Alfred the Great
Alfred the Great was King of Wessex from 871 to c. 886 and King of the Anglo-Saxons from c. 886 to 899. He was the youngest son of King Æthelwulf of Wessex, his father died when he was young and three of Alfred's brothers reigned in turn. Alfred took the throne after the death of his brother Æthelred and spent several years dealing with Viking invasions, he won a decisive victory in the Battle of Edington in 878 and made an agreement with the Vikings, creating what was known as Danelaw in the North of England. Alfred oversaw the conversion of Viking leader Guthrum to Christianity, he defended his kingdom against the Viking attempt at conquest, he became the dominant ruler in England. He was the first King of the West Saxons to style himself King of the Anglo-Saxons. Details of his life are described in a work by 9th-century Welsh bishop Asser. Alfred had a reputation as a learned and merciful man of a gracious and level-headed nature who encouraged education, proposing that primary education be conducted in English rather than Latin, improving his kingdom's legal system, military structure, his people's quality of life.
He was given the epithet "the Great" after the Reformation in the sixteenth century. The only other king of England given this epithet is Cnut the Great. In 2002, Alfred was ranked number 14 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. Alfred was born in the royal estate of Wantage in Berkshire but now in Oxfordshire, between 847 and 849, he was the youngest of five sons of King Æthelwulf of Wessex by Osburh. In 853 Alfred is reported by the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle to have been sent to Rome where he was confirmed by Pope Leo IV, who "anointed him as king". Victorian writers interpreted this as an anticipatory coronation in preparation for his eventual succession to the throne of Wessex; this is unlikely. A letter of Leo IV shows that Alfred was made a "consul", it may be based upon the fact that Alfred accompanied his father on a pilgrimage to Rome where he spent some time at the court of Charles the Bald, King of the Franks, around 854–855. On their return from Rome in 856 Æthelwulf was deposed by his son Æthelbald.
With civil war looming the magnates of the realm met in council to hammer out a compromise. Æthelbald would retain the western shires, Æthelwulf would rule in the east. When King Æthelwulf died in 858 Wessex was ruled by three of Alfred's brothers in succession: Æthelbald, Æthelberht and Æthelred. Bishop Asser tells the story of how, as a child, Alfred won a book of Saxon poems, offered as a prize by his mother to the first of her children able to memorize it. Legend has it that the young Alfred spent time in Ireland seeking healing. Alfred was troubled by health problems throughout his life, it is thought. Statues of Alfred in Winchester and Wantage portray him as a great warrior. Evidence suggests he was not physically strong and, though not lacking in courage, he was noted more for his intellect than as a warlike character. Alfred is not mentioned during the short reigns of his older brothers Æthelberht; the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle describes the Great Heathen Army of Danes landing in East Anglia with the intent of conquering the four kingdoms which constituted Anglo-Saxon England in 865.
Alfred's public life began in 865 at age 16 with the accession of his third brother, 18 year-old Æthelred. During this period, Bishop Asser gave Alfred the unique title of secundarius, which may indicate a position similar to the Celtic tanist, a recognised successor associated with the reigning monarch; this arrangement may have been sanctioned by Alfred's father or by the Witan to guard against the danger of a disputed succession should Æthelred fall in battle. It was a well known tradition among other Germanic peoples - such as the Swedes and Franks to whom the Anglo-Saxons were related - to crown a successor as royal prince and military commander. In 868, Alfred is recorded as fighting beside Æthelred in an unsuccessful attempt to keep the Great Heathen Army led by Ivar the Boneless out of the adjoining Kingdom of Mercia; the Danes arrived in his homeland at the end of 870, nine engagements were fought in the following year, with varying outcomes. A successful skirmish at the Battle of Englefield in Berkshire on 31 December 870 was followed by a severe defeat at the siege and Battle of Reading by Ivar's brother Halfdan Ragnarsson on 5 January 871.
