When culture and horns are mentioned, one thing that comes to many people’s minds are the Vikings. In the Middle Ages, these people dominated most of Europe.
Famous for horned helmets and weapons, their culture was unique. However, these days many people ask the question what was their favourite drink and drinking vessel?
In this article we will delve deep into answering these very questions.
Vikings Favorite Drinks
The Vikings’ everyday diet included milk and water. Apart from this, they also enjoyed alcoholic drinks such as mead, beer and wine.
While they made beer from barley and added hops, they produced mead from fermented honey. They also produced grapefruit wine and domestic fruit alcohol as common beverages.
The Vikings owned herds of cattle, which allowed them to produce their milk and this was also where they got some of their drinking vessels from. This was of course how they made drinking horns.
How the Popular Mead Was Prepared
Mead was one of their favorite drinks that they poured in their drinking horns. They would pour water and honey into a specific container and let it sit until it was fully fermented.
Where did they get the yeast from? This ingredient is important in producing fermentation and ensuring an alcoholic drink acquires its taste, smell, and quality.
In Mead production, there was no added yeast as it was derived from fruits, raw honey, and herbs. With such a simple process, it is surprising how good their way of producing mead turned out to be.
During fermentation, a totem stick or fermentation vessel would also be used to quicken the process.
Their Favorite Drinking Vessel
Keeping in mind that they lived centuries ago, many ask what did they use to hold their drinks?
For beer and mead, their favorite drinking vessel was cattle horns. This is why they say when you want an authentic Vikings experience, you should drink from a real horn. It is how you get the traditional experience.
Back then, they would get the horns from auroch that are now extinct and from cows. They would then prepare them ready for use.
It involved removing the marrow from the inside, where they would pour their drink. Unlike now where extensive preparation is done before horns can be used, theirs method was quite simple.
Nowadays the marrow is removed, the horn is sanitized, cured, and sealed. After all this has been done, some may argue you will not be having the authentic Vikings experience. However, to prevent disease and illness it is better to treat the horn properly these days.
Vikings would drink from these vessels despite the off-flavor and smell that would come from it. Fortunately, today we can enjoy the experience without these unpleasant qualities.
Drinking Horns in the Middle Age
Drinking horns were popular in middle age. Besides being used at home to take beverages, also, they were popular during special events such as weddings.
One generation would pass the horns to the next, and although the culture may not be there, drinking horns are still regarded highly. They are still used for special occasions and when users need to immerse themselves in culture.
One interesting thing about the Viking’s drinking vessels is that they did not only come from cattle. They would also import glass horns and roll birch bark to create horns.
Not every horn was regularly used. Despite them coming from animals, some were utilized only in special events such as religious rituals and weddings.
Interesting Facts about Viking Drinking Vessels
Drinking horns are symbolic to the Vikings, and even centuries down the line, they remain a cultural heritage. For more than 2,500 years, they have been in use as not only drinking vessels, but also as ceremonial and ritualistic items.
They were also handed down from one generation to the other.
Is It Possible To Get a Viking Drinking Horn Today?
A real or authentic Viking drinking horn takes you back to ancient times. It is a way of commemorating heritage and especially Scandinavian.
Today, you can buy a real cattle horn of your preferred size. There are small ones that can hold only 100ml of your beverage, and larger ones that hold up to 2 liters or more.
You can buy one, but on the other hand, if you have the capacity you can still make one.
It is obvious, a real one comes from animals such as an ox. The question is, how is it prepared for usage?
The Process of Making a Viking Drinking Horn Today
Once the horn is removed from an animal, the marrow in it must be removed first. It also helps in removing the odor and bacteria that come with it. This is done by the use of boiling water.
After the matter is removed fully, beeswax or a sealant of choice is poured into it. This is to create a barrier between the horn and your drink.
The process helps in reducing unpleasant smell and flavor from the horn. It is then left to sit for a few days. From there, it can be used as-is or enhanced to be more appealing.
The Vikings Day To Day Life
Besides drinking mead and beer, the Vikings were great explorers and skilled fighters famous for rapacious raiding. Even when you look at their pictures on the internet, this is evident.
Their way of life was interesting, and they were determinant in all their endeavors. This saw them conquer numerous territories in Europe and pursued wealth beyond the Scandinavian borders.
Gold, silver, land, and gemstones are what they pursued extensively. While at it, they never left their drinking horns behind. They would use them to take a beer, water, herbal tea, and milk.
The Vikings lived in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden in the Middle Ages. While they may be popular due to their horned helmets and dressing, they are also popular for using drinking horns.
They would get the vessels from bovid and prepare them for usage. Although they used them to take water and milk, they were more useful in drinking mead and beer.
If you want an authentic Viking experience, get yourself one of their drinking horns. Whether they were in the field fighting or exploring the world, they would carry these vessels to take their beverages.
Today, it is not hard to get a Viking drinking horn if you wish for one. They are available in different sizes and aesthetics. Also, you can find carved ones depending on your preference.
(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)