What better way to begin exploring Icelandic history than diving into this source of Nordic literature?!
The Sagas of Icelanders is a book that is rich in Viking heritage and full of comprehensive history and how these Nordic warriors conquered and evolved. The book is about how the Vikings came from Norway and sailed to the land of Iceland. Some even established territories in Greenland and Vinland, an area of coastal North America discovered by Leif Erikson, who landed there around 1000 AD. The age of the Vikings is also called the “Saga Age”. This medieval literature creates a relatable and understandable world of Nordic reality through the experiences of the Norse men and women (Iceland’s first settlers) and their families. Later, they traveled farther west to Greenland and even to the coast of North America.
Back to the book! I finally got through the “Introduction”, which was over 50 pages. The introduction tells of the Viking Sagas and their establishment, getting the reader familiar with the backgrounds of each family’s treeline, locations and time periods. The first Saga I am reading is “Egil’s Saga (Egill Skallagrimsson)”. The saga spans the years c. 850–1000 and traces the family’s history from Egill’s grandfather to his offspring.
I am eager and excited to read on about these Sagas and learn more about this heritage.