Prose Edda Tales from Norse Mythology

ISBN-10: 0140447555
ISBN-13: 9780140447552
Edition: 2005
List price: $18.00 Buy it from $9.28
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Description: The stirring, bloody, and tragic saga that inspired such artists as Wagner, Borges, and Tolkien Written in Iceland a century after the close of the Viking Age, The Prose Eddais the source of most of what we know of Norse mythology. Its tales are  More...

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Book details

List price: $18.00
Copyright year: 2005
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 1/31/2006
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 224
Size: 5.25" wide x 7.75" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.572
Language: English

The stirring, bloody, and tragic saga that inspired such artists as Wagner, Borges, and Tolkien Written in Iceland a century after the close of the Viking Age, The Prose Eddais the source of most of what we know of Norse mythology. Its tales are peopled by giants, dwarves, and elves, superhuman heroes and indomitable warrior queens. Its gods live with the tragic knowledge of their own impending destruction in the cataclysmic battle of Ragnarok. Its time scale spans the eons from the worlds creation to its violent end. This robust new translation captures the magisterial sweep and startling psychological complexity of the Old Icelandic original.

Snorri Sturluson's fame as a historian---his main work is the 16 sagas included in Heimskringla (c.1230), a monumental history of Norway from its beginning until 1177---lies both in his critical approach to sources and in his fine, realistic exposition of event and motivation. A similar combination of scholarly and imaginative talent is seen in The Prose Edda (c.1220). Intended to be a handbook in skaldic poetry, it preserves invaluable mythological tales that were on the verge of being forgotten even in Sturluson's time. A large part of what we know about Nordic mythology stems from his Edda. The bibliography that follows also lists the anonymous Egil's Saga (1200--30), which many expert Scandinavian medievalists (e.g., Sigurdur Nordal and Bjorn M. Olsen) attribute to Sturluson. It is a fascinating account of life in Norway, England, and Iceland and of the poet-warrior Egil, whose skaldic verse is renowned for its unusual emotional and personal qualities. Snorri Sturluson's own life was as eventful as those about whom he wrote. Returning to Iceland from exile in 1239, he again became deeply involved in serious power struggles and was murdered in 1241.

Map : the geographical world of the Edda
The prose Edda
Gylfaginning (the deluding of Gylfi)
Skaldskaparmal (poetic diction)
Mythic and legendary tales poetic references from Skaldskaparmal
The Norse cosmos and the world tree
The language of the Skalds : Kennings and Heiti
Eddic poems used as sources in Gylfaginning

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