But in 1887 Professor Storm announced his conviction that the lands visited by the Norsemen in the early part of the 11th century were Labrador, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia.
In later Gaelic literature the primitive form Eriu became the dissyllable Eire; hence the Norsemen called the island the land of Eire, i.e.
What we can alone describe as a literature, first the early Eddic verse, next the habit of narrating sagas: these things the Norsemen learned probably from their Celtic subjects, partly in Ireland, partly in the western islands of Scotland; and they first developed the new literature on the soil of Iceland.
On the seaward side of the Ness there is a large ancient earthwork which is attributed to the Norsemen through a reference in the Saxon Chronicle (894) under the name Sceobrig.
As early as the 10th century, if not earlier, the Norsemen frequented this part of the world (Bjarmeland) on trading expeditions; the best-known is that made by Ottar or Othere between 880 and 900 and described (or translated) by Alfred the Great, king of England.
The importance of the information, meagre as it is, lies in the fact that Adam received from the lips of kinsmen of the explorers (as the Danes in a sense were) certain characteristic facts (the finding of grapes and unsown grain) that support the general reliability of the Icelandic sagas which tell of the Vinland voyages (in which these same facts are prominent), but which were not put into writing by the Norsemen until later - just how much later it is not possible to determine.
The Lapps have a dim tradition that their ancestors lived in a far eastern land, and they tell rude stories of conflicts with Norsemen and Karelians.
The men of Rus, or Variags, as they were sometimes called, were simply the hardy Norsemen or Normans who at that time, in various countries of Europe, appeared first as armed marauders and then lived in the invaded territory as a dominant military caste until they were gradually absorbed by the native population.
I cannot help wondering if it is the same fragrance that greeted the Norsemen long ago, when, according to tradition, they visited our shores--an odorous echo of many centuries of silent growth and decay in flower and tree....
From the Runic description on the marble lion of the Peiraeus it has been inferred that Harold Hardraada and the Norsemen in the service of the Byzantine emperors captured the Peiraeus in 1040, but this conclusion is not accepted by Gregorovius (bk.