Rurik or Roerik of Dorestad

Roerik of Dorestad was born about 810/20. Frankish chroniclers mention that he received lands in Friesland from the Emperor Louis I. This was not enough for him, and he started to plunder neighbouring lands: he took Dorestad in 850, captured Haithabu in 857, looted Bremen in 859... The Emperor was enraged and stripped him of all his possessions in 860. After that Roerik disappears from the Western sources for a considerable period of time.

The first ruthenian chronicle, that of Nestor, says that in 862 one Rurik arrived to Slavic lands with his kin from the land of "rus" (identified by Adam of Bremen with Jutland) in 862, built the fortress of Ladoga, and then ruled in Novgorod. Nestor wrong translated Scandinavian words 'sine hus' (with house) and 'tru voring' (with loyal guard) as the names of Rorik's brothers: Sineus and Truvor. Archaeologists discovered that the settlement of Ladoga was really built about this time, and that earthenware, household utensils, etc were imported from Jutland! These facts led many scholars to identify the Viking prince Rurik of Russian chronicles with Roerik of Dorestad.

Roerik of Dorestad reappeared in Frankish chronicles in 870, when his Friesland demesne was returned to him by Charles the Bold; in 882 he is already mentioned as dead. Nestor places the death of Russian Rurik at 879. Quite striking for a coincidence!



Rurich of Wenden or Wandalia.


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