Miller, William Ian. The Two Thorgeirs and Death of Gunnar: Chapters 67–77

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  • Author: Miller, William Ian
  • Title: The Two Thorgeirs and Death of Gunnar: Chapters 67–77
  • Published in: Why Is Your Axe Bloody?: A Reading of Njáls Saga
  • Place, Publisher: New York: Oxford University Press
  • Year: 2014
  • Pages: 134-43
  • E-text:
  • Reference: Miller, William Ian. Why Is Your Axe Bloody?: A Reading of Njáls Saga. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.

  • Key words:

Contents

Annotation

Miller looks at Gunnar’s enemies, the two Þorgeirr‘s, and their two very different nature, stressing the high number of enemies the hero gathered along the way. Mǫrðr‘s character is discussed shortly with a focus on his avoiding the spotlight in his actions against Gunnar. Miller looks at Gunnar’s violating his outlawry sentence as an act of defiance against his enemies óvinafagnaðr (joy at enemies’ strife), rather than a longing for Hallgerðr. Miller finishes with a rather short analysis of the attack on Gunnar’s farmstead, analyzing the deaths of Þorgrímr and the dog Sámr. His discussion of Gunnar’s death mainly raises the question of whether or not Hallgerðr‘s hair could have saved his life.

Lýsing

Í kaflanum lítur Miller á óvini Gunnars í sögunni og hver margir þeir eru, hann lítur sérstaklega á Þorgeir Otkelsson og Starkaðarson og ólík eðli þeirra. Finna má stutta umfjöllun um Mörð og stöðu hans utan kastljóssins í baráttunni gegn Gunnari. Miller túlkar ákvörðun Gunnars um að fara ekki í útlegð sem uppreisn gegn óvinafagnaði, frekar en löngun eftir Hallgerði. Miller endar kaflann með stuttri greiningu á aðförinni gegn Gunnari þar sem hann greinir dauða Þorgríms og Sáms. Umfjöllun Millers um dauða Gunnars snýst meira og minna um hvort að hárlokkur Hallgerðar hefði bjargað lífi hans.

See also

References

Chapter 75: stefndi Gissur öllum óvinum Gunnars í Almannagjá; Chapter 68: Nokkuru síðar fór Þorgeir Starkaðarson í Kirkjubæ að finna nafna sinn; „ As I indicated, Gunnar’s enemies include all kinds of people, many of them without a streak of villainy. The author nicely makes the two Thorgeirs serve as emblems for the moral range of people who will kill Gunnar, from Mord to Gizur“ (p. 134).

Chapter 77: og skal þig þessa eigi lengi biðja: “Gunnar chooses not to overpower her and cut her hair, as we noted before, though that option was available to him. Does that reveal that he too knows her hair does not matter at all? Or did he also realize that she had given him the best gift of all: a way to take no responsibility for his own death, and instead to have history place the blame all on her. His own perfect revenge .“ (p. 143).

Links

  • Written by: Yoav Tirosh
  • Icelandic translation: Andri M. Kristjánsson
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