Map Of The Viking World With Placenames In The Old Norse Language

Below you can see a detailed map designed by Sandra Rimmer for www.abroadintheyard.com depicting the world known to the Vikings in the Viking Age with original placenames in the Old Norse language. For this work, the following sources were credited: The Skaldic Project, The Old Norse World, and Altnordische Kosmographie by Rudolf Simek.

Note: All credits go to the creators of this work and to the website where it was originally published. Please click to enlarge for higher resolution.

Map of the known world to the Norsemen depicting place names in Old Norse. Image source: www.abroadintheyard.com

Map of the known world to the Norsemen depicting place names in Old Norse. Image source: www.abroadintheyard.com

The Norsemen travelled along many maritime routes throughout the tumultuous Viking Age which started sometime during the 9th century and ended in the mid late part of the 11th century. The Norwegian and Danish Vikings would often sail westward, to the British Isles, Iceland, Faroese, Greenland or even North America, while the Swedish Vikings would voyage into modern day Poland, Russia, and Ukraine along the great rivers.

The Viking Age took place during the early Middle Ages, being triggered primarily by trade and subsequently marked by conquest, plunder, and settlement by the Norsemen in most of the regions where they landed.

Legend (only for some major placenames from this map, listed in no particular order, with their historical/contemporary correspondents):

  • Norvegr – Norway
  • Danmörk – Denmark
  • Svitjod – Sweden
  • Finnland – Finland
  • Garðaríki – Russia
  • Frakkland – France (or, in the past, the Frankish Empire)
  • England – England
  • Bretland – Wales
  • Skotland – Scotland
  • Hjaltland – Shetland Islands
  • Orkneyjar – Orkney Islands
  • Irland – Ireland
  • Spanland – Spain
  • Miklagarð – Constantinople
  • Nordmandi – Normandy
  • Ísland – Iceland
  • Groenland – Greenland
  • Helluland – Baffin Island, Canada
  • Markland – Labrador, Canada
  • Vinland – Newfoundland and New Brunswick, Canada
  • Skraelingsland – modern day United States of America and Canada (or, in the past, the lands inhabited by the Skraelings, Native American populations from North America)
  • Nordhraf – North Atlantic Ocean
  • Svartahaf – Black Sea
  • Englandshaf – North Sea
  • Noregshaf – Norwegian Sea
  • Groenlandshaf – The Sea of Greenland
  • Færeyjar – Faroe Islands
  • Grikkland – Greece (or, in the past, the Byzantine Empire)
  • Harvaða fjöllum – Carpathian Mountains
  • Ungarariki – Hungary
  • Blokumannaland – Romania (or, in the past, Wallachia)
  • Bolgaraland – Bulgaria
  • Egiptaland – Egypt
  • Afrika – Africa

13 Responses to Map Of The Viking World With Placenames In The Old Norse Language

  1. Debbie Miller says:

    Heavener, Oklahoma was claimed by a Viking. The land claim is carved in stones. He claimed the valley to the Arkansas River, near the Arkansas border. Also, Americas Stonehenge in New Hampshire. New England has too much evidence to say the Viking were not here.

  2. Travis says:

    Vinland actually refers to America and both Helluland and Markland refer to Canada

  3. Joel says:

    Frakland was not France, but just one of the two Frankish kingdoms of France. Originally, Frakland is the kingdom of Neustria between river Scheldt and river Loire. Valland is the kingdom of Aquitaine between river Loire and the Pyrenees. Tuskaland was the name given to the southern part of Aquitaine, Gascony between river Garonne and the Pyrenees.
    Tuskaland is considered until now as the country around the city of Tours, but this probability is unlikely.

  4. Keills Flatneif says:

    If Orkneyjar and Hjaltland are there then Suđreyjar should surely deserve a mention?

  5. Valdamer son of Arne says:

    Pure copper was mined on the area on the South side of Lake Superior for 10,000 years. This pure copper was traded all over the settled world.

  6. Rino Flemming Landsjø says:

    “The Norwegian and Danish Vikings would often sail westward, to the British Isles, Iceland, Faroese, Greenland or even North America, while the Swedish Vikings would voyage into modern day Poland, Russia, and Ukraine along the great rivers.”

    Well…There have never been any Norwegian, Swedish or Danish Vikings.
    Norway as a country did not exist at that time, the area consisted of many small kingdoms.
    The term “Viking” came from the area around the Oslo Fjord, and a bit down the Swedish coast-Bohuslen, an area that went by the name “Viken”. The first men who departed from here on a raid were referred to as Vikings, or men from the “Viken”
    Danish men were called Danes, and Swedes went by the name Svear.

    • Absolutely correct Rino Flemming Landsjo, except that those who sailed in “Vesturveg” i.e. to the British isles, and other west European areas were routinely referred to as Danes because they spoke the “Danish” language (Norse / Icelandic). Several of them came from Sweden according to the Icelandic sagas, — there are no clear cut divisions between these people, because they did not have the identity now being pushed on then. Even in around 1260 Snorri Sturluson refers to the language he wrote in as Danish.

      On another note Grænland was not called Groenland at any time. Miklagarð is accusative of nominative Mikligarður which was the name for Constantinople.

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