Tar helped Vik­ings make lengthy pil­lag­ing trips

The Guardian Weekly - - Global report -

Vik­ings con­quered Europe af­ter they learned how to make tar on an in­dus­trial scale and used it to wa­ter­proof their long­ships so that they could un­der­take large-scale, lengthy pil­lag­ing trips around Europe – and across the At­lantic, say ar­chae­ol­o­gists. The dis­cov­ery is the work of An­dreas Hen­nius, of Upp­sala Univer­sity. In the jour­nal An­tiq­uity, he re­ports find­ing ev­i­dence that shows out­put from tar pits in Scan­di­navia in­creased dra­mat­i­cally just as Vik­ings be­gan raid­ing other parts of Europe.

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