I have to start by saying that this isn’t my favourite layout. But I can’t tell you why. Something about it just doesn’t feel right – I don’t know if it’s my font choice, paper choice or simply a photo which doesn’t really inspire much (but it’s the best pic I could find of dear old Rollo.)
The research was also problematic. Lately, due to the popularity of the TV show Vikings (where Rollo is portrayed), there has been a flood of “facts” erupting from the show that aren’t actually facts. The TV show isn’t a documentary – it’s fiction. Very Game of Thrones but with less dragons and more Vikings. However people seem to be confused and are believing it to be 100% true so sorting through the glut of “information” online proved more difficult than it has been for previous ancestors.
Nevertheless, it was still fun to create this page. I layered some paper I made myself and made a string of coins based on the silver denier of Charles the Simple (who was the ruler at the time). A last minute addition to the layout was a frame I picked up from Arlene’s Scrapbits February Pixel Scrapper blog train contribution.
Papers I created myself
String of coins I created from the denier (which is in the public domain)
Frame by Arlene’s Scrapbits
Paper tag I created using a basic Photoshop shape template
Decorative button by Laitha’s Designs (Attic Treasures kit)
Fonts are Old English Text and Bamberg Antique
This is what the text says:
Rollo is the son of Rognvald Eysteinsson, founder of the Earldon of Orkney, and grandson of Eystein Glumra “The Noisy”. Rollo himself was a powerful Viking leader, born in 846 somewhere on the Atlantic side of Scandinavia, probably Norway.
In 876, Rollo was one of a number of Vikings to seize Rouen and in 885 he and his fleet invaded Paris. The following year, the Vikings retreated but Rollo and a band of Norsemen stayed behind, invading then settling in an area in northern France – Normandy. There is some scepticism as to these dates, with some historians suggesting these events took place much later, in 911 when the Treaty of Saint Clair-sur-Epte was signed between Rollo and Charles III, King of Western Francia.
The treaty was negotiated after Rollo launched a failed attack on Paris before laying seige to Chartres. The Bishop of Chartres appealed to the local nobles for help and in July of 911, the nobles defeated Rollo at the Battle of Chartres. Rollo and his soldiers were granted all the land between the river Epte and the sea, plus Brittany. In return, Rollo gave King Charles III his loyalty, including military assistance for the protection of the kingdom.
Sometime soon after the signing of the treaty, Rollo converted from Norse paganism to Christianity, being baptized “Robert”. Rollo married Poppa of Bayeux. Little is known about Poppa other than she was the mother of William I, Duke of Normandy. There is some speculation that she is the daughter of a Count who was captured by Rollo when he invaded Bayeux in 885, but nothing can be proven. It is, however, agreed by historians that she was almost certainly a member of the Frankish aristocracy.
Edit: 7th March 2016
FINALLY we’ll be getting an answer as to whether Rollo was Danish or Norwegian. The history nut in me is very excited by this news article.