Four days the Anglo-Saxons won a brilliant victory at the Battle of Ashdown on the Berkshire Downs near Compton or Aldworth. Alfred is credited with the success of this last battle; the Saxons were defeated at the Battle of Basing on 22 January. They were defeated again on 22 March at the Battle of Merton. Æthelred died shortly afterwards on 23 April. In April 871 King Æthelred died and Alfred succeeded to the throne of Wessex and the burden of its defence though Æthelred left two under-age sons, Æthelhelm and Æthelwold; this was in accordance with the agreement that Æthelred and Alfred had made earlier that year in an assembly at an unidentified place called Swinbeorg. The brothers had agreed that whichever of them outlived the other would inherit the personal property that King Æthelwulf had left jointly to his sons in his will; the deceased's sons would receive only w
The Wendland is a region in Germany on the borders of the present states of Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Lower Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. Its heart is the Hanoverian Wendland in the county of Lüchow-Dannenberg in Lower Saxony. In 2012 the state of Lower Saxony nominated the Rundling villages in Hanoverian Wendland for the German shortlist of candidates for future UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Subsequent decisions that will determine the success of this bid take place in 2013 at the conference of education ministers and no earlier than 2017 by UNESCO. Wendland is not an ancient regional name; the term was first used around 1700, when a priest from Wustrow wrote about the language, habits and manners of the Polabian inhabitants of this area. He so named the region the Wendland. Over the course of time the name stuck; the term Vendland was used for the regions east of Lübeck, however, by the Scandinavian peoples since at least before the turn of the 10th Century. One recorded historic instance is when King Olaf I of Norway in 982 married Queen Geira, a daughter of King Burizleif of Vendland.
Geographically the western Wendland is the eastern edge of the Lüneburg Heath, its appearance shaped during the Saale glaciation. Here the countryside is dominated by the ridge of the Drawehn, a gravelly, east Hanoverian terminal moraine, it is thus a sandy geest terrain, afforested with pines. With infertile soils and a scarcity of water as a result of the porous soil it was always a hostile environment for settlers; the largest part of the Hanoverian Wendland, lies in the glacial meltwater valley of the River Elbe. A distinction here needs to be made between the actual flood plain of the Elbe in the north and the Lüchow Depression; the latter is a lower terrace, crossed by numerous streams - the largest being the Jeetzel – canals and ditches. Low hills are formed by small, island-like ground moraines like Öring, Langendorfer Geestinsel and Höhbeck. In the east the Gartow Forest stands on a large plain of wind-borne sand; the Wendland is influenced by the Polabian culture. In the Middle Ages, in places up to the Early Modern Period, the Wendland was inhabited by Slavs, who were known as Wends in the German-speaking world.
As a result there are numerous place names that have Slavic origins, as well as circular villages of the Rundling type that emerged during times of conflict in the medieval period. The Slavic language of the Wendlanders, the Draveno-Polabian, died out in 1756; until the Wendland was the westernmost point of the Slavic language region. Until the Wende in 1989/90, the Wendland was a border zone that extended like a salient into East German territory. Since the end of the 1970s it has become renown outside the region for protests against the atomic waste depot at Gorleben and the call for the so-called Free Republic of Wendland in 1980 - a protest camp, cleared by police. Since 1989, a cultural festival, the Kulturelle Landpartie, has taken place in the Wendland annually between Ascension Day and Pentecost, it is one of the biggest cultural events in Germany. In Hanoverian Wendland, a distinctive type of historic circular village, known as the Rundling, is common today. All Rundlinge still bear village names of Slavic origin.
