Aug

27

Heyerdahl on the Kon TikiThe archaeologist Thor Heyerdahl went a bit further than most scholars to prove his theories :

"After the war, Heyerdahl continued his research, only to meet a wall of resistance to his theories amongst contemporary scholars. To add weight to his arguments, Heyerdahl decided to build a replica of the aboriginal balsa raft (named the "Kon-Tiki") to test his theories. In 1947, Heyerdahl and five companions left Callio, Peru and crossed 8000 km (4300 miles) in 101 days to reach Polynesia (Raroia atoll, Tuamotu Archipelago). Despite skepticism, the seaworthiness of the aboriginal raft was thus proven and showed that the ancient Peruvians could have reached Polynesia in this manner."

If I tell you that the first man to reach the South Pole (Roald Amundsen); the first woman to do the same (Liv Arnesen), the first man to cross Greenland on skies (Fridtjof Nansen), and the first non-Indian in America (Leiv Ericsson) all have one thing in common with me; they are Norwegians– then my lifestyle gets into perspective…

Stefan Jovanovich comments:

The Norwegian "lifestyle" has had an extraordinary longevity. Those scholars who have studied the runes and other archaeological evidence from the age of the Vikings estimate that each time the crew of a long boat put out to sea from home, they faced odds of 1 in 3 that they would not return. Gareth Williams, curator of early medieval coins at the British Museum, has written about how the Vikings used a "silver standard" in their economy with hoards of silver being held as a kind of reserve depository against outstanding monetary/social liabilities. Williams has just published a biography of Eirik Bloodaxe, the Viking king.


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