The VARANGIANS / UKRAINIANS Book Series — The True History of ‘THE GREAT VIKING MANIFESTATION OF MEDIEVAL EUROPE’© with the SAGAS of Book 1: Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’, 2: Erik ‘Bragi’, 3: Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’, 4: Ivar ‘the Boneless’, 5: Svein ‘the Old’, 6: Valdamar ‘the Great’, 7: Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’, 8: Canute ‘the Great’, & 9: William ‘the Conqueror’




This Book Series Has Been Updated Due To The Illegal and Dispicable Russian Attack Upon Ukraine

All References to Rus’ Have Been Changed to Hraes’ to Show The Original Proper Source And Spelling

This Has Been Done to Ensure All Know That Ukraine Founded Hraes’, not Russia

Hraes’ (Rus’) Was Founded by Danes and Slavs 400 Years Before Muscovite Rus’ Even Existed



© Copyright by Brian Howard Seibert

Acknowledging Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, a powerful research tool unavailable to Saxo Grammaticus (Please Donate).

Note: This website is about Vikings and Varangians and the way they lived over a thousand years ago. The content is as explicit as Vikings of that time were and scenes of violence and sexuality are depicted without reservation or apology. Reader discretion is advised.

The VARANGIANS / UKRAINIANS Book Series is my latest updated Book Series detailing the Founding of Kievan Hraes’ and its following ‘Varangian’ and ‘Ukrainian’ histories from the circa 750 AD establishment of the Varangian trade route through Slavic Scythia to the fall of Kievan Hraes’ following the total destruction of Kiev by the Mongol Hordes in 1240 AD.

Please see the below section for book details:


BOOK ONE:  The Saga of King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ Sigurdson

The Hroar of Fafnir, Roman Byzantine Greek Fire Ship

BOOK ONE: King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ Sigurdson’s third wife, Princess Aslaug, was a young survivor of the Saga of the Volsungs and was a daughter of King Sigurd ‘the Dragon-Slayer’ Fafnirsbane, so this is where Ragnar’s story begins in almost all the ancient tales (except Saxo’s).  In our series, we explore this tail end of the Volsungs Saga because King Sigurd appears to be the first ‘Dragon-Slayer’ and King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ would seem to be the second so, it is a good opportunity to postulate the origins of Fire Breathing Dragons and how they were slain.  King Ragnar would lose his Zealand Denmark to the Anglish Danes of Jutland, who spoke Anglish, as did the majority of Vikings who attacked England, where both Anglish and Saxon languages were spoken, sometimes mistakenly called a common Anglo-Saxon language.  The Angles and Saxons of England never really did get along, as shall be demonstrated in the following books.  King Ragnar assuaged the loss of Zealand by taking York or Jorvik, the City of the Boar, in Angleland and Stavanger Fjord in Thule from which he established his Nor’Way trade route into Scythia. Ragnar died quite famously in his ‘City of the Boar’ and he placed a curse on King AElla of Northumbria and his family that was to reverberate down through the ages.

Princess Aslaug (Kraka) of Volsunga

BOOK TWO:  The Saga of Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson

Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson

Book Two of the Nine Book The Varangians and Ukrainians Series places The Saga of Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson from Book Five of The First Nine Books of the Danish History of Saxo Grammaticus (c. 1200 AD) about King Frodi ‘the Peaceful’ puts the saga into its proper chronological location in history.  In 1984, when I first started work on the book, I placed Prince Erik’s birth at circa 800 CE, but it has since been revised to 810 CE to better reflect the timelines of the following books in the series.  Saxo had originally placed the saga at the time of Christ’s birth and later experts have placed the story at about 400 CE to correspond with the arrival of the Huns on the European scene but, when Attila was driven back to Asia, the Huns didn’t just disappear, they joined the Khazar Empire, just north of the Caspian Sea, and helped the Khazars control the western end of the famous Silk Road Trade Route.  Princes Erik and Roller, both sons of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’, sail off to Zealand to avenge their father’s loss, but Erik falls in love with Princess Gunwar, the sister of the Anglish King Frodi of Jutland and, after his successful Battle Upon the Ice, wherein he destroys the House of Westmar, Erik marries Gunwar and both brothers become King Frodi’s foremost men instead, and the story moves on to the founding of Kievan Hraes’ in present day Ukraine and Belarus. The Danes defeat the Khazars in the famous ‘Battle of the Goths and the Huns’ to establish their position as the great Hraes’ trading empire.

