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Why weren't the Faroe Islands ever conquered by Britain?

Why weren't the Faroe Islands ever conquered by Britain?

Here are the Faroe Islands:

According to the history I read, they've always been under Denmark's control except in the middle of WWII.

Why weren't these ever conquered by Britain? They seem close enough, almost as close as the Shetland Islands (which have been Scottish and/or British since the 1300's).

Particularly after the Seven Years War (1762), when Britain's Navy was becoming hugely dominant, why weren't they taken? There was also the French Revolution, Gunboat War, and the War of the 6th Coalition, all of which saw Britain and Denmark-Norway on opposite sides.

From what I read, there was a trading monopoly on the Faroes, so there was at least economic incentive.

I might also ask the same thing about Iceland or Greenland for similar reasons.


Britain never saw a compelling reason to take them. On the other hand, the Faroes were strategic to Denmark, because of their supply route to Iceland and Greenland. So it was probably the fact that other countries wanted the islands much more.

Wikipedia - History of the Faroe Islands

The first settlers in the Faroe Islands were Celts and Norse. Henry I Sinclair, a Scottish nobleman, married into the Norwegian royal family and took over the islands. In the 1500s, Norway had to drive off British adventurers from the island. The island eventually had problems with pirates and merchant power struggles and maybe wasn't an attractive place for England to conquer.

Wikipedia - Timeline of Faroese history

After going into exile, Christian II offers the Faroes and Iceland to Henry VIII of England as collateral for a loan. Henry denies. Historians believe this saved the two countries from losing their languages, as it happened with the Norn language in Shetland and Orkney.

So England had a chance to take the islands- they simply weren't interested.

Travellerspoint - Faroe Islands

The Faroe Islands were associated with Norway and remained so even after the more southerly Shetlands and Orkneys were firmly established as part of Scotland. When Norway fell under Denmark, the Faroe Islands did as well. During the Napoleonic wars, Great Britain occupied Denmark to keep out the French. Denmark entered the war on Napoleon's side and their Nordic rival, Sweden, then joined the anti-French coalition. Losers do lose and Denmark had to cede Norway to Sweden. The Faroe Islands were left behind with Denmark, as were Greenland and Iceland.

So even when Britain defeated Denmark, it didn't want the Faroes. Also, the UK occupied the islands during WW2.

Overall it seems like other people wanted the Faroes more than the UK did, and thus, it never took the islands for itself.

As for your question about Iceland and Greenland, it's a very good one. Greenland is expensive and irrational to colonise. Iceland was willing to put up with Norway exploiting it, perhaps in exchange for protection for its fishing industry against the British.


The foreign policy of most north European countries, including Britain (and Norway), was directed south, that is to warmer climes. Most European countries neglected (or were blindsided by) regions to the north of them. England's interests lay in France, the Low Countries, Germany, the Mediterranean, and even New England and the 13 colonies, all of which are south (though New England is colder than England because of the Labrador current).

The Faroes were far north, north of Scotland, the northern reaches of which were barely part of Britain. They didn't figure as part of British geography.

Although technically under Danish rule, the Faroes actually belonged to Norway (also under Danish rule). The Faroes were important (and aspirational) to the Norwegians because they were south of most of Norway. Ditto for Iceland and Greenland that were originally settled by Norwegians, although technically under Danish rule.

After the Napoleonic Wars, Denmark was punished in 1814 (by Britain among others), by having Norway proper (Denmark's richest overseas possession) taken from her and given to Sweden (an ally against Napoleon). That done, Britain didn't see the need to punish Denmark further by taking the Faroes, Iceland, or Greenland from her.

This was true even though Norway and Denmark were part of a "personal union.". Still the treaty of Kiel in 1814 transferred Norway, but not the Faroe islands, from Danish to Swedish rule.


Danish language

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Danish language, Danish Dansk, the official language of Denmark, spoken there by more than five million people. It is also spoken in a few communities south of the German border it is taught in the schools of the Faroe Islands, of Iceland, and of Greenland. Danish belongs to the East Scandinavian branch of North Germanic languages. It began to separate from the other Scandinavian languages, to which it is closely related, about ad 1000. The oldest Danish records are runic inscriptions (c. ad 250–800) found from Jutland to southern Sweden the earliest manuscripts in Danish date from the 13th century.

The norms of the first printed books in Danish continued the norm of the royal chancery in Copenhagen, which was not based on any particular dialect and probably reflected a state of the language closer to that of 1350 than of 1550. Because of the influence of the written language, many speech forms used even by the aristocracy at that time were eliminated or branded as vulgar.

Danish is clearly the Scandinavian language that has undergone the greatest amount of change away from Old Scandinavian. During the Middle Ages it lost the old case system, merged the masculine and feminine genders into one common gender, and acquired many Low German words, prefixes, and suffixes from contact with the traders of the Hanseatic League. In the 18th century a mildly puristic reform led to the replacement of many French loans by their native equivalents (e.g., imagination was replaced by indbildning compare German Einbildung), and, in the 18th and 19th centuries, Danish became the vehicle of a classical literature. Modern Danish has only two cases (nominative and genitive) and two genders (common and neuter). The most outstanding feature of its sound system is the glottal stop (stød), derived from what was originally a tonal accent. A spelling reform in 1948 eliminated the capitalization of nouns and introduced the letter å for aa, thereby making the spelling more similar to that of Norwegian and Swedish.

Evidence of Denmark’s political power and influence can be seen in the stamp of the Danish language on the Norwegian, Swedish, and Icelandic languages.


You Could Rewrite This BBC Story About Faroe Islands For Israel

Prominent on the BBC’s website this morning I saw a story about the Faroe Islands and their language. Once you have the ability to deconstruct journalism like this and can apply an indigenous lens to the story, you see this as a story about an indigenous people working hard to retain their unique culture despite colonization. We don’t think of Denmark as a colonizing power, but for centuries it has been.

If you are familiar with Ryan Bellerose’s work on why Jews and Judaism are Indigenous to Israel, you’ll know that language is one of the five core components of indigenous identity (the others are blood, land, language, culture & spirituality). In the context of Israel, that is why the revival of Hebrew as a modern spoken language (instead of just for religious observances) was such an important part of rebuilding Israel again.

The BBC story is told in a series of photographs, short texts and a short video. It’s told in a completely apolitical way (this is in the Travel section of the website), here are some highlights.

