Top 5 Facts: Viking myths

1. Horny issue – Aside from a few ceremonial helmets, no Viking helmet has survived that is mounted with horns. This common but inaccurate depiction only arose during the 19th century.

2. Skull-duggery – Another myth commonly believed today is that Viking warriors would use the skulls of their slain enemies as drinking cups. However, no evidence for this exists.

3. Bath time – Vikings were not, as generally depicted, dirty and wild. Indeed, they were considered very clean by Anglo-Saxon standards due to their custom of bathing every Saturday.

4. East meets west – Vikings did not just raid and settle in western Europe but throughout large parts of Asia and beyond. Evidence of occupation has even been found in Turkey.

5. No more Vikings – Despite the age of the Vikings ending in the 11th century, their influence is felt to this day, with many of their words, names, tools and construction techniques still around.