The Vikings believed that the runes were so much more than just an alphabet. More than simply having the power to describe the world, in the right magical combination, they could also shape the world.
We know very little about how the Vikings used the runes, but some insight into later rune magic practices is provided by a series of magical grimoires from 18th-century Iceland. They combine the runes into magical staves, known as Galdrastafir, for different purposes.
This Viking shield pendant is inspired by those magical staves, with some of the most popular runic combinations printed onto the front of the shield. The Vikings may have used the runes in this way for protection in battle.
The traditional circular wooden shields carried by the Vikings were used both for protection and offensively to smash into their foes. This embodies the Viking philosophy: the best defense is a good offense!