Sagas of Icelanders [The Icelandic Family Sagas]

Literary/ Cultural Context Essay

Diana Whaley (University of Newcastle upon Tyne)
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The Sagas of Icelanders have also been known, rather imprecisely, as Icelandic Family Sagas. They constitute the best-known grouping within the richly diverse range of Icelandic Sagas (see the separate essay Icelandic Sagas in The Literary Encyclopedia). There are some forty in total (this being, for instance, the number translated in The Complete Sagas of Icelanders, 1997). Collectively, they cover events running from the mid ninth century to the mid eleventh and located in all inhabited parts of Iceland (and some uninhabited), though saga-writing flourished above all in the West and North. Individual sagas vary in length …

3315 words

Citation: Whaley, Diana. "Sagas of Icelanders [The Icelandic Family Sagas]". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 30 April 2003 [, accessed 27 September 2023.]

1275 Sagas of Icelanders [The Icelandic Family Sagas] 2 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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