The Faroese people have been fighting to keep their language alive ever since it was suppressed by the Danish, when the islands became part of the Dano-Norwegian Kingdom in 1380. With the Reformation, that stronghold was reinforced and Faroese was completely banned in schools. People had no choice but to succumb to the vernacular of the law courts and the Danish parliament.

While Danish dominated official realms for centuries, the wider community continued to speak and sing in Faroese. The written language they use now only formally came into being in 1846, and over the next few decades an upturn in the Faroese economy, caused by sloop fishing and the end of the Danish trade monopoly, further increased national confidence.

With greater links to the outside world in the late 1800s, people began to assert the integrity of their own tongue, and oral Faroese became a school subject in 1912, followed by the written language in 1920. After the establishment of Home Rule in 1948, Faroese was recognised as the official language of government however, Danish is still taught as a compulsory subject, and all the Faroes’ parliamentary laws still need to be translated into Danish.

Banning or suppression of an indigenous language is a vital step for colonization. So much of our culture and values are transmitted uniquely in language: different languages have been proven to make peoples brains work in different ways. It’s no accident that Arabic has replaced scores of local indigenous languages across all the areas it has conquered all the way to North Africa.

The culture is intimately tied to the land (sea) and language: unique words for tools and parts of fishing boats that only matter to Faroe islanders when they’re engaged in the methods of survival they developed to live in such a remote and harsh environment.

Faroese culture, identity and language have been shaped in part by the windswept islands’ harsh climate and far-flung location. The need to work together to survive has given these islanders a strong sense of community and a dogged refusal to let go of a way of life that has sustained them through unforgiving winters, war and disease.

….

Language is as important to him as it was to his poet ancestor, and he can tell you the traditional name of every fishing and hunting tool on display in the museum.

This part about a local church and knowing where your ancestors are buried is very important. It speaks to the strong connection with the land and knowing where one’s ancestors are buried. That’s what makes Hebron so unimaginably important to Jews.

Inside, most people can point to where they used to sit with their parents as children, and outside to the plots where their parents have now been laid to rest. Many also remember when they had to battle to have any religious services in their own language – it was only in 1961 that the first Bible was published in Faroese.

Buried deep in the story is a an uncharacteristic swipe at the EU (clear evidence this piece of journalism didn’t come from the more political and vehemently pro-EU parts of the BBC):

Locals are proud of being able to determine their own quotas – one of the reasons they have never been part of the EU, despite Denmark signing up in the 1970s.

It’s interesting how they drop in a reference to Catalonia. Of course what’s missing is the best example the world has ever seen of an indigenous revival including the complete re-creation and adoption of an ancient language: Israel and Hebrew.

Nevertheless, the Faroese are keeping a close eye on how Catalonia’s bid for independence progresses, as well as Britain after Brexit. Separatists feel that independence is long overdue, though for many, the spike in taxes if they were to lose Danish support is more than enough reason to keep some of the ties that bind them. Whatever does happen in the future though, the fight to keep Faroese as a living, breathing language will endure.

The story of Israel’s indigenous revival hasn’t been told properly. I think it’s a very important aspect to who we are in Israel which could be stressed more when those of us talking about Israel tell our story. I’m sure the Faroe Islanders wouldn’t know to see the parallels and it would be unthinkable for the BBC to produce a story like this about Israel.


Accidental Discovery of Iceland by Naddod and Gardar

Iceland lies about 420 kilometers (260 miles) to the west of the Faroe Islands, and was first discovered by accident. The hero of our story, Hrafna-Flóki Vilgerðarson, is credited as the first Norseman to intentionally sail to Iceland to settle there. But the truth is that he wasn’t the first to discover it. That credit goes to his countryman Naddod (Naddoðr), a man from Norway, and one of the early settlers of the Faroe Islands. Naddod discovered Iceland unintentionally.

He set sail from Norway for the Faroe Islands but got lost on the way and went far off course, eventually reaching the shores of a new land further to the west of his initial goal. He landed on the eastern coast of Iceland, attempted to survey the land, and searched for signs of human life. He found no people there. Initially he named the new land he found “Snæland”, meaning Snow-land. Eventually, Naddod decided to sail east and tried to reach the Faroe Islands, his original destination.

The next Norseman to reach Iceland, also by accident, was Garðar Svavarsson (or Gardar Svavarsson), a Danish man. He was married to a woman from the Hebrides in Scotland, and around 860 AD, he set sail towards the Hebrides to claim his inheritance. But as he was crossing the treacherous passage between mainland Scotland and the Orkneys, Garðar Svavarsson was thrown far of course when his ship was swept up in a major storm. Forced on a northerly course as a result, he reached the shores of a new which he circumnavigated. This proved that this new land was actually an island. He landed on the northern coast of “Iceland,” built a house, and stayed there for entire winter. Today, this place is called Húsavík (“House Bay”). It was the first place in Iceland to be settled by Norsemen. Svavarsson later returned home and spoke of the new land he found, praising it, and calling it Garðarshólmi, after himself.

However, no Norseman had sailed intentionally to Iceland until Hrafna-Flóki Vilgerðarson. Having heard tales of a vast new land far to the west, Flóki decided to take his family to see the riches of this new land for himself and settle there if possible. Accompanied by his wife, Gró, their two children Oddleifur and Þjóðgerður, and three other men (Herjólfr, Faxi, and Thorolf), Flóki raised the sails on his longship from Western Norway and set course for the Shetland Islands.

The medieval Icelandic Landnámabók saga that describes Flóki’s journey, tells us that he met misfortune early in his journey. His daughter drowned off the Shetlands. Despite this tragedy, he continued on his journey and next reached the Faroe Islands. There his other daughter got married. Restocking his resources and still devoted to his mission, Flóki acquired three ravens from the Faroe Islands. Using ravens to find land was an old tactic used by Norse seafarers. When searching for landfall, a sailor would let loose a raven. If the bird took off in a certain direction and didn’t return, this was a sure sign it had reached land. The Viking explorers then followed the direction the raven flew.

Cape Dyrholaey, southernmost part of Iceland not far from the town of Vík. ( alfotokunst / Adobe Stock)


Shetland Islands: Viking history

Seabird colonies nesting on the cliffs at Hermaness NNR.__© Lorne Gill/SNH__For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.org.uk

Once a Norse stronghold, the Shetland Islands, in Britain’s extreme north, are littered with relics of their former conquerors and much more besides, writes Paul Kirkwood

The Shetland Islands are marooned over 100 miles off the coast of northern Scotland. They are so far north, in fact, that they’re usually depicted on maps of the British Isles in an inset square and are closer to the Arctic Circle than London.