Princess Alfhild of Viken, Norway

BOOK THREE:  The Saga of Prince Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Erikson

Arrow Odd Trades With Natives of the Newfoundland

Book Three, The Saga of Prince Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Erikson, recreates Arrow Odd’s Saga of circa 1200 AD to illustrate how Arrow Odd was Prince Helgi (Oleg in Slavic) Erikson of Kiev, by showing that their identical deaths from the bite of a snake was more than just coincidence. The book investigates the true death of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ by poisoned blood-snakes in York or Jorvik, the ‘City of the Boar’, and how his curse of ‘calling his young porkers to avenge the old boar’ sets up a death spiral between swine and snake that lasts for generations.  The book then illustrates the famous Battle of the Berserks on Samso, where Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ and Hjalmar ‘the Brave’ slay the twelve berserk grandsons of King Frodi on the Danish Island of Samso, setting up a death struggle that takes the Great Pagan Army of the Danes from Denmark to ravage Norway and then England and on to Helluland in Saint Brendan’s Newfoundland.  A surprise cycle of vengeance manifests itself in the ‘death by snakebite’ of Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’.

Princess Hervor on Samso Island

BOOK FOUR:  The Saga of Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Erikson

Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ was a grandson of Ragnar Lothbrok

Book Four, The Saga of Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Erikson, reveals how Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Ragnarson was actually Prince Eyfur or Ivar (Igor in Slavic) Erikson of Kiev and then King Harde Knute ‘the First’ of Denmark.  By comparing a twenty year lacuna in the reign of Prince Igor in The Hraes’ Primary Chronicle with a coinciding twenty year appearance of a King Harde Knute (Hard Knot) of Denmark in European Chronicles, Prince Igor’s punishment by sprung trees, which reportedly tore him apart, may have rather just left him a boneless and very angry young king.  Loyal Danes claimed, “It was a hard knot indeed that sprung those trees,” but his conquered English subjects, not being quite as polite, called him, Ivar ‘the Boneless’.  The book expands on the death curse of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ and the calling of ‘his young porkers to avenge the old boar’ when Ivar leaves his first son, King Gorm (Snake) ‘the Old’, to rule in Denmark and his last son, Prince Svein (Swine) ‘the Old’ to rule in Hraes’, further setting up the death spiral between the swine and snake of the ‘Lothbrok’ curse.

Queen Helga of Kiev

BOOK FIVE:  SVEIN’SAGA the OLD or The Saga of Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson

Emperor John Tzimiskes meets Prince Sveinald

Book Five, The Saga of Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson, demonstrates how Prince Sveinald (Sviatoslav in Slavic) ‘the Brave’ of Kiev was really Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson of Kiev, who later moved to Norway and fought to become King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ of Denmark and England.  But before being forced out of Russia, the Swine Prince sated his battle lust by crushing the Khazars and then attacking the great great grandfather of Vlad the Impaler in a bloody campaign into the ‘Heart of Darkness’ of Wallachia that seemed to herald the coming of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and included the famed 666 Salute of the Army of the Impalers.  The campaign was so mortifying that the fifteen thousand pounds of gold that Emperor John Tzimiskes of Constantinople paid him to attack the Army of the Impalers seemed not nearly enough, so Prince Svein attacked the Eastern Roman Empire itself.  He came close to defeating the greatest empire in the world, but lost and was forced to leave Hraes’ to his three sons.  He returned to the Nor’Way and spent twelve years rebuilding Ragnar’s old trade route there.

