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Both indoor board games and outdoor sports were regular leisure time activities among Vikings, which is revealed by both the sagas and archaeological evidence. Many games prepared them warfare through tactical and physical challenges. The importance of being good at games is perhaps best illustrated in the words of Norwegian Jarl Rögnvald Kolsson when he describes the skills of a noble viking: “I play Hnefatafl enthusiastically. I can play nine sports. I know all the runes. I often read and craft. I can go downhill on skis . I am fully able to row and bunt. I am interested in both playing instruments and poetry.”

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