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The women held a strong position in Viking society and were responsible for the farm when their men were abroad. The symbol of the powerful housewife was her keys, hung from her gown. If her husband took the keys from his wife, she could divorce him instantly, and keep their shared property. No women were forced into marriages, unlike most other cultures at that time.

Langobardic Shield Boss, c. 7th century

He Sleeps - Kronborg Castle, Helsingor, Denmark

Viking cauldron replica - Based on the ship's cauldron found with the Oseberg burial.