pacific and ...

portage
s on the
drainage divide In topography, a drainage divide, water divide, divide, ridgeline, watershed, water parting or ''height of land'' is elevated terrain that separates neighboring drainage basins. On rugged land, the divide lies along topographical ridges, and may ...
s. An alternative route was along the
Dniestr The Dniester ( ) is a river in Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the region of the European continent between Western Europe and Asia. There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because the term has a wide range of ...

Dniestr
river with stops on the Western shore of
Black Sea , with the skyline of Batumi Batumi (; ka, ბათუმი ) is the second largest city of Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country) Georgia ( ka, საქართველო; ''Sakartvelo''; ) is a country locat ...

Black Sea
. These more specific sub-routes are sometimes referred to as the Dnieper trade route and Dniestr trade route, respectively. The route began in Scandinavian trading centers such as
Birka Birka (''Birca'' in medieval sources), on the island of Björkö (literally: "Birch Island") in present-day Sweden Sweden ( sv, Sverige ), officially the Kingdom of Sweden ( sv, links=no, Konungariket Sverige ), is a Nordic countries ...

Birka
,
Hedeby Hedeby (, Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germanic dialects before their final divergence into separate Nordic languages. Old Norse was spoken by inhabitants of Scandinavia ...
, and
Gotland Gotland (, ; ''Gutland'' in the local dialect), also historically spelled Gottland or Gothland (), is Sweden's largest island An island (or isle) is an isolated piece of habitat that is surrounded by a dramatically different habita ...
, crossed the Baltic Sea, entered the
Gulf of Finland The Gulf of Finland ( fi, Suomenlahti; et, Soome laht; rus, Фи́нский зали́в, r=Finskiy zaliv, p=ˈfʲinskʲɪj zɐˈlʲif; sv, Finska viken) is the easternmost arm of the Baltic Sea The Baltic Sea is an arm of the Atlantic ...
, and followed the
Neva River The Neva (russian: Нева́, ; fi, Neva) is a river A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the ...

Neva River
into
Lake Ladoga Lake Ladoga ( rus, Ла́дожское о́зеро, r=Ladozhskoye ozero, p=ˈladəʂskəjə ˈozʲɪrə or rus, Ла́дога, r=Ladoga, p=ˈladəɡə, fi, Laatokka arlier in Finnish ''Nevajärvi'' ; vep, Ladog, Ladoganjärv) is a Fresh ...

Lake Ladoga
. Then it followed the
Volkhov River The Volkhov (russian: Во́лхов) is a river in Novgorodsky District, Novgorodsky and Chudovsky Districts of Novgorod Oblast and Kirishsky District, Kirishsky and Volkhovsky Districts of Leningrad Oblast in northwestern Russia. It connects L ...
upstream past the towns of
Staraya Ladoga Staraya Ladoga ( rus, Ста́рая Ла́дога, p=ˈstarəjə ˈladəɡə); fi, Vanha-Laatokka) is a types of inhabited localities in Russia, rural locality (a ''village#Russia, selo'') in Volkhovsky District of Leningrad Oblast, Russia, locat ...

Staraya Ladoga
and
Velikiy Novgorod Veliky Novgorod ( rus, links=no, Великий Новгород, p=vʲɪˈlʲikʲɪj ˈnovɡərət), also known as Novgorod the Great, or Novgorod Veliky, or just Novgorod (meaning "newtown"), is one of the oldest historic cities of Russia ...
, crossed
Lake Ilmen Lake Ilmen ( rus, И́льмень, p=ˈilʲmʲɪnʲ) is a large lake in the Novgorod Oblast Novgorod Oblast (russian: Новгоро́дская о́бласть, ''Novgorodskaya oblast'') is a federal subject of Russia Russia (russi ...
, and continued up the
Lovat River The Lovat ( be, Ловаць ''Łovać'', ; russian: река́ Ло́вать) is a river A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases a river flows into ...
, the
Kunya River The Kunya (russian: Ку́нья) is a river in Kunyinsky District, Kunyinsky, Velikoluksky District, Velikoluksky, and Loknyansky Districts of Pskov Oblast, Toropetsky District of Tver Oblast, and Kholmsky District, Novgorod Oblast, Kholmsky Distr ...
and possibly the . From there, a
portage Portage or portaging (Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Canada, ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, Pacific and ...

