4. Changes in the countryside
- Julian D. Richards
Archaeologists argue that the Vikings' origins lay in a process of gradual settlement evolution, as well as a growing complexity in settlement types. ‘Changes in the countryside’ looks at how Scandinavia developed from the Iron Age onwards and examines rural settlement patterns during the Viking Age in Norway, various parts of Sweden, and Denmark. There were major changes in rural activities taking place during the Viking Age, reflecting a growing social complexity and increasing hierarchies and specialization of site functions. These changes underpinned the establishment of the Scandinavian nation states and provided the basis for overseas expansion.