This type of settlement occurred in regions from the Baltic Sea to the Ore Mountains, but has only survived in its original form in any numbers in the Wendland due to the relative isolation of the region since the Middle Ages and its distance from the main trading routes. Over 100 villages in the area still preserve the characteristic appearance of a Rundling, but similar villages called by other names such as Runddorf or Platzdorf or Rundangerdorf occur in significant numbers in neighbouring Altmark as well as the eastern parts of the counties of Lüneburg, Gifhorn and in the south on the Vorsfelder Werder and some parts of Schleswig-Holstein. However, unlike those in the Hanoverian Wendland, they have been modified, and fewer of their historic farmhouses have survived, because in other regions with better economic conditions, new buildings replaced the old. The Rundling villages of the Hanoverian Wendland were nominated in 2012 by the state of Lower Saxony as a cultural landscape for the German shortlist of candidates for future UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
On 18 June 2012, the Lower Saxon Ministry of Science and Culture announced its decision following a selection process that had started in 2011. The conference of cultural ministers will decide in 2013 which entries from Germany's federal states will be placed on a shortlist, from which UNESCO will choose new world heritage sites in 2017; the original bid was based on 15 Rundling villages chosen to represent a selection of distinctive high medieval colonisation settlements in the county of Lüchow-Dannenberg. Since the bid has been modified to encompass the landscape between the villages, 19 villages have been provisionally chosen to represent the best of the Rundlingslandschaft; the uniqueness of these circular villages stems from their combination of a distinctive ground plan, a high density of Low German hall houses with their gable ends facing a central green as well as the fact that their houses represent a regionally specific variation of this type of farmhouse. The state of Lower Saxony hopes that the bid will prove successful because these circular villages are among the most unrepresented categories of cultural landscapes and farming architecture in the UNESCO's world heritage list.
Wendland-Lexikon. Ed.: Wol
Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks
Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks is a legendary saga from the 13th century combining matter from several older sagas. It is a valuable saga for several different reasons: it contains traditions of wars between the Goths and the Huns from the 4th century; the saga may be most appreciated for its memorable imagery, as seen in a quote from one of its translators, Nora Kershaw Chadwick, on the invasion of the Horde: Hervör standing at sunrise on the summit of the tower and looking southward towards the forest. The text contains several poetic sections: the Hervararkviða, on Hervor's visit to her father's grave and retrieval of the sword Tyrfing, it has inspired writers and derivative works, such as J. R. R. Tolkien when shaping his legends of Middle-earth, his son, Christopher Tolkien translated the work into English, as The Saga of King Heidrek the Wise. Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks is a legendary saga known from 13th- and 14th-century parchment sources, plus additional 17th-century paper manuscripts that complete the story.
There are two main manuscript sources for the text, dating to the 14th and 15th centuries referred to as H and R, respectively. H, the Hauksbók dates to c. 1325. H tells the story up to the end of Gestumblindi's second riddle, whereas R is truncated before the end of Ch. 12, within the poem on the battle of Goths and Huns. There is a third version referred to as U, from 17th-century paper manuscript held at the University Library in Uppsala; the version is garbled, includes corrections sourced from other sagas, including from the Rímur reworking of the same tale, the Hervarar Rímur. An additional 17th-century manuscript held at the Copenhagen University Library contains a copy of R, but continues with text from another unknown source, thought to share a common ancestor with U. There are copied versions written down in the late 17th century; these include AM 192, AM 193, AM 202 k, AM 354 4to, AM 355 4to, AM 359 a 4to. These the 17th century paper manuscripts are thought to add nothing to the texts known from H and R, though they continue the story where the two older versions end, fill in lacunas.
Two manuscripts, help complete the'H' version, being copies. Used the 1694 text in preparing his edition of the saga. There are significant differences between R and H: R misses the first chapter and some riddles, as well as having a different sequence from H. Scholarly opinion differs as to which presents the best form of the text; the least altered version is thought to be the'R' text. A different version of the stemma has been reconstructed by Alaric Hall, from that proposed by Helgason 1924 - both propose a version from which both parchment and the paper versions descend; the saga tells the history of the family of Heidrek over several generations. It begins with a mythic tale. Considers that the latter part of the tale, among the Huns and Goths, has a separate origin to the earlier parts, and, in actual chronological time, is taking place several centuries earlier. All the different manuscripts show a similar pattern, with seven sections. Identifies seven key events: 1. Introduction with the forging of the sword, Tyrfingr.
