Miller, William Ian. The central feud in Njáls saga

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  • Author: Miller, William Ian
  • Title: The Central Feud in Njáls Saga
  • Published in: Sagas of the Icelanders
  • Editors: John Tucker
  • Place, Publisher: New York and London: Garland Publishing INC.
  • Year: 1989
  • Pages: 292-322
  • E-text:
  • Reference: Miller, William Ian. „The Central Feud in Njáls Saga.” Sagas of the Icelanders. Eds. John Tucker, New York and London: Garland Publishing INC, 1989, pp. 292-322

  • Key words: social reality, law (samfélagsmynd, lög)


Contents

Annotation

The article, which is a revised version of the article Justifying Skarpheðinn, explores aspects of the feud between the Sigfussons and the people at Bergthorshváll. Miller suggests that the saga author set up a balance-sheet model of a bloodfeud. The first part of the article deals with this model, and focuses on the feud between the households at Bergthorshváll and Hlidarendi, Thrainn’s liability, Hoskuld Njalsson’s death and Njal’s act as peacemaker when he offers to foster Hǫskuld Hvítanessgoði. The second part of the article focuses on the power in the district after Gunnarr’s death.


Lýsing

Greinin, sem er aukin og endurbætt útgáfa greinarinnar Justifying Skarpheðinn, fjallar um ýmsar hliðar fæðardeilunnar milli Sigfússona og fólksins á Bergþórshvoli. Miller telur að höfundur sögunnar hafi gert sér eins konar módel af fæðardeilubókhaldi. Fyrri hluti greinarinnar fjallar um þetta módel og hnitast um deilurnar milli fólks á Bergþórshvoli og Hlíðarenda, hlut Þráins Sigfússonar, dauða Höskuldar Njálssonar og friðartilmæli Njáls sem felast í boði hans um að fóstra Höskuld Þráinsson. Síðari hluti greinarinnar fjallar um valdahlutföll í héraðinu eftir dauða Gunnars.

See also

Miller, William Ian. Justifying Skarpheðinn

References

Chapter 41, p. 296, ÍF p. 107: „Mágr þœtti mér þú vera,” segir hon, „ef þú dræpir Þórð leysingjason.” : „Þráinn is obligated to Hallgerðr in her own right silence her daughter by a prior marriage is Þráinn’s wife. She invokes this bond when she asks Þráinn to kill Þórðr.”

Chapter 43, p. 295, ÍF p. 111: „Mikils þótti þeim við þurfa,” segir Skarphéðinn; „en hvar skal þá komit, er vér skulum handa hefja?” : „The killing of Þórðr leysingjason (Freedmanson), fosterfather to the Njálssons, however, is a critical event in the escalation of the feud; his death draws men of the warrior class into the fray. When Skarpheðinn hears of Þórðr’s death he is no longer amused: „but what has to happen before we strike?” His recruitment to the feud will soon follow.”

Chapter 94, p. 302, ÍF p. 236-237: „Veit ek, at Skarpheðinn vá hann, ok þurfu vit ekki á þat at minnask, er sætzk hefir á verit ok fullar bœtr hafa fyrir komit”: „The son would be expected to avenge his father and the sagas are full of such examples. This is why Njáll questions Hǫskuldr closely before adopting him. Hǫskuldr gives Njáll the answer he is looking for.”

Chapter 145, p. 311, ÍF p. 413: víg Skarpheðins skyldi jafnt ok víg Hǫskulds Hvítanessgoða: „Community ambivalence is given concrete expression a year after Hǫskuldr’s death when the lives of Skarpheðinn and Hǫskuldr are valued equally and set off against each other.”



Links

  • Written by:Viktória Gyönki
  • Icelandic translation: Svanhildur Óskarsdóttir
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