Inside York

Valhalla: York's Viking Dead

York is well known for its long association with the Vikings and at Jorvik Viking Centre, their summer exhibition, entitled “Valhalla: In Search Of The Living Dead” which commeced in July this year is still open to the public for visiting right up until Sunday 4th November 2012.

The exhibition was created in association with York Minster and the Isle of Man’s Manx Museum and explores the Viking attitudes to both death and burial and highlights the importance of the different rituals and customs that went along with it. Death was a common occurrence in these times and depending on the circumstances, the Vikings would have treated each burial differently. 

The legend of Valhalla was a very important one to Norse men and women. Valhalla itself was a huge, sweeping Norse hall which was found in a place called Asgard, one of the Nine Worlds, which was a capital of the Norse Gods. It was ruled over by Odin and it was believed that of all the men who were killed fighting in wars at the time, half of them would end up there. Once they had gained entry to it they joined the other exalted members of Germanic tribes who had also lost their lives in combat too.

The exhibition also explores notions of Norse mythology and showcases lots of different artefacts and treasures that have been excavated in the city of York over the last few years. There are examples of headstones from burials and also exhibits from Christian gravesites. It’s an exciting chance to view York as it would have been over one thousand years ago from around the ninth century. The exhibition aims to give a flavour of how culturally mixed the city was and how different the way of life would have been for anyone living there.

Jorvik Viking Centre

10 Coppergate



Tel: (01904) 615505

Jorvik Viking Centre is easily accessible by public transport and can be visited on foot from York Station. Admission is between 9.00am and 17.00pm daily. If you are visiting Jorvik, the admission to this particular exhibition is already included in the price of your ticket. If you are visiting the centre just to see this exhibition a separate charge will apply.


News article written by Eve Pearce. ©


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