portage
led to the and downstream to the Western Dvina River. From the Western Dvina, the ships went upstream along the
Kasplya River The Kasplya (Belarusian Belarusian may refer to: * Something of, or related to Belarus * Belarusians, people from Belarus, or of Belarusian descent * A citizen of Belarus, see Demographics of Belarus * Belarusian language * Belarusian culture * Bela ...
and were portaged again to the Katynka River (near Katyn), a tributary of the Dnieper. It seems probable that once the route was established, the goods were unloaded onto land transport to cross the portage and reloaded onto other waiting ships on the Dnieper. Along the Dnieper, the route crossed several major rapids and passed through
Kiev Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also share ...

Kiev
. After entering the
Black Sea , with the skyline of Batumi Batumi (; ka, ბათუმი ) is the second largest city of Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country) Georgia ( ka, საქართველო; ''Sakartvelo''; ) is a country locat ...

Black Sea
, it followed its west coast to
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
.


History

The route from the
Varangians The Varangians (; non, Væringjar; gkm, Βάραγγοι, ''Várangoi'';Varangian
" Online Etymo ...
to the Greeks was first mentioned in the ''
Primary Chronicle The ''Tale of Bygone Years'' ( orv, Повѣсть времѧньныхъ лѣтъ, ''Pověstĭ vremęnĭnyxŭ lětŭ''), known in English-language historiography as the ''Primary Chronicle'' or ''Old Russian Primary letopis'' or, after the auth ...
'', but its effects were reported much earlier, in the early ninth century when the
Byzantines
Byzantines
noted newcomers in their regions, the ''Varangians''. Though this has come to mean "Vikings" to many, the term for the Byzantines meant all Scandinavians and their kindred living in what is now Russia. The route was probably established in the late 8th and early 9th centuries, when Varangian explorers searched for plunder but also for
slave Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who is someone forbidden to quit their service for an enslaver, and who is treated by the enslaver as their property Property is a system of rights that gives ...
s and lucrative goods. The route gained significant importance from the 10th until the first third of the 11th century, concurrently with the
Volga trade route In the Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past events and affairs of the people of Europe si ...
and the trade route from the Khazars to the Germans. According to
Constantine VII Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus Traditionally, born in the purple (sometimes "born to the purple") was a category of members of royal family, royal families born during the reign of their parent. This notion was later loosely expanded to include ...
, the
Krivichs The Krivichs (Kryvichs) ( be, крывічы, kryvičý, ; rus, кри́вичи, p=krʲɪvʲɪˈtɕi) were a tribal union of Early East Slavs between the 6th and the 12th centuries. It is suggested that originally the Krivichi were native to the a ...
and other tribes dependent on
Kiev Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also share ...

Kiev
transported hollowed-out sailboats, or '' monoxyla'', which could accommodate thirty to forty people, to places along the rivers. These sailboats were then transported along the Dnieper to Kiev. There they were sold to the Varangians who re-equipped them and loaded them with merchandise.


Routes and places

Places named include
Smolensk Smolensk ( rus, Смоленск, p=smɐˈlʲensk, a=smolensk_ru.ogg) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The ...

