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 Post subject: Re: History on the History Channel (Vikings (TV 2013 -) et a
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:47 am 
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Actually this "pagan threesome" thing is now up to at least four references by episode 5 or 6: the scene where Ragnars wife (Isolde?) is sitting as Chieftess and hears a grievance by a husband who complains that a newborn is not his but the product of a young man who had visited their home some 9 months previously. The woman explains she "does not know who the father is. They were all three in the same bed . . ."

So without any doubt, the writers/producers of this series are trying to convey that the pagan Norse engaged in two-guy one-gal threesomes.

This may or may not be true, I have never heard of it being a custom in that population/time period. I am aware of it having been practiced in some Inuit or Eskimo populations as well as in certain Himalayan populations, but apart from those (as well as post-modern "swinger" society) I was not aware of any such thing in ancient Scandinavia. There is a custom that was quite prevalent throughout many Western European societies that took an influence from eastern Mediterranean origins (though not sure if it was from Phonecian, Greek or other origins) in which a brother of a man who died would take the widow as his wife. This custom even had a name and if memory serves it is referenced in one of Shakespeare's plays . . . Ah yes, the name of it was the "Levirate"

Quote:
lev·i·rate
ˈlev(ə)rət,ˈlevəˌrāt/
noun
a custom of the ancient Hebrews and other peoples by which a man may be obliged to marry his brother's widow.
"levirate marriages"


So Canaanite origins for that one . . .

Anyone know if "threesomes" really were a thing in ancient Scandinavia?

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 Post subject: Re: History on the History Channel (Vikings (TV 2013 -) et a
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:16 pm 
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Anthropoid wrote:
Anyone know if "threesomes" really were a thing in ancient Scandinavia?


Not that I recall hearing as a common practice. But *shrug*


It's a tv series only very loosely based in history. Keep that in mind. I wouldn't be surprised if a writer just felt like portraying Ragnar & his old lady as swingers. Because: adding more drama to tv shows.

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 Post subject: Re: History on the History Channel (Vikings (TV 2013 -) et a
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:25 pm 
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NefariousKoel wrote:
Anthropoid wrote:
Anyone know if "threesomes" really were a thing in ancient Scandinavia?


Not that I recall hearing as a common practice. But *shrug*


It's a tv series only very loosely based in history. Keep that in mind. I wouldn't be surprised if a writer just felt like portraying Ragnar & his old lady as swingers. Because: adding more drama to tv shows.


Yep, that seems the most likely explanation.

In the historical cases where it tended to occur (New World arctic and Himalayas) the general explanation that ecological anthropologist focus on is: resource scarcity else land parcels that are at minimum threshold. For the Inuite/Eskimo, a man by himself had a very difficult time achieving much success, but while two men were much more effective, the resource scarcity essentially meant that, for long stretches of the year, it was untenable for anything more than a nuclear family to co-reside in the same territory. Add one dude to the nuclear family and he gets the perks of bopping the old lady = far more effective hunting. I cannot recall if this tended to be male relatives or not, but it wouldn't surprise me.

Himalayan, as far as I recall it was strictly a thing with two brothers becoming the husband of the same woman.

The other thing I found a bit questionable was the whole voluntary "human sacrifice" thing . . .

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 Post subject: Re: History on the History Channel (Vikings (TV 2013 -) et a
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:54 pm 
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Anthropoid wrote:

The other thing I found a bit questionable was the whole voluntary "human sacrifice" thing . . .



Human sacrifice was a thing in Norse worship.

Although it's frequency during the early middle ages (aka "Dark Ages") is probably up for debate.

Hell.. it was a thing in many places of the world at some point. You just gotta go back a lot further in some areas than others.

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