The Vikings by Kenneth W. Harl

The Vikings

Parts one,two, and three. Each part contains six audio cassettes and course guidebook in a clamshell case.

Details The Vikings

TitleThe Vikings
Release DateJan 1st, 2005
PublisherThe Teaching Company
GenreHistory, Nonfiction, Audiobook

Reviews The Vikings

  • UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish
    I love Audible's The Great Courses collection of books. They're informative, educational and, sometimes, even exciting.I chose to listen to this lecture because I love Viking fiction and thought it'd be fun to get the real scoop on these sexy men. Well... so they aren't all as sexy as my favorite authors make them, clearly, but I still enjoyed learning their about their culture, their traditions, and their history. Kenneth W. Harl does a great jo...
  • TS Chan
    After watching the Vikings series, I am even more intrigued with the history of these traditionally feared and stereotyped 'barbarians'. Extremely enlightening course about the history of Vikings and how they shaped Western Europe to be what it is today. Almost strange how the seemingly uncivilised Northmen influenced the unity and strength of the countries that they invaded. This is a comprehensive audiobook course which comes with a pdf downloa...
  • Jeff Harris
    Interesting and covered a much broader subject matter than I anticipated. More Scandinavian than Viking.
  • Patrick Peterson
    Listened to this Audio course. It is quite good, but a bit too detailed. About half-way through. Harl is very knowledgeable and eliminates many myths about the Vikings. He (almost too) comprehensively explores what they were all about, where they came from, how they interacted with the rest of the world, their beliefs, their successes and failures, etc.If you don't mind too much detail, it's great. He's a very good and enthusiastic speaker. No da...
  • Julie
    I love history books. I didn't know that the germanic language began in Scandanavia. I didn't know why the Slavic countries are called Slavic. I knew that the Goths were Swedish, but I hadn't understood how the "Sweeds conquered Rome." I didn't know where the Russians got their name, "Russia." I learned so much history from this book.
  • B.A. Wilson
    This is an interesting course, with 36 different lectures on the Vikings. I found it to be engaging, and while some of the lectures were more interesting to me and my research than others, this was overall an excellent series. The professor really knows his information, and if you are looking on a reliable and more in-depth resource on Vikings that is still captivating, then this may be for you. For the lectures that were really of interest to me...
  • Daniel
    A very good and detailed History of the Viking age. These lectures could of easily been called The Vikings and the creation of Europe and it would of been just as precise. I learned quite a bit of new information from these lectures and it filled in details especially about England and Normandy that I hadn't realized I didn't know. Well worth getting.
  • John Doyle
    I read a lot of history and had never invested much time learning about the Viking Age (~900 to 1,100 AD). These lectures cover early Scandinavian history from the first millennium BC through the late Middle Ages as context for the two centuries during which the Vikings had an enormous impact on the development of Western Europe as we know it today. The pressure of Viking raids was a general catalyst for the formations of united kingdoms and gove...
  • Susan
    These audio lectures cover the history of Scandinavia from prehistory to the early Middle Ages, focusing on the Vikings. I had no idea how far the Vikings traveled to the East or their lasting influence on England, Ireland, France, and Russia. Viking settlements in Russia even warred with Constantinople. The course also addresses the sagas, what happened with Viking settlements in Iceland, Greenland, and North America, and how pre-Christian myths...
  • Ob-jonny
    This Great Courses series makes the Vikings seem like one of the most fascinating times in world history. It's amazing what they were able to accomplish and how profound their influence was on Europe and as far as the Middle East. There were so many firsts like the colonizations of Iceland, Greenland, and Vinland. It's mind-boggling to learn that the Swedes were able to make it all the way to Baghdad starting from the Baltic Sea and traveling dow...
  • Marcus
    Yet another of Great Courses from Teaching Company and this one gets top marks from me. Both the selection of topics in this course and its structure was extremly well-thought out and a pure joy to follow. Also, since the topic itself is rather specific, professor Harl could allow himself the luxury to go into depth of the issues he discussed and this course does indeed feel like an introductory set of college lectures.The course itself starts wi...
  • Mark
    Kenneth W. Harl does a wonderful job explaining how the people who would eventually become Norwegians, Danes, and Swedes had a profound impact on the development of both Western Europe and Russia. Over a series of 36 lectures Harl reviews such interesting topics as the Viking slave trade (selling Slavs and Irish to the Islamic world), Icelandic colonization and literary tradition (Icelandic literature who knew?), the fury of the Northmen in what ...
  • Evan Hays
    Just an excellent piece of history. Hearing a scholar at the top of his game giving the history an in-depth yet interest review always impresses me to no end. This is the sort of thing that makes me realize why history is my field first and foremost. He also did not just cover kings and battles, but talked about women, regular life, literature, food, shipping, etc., etc. His knowledge of the sources is truly amazing, and learning about the source...
