From some 250 years most of the world fell prey to raiders called Vikings. Sailing from Scandinavia they terrorized and left their testimony in Europe, Asia and even North America. They dominated Russia and gave it its name, they crossed Atlantic 5 centuries before Columbus. They visited Constantinople, Greece, they sailed Volga. Even the names of the days came from Viking age gods - Thursday ( Thor's day) or Friday (Frigg)
Four times the Viking fleet sailed the Black See and raided Constantinople (they called it Miklagard, the big city). They carved their runes in famous Hagia Sophia. Impressed, the Byzantine emperors recruited warriors as a part of their guard - Varagian Guard. They served Byzantium for 200 years. There is a suggestion that the Vikings were the dominant class of eastern countries. Some historians think that the first polish king - Mieszko was a viking. We know for sure that Norsemen assimilated into local population and then, they became Slavic. The Volga river was a rich trade road. And for the Norsemen it was also a source a trading exchange. The small buddha figure was found in Viking's grave at Helgo, Sweden with some Coptic (Egyptian) landle and irish cozier.
Inching the north Atlantic Norse settlers reached Greenland around the end of 10th century. The first Viking that landed in North America was Leif the Lucky. He came to a mass of mountains and glaciers which he named Vinland. Further south he came to a flat land with a lot of trees and grassland. Leif built a house and wintered there. We do not know for sure where did he landed but it is probably Labrador. Another Viking explored the new continent even further. His party came upon "three sin boats and three men under each". He probably met Eskimos or Indians. The Norse planned to colonize new lands. Early in 11th century Thorfinn prepared three ships loaded with 65 people and sailed to the west. His colony stood for two years. In the meantime his wife gave birth to a boy called Snorri - he was the first white child born in the America.