Princess Sviataslava of Ramnic

BOOK SIX:  VALDAMAR’SAGA’ the GREAT or The Saga of Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson

Baptism of Prince Vladimir ‘the Great’ Sveinson

Book Six, The Saga of Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson, establishes how Grand Prince Valdamar (Vladimir in Slavic) ‘the Great’ of Kiev, expanded the Hraes’ Empire and his own family Hamingja by marrying 700 wives that he pampered in estates in and around Kiev.  Unlike his father, Svein, he came to the aid of a Roman Emperor, leading six thousand picked Varangian cataphracts against Anatolian rebels, and was rewarded with the hand of Princess Anna Porphyrogennetos of Constantinople, a true Roman Princess born of the purple who could trace her bloodline back to Julius and Augustus Caesar.  She was called ‘Czarina’, and after her, all Hraes’ Grand Princes were called ‘Czars’ and their offspring were earnestly sought after, matrimonially, by European royalty.

Princess Anna Porphyrogennetos of Constantinople

BOOK SEVEN:  SWEYN’SAGA FORKBEARD or The Saga of King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ Ivarson

King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ Ivarson by L Frolich 1883

In The Saga of King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ Ivarson, Prince Svein anonymously takes the name of Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ in Norway and befriends the Jarls of Lade in Trondheim Fjord in Norway as he expands the Nor’Way trade route of his grandfather, Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’.  He had come close to defeating the Eastern Roman Empire, and still felt that he was due at least a shared throne in Constantinople.  He used the gold from the Nor’Way trade to rebuild his legions and his Hraes’ cataphracts and though his brother, King Gorm ‘the Old’, was dead, his son, Sweyn’s nephew, King Harald ‘Bluetooth’ Gormson had usurped the throne of Denmark and had hired the famed Jomsvikings to attack Prince Sweyn in Norway, setting up the famous Battle of Hjorungavagr in a fjord south of Lade.  King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ would emerge from that confrontation and then he would defeat King Olaf Tryggvason of Norway in the Battle of Svolder in 1000 AD, in an engagement precipitated over the hand of Queen Sigrid ‘the Haughty’ of Sweden.  Later he attacked England in revenge for the following St. Brice’s Day Massacre of Danes in 1002 AD and he fought a protracted war with the Saxon King Aethelred ‘the Unready’ that could only be described as the harvesting of the English for sale as slaves in Baghdad and Constantinople.  With the help of his son, Prince Valdamar of Kiev, and the legions and cataphracts of Hraes’, he conquered England on Christmas Day of 1013, but victory was not kind to him.

Young Woman in Black

BOOK EIGHT:  CANUTE’SAGA the GREAT or The Saga of King Canute ‘the Great’ Sweynson

King Canute ‘the Great’ Sweynson

Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson of Kiev, who had supported his father, King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ of Denmark in attacks upon England left his ‘Czar’ sons in charge of Hraes’ and took over as King Valdamar of England, but the Latin Christian English revolted against his eastern name and Orthodox Christian religion and brought King Aethelred back from exile in Normandy and Valdamar had to return to Hraes’ and gather up the legions he had already sent back after his father’s victory.  His half brother was ruling in Denmark and his sons were ruling in Hraes’ so, in 1015 AD Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ of Kiev was written out of Hraes’ history and in 1016 the Latin Christian Prince Canute ‘the Great’ returned to England to reclaim his throne.  He defeated Aethelred’s son, King Edmund ‘Ironside’ of England, at the Battle of Assandun to become King Canute ‘the Great’ of England and later King Knute ‘the Great’ of Denmark and Norway as well.  But that is just the start of his story and later Danish Christian Kings would call his saga, and the sagas of his forefathers, The Lying Sagas of Denmark, and would set out to destroy them, claiming that, “true Christians will never read these Sagas”.

Queen Emma of Normandy

BOOK NINE:  WILLIAM’SAGA the CONQUEROR or The Saga of King William ‘the Conqueror’ Robertson of England and Normandy

