Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Online Academic Library

Saga Motifs on Gotland Picture Stones: The Case of Hildr Högnadóttir


The Gotland Picture Stones have long aroused interest and admiration, not only among tourists as objects of beauty and casual curiosity, but also among scholars who have been led to speculate about what they were originally intended to signify.  one of the methods used to analyze and interpret the images has been to view them […]

The Road to Hel: A Study of the Conception of the Dead in Old Norse Literature

“I Have Long Desired to Cure You of Old Age” Sibling Drama in the Later Heroic Poems of the Edda


The current decade in medieval studies, both literary and historical, has brought what has been characterized as the “affective turn.” It problematizes our understanding of past emotions and feelings in the light of new research into biological and psychological universals, while remaining aware that, within what Barbara Rosenwein has characterized as “emotional communities”, emotion and […]

Vafþrúðnismál and Grímnismál: Cosmic History, Cosmic Geography


Óðinn is the protagonist of both these poems, which follow Hávamál in the Codex Regius. In Vafþrúðnismál he visits teh giant Vafþrúðnir in disguise to compete with him in a wisdom-contest in which the stake is the loser´s head.  Once he has established (by posing some questions about mythological facts) that Óðinn is a worthy […]

Narratives, Space and Drama: Essential Spatial Aspects Involved in the Performance and Reception of Oral Narrative


In the past, oral narratives tended to be regarded as a two-dimensional phenomenon largely confined to the form of the spoken (or later) printed word. Over the last twenty years, however, oral narratives have gradually gained “thickness” in the eyes of folklore scholars who have increasingly demanded that more attention be paid to the social […]

Ritual Space. Ritual Year. Ritual Gender: A View of the Old Norse and New Icelandic Ritual Year


The roots of this paper go back in part to a short chapter I was recently asked to write fora  book about Iceland in the present day.  In the chapter in question, which dealt with modern day Icelandic festivals, I underlined the importance of the sense of family for Icelandic society, and not least the […]

Goddesses Unknown I: Njǫrun and the Sister-Wife of Njǫrðr


The present article attempts to fill a gap in modern Old Norse scholarship by presenting overviews of two highly mysterious figures, the apparent goddess Njǫrun and the unnamed wife  and  sister  of  the  major  god  Njǫrðr.  In doing so, this article thematically connects with previous discussion of the Vanir found in earlier issues of RMN Newsletter. Originally Published: […]

The Heroized Dead: People, Animals, and Materiality in Scandinavian Death Rituals AD 200-1000


As an archaeologist, my interpretation of Old Norse religion is broadly formulated on the basis of the archaeological evidence, and in the Midgard Project my focus has been especially on people’s relationship with animals. hus, in this article the role of animals will be outlined in terms of lifestyle metaphors, social identities, and cosmological agents […]