Ducks Don’t Have Horns

Scandinavian Tchotchke Box at Groennfell Meadery

This week marks Donald Duck’s 100th birthday! At least that’s what some experts seem to think, though it appears to be a hotly debated topic.[1]

You know what isn’t a hotly debated topic? Horns (or wings) on Viking helmets.

Oft represented? Yes.
Much discussed? Perhaps.
Debated? No.

There is no debate about it; Vikings had horns on their helmets about as often as they had them growing out of their actual skulls. As Morten Warmind, Norse Mythology professor at the University of Copenhagen so vividly puts it, “Horns on helmets are also known as ‘throat slitting handles’ in the industry. So no, Vikings did not have ludicrous and impractical horns on their helmets. Wings make even less sense.”

So now you’re probably thinking, “What does any of this have to do with anything?”

Well, the image above is a close-up photo of our tchotchke wall here at Groennfell Meadery. This is the Scandinavian box. Within the Scandinavian box is an empty bottle of mead from Denmark with inaccurately horned Vikings, a delightful little troll, and a Donald Duck doll from Norway. Please compare it to how it originally arrived to us:

Norwegian Donald Duck
Courtesy of
As you will see, our meadmaker Ricky has performed alaectomy surgery[2] to restore dignity to dear Uncle Donald; a fact the aforementioned meadmaker is inordinately proud of.

We also take all of this to heart because for reasons that may or not make sense (depending on who you ask), mead and Vikings are intimately connected in many people’s minds. In our tasting room, we actually field questions on Vikings nearly as often as we answer questions about mead.

So, Happy Birthday Uncle Donald! May your year be full of pillaging and looting in historically accurate style!

1. This is not technically true since “hotly debated” implies that multiple people have strong feelings on the subject, which is almost certainly not the case as regards Donald Duck’s birthday.
2. Don’t bother googling that word, Ricky made it up.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.