Norman Cavalry at the Battle of Hastings – From The Bayeux Tapestry

The Third Danish Conquest of Angleland was seen to herald the end of the Great Viking Manifestation of the Middle Ages, but this, of course, was contested by the Vikings who were still in control of it all.  Danish Varangians still ruled in Kiev and Danes still ruled the Northern Empire of Canute ‘the Great’, for the Normans were but Danish Vikings that had taken up the French language, and even Greenland and the Newfoundland were under Danish control in a Hraes’ Empire that ran from the Silk Road of Cathay in the east to the Mayan Road of Yucatan in the west.  “We are all the children of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’,” Queen Emma of Normandy often said.  Out of sheer spite the Saxons of England took over the Varangian Guard of Constantinople and would continue their fight against the Normans in Southern Italy as mercenaries of the Byzantine Roman Empire.  They would lose there as well, when in the Fourth Crusade of 1204, the Norman Danes would sack the City of Constantinople and hold it long enough to stop the Mongol hoards that would crush the City of Kiev.  It would be Emperor Baldwin ‘the First’ of Flanders and Constantinople who would defeat the Mongol Mongke Khan in Thrace.  But the Mongols would hold Hraes’ for three hundred years and this heralded the end of the Great Viking Manifestation.  The Silk Road was dead awaiting Marco Polo for its revival.  But the western Mayan Road would continue to operate for another hundred years until another unforeseen disaster struck.  Its repercussions would be witnessed by the Spanish conquerors who followed Christopher Columbus a hundred and fifty years later in the Valley of the Mound Builders.

Please note that in this, The VARANGIANS / UKRAINIANS Book Series, all references to Kievan territory shall be made as Kievan Hraes’, as found in the description of Ragnar Lothbrok’s famed shield, Hraes’ Ship’s Round, the original Edda reference of Hraes’, in lieu of any Rus’ reference which has also been annexed by the later arriving Rus’sians.  Likewise, references to the country of Ukraine shall be as ‘Ukraine’, and not ‘the Ukraine’, in respect of the proper name of the country, just as Canada is now called ‘Canada’ and not ‘the Canada’ as it was originally called when it was but a river.  However, The Varangians or The Ukrainians is acceptable with the definitive article or adjective THE, as it denotes a people or group, such as The Canadians or The Americans.  THE is a definite article and is used at the beginning of noun groups, a country being singular and its people being a group.


The Nine Book Series is based upon The First Nine Books of the Danish History of Saxo Grammaticus which was compiled and written circa 1200 AD by Saxo under the auspices of Bishop Absalon of Lund. Danish Historians have likened the work of Saxo to the British Histories of Geoffrey of Monmouth. “The History of the Kings of Britain is now usually considered a literary forgery containing little reliable history,” (Wiki).  This is a grievous error on their part, for Saxo was much more contemporary with the period he was dealing with and he had much more extant Saga material to work with, far more than has survived today. The problem with Saxo is in the arrangement. And perhaps the Bishop of Lund had something to do with that.

Book Five of Saxo’s History has the greatest clarity and cohesiveness of all his books and looks to be a complete Saga that he may have found in his journeys to Norway, for it is claimed that he did travel in search of material. The book tells the tale of Princes Erik and Roller Ragnarson who seem to be the sons of King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’, for their mother is Kraka, a byname of Princess Aslaug, a wife of Ragnar’s. The story is placed in the time of Christ, but this is likely the musings of the Bishop, for, when I first read the story while researching the Origins of Hamlet (which is the Amleth tale in the preceding Books Three and Four of Saxo’s work) in University, I immediately suspected that the tale was really about the founding of Kievan Hraes’ in Ukraine circa 800 AD. I took courses in Kievan Rus’ history and courses in Scandinavian Sagas and everything I learned convinced me I was correct in my theory. Prince Erik Ragnarson of Norway was also Prince Rurik of Novgorod and the Battle of the Goths and the Huns, which is a central part of the Book Five Saga is actually describing the Battle of the Danes and the Khazars (of which the defeated Huns make up their seventh tribe). So I rewrote Book Five as my first book, The Saga of Prince Erik ‘Bragi’ Ragnarson, putting the tale in its proper timeframe of circa 800 AD and I turned Saxo’s fifty page novella into a five hundred page novel and everything fit. I successfully blended Saxo’s Book Five Erik into the circa 800 AD story, in the Monk Nestor’s The Rus’ Primary Chronicle, of Prince Rurik of Novgorod.

Then I got married, and I was designing gas plants and building them to be shipped all over the world, and I would often travel around the world starting them up in client’s countries. One of my modularized gas plants was even flown to Islamabad on a Ukrainian Air Antonov 124 cargo plane, one of the world’s largest, and I fear I saw a photograph of it blown up by the godless Russians in the airport of Kyiv. It made me sick.

