• February 21, 2024

Top 3 Viking Characters that are Historical Figures or made a difference on the Show

How well is the show paying tribute to the actual Vikings? With the Vikings’ final season, it is hard to know what to do without the rush of war, steamy relationships, and intense power struggles. The show has given us a healthy dose of excitement and suspense for seven years while also offering insight into a past life and historically relevant challenges and individuals.

Here are the Top Three Main Characters in our Viking List that Significantly Impacted the Show.

Yet they had many artistic licenses; it is hard to tell which characters were based on actual people and fictional. Several characters interacted in the show who may have been actual but who would never have met in real life or lived in different periods.

Ragnar of Lothbrok

While Ragnar Lothbrok was the main character of the first few seasons of the show, he was not the guy you see in the series. Different stories of his life are written down in many historical texts as if he were real, but many people believe that he is a collection of a few different people.

In the film, he was the first Viking to attack England and France. Since he lived in the early mid-nineteenth century, he would have arrived after other Vikings had visited the countries. Some assume that he (or one of the people on whom he is based) was the first to set up settlements and claim land in the conquered territories.


Similarly, in the show, he is listed as Bjorn Ironside and Ivar the Boneless’s father. He was also married to Queen Lagertha and Aslaug, but he again married Princess Thora in real life.

Most accounts suggest he died in England, either by being thrown into a snake pit by King Lalla in Northumbria or by King Edmund’s death in East Anglia. Some accounts claim he died during a Viking siege in France.


In the film, Lagertha begins as a simple farmer and the wife of Ragnar Lothbrok. She’s powerful and smart, both as a leader and a shieldmaiden, so she can quickly gain power and respect in the show.


Lagertha was mentioned only in the Saxo Grammaticus ‘Gesta Danorum’ of the early 13th century. In this version of history, she encounters Ragnar in a fight. She helps him win, and she is so enamored with her power that they will finally marry. They have three children, including a son, although it’s not Bjorn Ironside as seen in the show. By the way, Bjorn Ironside tattoos from tv show Vikings also had historical context. (Click here to see Tattoed Now Lettering & Script Tattoos) If you are interested in the tattoos you saw in the Vikings TV show, feel free to visit the Tattooed Now Vikings tattoos website. They cater to different types of Vikings tattoos. Going back, when Ragnar finally leaves her, but unlike the film, it’s for Princess Thora, not Aslaug.


Even though her story is based on an ancient document, most historians don’t believe it happened. They think it’s a representation of powerful women warriors rather than a real individual. 


Rollo is an important historical figure, even though he existed after the events he witnessed in the film. He was not Ragnar’s brother, but he was born about AD 860, decades after Ragnar’s life.


He raided France and became famous for the siege of Paris in 885 AD. He was finally given land across the lower Seine when Charles the Simple decided to let him have it in exchange for his protection against other Vikings. Here, Rollo created the Duchy of Normandy and ruled it from AD 911 to AD 927. His descendants remained in control and occupied parts of Italy and Sicily. He was also the great-great-great-grandfather of William the Conqueror, who later became William I of England. He could have married Princess Gisla in real life, too, when he was given the land. But during that time, she may have only been five years old.