Viking Shields & Bosses
In the Viking age, fighting men used large, round, wooden shields gripped in the center from behind an iron boss.
Shields represent one of several instances where the literary sources and archaeological sources do not agree on how Viking weapons were constructed.
The Norwegian Gulaþing and Frostaþing laws specify the construction of a shield. The shield should be made of wood with three iron bands and a handle fastened to the back side by iron nails. A later revision of the law says that the shield should be made of a double layer of boards (tvibyrðr), and the front should be painted red and white.