But I always maintained my research while raising four lovely children and in 2014 I finally realized that the Ragnar and Kraka in the Book Five tale were likely King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ and Princess Aslaug. This was a mixed blessing, for it gave me a fantastic lead, but the lead was away from Kievan Hraes’ history and into the totally confusing world of Scandinavian history. Viking history is an absolute boar’s nest, and we’re not talking Dukes here, hazardous or otherwise. There are only two things Vikings fear, and they are fog and their own focked up history! I, personally, wanted nothing to do with that mess!

However, my next book into the series turned out to be an exercise in blending Arrow Odd’s Saga into the circa 880 AD timeframe of Prince Oleg of Novgorod, who both suffer identical deaths in their respective Norse and Hraes’ sagas, the foretold death by snakebite from a poisonous viper that crawls out from under the weathered skull of their favourite expired horse. Not only are the deaths identical, but they are identically foretold, similarly avoided, and identically foiled and executed, the one death in Kiev and the other in Norway, thousands of miles apart. It is the Saga of the death of the same man as told by chroniclers of completely diverse societies. Or are they? If Prince Erik conquered Kiev as is detailed in the defeat of the Slavic King Olmar of what seems to be Kiev, and if Kiev was peopled by ‘Swift Danes’ and ‘Runaway Slavs’ as is detailed by Bishop Theitmar in his Chroncles of Mersburg of 1018 AD, a contemporary history, then perhaps Arrow Odd was Prince Oleg as I have written in my The Saga of Prince Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Erikson, and the coincidental deaths are actually the same death as told by two very related peoples. Imagine, Danes in Kiev! Have you ever seen a blonde haired blue eyed Ukrainian? Duh…Yes! Quite often, actually.

By 2017 I was getting quite perturbed by the poor state of Viking history, particularly the focked up version of it that was being portrayed in The Vikings television series. I even wrote to Take Five Productions and offered them the use of my books for a show on Eastern Vikings or Varangians. They didn’t respond, but the next season they came up with their own even more focked up version of Varangian Kievan history. Their portrayal of Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ as a slytherin was what I found most outrageous, because the Ivar ‘the Boneless’ I had learned about was a prince who had lost his legs and was carried into battle on a shield. Loss of limbs in battle was one of the most common injuries on the battlefields of Scandinavia. Razor sharp swords and round shields that stopped at the knees was a very hazardous combination for both Dukes and Princes. One night, before falling asleep, I asked my Prince Erik, “Who was Ivar ‘the Boneless?” I literally clenched my fists and I asked it twice, so angered was I by Take Five Productions, and about four in the morning (it took about five hours) Prince Erik said to me in a very deep and serious voice, “Ivar ‘the Boneless’ is Prince Igor of Kiev!” In my dream I told him, “That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard!” to which he responded, “Ivar ‘the Boneless’ IS Prince Igor of Kiev!” So the next day I began researching Prince Igor of Kiev, looking for bynames that could possibly match Bienlausi (Boneless) or some such other discovery, but I could find nothing. I was frustrated, so before sleeping again, I asked Prince Erik the same question twice, explaining that I could find nothing to work with. His reply was, “Ivar ‘the Boneless’ IS Prince Igor of Kiev!” So I did more research and then I found the link. In the Byzantine History of Leo the Deacon, Emperor John Tzimiskes tells one of his subjects that Prince Sviatoslav of Kiev’s father had lost his legs when the Germans used Death by Sprung Trees on him, and his father was Prince Igor of Kiev! The Danish form of Igor is Ivar and this was Ivar ‘the Boneless’! Whether he survived the attack or not, the Danes would have attached that name to him, and in my next book, it is a very angry Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ of Kiev that I unleash upon the world.

