BAR 31:02, Mar/Apr 2005
Yes, Sweden. This fifth or sixth century A.D. statue of the Buddha from northern India was found in a Viking treasure horde on the Swedish island of Helgö. Globalization is clearly not a recent phenomenon: Ancient and medieval peoples traveled extensively and forged trade networks that spanned continents, making possible the spread of ideas, languages and cultural artifacts from one civilization to another. Of course, few people got around as much as the Vikings. From their Scandinavian coves they visited, raided, traded with and settled in lands from Newfoundland to Baghdad. They conquered Britain, terrorized Ireland and France, settled Iceland, raided Spain and ranged throughout the Mediterranean basin. They established a major presence in Russia, the Ukraine and the Crimea, sending their longboats down the Volga into the Black Sea. They raided Constantinople no less than four times.