A hersir was a local military commander of a hundred and owed allegiance to a jarl or king. They were also aspiring landowners, and, like the middle class in many feudal societies, supported the kings in their centralization of power. The hersir was often equipped with a conical helmet and a short mail coat. Most would wield an iron sword, mostly augmented with a wooden shield. They were also known to wield one- or even two-handed axes. The hersir would always fight on foot, usually as part of a shield wall formation. Another formation was also used the Svinfylking which was a variation to the shield wall but with several wedge like formations pointing towards the enemy creating a zig zag pattern. Although excellent against other foot troops the Vikings were frequently defeated by mounted troops. [ [http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_hersir.html Hersir, Viking ] ]

By the end of the 10th century, the independence of the herse was gone, and he was now a regional servant of the Norwegian king. [ [http://www.ospreypublishing.com/title_detail.php/title=P3184~per=41 Osprey Publishing - Viking Hersir 793–1066 AD ] ]

It was also the name of a man in "Rígsþula" whose daughter Erna married Jarl, the first earl.

A Swedish hersir, Jarlabanke Sigfastsson, has become notable for the c. 20 Jarlabanke Runestones that he raised together with his relatives.


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  • Hersir — Un hersir era un comandante militar de un hundred de comprometida alianza con un hold, jarl, caudillo o rey. También aspiraban a ser terratenientes y, como la clase media en muchas sociedades feudales, apoyaban a la monarquía en su centralización …   Wikipedia Español

  • hersir — noun A local leader in early mediaeval Scandinavia. ,1997: There was a powerful hersir in Sognefjord called Bjorn, who lived at Aurland; his son Brynjolf inherited everything from him. ‘Egils Saga’, tr. Bernard Scudder, The Sagas of Icelanders… …   Wiktionary

  • Hersir — (Chef de Guerre) Péret de Erna qu’il marie à Jarl dans le Rigsthula …   Mythologie nordique

  • Svinfylking — El Svinfylking (nórdico antiguo: hocico de verraco), era una versión de la formación en V usado por los vikingos. La formación consistía en guerreros con amplio equipamiento armado para la confrontación cuerpo a cuerpo y arqueros menos protegidos …   Wikipedia Español

  • Erna — This article is about the figure in Norse mythology, for C. S. Friedman s fictional world, see Erna (planet). For eRNA (efference RNA), see Non coding RNA. For a military exercise in Estonia, see Erna Raid. In Norse mythology, Erna was the mother …   Wikipedia

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  • Ketil Flatnose — Ketil, nicknamed Flatnose, was a Norwegian hersir of the mid 800s, son of Bjorn (or Bjarni) Buna. His holdings were in the northern part of the country. Some scholars have speculated that, based on his location, nickname and his father s non… …   Wikipedia

  • Jarlabanke Runestones — The Jarlabanke Runestones ( sv. Jarlabankestenarna) is the name of c. 20 runestones written in Old Norse with the Younger Futhark in 11th century, Uppland, Sweden. They were ordered in the by what appears to have been a chieftain named Jarlabanke …   Wikipedia

  • Ketil Nariz Chata — Ketil Bjornsson, apodado Nariz Chata (nórdico antiguo: Flatnefr), fue un caudillo vikingo, hersir de Noruega en el siglo IX.[1] Era hijo de Bjorn Grimmson y procedía de Romsdal (Raumsdal), un valle en la provincia de Møre og Romsdal, entre… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Skjaldborg — Recreación histórica donde se observa una formación skjaldborg. El Skjaldborg, (del nórdico antiguo: muro de escudos), era una formación típica de los vikingos que consistía en un cuerpo de guerreros posicionados suficientemente cerca como para… …   Wikipedia Español

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