Smolensk
(Μιλινισκα),
Liubech Liubech ( uk, Любеч, russian: Любеч, pl, Lubecz) is an urban-type settlement Urban-type settlement (russian: посёлок городско́го ти́па, translit=posyolok gorodskogo tipa, abbreviated: russian: п.г.т., translit=p ...
(Τελιουτζα),
Chernihiv Chernihiv ( uk, wikt:Чернігів, Чернігів, ) also known as Chernigov (russian: Черни́гов, p=tɕɪrˈnʲiɡəf; pl, Czernihów, ) is a List of cities in Ukraine, city and List of hromadas of Ukraine, municipality in northe ...
(Τζερνιγωγα),
Vyshhorod Vyshhorod ( uk, Ви́шгород) is a city in Kyiv Oblast (region In geography, regions are areas that are broadly divided by physical characteristics ( physical geography), human impact characteristics ( human geography), and the interact ...
(Βουσεγραδε), Vytachiv (Vitichev, Βιτετζεβη), and
Kiev Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also share ...

Kiev
(Κια α). Some of these cities had alternate names in
Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germanic dialects before their final divergence into separate Nordic languages. Old Norse was spoken by inhabitants of Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skades ...
, and Constantine quotes some of them: So
Novgorod Veliky Novgorod ( rus, links=yes, Великий Новгород, p=vʲɪˈlʲikʲɪj ˈnovɡərət), also known as just Novgorod (russian: Новгород, lit=newtown, links=yes), is the largest city and administrative center of Novgorod O ...

Novgorod
(Νεμογαρδα) is the same as Hólmgarðr (‘Island Enclosure’) and Nýgarðr (‘New Enclosure’);
Kiev Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also share ...

Kiev
is equally called Kœnugarðr (‘Boatyard’) or Σαμβατας, which might derive from Norse Sandbakki-áss (‘Sandbank Ridge’). Though Constantine Zuckerman suggests a more obvious etymology, from the Turkic (Khazar) roots ''sam'' and ''bat'' (literally, ‘upper fortress’).Sorlin I. ''Voies commerciales, villes et peuplement de la Rusia au Xe siècle d'après le De administrando imperio de Constantin Porphyrogénète''. Les centres proto-urbains russes entre Scandinavie, Byzance et Orient ed. M. Kazanski, D. Nercessian, C. Zuckerman (Réalités byzantines 7). - Paris, 2000. -P. 337–355 The runestone N 62 preserves the name Vitaholmr (‘demarcation islet’) for Vytachiv.


Dnieper route

On the
Dnieper } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major list of rivers of Europe, rivers of Europe, rising in the Valdai Hills near Smolensk, Russia, before flowing through Belarus and Ukraine to the Black Sea. It is the longest river of Ukraine and ...

Dnieper
, the
Varangian The Varangians (; non, Væringjar; gkm, Βάραγγοι, ''Várangoi'';Varangian
" Online Etymo ...
s had to
portage Portage or portaging (Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Canada, ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, Pacific and ...

portage
their ships around seven
rapid Rapids are sections of a river where the river bed has a relatively steep gradient In vector calculus Vector calculus, or vector analysis, is concerned with differentiation Differentiation may refer to: Business * Differentiation (ec ...
s, where they had to be on guard from
Pecheneg The Pechenegs or Patzinaks were a nomad, semi-nomadic Turkic peoples, Turkic ethnic people from Central Asia speaking the Pecheneg language which belonged to the Oghuz languages, Oghuz branch of the Turkic language family. Ethnonym The Pech ...

Pecheneg
nomads. The rapids began below
Dnipro Dnipro ( uk, Дніпро ; russian: Днепр ), previously called Dnipropetrovsk ( uk, Дніпропетро́вськ, links=yes ; russian: Днепропетро́вск ) from 1926 until May 2016, is 's fourth-largest , with about one m ...

Dnipro
where the river turns south and fell 50 meters in 66 kilometers. They no longer exist, as a chain of basins was established starting from the 1950s to the 1970s. Below the rapids, they had to pass a narrow rocky spot called the ''Ford of Vrar'' (Russian: ''Krariyskaya'' crossing), where the Varangians were often attacked by the
Pechenegs The Pechenegs or Patzinaks were a from speaking the which belonged to the branch of the . Ethnonym The Pechenegs were mentioned as ''Bjnak'', ''Bjanak'' or ''Bajanak'' in medieval and texts, as ''Be-ča-nag'' in documents, and as '' ...
. The Varangians stopped at St. George Island. Then they equipped their ships with sails in the Dnieper estuary and continued to navigate along the western shore of the
Black Sea , with the skyline of Batumi Batumi (; ka, ბათუმი ) is the second largest city of Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country) Georgia ( ka, საქართველო; ''Sakartvelo''; ) is a country locat ...