A holmganga between Örvar-Oddr and Hjálmarr, Angantýr and his brothers, with Angantýr killed and buried with the sword. Hervör reviving her dead father Angantýr and retrieving the sword Tyrgingr; the tale of Heiðrekr son of Hervör, new wielder of Tyrfingr. War between Heiðrekr’s sons Angantýr and Hlöðr. An epilogue listing the kingly descendents of Angantýr; the 6th and final parts are lost or absent in manuscripts'H' and'R', but are found in the 17th-century paper manuscripts. The common link through all the tales is the sword passed between generations - this magic sword shares a common trope with some other mythological weapons in that it cannot be sheathed once drawn until it has drawn blood. There are three poems in one heroic; the gnomic The Riddles of Gestumblindi, is a good example of riddling from early Norse literature. In addition to attempts to understand the relationship between the events in the saga and real world historical char
Aslaug called Aslög, Kráka or Kraba is a queen consort in Norse mythology who appears in Snorri's Edda, the Völsunga saga and in the saga of Ragnar Lodbrok as his third wife. According to the 13th-century Tale of Ragnar Lodbrok, Aslaug was the daughter of Sigurd and the shieldmaiden Brynhildr, but was raised by Brynhildr's foster father Heimer. At the deaths of Sigurd and Brynhildr, Heimer was concerned about Aslaug's security, so he made a harp large enough to hide the girl, he traveled as a poor harp player carrying the harp containing the girl. They arrived at Spangereid at Lindesnes in Norway, where they stayed for the night in the house of the peasants Áke and Grima. Áke believed the harp told his wife Grima. Grima convinced him to murder Heimer as he was sleeping. However, when they broke the harp open, they discovered a little girl, whom they raised as their own, calling her Kráka. In order to hide her beauty – the accepted sign of her noble origins – they rubbed her in tar and dressed her in a long hood.
However, once as she was bathing, she was discovered by some of the men of the legendary king Ragnar Lodbrok. Entranced by Kráka's beauty, they allowed the bread. Ragnar sent for her, but in order to test her wits, he commanded her to arrive neither dressed nor undressed, neither fasting nor eating, neither alone nor in company. Kráka arrived dressed in a net, biting an onion, with only a dog as a companion. Impressed by her ingenuity and finding her a wise companion, Ragnar proposed marriage to her, which she refused until he had accomplished his mission in Norway, she gave him five sons: Ivar the Boneless. When Ragnar visited viceroy Eysteinn Beli of Sweden, Eysteinn persuaded him to reject Kráka and marry his daughter, Ingeborg. On his return home, three birds had informed Kráka of Ragnar's plans, so she reproached him and told him of her true noble origins. In order to prove she was the daughter of Sigurd who had slain Fafnir, she said she would bear a child whose eye would bear the image of a serpent.
This happened. When Eysteinn learned of Ragnar's change of mind, he rebelled against him but was slain by Ragnar's sons at Kráka's behest; when Ragnar was about to undertake his ill-fated final expedition to England, his failure was due to his not heeding Kráka's warnings about the bad condition of the fleet. When King Ælla threw Ragnar into the snake pit, it was claimed Ragnar was protected by an enchanted shirt that Kráka had made, it was only when this shirt had been removed that the snakes could kill him. According to Marilyn Jurich, Aslaug's tale in the Saga of Ragnar Lodbrok is the prototype of the "Clever Peasant Girl" folk tale, Aarne–Thompson no. 875. The saga matches the tale up to Aslaug's marriage to Ragnar, but after that there are similarities: The saga highlights Aslaug's resolve and her preternatural wisdom: because Ragnar insists on bedding her after the wedding, contrary to her advice, their first son Ivar was born weak, "boneless"; the Brothers Grimm discuss the similarities of their tale 1815 #8 "Die kluge Bauerntochter," with the Nordic tale of Kraka in the appendix entry of the text.
