The Vikings excelled in the decorative arts — embellishing functional objects like swords and runic inscriptions, and crafting beautiful adornments, especially jewelry. Many Viking decorative motifs were adopted by the scribes who made illuminated manuscripts in the Middle Ages.
The idea that the Vikings introduced “democratic government” to places where they settled is largely a Romantic myth, but they did found the city of Dublin, among others.
It is also untrue that the Vikings were in any way more egalitarian toward women than the rest of the world at the time.
Yes, the Normans were essentially the descendants of the original Vikings who settled in northern France and the Frankish natives of the region.
No. That was the invention of the costume designer for the first production of Wagner’s “Ring Cycle” in 1876.