Black Sea
all the way to
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
(
Slavic
Slavic
: Tsargrad, Old Norse: Miklagarðr).


Western Black Sea shores

The Varangian boats were used along the rivers and along the Black Sea shores. According to
Constantine VII Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus Traditionally, born in the purple (sometimes "born to the purple") was a category of members of royal family, royal families born during the reign of their parent. This notion was later loosely expanded to include ...
, the navigation near the western shore of Black Sea contained stops at Sulina (Danube Delta), Conopa, Constantia (localities today in Romania). There are some remains of the Varangian presence in this area at Murfatlar Cave Complex near Constantia (today Constanţa, Romania). Numerous runic inscriptions, symbols and even a graffiti of a Viking navy are visible on the walls of the rock church from Murfatlar. A rune stone from the Sjonhem cemetery in Gotland dating from the 11th century commemorates a merchant Rodfos who was traveling to Constantinople and was killed north of the Danube by the Blakumenn (Vlachs).


Trade activities

The Trade Route from the Varangians to the Greeks was connected to other waterways of Eastern Europe, such as the
Pripyat Pripyat ( ; russian: При́пять), also known as Pryp'yat' or Prypyat ( uk, При́пʼять, translit=Prypiat, ), is an Ghost town, abandoned city in northern Ukraine, near the Ukraine–Belarus border. Named after the nearby river Pri ...

Pripyat
- Bug waterway leading to
Western Europe Western Europe is the western region of Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical r ...

Western Europe
, and the
Volga trade route In the Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past events and affairs of the people of Europe si ...
, which went down the
Volga The Volga (; russian: Во́лга, a=Ru-Волга.ogg, p=ˈvoɫɡə) is the longest river in Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention ra ...

Volga
waterway to the
Caspian Sea The Caspian Sea (also known as Mazandaran Sea, Hyrcanian Ocean, or Khazar Sea), tk, Hazar deňzi, az, Xəzər Dənizi, russian: Каспийское море, script=Latn, fa, دریای مازندران، دریای خزر, script=Latn, tly, ...

Caspian Sea
. Another offshoot was along the Dnieper and the Usyazh-Buk River towards
Lukoml Lukoml ( be, Лукомль, pl, Łukoml) is a village in Lukoml ''selsoviet'', Chashniki District, Vitsebsk Voblast, Belarus, by the Lukoml Lake. History Early references to Lukoml in Russian chronicles are dated by 1078, when it was burned by V ...
and
Polotsk Polotsk (russian: По́лоцк; be, По́лацк, translit=Polatsk (BGN/PCGN), Polack (official transliteration); lt, Polockas; pl, Połock) is a historical city in Belarus, situated on the Western Dvina, Dvina River. It is the center of the ...

Polotsk
. The Trade Route from the Varangians to the Greeks was used to transport different kinds of merchandise.
Wine Wine is an alcoholic drink An alcoholic drink is a drink A drink (or beverage) is a liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible fluid In physics, a fluid is a substance that continually Deformation (mechanics), deforms (flow ...

Wine
,
spices A spice is a seed A seed is an embryonic ''Embryonic'' is the twelfth studio album by experimental rock band the Flaming Lips released on October 13, 2009, on Warner Bros. Records, Warner Bros. The band's first double album, it was releas ...

spices
,
jewelry Jewellery or jewelry consists of decorative items worn for personal adornment 150px, The principal adornment of these girls from the Bundu tribe in Sierra Leone is the adornment of bodies and faces with markings produced by the smearing on by ...

jewelry
,
glass Glass is a non- crystalline, often transparency and translucency, transparent amorphous solid, that has widespread practical, technological, and decorative use in, for example, window panes, tableware, and optics. Glass is most often formed by ...

glass
, expensive fabrics,
icon An icon (from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is appr ...

icon
s, and books came from the
Byzantine Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn ...