They discuss similarities to a tale in Johannes Pauli's "Schimpf und Ernst" from 1519/1522. The romantic poem The Fostering of Aslaug by William Morris is a retelling of Aslaug's relationship with Ragnar, based on the version of the tale in Benjamin Thorpe's Northern Mythology, it is changed in tone and emphasis by Morris' romanticism, excising the saga's more somber and complicated motifs and portraying Ragnar as the typical hero wooing the maiden. She appears in Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué's "Aslauga's Knight," published in 1810 with two other Icelandic romances as Der Held des Nordens. A principal character in the television series Vikings, played by Alyssa Sutherland, is loosely based on the legend, introduced to Ragnar in the manner it described. Aslaug appears as a daughter of Loki in the Red Queen's War series of fantasy novels by Mark Lawrence
Sigurd Ring (Old Norse: Sigurðr hringr was a legendary Swedish king mentioned in many old Scandinavian sagas. According to Bósa saga ok Herrauds, there was once a saga on Sigurd Ring. In the old sources, he is notable for winning the Battle of the Brávellir against Harald Wartooth and for being the father of Ragnar Lodbrok; the Hervarar saga tells that when Valdar died, his son Randver became the king of Sweden, while Harald Wartooth became the king of Denmark. Harald conquered all of his grandfather Ivar Vidfamne's territory. After Randver's death, his son Sigurd Ring became the king of Sweden as the subking of Harald. Sigurd Ring and Harald fought the Battle of the Brávellir on the plains of Östergötland where Harald and many of his men died. Sigurd was succeeded by his son Ragnar Lodbrok. Harald Wartooth's son Eysteinn Beli ruled Sweden as a jarl until he was killed by the sons of Ragnar Lodbrok. In Sögubrot af nokkrum fornkonungum, Sigurd is the paternal nephew of the Danish king Harald Wartooth, the son of Randver, who in his turn is the son of Harald's mother Auðr the Deep-Minded and her husband king Raðbarðr of Gardariki.
Harald Wartooth was beginning to feel old, so he made Sigurd the king of Sweden and Västergötland. Sigurd beat his uncle at the colossal Battle of Bråvalla, became the ruler of Denmark as well, he made a shieldmaiden the ruler of Denmark. Sigurd married Alfhild, the daughter of king Alf of Álfheimr and their son was Ragnar Lodbrok; as Sigurd grew old, distant parts of his realm began to secede, it is told how he lost territory in England due to old age. One day, he was visited by his brothers-in-law, the sons of Ragnar, they asked him to join them in attacking king Eysteinn of Vestfold in Norway. In Vestfold, there were great blóts held at Skiringssal. Sögubrot ends there. However, the Skjöldunga saga is believed to be the original story on which Sögubrot is based and it continues the story; the Skjöldunga saga tells that Sigurd Hring was married to Alfhild, the daughter of king Alf of Alfheim, their son was Ragnar Lodbrok. Alfhild died; when Sigurd Hring was an old man, he came to Skiringssal to take part in the great blóts.
There he spotted a beautiful girl named Alfsol, she was the daughter of King Alf of Vendel. The girl's two brothers refused to allow Sigurd to marry her. Sigurd fought with the brothers and killed them, but their sister had been given poison by her brothers so that Sigurd could never have her; when her corpse was carried to Sigurd, he went aboard a large ship where he placed Alvsol and her brothers. He steered the ship with full sails out on the sea, as the ship burnt. Ragnar Lodbrok succeeded his father, but put a subking on the throne of Sweden, king Eysteinn Beli, killed by Ragnar's sons. According to Gesta Danorum, by Saxo Grammaticus, Hring was the son of the Danish king Randver and the maternal nephew of the Danish king Harald Wartooth, his father Ingjald had raped the sister of Harald, but the latter did not mind in order preserve the friendship with Ingjald. Ring fought with Harald Wartooth in the Battle of the Brávellir and became the king of Denmark as well. Saxo describes the different subkings and their adventures.
