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What Happened to the Norse in Greenland?

  1. Nov 11, 2016 #1


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    Not sure if this is the place for this interesting story, but it seems better than the alternatives.

    Norse from Scandinavia colonized some sites in Greenland, but eventually went away.
    Why has been a controversy.
    New findings described in this short article reveal a more complex situation.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 11, 2016 #2
    It would appear that whatever the reason(s) the Norse had for colonizing or exploiting the resources of Greenland, the Little Ice Age seriously impacted the Norse ventures. Working out the stages in that decline might provide some insights for us today.
  4. Nov 11, 2016 #3
    I have heard it is believed that they left after a sustainable supply of food for the population there exhausted.
    Initially there was enough grazing land for animals, but it became overgrazed, and animals can't eat rock.
    There still were fish of course, but not enough.
  5. Nov 11, 2016 #4


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    The article talks about new findings showing indicating they got significant amounts of food from the sea (different isotope ratios), with some additional details.
    Apparently, there was an economic reason for being there, to hunt and trade walrus ivory.
    But it got colder and stormier...
  6. Nov 13, 2016 #5

    Fervent Freyja

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    It looks as if most of the Norse that survived the harsher conditions emigrated. Having such a small population left, the rest were probably overwhelmed by conflict with the natives or may have interbred with them to survive. In addition to the Little Ice Age, there was also a plague during the time period. Not to mention nearby conflicts or attacks from arrivals.
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