In recent history the Vikings may have been given a bad press, being portrayed as ruthless and dangerous. The University of Birmingham’s public event on Saturday 29th April will reveal the truth about the Viking era and dispel some of the myths surrounding this legendary people.

The event, called the Midlands Viking Symposium, will include speakers from different universities, who will cover all aspects of Viking life including mythology, commerce, travel, rituals, language, and material culture such as coins and grave goods.

A group of Viking re-enactors will be bringing the tenth century back to life with a display showing how the Vikings lived.

Dr Chris Callow of the University of Birmingham’s Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity says, ‘We are hoping to provide a forum for everybody interested in the study of the Vikings, bringing together academics and members of the public for an interesting and fun event. The latest research in the field will be available to a wider audience and hopefully give the opportunity for a wider public debate.’

Areas that will be discussed at the event include:

- Material culture: the artefacts that tell us more about trade and exchange in the North Atlantic

- Dressing for life and death: how the Vikings were buried in the most fashionable clothes

- North Midland Trading sites: tracing the early origins of Stafford – a town with a Viking history

- Viking language: how to spot a Viking place-name.

The event costs £27 per person which includes registration, handouts, a buffet lunch, coffee and tea. All those wishing to attend should contact Dr Chris Callow on 0121 414 5934 or at or write to him at the Department of Medieval History, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT.


For further information

Kate Chapple, Press Officer, University of Birmingham, tel 0121 414 2772 or 07789 921164.