In book 9, he returns to Sigurd Hring as Siward, surnamed Hring, the father of Ragnar Lodbrok. According to Hversu Noregr byggdist, Sigurd was the son of the brother of Harald Wartooth. Randver and Harald were the sons of Hrærekr slöngvanbaugi. In the part of the Heimskringla called the Saga of Harald Fairhair, Harald Fairhair learns that the Swedish king Erik Eymundsson had enlarged Sweden westwards, until it reached the same extent as it had during king Sigurd Hring and his son Ragnar Lodbrok; this included Romerike, Westfold all the way to Grenmar, Vingulmark. In Ragnar Lodbrok's saga, it is mentioned that Sigurd Hring and Harald Wartooth fought in the Battle of the Brávellir and that Harald fell. After the battle Sigurd Hring was the king of Denmark, he was the father of Ragnar Lodbrok. Ragnarssona þáttr only states that Ring was the king of Sweden and Denmark, the father of Ragnar Lodbrok. In Bósa saga ok Herrauds, it is only said that Sigurd Hring, the father of Ragnar Lodbrok fought with Harald Wartooth at the Battle of the Brávellir where Harald died.
It adds. According to the Chronicon Lethrense, Harald Wartooth had made all the countries down to the Mediterranean pay tribute. However, when he went to Sweden to demand tribute, the Swedish king Ring met him at the Battle of the Brávellir, Harald lost and died. Hring made a shieldmaiden the ruler of Denmark. Gríms saga loðinkinna and the younger version of Orvar-Odd's saga only mention Sigurd Hring in a few lines relating to the Battle of the Brávellir with Harald Wartooth. In Norna-Gests þáttr, it is said that Sigurd Hring was old when Sigurd's sons-in-law, the sons of Gandalf, asked him to help them fight against Sigurd Fafnisbani and the Gjukungs. Sigurd Hring could not help them in person, as he was busy fighting against ravaging Curonians and Kœnir, it has been suggested that a report of a struggle for the Danish crown may have given rise to the legend of Sigurd Hring. Following the death of Hemming in 812, his brother or cousin Sigifrid and Anulo, nephew or grandson of an earlier king Harald, fought a battle for the succession in which bo
A legendary saga or fornaldarsaga is a Norse saga that, unlike the Icelanders' sagas, takes place before the colonization of Iceland. There are some exceptions, such as Yngvars saga víðförla; the sagas were all written in Iceland, from about the middle of the 13th century to about 1400, although it is possible that some may be of a date, such as Hrólfs saga kraka. In terms of form, fornaldarsögur are similar to various other saga-genres, but tend towards linear, episodic narratives. Like sagas in other genres, many quote verse, but in the fornaldarsögur that verse is invariably in the metre of Eddaic verse; the setting is Scandinavia in the time prior to the settlement of Iceland and the conversion of Scandinavia, but it moves temporarily to more distant and exotic locations or has its characters encounter Christian cultures. There are very mythological elements, such as dwarves, elves and magic. In centuries past, they were considered to be reliable historic sources by Scandinavian scholars, but since the 19th century, they have been considered to contain little historic material.
The present consensus is that, although some of the sagas contain a small core, not fiction, or are based on historical characters, the primary function of the legendary sagas was entertainment, the aim of the sagas has not been to present a accurate tale. However, it has been emphasized that the sagas are useful sources for the culture of 13th and 14th century Iceland, "in terms of the light that they can shed on the culture in which they were composed" i.e. Iceland in the Middle Ages. In the words of Margaret Clunies Ross, The themes and the whole world of the fornaldarsaga lend themselves to interpretation, not as realistic narratives, but rather as subjects dealing with deep and disturbing issues that cannot be approached from the perspective of the mundane world but must rather be enacted in a literary world in which taboo subjects can be raised and aired, though not resolved, they may be treated in a comic or parodic vein. Some of the sagas are based on distant historic characters, this is evident in cases where there are corroborating sources, such as Ragnars saga loðbrókar, Yngvars saga víðförla and Völsunga saga.