Solely from a point of ‘Due Diligence’, and Engineers would get this, I checked Danish History to see if a new Danish king had happened to turn up during a twenty year lacuna in the story of Prince Igor of Kiev in the Hraes’ Primary Chronicle between the years 916 and 936 AD and, low and behold, Wiki popped one up! A King Harde Knut I of Denmark reigned from circa 915 AD for about thirty years according to Adam of Bremen, a contemporary historian, so to about 945 AD, which is the year the Hraes’ Primary Chronicle tells us that Prince Igor of Kiev died! But Prince Igor reappears in the Hraes’ chronicle in 936, so it is possible that he ruled both, especially when one considers that Prince Erik originally went to Kiev to found a Danish trade route through Ukraine and the trade route existed, in fact, flourished to the point that the Kievan Hraes’ had attacked Constantinople two or three times by then in order to garner better trade agreements. So I wrote the next book based on this discovery (copyright of course) and I even found a similar history in Book Six of Saxo’s work, the story of a King Fridlief (from ‘the Old’ Fridleif / Frodi line of Anglish Danish kings) who returned to Denmark from Hraes’ and killed a usuper, King Hiarn, and took back Denmark for himself. And one can see here, the propensity of evidence popping up everywhere shows us that Saxo’s work is not to be compared with the writings of Geoffrey of Monmouth at all. Saxo was doing some really solid historical research, and it appears that church authorities were likely following behind him and screwing up the order of things. But I got a novel’s worth of information out of the histories and I called it The Saga of Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’ Erikson.

The name ‘Harde Knut’ in Danish means ‘Hard Knot’, and I expostulated that it was a hard knot indeed that took the legs of our young prince.  Harde Knut ‘the First’ was the start of a long line of Knot Kings or Knytlings, starting with several Canutes, Knuts, Knuds and many more Harde Knuts, all stemming from one of the most famous of Vikings, Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’.  There were no Knuts of any kind before him, but many after, and the preponderance evidence continues to grow.  King Harde Knuts son in Denmark was King Gorm ‘the Old’, Gorm meaning worm or Snake and ‘the Old’ from the ‘Old’ Fridleif-Frodi line of Anglish Danish kings.  His son in the east, as Prince Ivar ‘the Boneless’, was Prince Svein ‘the Old’, or Sveinald, with Svein meaning Swine and, again, ‘Old’ of the Fridleif-Frodi line.  A storm is brewing here, the Swine being a mortal enemy of the Snake, the ‘Snake’-King AElla of York having taken the life of ‘the Old Boar’, King Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’, and Gorm’s byname being ‘ the Englishman’, perhaps signifying his mother was and English princess from York, perhaps Princess Blyia, granddaughter of AElla.  In the novel we explore the most famous death of Ragnar ‘Lothbrok’ and the vengeances that were unleashed upon AElla and his line.

This discovery of mine, the concept of Hraes’ Princes retiring and returning to Denmark as Kings carries on through Saxo’s Book Six to a King Frodi who is none other than Prince Svein ‘the Old’ (Sviatoslav ‘the Brave’) of Kiev, who returns to Denmark as King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ after killing his brother, Gorm’s son, King Harald ‘Bluetooth’, who had usurped his rightful throne, for Viking rules of succession passed the crown to surviving brothers before passing it down to surviving sons.  Prince Sweyn and his Ladejarl allies defeat the Danes and their Jomsviking allies at the famous Battle of Hjorungavagr in 986 AD by using witches and goddesses that shoot arrows five at a time, causing the death of a man with each dart, and I recalled just such a goddess being employed in Arrow Odd’s Saga and my writing of it in my The Saga of Prince Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Erikson and I began to realign my writing to reflect more of the Viking religion and its witchcraft into my books.  Personally, I am a man of science and engineering, so I had originally intended to downplay the Aesir religion and its inherent witchcraft, deeming them likely unbelievable to men of the sword, but I kept coming across sagas whereby highly intelligent and capable leaders were recorded as having used witches to gain military victories.  I have come to the conclusion that they really believed this stuff.  They were putting their lives on the line and making extreme sacrifices to use the witchcraft, so it must have been proffering them some kind of benefit, so I decided to expand upon witchcraft and the whole Viking Aesir religion.  My youngest daughter suggested I read The Golden Ass by the Vanir Roman writer Apuleius, it being the only Roman novel surviving the fall of Rome in its entirety.