Shetland wildlife

Once you get to Shetland, though – and it’s only a 90-minute flight from Glasgow or Edinburgh – you don’t have to travel far to experience its wildlife, history and culture. About five minutes by car, in fact. That’s the distance from Sumburgh airport to Shetland’s southernmost point and the logical start to an exploration of the archipelago. It’s crowned by a lighthouse built by Robert Stevenson in 1821, but the main attraction for visitors between May and August are the puffins. Simply walk up a boardwalk beside a dry stone wall next to the lighthouse, look over it and there they all are – so numerous and close you barely need binoculars.

Shetland’s Viking archeology

The first, and most celebrated, archaeological site on Shetland, Jarlshof, is so close to the airport there’s little more than a road and perimeter fence between the two. Named by Sir Walter Scott, the site is a jumble of ruins and archaeological remains dating from the Stone Age to 17 th century and including Viking longhouses. Working out which bit belongs to which era is all part of the fun – for archaeologists and visitors alike. There’s access to all areas which means you can descend into the well preserved Pictish wheelhouses, ascend to the first floor of the old laird’s house and wander around all areas in between.

There are more archaeological riddles literally just down the road at Scatness where the remains of an early Iron Age village and broch were discovered and excavated following construction work for the extension of the airport runway. The Vikings literally burnt their boats when they came to Scatness. The rivets that held the distinctive clinker-built boats together were found where they had fallen into the fire as the wood burnt.

Where to see Viking treasures

To put everything in context and set the scene for the rest of your tour you should head next to the excellent Shetland Museum in Lerwick, Shetland’s capital and only town. Exhibits here include a giant hunk of butter that was used by Shetlanders to pay tax to the king of Norway in around AD1000-1500. The butter had been wrapped and buried in a peat bog to keep it cool and damp until it was time to hand it over. The savvy Shetlanders kept the best butter for themselves!

There is also a display about Up Helly Aa, a descendant of the ancient feast of Yule held by Norsemen to celebrate the rebirth of the sun in late January. Dressed as Vikings with winged helmets and shields, men (called guizers) form themselves into squads under the leadership of the guizer jarl (translated as ‘earl’). They march through their town or village bearing giant axes and torches and pulling a boat – a longship in the case of the principal Lerwick festival – into which they cast their torches at the end of the procession to create a bonfire. A long night of merriment follows during which guizers tour halls and other premises performing short shows and dances. You can find out more about Up Helly Aa at an exhibition that runs during the summer in the galley shed in Lerwick and includes the jarl squad suits from the last 10 years.

Lasting Viking influence on Shetland

The Viking influence pervades Shetland. In many respects these islands should be another country and up to 1469 were, indeed, governed from Norway. Many of the place names belong firmly to Norway such as Burra and Voe. My favourite is Muckle Flugga which translates as ‘large, steep-sided island’. Topped by a lighthouse, the islet is the northernmost point of Unst and the entire British Isles. That’s if you exclude the otherwise insignificant and plainly named Out Stack, which hunches a few yards further north still. Continue in the same direction from here and you’ll encounter nothing but sea until you reach the Arctic. The view of the lighthouse is the highlight of a half-day walk from the Burrafirth visitors’ centre across the Hermaness nature reserve to the west coast and back over Hermaness Hill. Beware of great skuas (or ‘bonxies’ as they’re called here) which may try to dive bomb you – and keep an eye open for otters sometimes seen playing in the Loch of Cliff.

A few miles south is a replica of a Viking longboat undergoing reconstruction. Named Skidbladner, the vessel came to Unst in 2000 during a voyage from Sweden. The aim of the sailors had been to recreate a North Atlantic crossing made by Norwegian explorer Leif Ericson in the 9 th century. They failed, but couldn’t have chosen a more suitable spot to come ashore. The story of the Skidbladner is told at the Unst Boat Haven in Haroldswick which, among its many vessels, includes herring boats from around a century ago when 600 boats and 50 curers operated out of nearby Baltasound.

The Shetland dialect is another example of the links between the nations and their cultures. Derived from Old Norse, the dialect has an accent that is a weird blend of Scots and Norwegian and also takes sounds from Denmark and Germany, former trading partners. A house down south is a “hoose doon sooth” and B&B landladies don’t make breakfast but “mack brackfast”. The Keep Shetland Tidy slogan is “Dunna Chuck Bruck”. Nothing lost in translation there.

Strong links to Norway

The Shetland-Norway connection was never stronger than during the Second World War – as you can discover on excursions to Lunna and Scalloway. The hamlet of Lunna lies half way up a beautiful, peaceful finger of land extending north-east from Shetland Mainland. The contrast between this place and the much busier main roads and modern settlements more typical of Shetland couldn’t be greater. This is how all of the islands were before the oil money, apparently.

The Shetland Bus

Lunna House is an imposing 17 th century laird’s home that today provides accommodation but, during the war, served as the initial headquarters of the Shetland bus. This was the name given to fishing boats which covertly transported men, arms and cargo between Shetland and Nazi-occupied Norway often under the cover of darkness. Compared to the high-tech methods of modern warfare the link seems quaint but, of course, was deadly serious. Lunna was chosen as this most singular bus station because it had a usable pier, sheltered harbour and large house for accommodation.

In the laird’s day the harbour was ideal for landing herring. He built a look-out tower on a hill beside it form which he could spy on his fishermen to ensure they landed their catch at Lunna and not Mossbank across the water. Further adding to Lunna’s charms is its immaculately restored kirk, the oldest in Shetland still in use, built in 1753. Look out for the hole in the wall said to have allowed leprosy victims to hear the service while remaining separated from the congregation inside.

The Shetland bus soon outgrew its early base and switched to Scalloway, the islands’ ancient capital, where there was a better slipway and repair facilities. The bus is commemorated with a plinth at the harbour and its full story is retold in the Scalloway Museum which was opened in May 2012 by Norwegian prime minister Jens Stoltenberg. The principal exhibit is the Heland boat which served in the Shetland bus and also brought over 23 refugees. At the other end of the high street is Norway House where Norwegians stayed in between missions. In common with many other buildings in the village and throughout Shetland it’s made from timber and painted red, Scandinavian-style.