Byzantine Empire
.
Volhyn Volhynia (; uk, Волинь, Volyn'; be, Валынь (); pl, Wołyń ), is a historic region in , between south-eastern , south-western , and western . The borders of the region are not clearly defined, but the territory that still carries t ...
traded
spinning wheel A spinning wheel is a device for spinning Spin or spinning may refer to: Businesses * SPIN (cable system) SPIN (or South Pacific Island Network) was a submarine communications cable, submarine communications cable system that would connec ...

spinning wheel
s and other items. Certain kinds of
weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting, crime, law enforcement, self-defe ...
s and
handicraft A handicraft, sometimes more precisely expressed as artisanal handicraft or handmade, is any of a wide variety of types of work where useful and decorative objects are made completely by one’s hand or by using only simple, non-automated rela ...

handicraft
s came from
Scandinavia Scandinavia; Sami Places * Sápmi, a cultural region in Northern Europe * Sami, Burkina Faso, a district of the Banwa Province * Sami District, Gambia * Sami, Cephalonia, a municipality in Greece * Sami (ancient city), in Elis, Greece * Sa ...

Scandinavia
. Northern Rus' offered timber, fur, honey, and wax, while the
Baltic tribes The Balts or Baltic people ( lt, baltai, lv, balti) are a group of Indo-European peoples The Indo-European languages are a language family native to western and southern Eurasia. It comprises most of the languages of Europe together wi ...
traded
amber Amber is fossil A fossil (from Classical Latin Classical Latin is the form of Latin language Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communi ...

amber
. In the second half of the eleventh century, the
Crusades The Crusades were a series of religious wars initiated, supported, and sometimes directed by the Latin Church in the medieval period. The term refers especially to the Eastern Mediterranean campaigns in the period between 1095 and 1271 that h ...

Crusades
opened more lucrative routes from Europe to the Orient through the Crusader states of the Middle East. By that time, Rus' had strengthened its commercial ties with Western Europe, and the route from the Varangians to the Greeks gradually lost its significance. For a related military route, see
Muravsky Trail Muravsky Trail or Murava Route (russian: Муравский шлях, uk, Муравський шлях) was an important trade route A trade route is a logistical network identified as a series of pathways and stoppages used for the commercial ...
.


In popular culture

* A large part of the best-selling Swedish historical novel ''
The Long Ships ''The Long Ships'' or ''Red Orm'' (original Swedish: ''Röde Orm'' meaning ''Red Serpent'' or ''Red Snake'') is an adventure novel by the Swedish writer Frans G. Bengtsson. The narrative is set in the late 10th century and follows the adventur ...
'' (original Swedish ''Röde Orm'') by Frans Gunnar Bengtsson describes the adventures of a Danish ship crew (with a pilot from
Gotland Gotland (, ; ''Gutland'' in the local dialect), also historically spelled Gottland or Gothland (), is Sweden's largest island An island (or isle) is an isolated piece of habitat that is surrounded by a dramatically different habita ...
) taking this route in the late 10th Century. *
Rosemary Sutcliff Rosemary Sutcliff (14 December 1920 – 23 July 1992) was an English novelist best known for children's books Biologically, a child (plural children) is a human being between the stages of childbirth, birth and puberty, or between the De ...
's 1976 novel ''
Blood Feud A feud , referred to in more extreme cases as a blood feud, vendetta, faida, clan war, gang war, or private war, is a long-running argument or fight, often between social group In the social science Social science is the branch Th ...
'' takes place during the 10th-century, and depicts a half-
Saxon The Saxons ( la, Saxones, german: Sachsen, ang, Seaxan, osx, Sahson, nds, Sassen, nl, Saksen) were a group of early Germanic Germanic may refer to: * Germanic peoples, an ethno-linguistic group identified by their use of the Germanic langua ...