In the case of Hervarar saga, it conveys names of historical places in Ukraine during the period c. 150-450, the last part of the saga is used as a historic source for Swedish history. Indeed, they contain old Germanic matter, such as the Hervarar saga and the Völsunga saga which contains poetry about Sigurd that did not find its way into the Poetic Edda and which would otherwise have been lost. Other sagas deal with heroes such as Hrólf Kraki and Orvar-Odd. In these respects the fornaldarsögur overlap in genre and content with the Kings' sagas; the Fornaldarsagas have great value for legend research, since they contain motifs and complexes of motifs from many types of legend of which there is otherwise no documentation in Scandinavia prior to the mid-19th century. They are of great value for scholars studying medieval Scandinavian ballads the Faroese kvæði, which are based on the same matters. Moreover, they are very important for the study of Scandinavian and Germanic heroic legends together with Saxo Grammaticus' Gesta Danorum, based on the same heroic poetry and traditions.
Philologists have held the legendary sagas in less esteem, in terms of their literary value, than the Icelanders' sagas. The content is less realistic, the characters more two-dimensional, the sagas borrow themes from each other, from folk tales. In these aspects of style and reception, the fornaldarsögur tend to overlap with the Chivalric sagas those composed in medieval Iceland; the legendary sagas have influenced writers, for instance the Swede Esaias Tegnér, who wrote Frithiof's saga, based on the Friðþjófs saga ins frœkna. For a comprehensive list of the medieval fornaldarsögur, with information about manuscripts, etc. See Stories for all time: The Icelandic fornaldarsögur. Áns saga bogsveigis Ásmundar saga kappabana - A saga based on the German Lay of Hildebrand. Bósa saga ok Herrauðs - like Beowulf it has Geatish heroes. Egils saga einhenda ok Ásmundar berserkjabana Eireks saga víðförla Frá Fornjóti ok hans ættmönnum Friðþjófs saga ins frœkna Gautreks saga Gríms saga loðinkinna Göngu-Hrólfs saga Hálfdanar saga Brönufóstra Hálfdanar saga Eysteinssonar Hálfs saga ok Hálfsrekka - A Norwegian legend, the hero of, compared to Hrólf Kraki.
Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks - a saga which may be of Swedish origin containing Swedish and Gothic heroes. This saga still serves as a source for Swedish historians. Hjálmþés saga ok Ölvis Hrólfs saga Gautrekssonar - A saga about a Swedish warrior princess, won by a Geatish prince. Hrólfs saga kraka. Hrómundar saga Gripssonar Illuga saga Gríðarfóstra A saga of the more traditional fairy tale kind, where a young man delivers a troll woman and her beautiful daughter from a curse. Ketils saga hœngs *Ormars saga Fraðmarssonar, thought to have existed as the source of Ormars rímur. Orvar-Odd's saga Ragnars saga loðbrókar - Sagas of Ragnar Lodbrok a legendary Viking warrior and his sons. Sturlaugs saga starfsama - A prequel to Göngu-Hrólfs Saga. Sögubrot af fornkonungum - A remnant of a larger work dealing with the Swedish and Danish kings of old. Sörla saga sterka Völsun
Lagertha was, according to legend, a Viking shieldmaiden and ruler from what is now Norway, the onetime wife of the famous Viking Ragnar Lodbrok. Her tale, as recorded by the chronicler Saxo in the 12th century, may be a reflection of tales about Thorgerd, a Norse deity, her name as recorded by Saxo, Lathgertha, is a Latinisation of the Old Norse Hlaðgerðr. It is rendered in English-language sources as "Lagertha", has been recorded as Ladgertha, Ladgerda or similar. Lagertha's tale is recorded in passages in the ninth book of the Gesta Danorum, a twelfth-century work of Danish history by the Christian historian Saxo Grammaticus. According to the Gesta, Lagertha's career as a warrior began when Frø, king of Sweden, invaded Norway and killed the Norwegian king Siward. Frø put the women of the dead king's family into a brothel for public humiliation. Hearing of this, Ragnar Lodbrok came with an army to avenge his grandfather Siward. Many of the women Frø had ordered abused dressed themselves in men's clothing and fought on Ragnar's side.