One of the panels at Jarlshof pointed out how, in Viking times and so at one with the sea, men weren’t afraid of rowing for miles over the ocean to trade and therefore that Shetland, being roughly equidistant from the Faroe Islands, Scotland and Norway, was actually a convenient, accessible central hub rather than somewhere out on a limb as it is perceived today. Last June a pair of rowers from Norway completed the same 200-mile crossing in a 17ft open wooden boat in seven days. As wayfarers of all sorts have proved in the past and present and for a variety of reasons, these islands are only as remote as you make them.


Essential Faroe Islands facts as obscure destination opens up to UK holidaymakers

Direct flights to the Faroe Islands will launch from the UK next month giving more choice for holidaymakers wanting to head abroad this year.

Although the islands have been on the government&aposs green list since May 17, they previously were only accessible via Denmark which had a travel ban on visitors from Britain.

That has now been relaxed and Atlantic Airways has announced it will begin flights from Edinburgh on July 1 meaning the Faroe islands joins Iceland and Gibraltar as green list quarantine-free holiday options for Britons desperate for an overseas break.

This remote archipelago - located midway between Iceland and Norway, north of Scotland – is the perfect place to get away from the crowds, with a population across its 18 islands of just 50,000, plus 80,000 sheep.

Favourite activities include hiking, birdwatching, fishing and adventure sports. There is also a vibrant food scene with a Michelin-starred restaurant KOKS.

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It consists of 18 separate islands stretching across 1,399 sq kilometres. There was a total of 130,000 overseas visitors in 2019.

How to get to the Faroe Islands

Fly direct from Edinburgh to Vágar Island from £308 pp return. Flights operate twice-weekly (Mondays and Thursdays) from July 1 to December 2021. Visit www.atlantic.fo for further information.

Where to stay

Two new 4-star hotels opened in 2020 Hotel Brandan and the Hilton Garden Inn, both situated in the capital, Tórshavn. An overnight stay costs from £153 for two sharing at the Hilton Garden Inn and from £209 for two sharing at Hotel Brandan.

Visit most remote James Bond movie location

Set for release in September, the hotly-anticipated 25th James Bond film, ‘No Time to Die’, used the wild and rugged scenery of the Faroe Islands in the third and final act of the movie. Scenes were filmed on the island of Kalsoy, populated by just 150 inhabitants and known for its twisting roads, deep valleys and famous Kallur Lighthouse, perched on a steep cliff at the top of the island.

The remote island can only be reached by ferry or helicopter you can now take the James Bond Sightseeing Tour and hike your way around the film locations, led by a specialist guide. The tour costs from £315 pp, including a tour of the film locations with a guide, ferry crossing, hiking around the film locations and a boat trip.

Drive through a subsea tunnel

In December 2020, work was completed on the 11km Eysturoy Tunnel, the second-longest subsea tunnel for vehicles in the world, and the only one to feature a roundabout. The tunnel connects the islands of Streymoy (location of Tórshavn, the capital) with the island of Eysturoy. The roundabout features a dramatic light installation by Faroese artist Tróndur Patursson. The cost is from £20 return per vehicle.

The 20th G! Festival

This July sees the 20th anniversary of the G! Festival, an eclectic and intimate music festival held in the tiny fjord-side village of Syðrugøta, home to just 400 people.

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Stages are built on the beach and the football pitch, making this a truly unique three-day event.

Caught between the peaks and the ocean, in a break between the cliffs skirting the coastline, Syðrugøta lies within an unrivalled natural amphitheatre and is set against a backdrop of the Faroes’ breath-taking landscape, dominated by grass-carpeted mountains.

Over the years, the festival has seen world-class acts perform, including Fat Boy Slim, The Guillemots and Travis, and this year’s line-up includes Faroese artist Eivør Pálsdóttir. The G! Festival takes place from July 15-17 and tickets cost from £173 pp - https://gfestival.fo/.

Faroes&apos food and fashion

Traditional Faroes food is mainly based on meat, seafood and potatoes and uses few fresh vegetables. Mutton of the Faroe sheep is the basis of many meals, and one of the most popular treats is skerpikjøt, well aged, wind-dried mutton, which is quite chewy.

Another Faroese specialty is made from pilot whale meat and blubber - but not for those with delicate tastebuds. Fresh fish is also widely-consumed and more popular.

There are also two breweries on the islands.

There has been a great interest in Faroese sweaters made famous in the TV series The Killing, where the main actress (Detective Inspector Sarah Lund, played by Sofie Gråbøl) wears the distinctive knitwear.

Visitors can buy one of the iconic designs at fashion store Guðrun & Guðrun.


Argentina only wants it back now that it has valuable resources

No because…

The only reason Argentina wants the island back in the first place is because numerous oil deposits have been found in and around the Falkland Islands.

You do realise that Queen Elizabeth the 1st ruled in the 1500s, 300 years before Argentina was even a country, in a time when the first Spanish explorers were brutally massacring the native inhabitants of the area in a horrific act of ethnic cleansing. At the very end of Elizabeth’s reign, in 1600, the islands were first sighted by a Dutch explorer, and 90 years later a British man became the first human to ever go there when his ship was swept off course to the islands, again, centuries before Argentina was a country, and the area was still largely under native rule. I think that this pretty much refutes your astoundingly ill-thought out comment.

Yes because…

No this is untrue – Argentina has claimed the islands since the reign of Queen Elizabeth the first. The recent discovery of natural resources has simply brought their claim to the forefront of their attention…


Just when you thought you&aposd read it all about the Vikings - even going so far as to go live in their homelands - a book like this comes along and you realise how little you really know.

Who doesn&apost love the Vikings? Everyone. Yes, even you. But how much about them do we really know? How much have we &aposlearned&apos from TV and film sources? Not the most reliable guardians of historical knowledge, I&aposm sure you&aposll agree. How much are we who we are, because they were who they were? Are they still to be fo Just when you thought you'd read it all about the Vikings - even going so far as to go live in their homelands - a book like this comes along and you realise how little you really know.

Who doesn't love the Vikings? Everyone. Yes, even you. But how much about them do we really know? How much have we 'learned' from TV and film sources? Not the most reliable guardians of historical knowledge, I'm sure you'll agree. How much are we who we are, because they were who they were? Are they still to be found with us today? Or in us? It's with books like this, that we can come away from "Hey ho! Let's go a-raidin' - just because we can!" with smiles nestling in beards baloney, and once again touch base with facts - and new facts at that.