Saxon
orphan who joins a
Viking Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; Sami Places * Sápmi, a cultural region in Northern Europe * Sami, Burkina Faso, a district of the Banwa Pro ...

Viking
crew and takes this route, joining the Varangian Guards and ultimately settling in
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
. * The second book of
Henry Treece Henry Treece (22 December 1911 – 10 June 1966) was a British poet A poet is a person who creates poetry. Poets may describe themselves as such or be described as such by others. A poet may simply be a writer of poetry, or may perform ...
's Viking Trilogy, '' The Road to Miklagard'', published in the late 1950s describes a
Viking Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; Sami Places * Sápmi, a cultural region in Northern Europe * Sami, Burkina Faso, a district of the Banwa Pro ...

Viking
voyage through the
Mediterranean The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Western Europe, Western and Southern Europe and Anatolia, on the south by North Africa ...

Mediterranean
to
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
, where the main characters are taken as slaves and later become members of the Varangian Guards. They eventually make their way back to their home village via the trade route. * In Stephen R. Lawhead's novel ''Byzantium'', the main character, a 9th-century
Irish Irish most commonly refers to: * Someone or something of, from, or related to: ** Ireland, an island situated off the north-western coast of continental Europe ** Northern Ireland, a constituent unit of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and North ...
monk A monk (, from el, μοναχός, ''monachos'', "single, solitary" via Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (f ...

monk
, is taken by Viking raiders from
Scandia Scandza was described as a "great island" by the Gothic-Byzantine historian Jordanes 200px, The Mediterranean area 550 AD as Jordanes wrote his ''Getica''. The Eastern Roman Empire, capital Constantinople, is shown in pink. Conquests of Justinia ...

Scandia
to
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
via this route. * In the comic strip
Prince Valiant ''Prince Valiant in the Days of King Arthur'', often simply called ''Prince Valiant'', is an American comic strip A comic strip is a sequence of drawings, often cartoons A cartoon is a type of illustration An illustration is a decoratio ...
, pages 932 (19 Dec 1954) to 988 (15 Jan 1956), the eponymous main character and company travel on two Viking longships from Constantinople to Scandia via this route, during which they encounter Patzinaks and Cumans, Polotjans. * Two music albums coincidentally released in 2007 deal with fictional journeys down the trade route, heavy metal music, heavy metal band Rebellion (band), Rebellion's ''Miklagard — The History of the Vikings Volume 2'' and folk metal band Turisas' ''The Varangian Way''. * Michael Crichton's fictional work ''Eaters of the Dead'' uses the framework of this trade route, in the book's first portion, to explicate a journey from the Middle East all the way to Scandinavia. This book was the basis for the film ''The 13th Warrior''.


See also

*Caspian expeditions of the Rus *Rus' Khaganate *Greece Runestones


References


Further reading

* * * *Dixon, D.F., 1998. Varangian-Rus warrior-merchants and the origin of the Russian state. Journal of Macromarketing, 18(1), pp. 50–61. *Adelson, H.L., 1960. Early medieval trade routes. The American Historical Review, 65(2), pp. 271–287. *Sverdlov, M.B., 1970. Transit Routes in Eastern Europe in the 9th to 11th Centuries. Soviet Geography, 11(6), pp. 472–479. *Petrukhin, V.J., 2006. The Dnieper rapids in" De administrando imperio": the trade route and its sacrificial rites. BAR INTERNATIONAL SERIES, 1499, p. 187. *Jakobsson, Sverrir, ''The Varangians: In God’s Holy Fire'' (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020), .


External links


P.M.Zolin
{{DEFAULTSORT:Trade Route From The Varangians To The Greeks Economy of the Byzantine Empire Economic history of Ukraine Economic history of Russia Former trade routes Portages History of Kievan Rus' Varangians Medieval economics