Chief among them, key to Ragnar's victory, was Lagertha. Saxo recounts: Ladgerda, a skilled Amazon, though a maiden had the courage of a man, fought in front among the bravest with her hair loose over her shoulders. All marvelled at her matchless deeds, for her locks flying down her back betrayed that she was a woman. Impressed with her courage, Ragnar courted her from afar. Lagertha feigned interest and Ragnar arrived to seek her hand, bidding his companions wait in the Gaular valley, he was set upon by a bear and a great hound which Lagertha had guarding her home, but killed the bear with his spear and choked the hound to death. Thus he won the hand of Lagertha. According to Saxo, Ragnar had a son with her, Fridleif, as well as two daughters, whose names are not recorded. After returning to Denmark to fight a civil war, Ragnar divorced Lagertha in order to marry Thora Borgarhjört, daughter of King Herraud of Sweden, he won the hand of his new love after numerous adventures, but upon returning to Denmark was again faced with a civil war.
Ragnar sent to Norway for support, Lagertha, who still loved him, came to his aid with 120 ships, according to Saxo. When at the height of the battle, Ragnar's son Siward was wounded, Lagertha saved the day for Ragnar with a counter-attack: Ladgerda, who had a matchless spirit though a delicate frame, covered by her splendid bravery the inclination of the soldiers to waver. For she made a sally about, flew round to the rear of the enemy, taking them unawares, thus turned the panic of her friends into the camp of the enemy. Upon returning to Norway, she quarrelled with her husband, slew him with a spearhead she concealed in her gown. Saxo concludes that she "usurped the whole of his name and sovereignty. According to Judith Jesch, the rich variety of tales in the first nine books of Saxo's Gesta, which include the tale of Lagertha, are "generally considered to be fictional". In portraying the several warrior women in these tales, Saxo drew on the legend of the Amazons from classical antiquity, but on a variety of Old Norse sources, which have not been identified.
Saxo's depiction of women warriors is colored by misogyny: Like most churchmen of the time, Saxo thought of women only as sexual beings. To him, the Viking shieldmaidens who refused this role were an example of the disorder in old heathen Denmark, cured by the Church and a stable monarchy. A woman called Hlaðgerðr, who rules the Hlaðeyjar appears in the sagas of the 6th century Scylding king Halfdan, she gives him twenty ships to help defeat his enemies. Hilda Ellis Davidson, in her commentary on the Gesta notes suggestions in the literature that the name was used by the Franks, for instance by Luitgarde of Vermandois, that the tale of Lagertha could have originated in Frankish tradition; when Saxo describes Lagertha as "flying round" to the rear of the enemy, he ascribes to her the power of flight, according to Jesch, indicating a kinship with the valkyries. The tale notably recalls that of Kára, the valkyrie lover of Helgi Haddingjaskati, who flies above Helgi in battle as a swan, casting spells in his support.
Davidson deems it possible, as Nora K. Chadwick considered probable, that Lagertha is identical with Thorgerd, a goddess reflected in several stories. Thorgerd was worshipped by, sometimes said to be wed to, the Norwegian ruler Haakon Sigurdsson, who lived at Hlaðir; this may be the origin of the name Hlaðgerðr. Gaulardal, the Gaular valley – where Lagertha lived according to Saxo – lies nearby and was the center of Thorgerd's cult, it was according to Snorri Sturluson, the abode of Haakon's wife Thora. The description of Lagertha coming to Ragnar's aid with flying hair is similar to how the Flateyjarbók describes Thorgerd and her sister Irpa assisting Haakon. Christen Pram's historical drama Lagertha is based on Saxo's account; the choreographer Vincenzo Galeotti based his ballet Lagertha, the first ballet to feature a Nordic theme, on Pram's work. Set to music by Claus Schall, the ballet was a significant success for Galeotti's Royal Theater, it was conceived as a Gesamtkunstwerk incorporating song, pantomime and also dialog parts.
More Lagertha is a main character broadly based on Saxo's legend in the 2013 TV series Vikings. She is portrayed as a shieldmaiden and Rag