Viking Ships near Roskilde © Stefan G. Rasmussen

Pocket Museum: Vikings

North-Western Europe is currently teeming with new Viking museums and exhibitions. In the crucible is the huge renovation of the museum at Bygdoy in Oslo and Copenhagen is finally planning to exhibit its grand collections, while the Viking exhibition in Stockholm recently reopened. While we wait, a new publication offers a fine introduction to the material culture of the Vikings.

Pocket Museum: Vikings
by Dr Steve Ashby and Alison Leonard
Thames and Hudson Ltd 
ISBN-10: 0500052069
ISBN-13: 978-0500052068

Pocket Museum: Vikings brings together nearly 200 of the most remarkable artefacts that are held in museum collections around the world. Although the popular image of the Vikings is one of wild, violent raiders, the objects in this book reveal a more complex society comprised of pioneering explorers and master metalworkers who established a far-reaching trade network. From the vast Oseberg ship to a tiny valkyrie pendant, and from simple wooden panpipes to the unparalleled collection of silver items in the Spillings Hoard, each object provides an important insight into this most fascinating of cultures. This juxtaposition of the elite and the everyday makes this volume unique in its field.


  • Introduction
  • The Early Viking Age
  • The Middle Viking Age – Towns, Trade and
    the Tenth Century
  • The Late Viking Age: Conquest, Colony and Conversion


Steven Ashby

Steven Ashby is a Senior Lecturer at the University of York. He is a medieval archeologist specializing in the archeology of portable material culture and the use of animal products in craft and industry. He recently recorded two series of documentaries in support of the History Channel’s popular drama Vikings.

Alison Leonard

Alison Leonard specializes in Viking Archeology with a focus on artifacts and coinage. She has extensive teaching experience at the universities of York and Cambridge.


Viking Ships near Roskilde © Stefan G. Rasmussen



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