Viking Britain, does as it states on the cover and relate the story, in a kind of chronological time line as much as possible - given the need in many areas, to go off towards the rest of Europe and North Atlantic - analysing their history as it relates to their activities in and around Britain. That includes, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland. As I say, I have read many, many histories of the Vikings in my time, I know a bit, I'm no expert, so I need books like these as much as the next person. On starting, I did think 'do we really need another book about the Vikings?' Well, yes we do, with the regard to the fact that there are both new ways of recovering new evidence and new ways of looking at the evidence we have recovered, being developed all the time. Viking Britain uses many of these new strands of research to further develop ideas previously encountered, and also to go in new directions. It is always readable, thanks to the time-line style, developing like a story (or should it be Saga?) keeping your attention focussed on taking onboard what made the Vikings in Britain who we've become. You see what I did there?

There is still, I feel, something missing here. A look at the fact that the Vikings who came to England were from the same (rough) area as the Jutes who, along with the Angles and Saxons, had made the same journey a couple of hundred years before. Was there any residual memory? I'm not saying deja vu, more a realisation that save for a few hundred years apart, they were attacking many of their own ancestors' descendants! As did the Normans of course, in 1066. I'd like to have seen a look at that little nugget.

So, I'm thinking, how can a people who invaded Britain still be held by the British in such high regard, even loved? In a way the Normans - themselves descendants of Vikings - are not? They came, they plundered, they conquered large parts of the country, they ruled, they took half the population away to sell as slaves, and yet are still heroic fantastic fantasy figures. Their beliefs undergoing a resurgence. Unfortunately attracting a lot of the 'if you don't like it hit it with an axe and all the pseudo-bollocks, rent a meaningful statement, but really xenophobia, go out and conquer like the Vikings, but woe betide the bastards if they want to come and settle in your land, 'honour your ancestors' crap. Maybe it's their simplicity that attracts. Simplicity of their life, the seeming simplicity of their purpose - go, kill, raid, take. The answer is of course, that they were much more pragmatic than they are often given credit for, they came, liked what they saw, and stayed. Eventually being fully integrated and as British as you and I. They are in us now, in the way we look, the way we talk, and therefore in the way we think. Britain (especially) owes so much to the Vikings - we wouldn't be who we are now if they hadn't been who they were then.

This is an interesting book to read, that introduces some basic ideas about Viking/Norse culture, then goes into a long account of the Viking attacks on Britain between 800-1050 AD. There are some nice sections of prose and some personal notes about his journeys in researching this book.

It&aposs not a history of the Vikings, or the Vikings in Britain, or even Viking Britain - it&aposs a history of the Anglo-Saxons fighting the Vikings, the rise of the House of Wessex, with some expla This is an interesting book to read, that introduces some basic ideas about Viking/Norse culture, then goes into a long account of the Viking attacks on Britain between 800-1050 AD. There are some nice sections of prose and some personal notes about his journeys in researching this book.

It's not a history of the Vikings, or the Vikings in Britain, or even Viking Britain - it's a history of the Anglo-Saxons fighting the Vikings, the rise of the House of Wessex, with some explanation of who they were fighting (ie, Vikings).

Although Williams does mention a few archaeological discoveries, in a single page he dismisses the rest of the archaeological record and its interpretation as too complicated and too full of arguments to cover in the book. Which basically sounds like Williams is completely out of his depth outside of reading the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles and a few Norse sagas.

Additionally, as with too many books, Williams makes the classic mistake of presuming England = Britain. So we get a lot of English history - specifically based in the South of England - but only a few brief mentions of the long-standing Viking kingdoms based along the coast of Scotland the Isle of Man (are they no longer British?), let alone any in-depth discussion of the Danelaw itself and the establishment of Viking culture in Northern Britain.

So, a well-written and interesting source for discussion of the Anglo-Saxons with some insight into their enemies - but a book about this Vikings this is not.
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Due to a lack of alternative sources beyond the Saxon chronicles this book would be more aptly named fighting the Vikings in Britain.

The author valiantly and largely successfully makes the point that the Vikings were not just homicidal marauders. In fact they they were homicidal marauders and other things. The other things is not entirely clear but trading, craftsman and the glue that connected Britain to the rest of Northern Europe are some of the areas covered. I enjoyed the authors asides, o Due to a lack of alternative sources beyond the Saxon chronicles this book would be more aptly named fighting the Vikings in Britain.

The author valiantly and largely successfully makes the point that the Vikings were not just homicidal marauders. In fact they they were homicidal marauders and other things. The other things is not entirely clear but trading, craftsman and the glue that connected Britain to the rest of Northern Europe are some of the areas covered. I enjoyed the authors asides, on various unpleasant camping trips in search of first hand communing with Viking sites, a great deal.

The basic conclusion was the vikings became British no more alien than the Saxons and the Angles who had preceded them in bloody conquest before. Oh and for good weather one would be much better off studying the aztecs.
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I do like factual books that deal with the subject in chronological order, suits my pigeon hole mind some might say!, this book does just that. Setting out by setting the first documented landing at Portland in Dorset and moving on through the known history. Here we have all the myths and legends, learned since a boy, laid bare. No more horned or winged helmets and no mention of King Alfred&aposd burnt cakes. Such is life. The many Kings their alliances, death and betrayal are prominent. The Viking I do like factual books that deal with the subject in chronological order, suits my pigeon hole mind some might say!, this book does just that. Setting out by setting the first documented landing at Portland in Dorset and moving on through the known history. Here we have all the myths and legends, learned since a boy, laid bare. No more horned or winged helmets and no mention of King Alfred'd burnt cakes. Such is life. The many Kings their alliances, death and betrayal are prominent. The Viking (Scandinavian) influence upon Britain has endured through to the present.

This book, although a serious study, by Thomas Williams who is a curator at the British Museum, is nevertheless easily read and above all easy to understand even if the references to Old Norse and Old English are difficult to fathom. Poor on my part for not looking up help with the pronunciation. I learned a lot and I have visited the Uffington White Horse and Waylands Smithy among others.

This is a recommended book for anyone interested in this part of British history.
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I don&apost like writing poor reviews, especially when the author so clearly knows his field, but this book is dreadful.

Williams can&apost keep to one thread, either geographically, politically or chronologically, and seems powerless to resist his urge to wander hopelessly off topic. At one stage he writes three pages about a trip that he took to the Lake District, and how his car got stuck on a cart track and he needed a push from some passing hikers. A few pages later he manages to cover 5 military en I don't like writing poor reviews, especially when the author so clearly knows his field, but this book is dreadful.

