The period from the beginning of 9th century to the middle of 11th century in European history is known as a “Viking period”. This is a time when Scandinavian tribes start their military campaign form the territory of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Norwest parts of Russia to the West, Central and Southeast Europe. For the political center of the Vikings was chosen the island Gotland in Baltic Sea. From there exactly starts “The Viking road to Constantinople” (Miklagard – the Scandinavian name of the city) which is described in “De Administrando Imperio” by emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogenitus (913-959). This road was the basic commercial artery for exchange of goods between Byzantium and Scandinavia. This trade route crossed the rivers in the territory of West Russia and Ukraine and reach to the mouth of Dnieper River. From the Northern Black Sea coast Varangians reached to the mouth of Danube and thence by sea reached to the capital of Byzantine Empire. The Balkans was being raided mainly from “East Normans” or so-called “Varangians” during the second half of 10th century. This happen after the consolidation of the tribes in South Russia and the emergence of Kievan Rus. It is about the campaign of the Kiev prince Svetoslav from 968-971 AD against the Bulgarian lands and Constantinople. In this time on the throne in Constantinople was emperor John I Tzimiskes who rules the Empire during the period 969-976 AD. This is the first witnessed ground military operations of the Varangians in the territories south of Danube. These military operations are described in detail in the essay “History” by Leo The Deacon. That is precisely why, the campaigns of prince Svetoslav could be accepted as terminus postquem for the elements of military equipment with North-European origin in Bulgarian lands excavated nowadays. Shortly after the Christianization of Kievan Rus in 988AD, emperor Basil II (976-1025) recruits about 6000 Varangians for his personal guards. This was the famous “Varangian corps” of the mercenary soldiers in the service of the emperors of Byzantium.
The presence of Varangians in Bulgarian lands today is evidenced by findings related with items of military suit and weaponry. In this work particular attention will be paid of the development of so-called “Nordic art styles” whose traces is most clearly tracked on the ornamentation of weaponry with North-European origin. The research of findings related with weapons for close battle (so-called “Cool weapons”) with Scandinavian origin in Bulgarian lands today is of particular importance for the study of the Early Medieval warfare in the Lower Danube area because this type of artifacts makes up a large part of the arsenal of cut and thrust weapons found south of Danube and dated in the period 9th – 11th century.