  • Tom
    While Harl is knowledgeable and erudite, he is also sadly condescending and pedantic. Unquestionably a fine scholar, not sure I'd want to be either his TA or student. That random comment made (as I am only judging by his tone and commentary - yes, totally unfair I must admit) I shall actually probably go over Harl's work again in the future as his insights and knowledge of the great "sea kings" and their effect on early British and Irish history ...
  • Larry
    Prof. Harl does a great job explaining how the Vikings who would eventually become Norwegians, Danes, and Swedes, also become Russians , Englishmen, Frenchmen, Icelanders, Attempt to colonize Greenland, Attempt to colonize North America. Over a series of 36 lectures Harl reviews such interesting topics as the Viking slave trade (the Slavs were slaves) ;The Normans in France were originally Vikings; Our word for Tuesday comes from an old Viking Go...
  • Andrew
    If you have any interest in the subject matter, you will benefit from this book. The audio version is great, and on you get a very thorough PDF reference book with it.
  • Michael Nash
    Great overview of the Viking age.
  • Kris McCracken
    One of my first forays into the audiobook world, Harl takes us through everything that you could possibly want to know about Vikings. An interesting - albeit weighty - diversion.
  • Jenn
    This course was so informative. I can't believe how little I knew about Scandanavian history and it's impact on western civilization until now.
  • Hank Pharis
    (NOTE: I'm stingy with stars. For me 2 stars means a good book or a B. 3 stars means a very good book or a B+. 4 stars means an outstanding book or an A {only about 5% of the books I read merit 4 stars}. 5 stars means an all time favorite or an A+ {Only one of 400 or 500 books rates this!). I also know next to nothing about the Vikings and this is a good introduction. Here are a couple quotes: “The term Viking conjures up one’s worst nightmar...
  • Wade
    The history of The Vikings is fascinating: their impact on the world as we know it today was so intense that it is hard to believe! France, England, Russia, Iceland, and Scotland would be unrecognisable without their influence and they also interacted with the The Byzantine Empire, The Ottoman Empire, North America, Greenland, Germany, and probably others that slip my mind and/or we just don't have records for.But while the Vikings certainly shoo...
  • Gilbert Stack
    If you ever wondered what the Vikings were really like, you should pick up this book by Kenneth Harl. It’s part of the Great Courses series and each chapter is a 30 minute lecture on the development of the Viking civilization and its impact on Europe. Vikings often get the short end of the stick in history courses. They are the barbarian “other” that threatened Europe and led to the feudal state. Harl will show you exactly why that happened...
  • Shawn
    Professor Harl is great and this course was very interesting. As he admits along the way, this isn't so much a course on The Vikings as much as it is a course on the history of Scandinavia and its impact on European history. And that is the biggest take-away from this course. Medieval Europe was the way it was in large part because of the Vikings. Be it the way the Carolingian kingdoms had to respond to the Viking raids or the Viking settlements ...
  • James
    I really enjoyed listening professor Harl's lecture series on the Viking Period. At close to 20 hours in length, it was a long process for sure, but one that I enjoyed tremendously. His knowledge runs the gamut in terms of breadth and width of topics relating to the period. His steady voice is not one that puts you to sleep in the least. His humor, while understated so as to focus on the topic, is still present, which allows for an aspect of glee...
  • sardit
    Fascinating information, clearly laid out. But I ended up listening to most of it at double time because I just couldn't stand the presenter. If you're doing an audio course, you should not be umming your way through it. It was produced more like a college lecture than a well-produced audio course, and what is tolerable from someone who's doing it in person every day is not from someone whose job is to do it once, perfectly, for all time.
  • Jane Wetzel
    Fascinating. I must listen again and really follow along better with the written outline and good maps. Sadly, warfare and greed have played havoc with humanity, but it is amazing how such despicable traits have helped bring about skills, trade and advancement in so many ways. Sadly, too, we all have an ancestry of being held in slavery. Humanity really has come a long way; but, oh, such a long way to go yet.
  • Jeff J.
    This is my first experience listening to lectures via audiobook, and it won't be my last. Breaking up the subject matter into lectures of between 30-60 minutes in length is perfect for listening while working out or during my commute. While I've done a lot of reading about the Vikings I still managed to learn a lot from this lecturer. Recommended!
  • Oda
    Very good, evidence based account of viking history and viking impact on the world (mostly Europe). The dry factual accounts are nicely balanced out with parts of storytelling and fun facts. A bit jumbled with many characters and complicated family relations towards the last 5 hours. But what he lacks in structure Harl makes up for in enthusiasm.
  • Joanne
    was on DVD , EVERYTHING you want to know about the Viking HISTORY, migration, guess i would have preferred the abridged version- beginning lectures where interesting, but they got into so much detail about the conquering and not enough about their life style- Love the Vikings tv show, guess I should have stuck with that!!! TMI