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Main page » Non-Fiction » Science literature » Literature Studies » Norse Myth in English Poetry

Norse Myth in English Poetry


Norse myths have their roots in tales told by a variety of Indo-European peoples who populated much of north and central Europe from as early as 600 B. C. These groups moved steadily south from Scandinavia, through what is now central and eastern Europe, toward the ever-expanding border of the Roman Empire. After the fall of Rome, Indo-European peoples migrated further into former Roman territory, and the Angles and Saxons settled in England. Latin culture remained dominant and the fall of the Roman Empire did not stop the spread of Christianity. By the seventh century, Christianity had spread widely throughout the British Isles and Western Europe. It would not arrive in Scandinavia for another three hundred years. It was during these years that the northernmost of the old Indo-European tribes began to move south into England and Western Europe, and as far west as Iceland and the North American continent, in the relentless Viking raids. It is these people, known as the "Northmen," who told and preserved the stories of the old gods and inspired many of the heroic legends that form the basis of Norse mythology.

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Tags: Europe, Roman, central, Norse, spread, peoples