Williams can't keep to one thread, either geographically, politically or chronologically, and seems powerless to resist his urge to wander hopelessly off topic. At one stage he writes three pages about a trip that he took to the Lake District, and how his car got stuck on a cart track and he needed a push from some passing hikers. A few pages later he manages to cover 5 military engagements that took place in 1016 in two sentences.

I kept reading in the hope that he would somehow snap out of it, only to be sorely disappointed. . more

Recently I’ve found myself delving deep (ok I read two books) into Viking Age Britain, personally I blame the cinematic kineticism of modern historical depictions, think History’s Vikings or Netflix’s The Last Kingdom, TV shows that bring history to life and offer a sometimes brutal escapism from modern life. TV worlds are built upon the archetype of heroic protagonists, striving to survive in cruel and inhospitable worlds, worlds where a leaders’ strength of purpose was matched by their strengt Recently I’ve found myself delving deep (ok I read two books) into Viking Age Britain, personally I blame the cinematic kineticism of modern historical depictions, think History’s Vikings or Netflix’s The Last Kingdom, TV shows that bring history to life and offer a sometimes brutal escapism from modern life. TV worlds are built upon the archetype of heroic protagonists, striving to survive in cruel and inhospitable worlds, worlds where a leaders’ strength of purpose was matched by their strength of arms, where the cruelty and barbarism of humanity could be overcome by a king and his pure convictions. It goes without saying (though I am saying it) that the highly stylised depictions of heroics afforded us through TV, while gloriously entertaining, may not accurately represent historicity and leaves the audience with an exaggerated representation of Viking identity.

This thorny issue of Viking identity forms the core theme of ‘Viking Britain’ by the Historian and writer Thomas Williams who formerly worked as a curator on the major international exhibition Vikings: Life and Legend. It was whilst working on Vikings: Life and Legend that Williams, prompted by a critique that lamented the lack of gory bloodshed (and any actual Vikings hewing men), began to see how the modern depictions of Viking identity are coloured by their reputation as history’s bogeymen. There is, of course, more to the Vikings than their murderous reputation, particularly in their impact on the British Isles and throughout ‘Viking Britain’ Williams sets out to reclaim Viking historicity and “restore dignity” to Viking identity.

Well… that seemed to be the aim set out in Williams’ preface to the book, I’m not quite convinced Williams didn’t actively set out to prove the critique wrong however as ‘Viking Britain’ seems to revel in the very bloodthirsty reputation of the Vikings that was sorely missed from the Vikings: Life and Legend exhibition.

Williams’ fascination with the bloodthirsty Viking identity is evident in his choice of sources and in how he structures his book. Chapters are begun with poetic, religious, saga or even more contemporary modern quotes that over time have fuelled the modern reception of Vikings as a hard and dangerous people. Even the choice of chapter title reads like an Amon Amarth (Swedish Viking Metal) track list, ‘Heart of Darkness, Shores in Flames, Eagles of Blood, Bloodaxe’ ominously set the tone. So much for “restoring dignity” to Viking identity. The ominous danger of the Viking identity is also presented by Williams’ own narrative reworking of key historical moments that are drawn from the medieval sagas and chronicles, themselves vested in their own historical contexts and interests in glorifying and goryfying Viking identities. On top of this there are also paragraphs where Williams’ presents descriptions of the landscapes and geography of Britain, like a Viking travel doc Williams embeds himself in the world as it is and how it was. This approach is one of the great successes of the book as it brings ‘Viking Britain’ to life and immerses the reader in a world that is as visceral and vivid as our own. In this way it reflects the cinematic kineticism of contemporary Viking depictions, focusing on the epic narratives and near mythic reputations above historicity. Like the TV shows ‘Viking Britain’ fundamentally has a structural contradiction, what it gains in entertainment is played off against historicity.

Overall it makes Viking Britain seem somewhat paradoxical, academically speaking, in that Williams is essentially providing the evidence against his own proposition of restoring ‘Viking dignity’. In fact, Williams does provides some good analysis and argument around handling a Viking rebrand, particularly when warning about the co-option of Viking identity by fascists in WWII and the danger inherent in cultures that seek to idealise dangerous men. Yet, it is not enough to stop Williams from falling prey to his own idealisation of bloodthirsty Norsemen and at its core ‘Viking Britain’ can’t avoided its own ambiguous concept of Viking identity, reflecting on both their alieness and their familiarity. However this ambiguity does provide Williams with his most intriguing analysis, proposing that Saxon identity was challenged by a Viking identity that represented their primal selves, and perhaps like the Saxons our modern reception of Viking identity, (both in academia and entertainment) shows a longing and a fear for our own primal selves.
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A Peaceful Invasion – The Allied Occupation Of Iceland During World War Two

After Hitler seized Denmark and Norway in 1940, the British government became concerned about his next step, as the Nazi war machine demonstrated its might and unprecedented disrespect of the rules of warfare. Denmark, which was neutral, was invaded and conquered within a day and the British attempt to defend Norway ended up in a retreat.

The next strategic point was Iceland ― an island state in the Atlantic Ocean, which was in close ties with Denmark, claiming its independence in 1918, but still accepting the Danish king as their sovereign. Iceland was a neutral country and had no army whatsoever. The capital city, Reykjavik, was protected by 60 police armed with handguns.

Having invaded the Faroe Islands in April 1940, which were of similar status as Iceland, the British continued convincing Iceland to abandon neutrality and join the Allies. Its position, halfway between North America and Europe, was supposed to enable the British to improve their defenses against potential German submarine raids. Iceland stayed stubborn during these negotiations, claiming their right to be neutral and believing that even Hitler would respect their decision.

The map of Iceland with marked strategic points.

Though the situation was gravely serious, the British kept their cool. They decided to invade Iceland first and ask questions later. The invasion was codenamed Operation Fork. On May 4th, 1940, Alexander Cadogan, then British Permanent Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs made an entry in his diary stating:

Home 8. Dined and worked. Planning conquest of Iceland for next week. Shall probably be too late! Saw several broods of ducklings.

Sailor sappers placing the charges in the bridge over a rapid stream whilst they are training at Hvalfjord, Iceland.

Well, opposite from Cadogan – who didn’t think much of the operation -the Naval Intelligence Department had several resistance scenarios once the invasion was to commence. First of all, a number of people of German ethnicity lived in Iceland. It was expected that they might organize a guerilla force, or even stage a coup against the Icelandic government. The second scenario included a fast reaction by the Germans, who could have easily staged a counter-invasion of Iceland from the coast of Norway.

