Did the Viking Berserkers Use Drugs To Go Berserk?
Viking berserker was one of the most elite Viking warriors. Legend had it that Viking berserkers would join the battle without wearing any armour or only wearing bearskin. But they entered a kind of trance state that knew nothing but wielding their axe.
The scholars always attempt to explain how these Viking berserkers went on to fight like that. Was it a kind of possession or any use of drugs or exaggeration of literal text?
However, the most widely accepted theory was the Viking warriors consumed a kind of drugs of their age.
Some remaining Viking sagas helped the historians believe that these warriors consumed a kind of hallucination mushroom that brought them to that kind of state.
Viking berserker would know nothing but wielding their axe to behead someone (Cre: Vikings TV Series)
The most famous kind of drugs in the Viking Age could have been the Amanita muscaria, a kind of hallucination mushroom. This kind of mushroom was known as the fly agaric which originally grew in the Northern Hemisphere and later spread.
Some archaeological evidence also cemented the point that the Viking warriors once used drugs.
In the grave of an alleged seeress in the Viking Age, the archaeologists found out a number of Henbane seeds. This woman got an extremely stunning grave which presented her social rank and she was accompanied by a wand. In Viking Age, a seeress was known as a volva and the word "volva" meant "the carrier of the wand". This type of seeds was also known as "crazy seed" or "crazy plant".
The seeds were crushed into powder and the Vikings could have rubbed it on their skin.
In the Oseberg burial mound in Norway, the archaeologists also found a leather slack of cannabis. However, some scholars debunked the theory that the Vikings used cannabis. Rather, they claimed that the old woman buried inside the Oseberg ship was hurt and she wanted to relieve herself from this pain by using cannabis.