Sturluson, Snorri

(1178-1241)
   An Icelandic historian, Snorri is the greatest man of letters in medieval Iceland. Having been educated in a literary tradition that combined medieval European scholarship with native Icelandic learning, he was well equipped to undertake the two projects on which his reputation rests. The first was to preserve the knowledge of the composition and interpretation of ancient Scandinavian court poetry. This tradition, known as the skaldic tradition, had arisen in Norway but had more or less become the monopoly of Icelandic skalds. Snorri composed a handbook for young poets, which came to be known as The Prose Edda (also known as The Younger Edda and Snorra-Edda), in which he surveyed the ancient myths that had served as a source material for the poetic imagery and diction of the court poets of the past. He also quoted about 350 stanzas by 60 different poets, thus helping to preserve a significant corpus of work that up to this point had been known mostly in oral tradition. Finally, he included a long poem that he had composed as a model for those who would study his handbook.
   Snorri's second project was to provide a reasonably critical history of Scandinavian kings. Having first compiled a history of the Norwegian king Saint Olaf, he added shorter histories, or sagas, that deal with the preceding rulers, going back to mythological times. Sagas of the kings who succeeded Olaf were also added, up to the year 1177, when the reign of King Sverre Sigurdsson began, for Sverre had already arranged for the history of his reign to be written during his lifetime. Snorri's great historical work came to be known as Heimskringla, after the first two words of his text, "kringla heimsins" (the round disc of the world).
   It has been hypothesized that Snorri is also the writer of the well-known Egils saga, which tells about the life and times of Egil Skallagrimsson, but no firm evidence has yet come to light.

Historical Dictionary of Scandinavian Literature and Theater. . 2006.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Sturluson, Snorri — • Historian, born at Hvammr, 1178; died 1241 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Snorri — Sturluson. Illustration des norwegischen Malers Christian Krohg für Heimskringla Ausgabe von 1899. S …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Snorri Sturluson — • Historian, born at Hvammr, 1178; died 1241 Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Snorri Sturluson     Snorri Sturluson     † …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Snorri Sturluson — Este artículo o sección necesita referencias que aparezcan en una publicación acreditada, como revistas especializadas, monografías, prensa diaria o páginas de Internet fidedignas. Puedes añadirlas así o avisar …   Wikipedia Español

  • Snorri Sturluson — Homme politique, diplomate, historien et poète islandais, Snorri Sturluson (1179–1241) est le principal écrivain scandinave du Moyen Âge. Auteur de nombreuses sagas et de récits mythologiques, son œuvre constitue une source irremplaçable pour la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Snorri Sturluson — (1179–1241)    Snorri Sturluson was Iceland’s best known medieval writer. He was a historian, a poet, and perhaps a saga writer as well. He wrote HEIMSKRINGLA (a history of the kings of Norway), the PROSE EDDA (a handbook of Norse mythology and… …   Encyclopedia of medieval literature

  • Snorri Sturluson — [The Old Norse/Icelandic spelling of the name is Snorri Sturluson . Snorre Sturlason is the modern Norwegian and Snorre Sturlasson the modern Swedish spelling. For the construction of the name (a patronymic), see Icelandic naming conventions.… …   Wikipedia

  • Snorri — Sturluson Statue de Snorri Sturluson. Homme politique, diplomate, historien et poète islandais, Snorri Sturluson (1179–1241) est le principal écrivain scandinave du Moyen Âge. Auteur de nombreuses sagas et de récits mythologiques, son œuvre… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • SNORRI STURLUSON — Depuis huit siècles qu’elle existe, la littérature islandaise n’a jamais compté d’écrivain comparable à Snorri, fils de Sturla de Hvammr. Mythologue, sagnamadr (compositeur de sagas), poète, pédagogue, historien hors pair, il domine de sa… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Snorri Sturluson — Snorri Sturluson, einer der bedeutendsten Isländer, der in der Geschichte der skandinavischen Literatur wie in der seiner engern Heimat eine wichtige Rolle spielt, geb. 1178 auf dem Hof Hvamm in Island als Sprößling eines der ältesten… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

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