There was a force of 60 police, a possibility of Danish ships near Iceland which would certainly help a resisting population and a marooned German freighter Bahia Blanca, rescued by an Icelandic trawler. Its 62-men crew on the island at the time and they were seen as a potential threat. Especially because British Naval Intelligence already that German U-boats were stationed in Icelandic harbors and the freighter was a cover for bringing in reserve crews for the submarines.

Due to delays, the invasion which was planned to take place on 6th of May was rescheduled for 8th. Royal Marines boarded HMS Berwick and the HMS Glasgow, the two cruisers designated to take them to the island-state. The landing party included 746 Marines who were initially poorly armed. In addition to that many of them were still half-trained and many had never fired a rifle in their life. Nevertheless, they headed for Iceland, in the hope of performing a fast seizure of the island. Marines were also accompanied by members of the Naval Intelligence Department and a diplomatic mission with whom was attached the would-be consul of Iceland, Gerald Shepherd.

Ratings, loaded with their gear for an attack on enemy positions, on the march to the rendezvous during training at Hvalfjord, Iceland.

The Marines were seasick, as they weren’t well accustomed to traveling by ship. One of them committed suicide for unknown reasons. He would become the only casualty of the campaign.

On the 10th of May 1940, a reconnaissance plane was launched from the Berwick. Even though it was warned not to fly across Reykjavik, it neglected the order. Since Iceland had no airports nor airplanes, the noise of the Supermarine Walrus reconnaissance aircraft gave away the British intentions.

The German consul was probably the most alarmed since he hurried to the coast where he saw the British ships approaching. He went home and started burning all confidential documents in his possession.

The Royal Marines were finally on the move. Two destroyers, Fearless and Fortune, joined the cruisers and started transporting the 400 Marines ashore. The ships were crowded and the men were still seasick and not in a state to act as a proper task force. A crowd was already gathered to wait for the invaders. Once they were ashore, Consul Shepherd politely asked the Icelandic police officer in front of the bewildered crowd: “Would you mind getting the crowd to stand back a bit, so that the soldiers can get off the destroyer?”

“Certainly,” replied the officer.

The Supermarine Walrus, though it proved ultimately unsuitable for operations in Iceland, had the advantage that it could land almost anywhere.

Reykjavik was taken without a shot being fired. The Marines hurried to the German consul’s house, where they managed to salvage a significant number of confidential documents.

On the evening of May 10th, the government of Iceland issued a protest, saying that its neutrality had been “flagrantly violated” and its “independence infringed,” but eventually agreed to the British terms. The troops stayed on the island out of fear of a German counter-attack, but it was later realized that Hitler had dismissed the notion of occupying Iceland as its strategic importance wasn’t bigger than the cost of the invasion.

Arrival of US troops in Iceland in January 1942.

The British were joined by the Canadians, and they were relieved by US forces in 1941. When the US officially engaged in WWII, the number of American troops on the island reached 30,000. This number equaled 25% of Iceland’s population and 50% of its total male population. Even though the occupation brought many economic advantages to Iceland and many infrastructural benefits such as airfields, hospitals, and roads, the local population protested against the courtship between Allied soldiers and Icelandic women.

The Icelanders called this situation simply “The Situation” (Ástandið) and the 255 children born out of these relationships “Children of the Situation”. A number of marriages happened between Allied soldiers and local women, but some men accused the women of betrayal and prostitution. Iceland spent the war in peaceful occupation and often refers to the period as the “Lovely War”. The British retreated completely after the war, and most of their facilities were turned over to the Icelandic government, but American military presence remained. The last of the US soldiers were pulled back from Iceland in 30th of September 2006.


Potential British colonies

Cannot say, perhaps East Nusa Tenggara is also a possibility. Bali would have also been desirable too provided West Nusa Tenggara somehow remained Hindu to create a contiguous link from Bali to East Nusa Tenggara.

Also assuming a scenario where the British focus on New Guinea, Timor, Sulawesi and Maluku Islands in the event another group (like say the Chinese via some form of wanked Lanfang Republic) manage to take all of Borneo and colonize it. That said cannot see how things would be different had Sulawesi and Maluku Islands fell under British rule.

Xsampa

No clue how feasible the following are in terms of potential historical British colonies (more interested in the notion of them managing to hold the most profitable colonies or at least providing some other benefit to British interests whether short/medium/long-term e.g. logistics, future allies / commonwealth members, etc - depending how one defines profitable), yet find the following appealing:

  • A surviving English-speaking part of ATL Belgium to add another dimension to the country (essentially much of Nord-Pas-de-Calais via ATL wanked Pale of Calais)
  • Malta
  • Cyprus
  • Brittany
  • Maya Protectorate (a Maya continuation/successor state composed of Belize, Guatemala as well as the Mexican states of Yucatán, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, and Chiapas)
  • Panama
  • Venezuela (akin to OTL Klein-Venedig plus possibly the Colombian departments of La Guajira, Cesar, Magdalena and North Santander yet minus Guayana region)
  • All of the Guianas (plus other parts of Brazil including Roraima and possibly Marajó island with its borders being the Orinoco, Casiquiare canal, Rio Negro and Amazon Rivers - Yet envision another European power taking the area)
  • Uruguay
  • Patagonia
  • Argentina (albeit reluctantly plus Uruguay, Patagonia and other parts of Chile provided they gain access to the South Pacific Ocean as a South American analogue to Canada)
    (albeit in a scenario where the Bantu Expansion never reaches further south beyond OTL Angola, Zambia and Mozambique north of the River Zambesi or is significantly delayed)
  • British West Africa (Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria and Ambazonia)
  • Madagascar
  • Taiwan (as a larger Singapore meets Australia / New Zealand)
  • Chusan (aka Zhoushan)
  • Sakhalin (completely out there though prefer it going to Japan)
  • Andaman & Nicobar (as an Anglo-Indian/Burmese state that welcomes other colonial Eurasian groups)
  • Palawan
  • New Guinea
  • Timor
  • Sulawesi
  • Maluku Islands

Masked Grizzly

Brunohusker

If the British win the American Revolutionary war, I think that the creation of the Ohio colony (the modern states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan , Wisconsin, and Northeast Minnesota) is inevitable. At some point they'd allow someone to settle it. Maybe victorious loyalists settle in the Ohio colony. Also the Cumberland colony might be the area of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi.

