The origins and true meaning of the Scandinavian term Skål is an oft debated topic. The most colourful meaning dates back to the middle ages, when bands of rampaging Vikings roamed Europe pillaging and handily beating other armies. Viking warriors would decapitate the king or leader of the tribe/army they had just vanquished and that night would drink from his skull –spelled skoll– as a sign of respect for the fallen opponent. It was only then, Viking warriors believed, could an opponent who had fought valiantly be allowed into Valhalla.
Valhalla, Old Norse Valhöll, in Norse mythology, the hall of slain warriors, who live there blissfully under the leadership of the god Odin. Valhalla is depicted as a splendid palace, roofed with shields, where the warriors feast on the flesh of a boar slaughtered daily and made whole again each evening. They drink liquor that flows from the udders of a goat, and their sport is to fight one another every day.
Thus they will live until the Ragnarök (Doomsday), when they will march out the 540 doors of the palace to fight at the side of Odin against the giants. When heroes fall in battle it is said that Odin needs them to strengthen his forces for the Ragnarök.