Thómas saga Erkibyskups (English: Saga of Archbishop Thomas) is an Icelandic saga on Saint Thomas Becket written in the 14th century and based on earlier sources: a now lost "Life" by Robert of Cricklade which was written soon after Becket's murder, a "Life" by Benet of St Albans, and an Icelandic translation of the "Quadrilogus" (a composite life based on 12th-century biographers). It provides some unique details, like Thomas speaking with a stammer; these details mostly come from Robert's "Life", which also was a source for Benet's.
Heimskringla is the best known of the Old Norse kings' sagas. It was written in Old Norse in Iceland by the poet and historian Snorri Sturluson (1178/79–1241) c. 1230. The name Heimskringla was first used in the 17th century, derived from the first two words of one of the manuscripts.
Thomas Becket, also known as Saint Thomas of Canterbury, Thomas of London and later Thomas à Becket, was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1162 until his murder in 1170. He is venerated as a saint and martyr by both the Catholic Church and the Anglican Communion. He engaged in conflict with Henry II, King of England, over the rights and privileges of the Church and was murdered by followers of the king in Canterbury Cathedral. Soon after his death, he was canonised by Pope Alexander III.
Rollo or Gaange Rolf was a Viking who became the first ruler of Normandy, a region in northern France. He is sometimes called the first Duke of Normandy. His son and grandson, William Longsword and Richard I, used the titles "count" and "prince" (princeps). His great-grandson Richard II was the first to officially use the title of Duke of Normandy. His Scandinavian name Rolf was extended to Gaange Rolf because he became too heavy as an adult for a horse to carry; therefore he had to walk. He emerged as the outstanding warrior among the Norsemen who had secured a permanent foothold on Frankish soil in the valley of the lower Seine. After the Siege of Chartres in 911, Charles the Simple, the king of West Francia, ceded them lands between the mouth of the Seine and what is now Rouen in exchange for Rollo agreeing to end his brigandage, and provide the Franks with protection against future Viking raids.
John of Salisbury, who described himself as Johannes Parvus, was an English author, philosopher, educationalist, diplomat and bishop of Chartres, and was born at Salisbury, England.
Sagas are prose stories and histories, composed in Iceland and to a lesser extent elsewhere in Scandinavia.
Flateyjarbók is an important medieval Icelandic manuscript. It is also known as GkS 1005 fol. and by the Latin name Codex Flateyensis. It was commissioned by Jón Hákonarson and produced by the priests and scribes Jón Þórðarson and Magnús Þórhallsson.
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, which takes place in the 11th century. The sagas were probably 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 later date, such as Hrólfs saga kraka.
Fóstbrœðra saga or The Saga of the Sworn Brothers is one of the Icelanders' sagas. It relates the deeds of the sworn brothers Þorgeirr and Þormóðr in early 11th century Iceland and abroad. Þorgeirr is a capable and insanely brave warrior. He kills people for trifles and for sport. Þormóðr is a more complicated character; warrior, trouble-maker, womanizer and poet. The saga contains poetry attributed to him, including parts of a lay on his blood brother.
Sturlunga saga is a collection of Icelandic sagas by various authors from the 12th and 13th centuries; it was assembled in about 1300. It mostly deals with the story of the Sturlungs, a powerful family clan during the Age of the Sturlungs period of the Icelandic Commonwealth.
Saint Sigfrid of Sweden (Swedish: Sigfridaer, Latin: Sigafridus, Icelandic: Sigurðr, Old English: Sigefrið/Sigeferð) was a missionary-bishop in Scandinavia during the first half of the 11th century. Originally from England, Saint Sigfrid is credited in late medieval king-lists and hagiography with performing the baptism of the first monarch of Sweden, Olof Skötkonung. He most likely arrived in Sweden soon after the year 1000 and conducted extensive missions in Götaland and Svealand. For some years after 1014, following his return to England, Sigfrid was based in Trondheim, Norway. However, his position there became untenable after the defeat of Olaf Haraldsson.
Óláfs saga Tryggvasonar is the name of several kings' sagas on the life of Óláfr Tryggvason, a 10th century Norwegian king.
Þiðreks saga af Bern is an Old Norse chivalric saga centering the character it calls Þiðrekr af Bern, who originated as the historical king Theoderic the Great (454–526), but who attracted a great many unhistorical legends in the Middle Ages. The text is either a translation of a lost Low German prose narrative of Theoderic's life, or a compilation by a Norwegian or Icelandic scholar based on German material. It is a pre-eminent source for a wide range of medieval Germanic legends.
Guernes de Pont-Sainte-Maxence, also known as Garnier, was a 12th-century French scribe and one of the ten contemporary biographers of Saint Thomas Becket of Canterbury.
Eiríkr or Eiríkur Magnússon was an Icelandic scholar at the University of Cambridge, who taught Old Norse to William Morris, translated numerous Icelandic sagas into English in collaboration with him, and played an important role in the movement to study the history and literature of the Norsemen in Victorian England.
Robert of Cricklade was a medieval English writer and prior of St Frideswide's Priory in Oxford. He was a native of Cricklade and taught before becoming a cleric. He wrote a number of theological works as well as a lost biography of Thomas Becket, the murdered Archbishop of Canterbury.
Benet of St Albans was a medieval English monk and biographer of Thomas Becket.
William of Canterbury was a medieval English monk and biographer of Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury murdered in December 1170.
The North Icelandic Benedictine School is a fourteenth-century Icelandic literary movement, the lives, activities, and relationships of whose members are attested particularly by Laurentius saga biskups. This movement is characterised by an elaborate rhetorical style new to Icelandic saga-writing at the time, with Latinate grammar, Latin and Low German loan-words; and, unusually for Icelandic sagas, which are usually anonymous, a close-knit network of identifiable authors. The school is associated particularly with the Northern Icelandic Benedictine monasteries of Þingeyri and Munkaþverá in the diocese of Hólar, and with the students of Jón Halldórsson and Lárentíus Kálfsson.
Saints' sagas are a genre of Old Norse sagas comprising the prose hagiography of medieval western Scandinavia.
Veraldar saga is an Old Norse-Icelandic work of universal history written in its earliest form some time in the twelfth century. It was first called Veraldar saga by Konráð Gíslason in his 1860 edition of the text.
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