Guðbrandur Vigfússon. Rök um aldr Njálu

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  • Author: Guðbrandur Vigfússon
  • Title: Rök um aldr Njálu
  • Place, Publisher: Skírnir 96
  • Year: 1922
  • Pages: 147-153
  • E-text:
  • Reference: Guðbrandur Vigfússon. "Rök um aldr Njálu." Skírnir 96 (1922): 147-153.

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The article is a print of a letter from Guðbrandur Vigfússon to Konrad Maurer, written in 1860. Guðbrandur claims that Njála cannot have been written until towards the end of the 13th century, the arguments being i.a.: Njála is not mentioned in any sagas, except in the tale of Þorsteinn Síðu-Hallsson. The oldest vellum manuscripts are not older than 1300 or the beginning of the 14th century. Indian (i.e. arabic) numbers are used in the oldest MSS. The word lögmaðr is variably used for lögsögumaðr, but the former term was first introduced in the new lawbook from 1271. Genealogies are written down to the middle of the 13th century. The procedure in the law-suit after the arson at Bergþórhvoll shows that the author wanted to create a vision of the ancient, but in reality he is only describing the procedure of the 13th century. Finally, there is a mistake in the oath formula in ch. 144 (142?), it is too young compared to the time it is supposed to refer to.


Texta vantar

See also


Chapter 20: Hann var lögmaðr svo mikill : “Eldri sögur, sem vjer vitum aldr á, gæta þessa vandl. og segja ávalt lögsögumaðr t.d. Íslendingabók, Kristnisaga, Hungrvaka, Rafnssaga.” (p. 148)


  • Written by: Marjatta Ísberg & Martina Ceolin
  • Icelandic/English translation:
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