Kings' Sagas and Norwegian History

This book is an examination of some of the principal issues arising from the study of the kings’ sagas, the main narrative sources for Norwegian history before c. 1200. Providing an overview of the past two decades of scholarship, it discusses the vexed relationship between verse and prose and the reliability as historical sources of the verse alone or the combination of verse and prose; the possibility and extent of non-native influence on the composition of these texts; and the function of the past, in particular given that most of the historiography of Norway was produced in Iceland. This book aims to stimulate studies of medieval Scandinavian historiography with its critical perspective on the texts and the scholarship, while also providing a useful work of reference in order to make this area of research accessible to scholars in cognate fields.

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9789004209893