The mysterious land of Vinland has enchanted Vikings and fans of Vinland Saga alike. According to Vikings, Vinland is a peaceful and prosperous land where wars don’t occur.
At the beginning of the manga, Leif Erikson claims that he has been to Vinland before. He talks about Vinland in great detail, but other characters ignore his claims.
But given the detailed nature of his statement, we can’t help but wonder whether anyone has been to Vinland before.
Leif was one of the first few people who had reached Vinland in the Vinland Saga. Following Leif, Thorfinn, and other villagers began their journey to Vinland. They finally reached Vinland in the final arc of the series.
How did Thorfinn find Vinland in the final arc? Does Vinland actually exist? Let’s find out!
Is Vinland a real place?
Vinland Saga is based on true events to some extent. Many characters in the story are inspired by real-life figures who existed a millennium ago. The events that occur in locations like Iceland and England mirror the historical events that occurred ages ago.
Vinland, one of the locations in Vinland Saga, doesn’t play a direct role in the story. However, it serves as a glimmer of hope for Vikings like Thorfinn who wish to escape from a life full of war and violence.
But at present, no land named Vinland exists. So, does this mean Vinland is a totally fictional land?
Vinland does exist in reality and is known as ‘North America’ in the present. According to Vikings, any area between Newfoundland and New Brunswick fell under Vinland. They called this area Vinland because the land had an abundance of grapevines.
Furthermore, the remains of a Nordic settlement found in Newfoundland proved that other events that occurred in the Vinland Saga, such as the Norse exploration of America, actually happened in history.
Thorfinn’s journey to Vinland
After gaining freedom from slavery, Thorfinn starts making preparations to settle down in Vinland. He travels home for the first time in many years to meet his family. Eventually, he decides to go to Greece to fund his travels.
Once he collects all the necessary funds for the Vinland voyage, he returns home once again. He asks his fellow villagers to join him on his journey. However, he imposes an ironclad rule: No one is allowed to bring any sort of weapons to Vinland.
This rule is met with criticism by the more non-pacifist members of Thorfinn’s group, such as Ivar. However, they eventually give in and give up their weapons to travel to Vinland.
Thorfinn travels to many lands on his way to Vinland. He meets Leif at his village for the final time, and makes pit stops at Markland and Helluland during his voyage.
In chapter 179, Thorfinn and his crew notice a house on the land in distance. Upon closer inspection, they eventually find out that it’s a Nordic settlement. After this discovery, Thorfinn finally confirms that the land around them is indeed Vinland.
Is the Vinland Saga manga ending?
Thorfinn’s discovery of Vinland in chapter 179 doesn’t mark the end of the manga. Even though Thorfinn has achieved his lifelong goal of settling down in Vinland, there are a lot of conflicts awaiting him.
According to the author, Makoto Yukimura, Vinland Saga manga is close to its ending, The final arc of the Vinland Saga manga has already begun. The last arc, also known as the Vinland arc, will last for around 50 chapters.
Thorfinn is already facing trouble in his paradise in the Vinland arc. The colonization of Vinland by the Norse folk has attracted hostility from some natives. Moreover, some crew members of Thorfinn broke the ‘no weapons’ rule by secretly bringing weapons to Vinland.
The prophetic dream seen by the Lnu tribe’s shaman showed an ominous, bleak future full of war. Will Vinland Saga stay true to the real, dark history behind America’s colonization? Or will the events change to some extent?
All we can do is wait for the future chapters to witness the fate of Thorfinn and the Norse people.
About Vinland Saga
Vinland Saga is a Japanese historical manga series written and illustrated by Makoto Yukimura. The series is published under Kodansha in its monthly manga magazine – Monthly Afternoon – aimed at young adult men. It currently has 26 volumes in tankōbon format.
Vinland Saga is set in ancient Viking times, where a young Thorfinn’s life goes astray when his father Thors – a well-known retired warrior – is killed while on a journey.
Thorfinn then finds himself under the jurisdiction of his enemy – his father’s killer – and hopes to seek revenge on him when he grows stronger. The anime is loosely based on the expedition of Thorfinn Karlsefni in his search for Vinland.