The Golden Ass is a contemporary novel of pagan Rome and its tripartite gods Vanir religion of Jupiter (Zeus Father), Mars and Mercury that compares directly with the Viking Aesir tripartite gods religion of Odin, Thor and Frey and it is full of witchcraft, particularly the transformational craft of humans turning into animals and it was full of sex and many the variations of it, including nith sex, which was forbidden, but practiced in Scandinavia.  After reading the book I could understand why 95% of all Roman literature has been lost, likely because 90% of it was burned by Christians.  It became apparent to me why ancient Vanir Romans feared and persecuted the Christians of their time:  the Christians were totally intolerant of other religions and their beliefs and practices.  And the Scandinavian Sagas are chock full of this Christian intolerance.  It is no wonder that 90% of surviving Aesir religious writings and sagas are found only in remote Iceland.  And it’s only because Iceland had scriptoriums and scholars such as Snorri Sturluson who could ignore the edicts of intolerant Christian kings.  The King of Norway, however, did manage to land a Norwegian strike force on Iceland and they did kill Snorri Sturluson in battle while attacking his estate and scriptorium, so this freedom of expression was not without cost.  I have often pondered what might become of me if I fell into the hands of the KGB.  I know that poisons and radiation are the M O of the KGB and I have used both types of hits in my books.

I had always wanted to write my Nine Books of Danish History, first and foremost, truthfully and faithfully, and secondly, in the manner that Viking skalds might have written them from the contemporary perspective as believers in their Aesir religion and the witchcraft inherent in it.  Although all the sagas and histories that I have been working with have been rewritten and copied by Christian monks under the auspices of their bishops, some sagas, such as Arrow Odd’s Saga, have been recopied as manuscripts with a less heavy hand than others.  That is why I have taken care to include the giants and dwarves and the elves and wee folks that are described in it.  And the books have no antiquated language in them, methinks because I wanted to show their lives in the way they had lived them, as the latest and foremost generation of their time.  Their ships were the best of that time and were brightly painted and embossed in gold and silver and their poetry and writing was of the latest stylings and of the best prose.  And their clothing was dyed as brightly as could be afforded and the styles were not static and of one kind for a thousand years, but varied from generation to generation as has always been, even to this day.  The frivolous fashions of the 14th century Frankish courts were not a first and would not be the last.

And it is not the last of the Princes of Hraes’ returning to Denmark as Kings, for the last king of Saxo’s Book Six is called Ingjald for some unknown reason.  Ing ‘the Old’, the son of Prince Svein ‘the Old’ of Kiev, is Grand Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ of Hraes’ (Slavic Vladimir), and he is described in both Book Six and The Hraes’ Primary Chronicle as being a wonton profligate of immense proportions, having seven hundred wives in and around Kiev and one Princess Anna Porphyrogennetos (born of the purple blood of the Caesars) as detailed in the Hraes’ chronicle.  But Valdamar is and eastern name so he comes to reclaim King Sweyn’s throne in England as King Canute ‘the Great’, hoping the English will respect his Knytling heritage, if not his earlier Orthodox Christian conversion.  And they do.  The kings and dukes and princes of Europe all want to marry his Czar daughters, born of the purple blood of the Roman Caesars, so that they, too, could call themselves Czars, as Valdamar’s sons in Hraes’ were now titling themselves.  And it is with these sources and this information that I wrote The Saga of Prince Svein ‘the Old’ Ivarson, then Prince Valdamar ‘the Great’ Sveinson, then The Saga of King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ and finally The Saga of King Canute ‘the Great’ Sweynson, Canute being the last of the Hraes’ princes to return as kings in the west.

This may be the end of my Hraes’ Princes returning to Scandinavia as Kings of Denmark and England and Norway, but it is not the end of the Hraes’ Trading Company that financed ‘The Great Viking Manifestation of Medieval Europe’.  The Ninth Book shall seek to show what becomes of King Canute’s Great Northern Empire and what was the true result of the Viking discovery of the Newfoundland, America.  Oh yes…and a little thing called the Norman Hraes’ reconquest of England of 1066 AD, The Saga of William ‘the Conqueror’ Robertson, to be written soon, hopefully.