Ahmad Ibn Fadlan
(c. 900 - c. 922)
A noted medieval traveler, Ahmad Ibn Fadlan was dispatched as an emissary of the Abbasid caliph Muqtadir to the leader of the Volga Bulgars, who had converted to Islam some twenty years earlier. He set out in June 921 and made contact with the Bulgar ruler in May 922, having traveled over two thousand miles. It was at the encampment that Fadlan made the acquaintance of a trading party of Rus, believed to be Vikings, and witnessed a nautical funeral. He wrote also of their custom of pitching a tent for a sick man, giving him bread and water, and then abandoning him.