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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site


Etruscan (Scope note)

The Etruscans inhabited western central Italy. This culture developed out of the Iron Age Villanovan culture—they are traditionally called ‘Etruscan’ after 700 BC, when their language was first written. Etruria was made up of twelve city-states, united by language and religion, who were loosely allied in the Etruscan league. Early on, kings ruled the city-states, but by 500 BC, the power was held by magistrates of the aristocratic class. Ancient Etruria was rich in mineral ores, agricultural resources, and timber; they were a wealthy people. The Etruscans were greatly influenced by the contemporary Greeks but they had their own distinctive character, which in turn influenced the neighbouring Italian peoples, including the Romans. The Etruscans reached the height of their civilization during the sixth century BC. Their decline was caused by the assault on them by the Greeks, the Gauls, and the Romans. They fought with Rome until circa 280 BC, by which time all the Etruscan city sates had lost their independence. By the first century BC, the Etruscans were assimilated into the Roman world. Used with Italy as Production place.