I don't know if these would be split up in time but I think an Ohio colony and a Cumberland colony would happen. Also, I wonder how far British expansion would go in North America? Would they take Louisiana in the Napoleonic Wars? Do they ever try to invade Mexico or at least make it a kind of northern Argentina where the British control things like railroads and other business interests?

Analytical Engine

IIRC, the various plans for the Ohio colony were just for the area of OTL Ohio, rather than for the entire Old Northwest.

New Orleans remains a key port for the greater Mississippi river network regardless of TL. It will still be important, particularly as westward settlement proceeds.

Eventually, though, Louisiana is going to be tempting.

As for Mexico, Britain may be more inclined to keep it as a trading partner. However, the gold and silver in Alta California is also going to be tempting.

George Washington

My list of potential British possessions:
Europe:
British Isles, Iberia, Scandinavia

America:
Canada, US, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Belize, Jamaica, various islands

Asia:
India, Perisia, Arabia, Hong Kong, Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia

Masked Grizzly

Could the British have also implemented their own analogue of Portugal's Pink Map by linking Nigeria (or ATL British West Africa including Benin, Togo and Ghana) to Sudan or South Sudan via Cameroon, south Chad and the Central Africa Republic?

Thereby helping to make the notion of an Accra to Nairobi version of the Cape Town to Cairo Railway / Highway more of a reality.

Analytical Engine

Could the British have also implemented their own analogue of Portugal's Pink Map by linking Nigeria (or ATL British West Africa including Benin, Togo and Ghana) to Sudan or South Sudan via Cameroon, south Chad and the Central Africa Republic?

Thereby helping to make the notion of an Accra to Nairobi version of the Cape Town to Cairo Railway / Highway more of a reality.

Make Porto-Novo, Dahomey, Adamawa, Kanem-Bornu and Wadai protectorates.

For bonus points, make the Kong Empire, Wassoulou Empire and Mossi states protectorates. Freetown to Nairobi Railway.

Iron_Lord

Brickhouse

Analytical Engine

George Washington

Brickhouse

George Washington

  1. With a 1600 POD, colonial rivalries.
  2. To project power. Why does OTL France have French Guiana or Great Britain have Northern Ireland, Projecting power allows a nation to project power.
  3. I meant to say Sweden.

History thinker

My list of potential British possessions:
Europe:
British Isles, Iberia, Scandinavia

America:
Canada, US, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Belize, Jamaica, various islands

Asia:
India, Perisia, Arabia, Hong Kong, Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia

Europe: I doubt they would get more than in OTL. If they're lucky maybe the island of crete or the faroe islands for example.

America: they already colonized Canada, Jamaica, Belize. Maybe the US can be conquered again in the war of 1812, Brazil and Uruguay are possible but unlikely. Maybe they buy Alaska instead of the US, they could also colonize Pategonia as that is the most likely colony in south America along with Suriname.

Africa: in Africa they could colonize the DRC, Senegal, Madagascar and other countries are also possible.

Asia: The entire Arabian peninsula, the Philippines and Indonesia are possible.

Other: haiwaii and other Pacific islands are possible but I doubt Antarctica as it useless basically.

WolfNeuron

If the British did colonise Brazil around 1600, according to Wikipedia the population of Brazil was already around 100,000 which is actually a ton of people. However this article says a total of 3,800,000 people left England alone, so I imagine the Brits would soon form a majority of the population in Brazil.

However, the settlers to northern Brazil would be similar to the hundreds of thousands of Brits who moved to the West Indies: eventually their population would die off due to malaria, yellow fever and other tropical diseases. However, some would inevitably create farming colonies further south similar to New England, centred around Uruguay and southern Brazil with their more Mediterranean climate. In those southern areas the Brits would be the majority, while in the north a semi aristocracy would form, mixed between English and Portuguese landowners. Their economy would be based around agriculture and extraction of sugar, coffee and cotton just like the American South. The south would be the more industrialised areas similar to the Rustbelt, but slavery would damage industrial development.

The amount of slaves who went to Brazil IOTL was shockingly high, around 5 million in total, while 2.3 million went to the British West Indies and 600,000 to the US. I mean even if the number of slaves going to TTL Brazil where equal to the total number going to rest of the British Empire, they would only be half of OTL Portuguese Brazil, so that's something at least.

I imagine parts of northern Brazil would resemble Jamaica or especially Florida, with them basically being large swamps with a majority Afro-Brazillian population with an export crop economy, while states like Uruguay would resemble the northern US, with Europeans being 95% of the population and with a decent amount of industry. All the cultural and geographic features that allowed the UK and New England to industrialise would be present in southern Brazil, including iron and coal reserves. I imagine the vast majority of European immigration will be focused in the four southern provinces, with large minorities of Italians, Spaniards, Germans and Irish emerging. Brazil will especially boom post 1880 as new medicine will mean diseases like malaria and yellow fever allow the population to survive in tropical diseases, and a large share of development post 1945 as air conditioning and new farming methods would allow the northern states to do well for themselves, just as Texas and Florida have in the USA.

By 2020 I think the Portuguese influence in Brazil would be very limited. Portuguese might be spoken by around 5% of the population, but be an official language alongside English, with very few monolingual Portuguese speakers existing. Similar to Louisiana though, residents will have their own Portuguese-influenced cuisine and local words. By 1960 I'd say the population would be around 60% White, 35% Afro-Brazillian and 5% others if I had to guess, although by 2020 that would be very different due to the migration of Indians, Chinese and Latinos into Brazil. I'd also love to see northern Brazilian states such as Para 'do a Texas' and grow into economic powerhouses very quickly. I think around 185 million is a good estimate for TTL Brazil's population by 2020.


Improving with age

Ten to twenty years ago, genealogical DNA tests often overestimated Scandinavian ancestry. As more results have been collected and compared to known family trees, these estimates have gotten much more accurate. If you were tested a few years ago be sure to go back and recheck your results. They get updated regularly as new information becomes available. Your ethnicity estimates may have changed.

A small percentage of Scandinavian DNA can easily be explained by distant ancestors who settled in foreign lands. If your Scandinavian ethnicity is more than 20%, though, you probably have strong and fairly recent ties to the region. If you haven’t found them yet, keep looking.

And if you haven’t been tested yet at all, why wait? You never know what you will find, but there’s a good chance you’ll discover at least a little bit Scandinavian ancestry somewhere in your past.