Thorstein the Red or Thorstein Olafsson was a viking chieftain who flourished in late ninth-century Scotland.
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Sharing a border with England to the southeast, Scotland is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, by the North Sea to the northeast and by the Irish Sea to the south. In addition to the mainland, situated on the northern third of the island of Great Britain, Scotland has over 790 islands, including the Northern Isles and the Hebrides.
He was born around 850 AD and was the son of Olaf the White, King of Dublin, and Aud the Deep-minded, who was the daughter of Ketil Flatnose.After the death of Olaf, Aud and Thorstein went to live in the Hebrides, then under Ketil's rule. Thorstein eventually became a warlord and allied with the Jarl of Orkney, Sigurd Eysteinsson. Together Thorstein and Sigurd waged a series of campaigns in Caithness, Sutherland, Ross, Moray, and a number of other regions, eventually receiving tribute from half of Scotland. However, the Scottish chieftains plotted against Thorstein, and he was killed; the exact nature of his death is unknown but it probably took place around 880 or 890. After Thorstein's death Aud left Caithness, sojourning for a while in Orkney before settling with other members of her clan in Iceland.
Olaf the White was a viking sea-king who lived in the latter half of the 9th century.
The Hebrides comprise a widespread and diverse archipelago off the west coast of mainland Scotland. There are two main groups: the Inner and Outer Hebrides. These islands have a long history of occupation dating back to the Mesolithic, and the culture of the residents has been affected by the successive influences of Celtic, Norse, and English-speaking peoples. This diversity is reflected in the names given to the islands, which are derived from the languages that have been spoken there in historic and perhaps prehistoric times.
Sigurd Eysteinsson or Sigurd the Mighty was the second Earl of Orkney – a title bequeathed to Sigurd by his brother Rognvald Eysteinsson. A son of Eystein Glumra, Sigurd was a leader in the Viking conquest of what is now northern Scotland.
Thorstein married Thurid, the daughter of Eyvind the Easterner. Thorstein and Thurid had a son, Olaf Feilan, and a number of daughters, including Groa, Thorgerd, Olof, Osk, Thorhild, and Vigdis.
Olaf Feilan Thorsteinsson was an Icelandic gothi of the Settlement period. He was the son of Thorstein the Red, jarl of Caithness, and his wife Thurid Eyvindsdottir. The byname "feilan" is derived from the Old Irish fáelán, meaning wolfling or little wolf.
A woman named Unn, wife of Thorolf Mostur-beard, claimed to be the daughter of Thorstein, but this claim was viewed by other Icelanders with scepticism.
|Ancestors of Thorstein the Red|
Jaun Zuria is the mythical first Lord, and founder, of the Lordship of Biscay , who defeated the Leonese and Asturian troops in the also mythical Battle of Padura, in which he chased off the invasors to the Malato Tree, establishing there the borders of Biscay. There are three accounts of its legend, one by the Portuguese count Pedro Barcelos and two by the chronicler Lope García de Salazar. According to the legend, Jaun Zuria had been born from a Scottish or English princess that had been visited by the Basque deity Sugaar in the village of Mundaka.
The Sagas of Icelanders, also known as family sagas, are prose narratives mostly based on historical events that mostly took place in Iceland in the 9th, 10th, and early 11th centuries, during the so-called Saga Age. They are the best-known specimens of Icelandic literature.
Rognvald Eysteinsson was the founding Jarl of Møre in Norway, and a close relative and ally of Harald Fairhair, the earliest known King of Norway. In the Norse language he is known as Rognvaldr Eysteinsson and in modern Norwegian as Ragnvald Mørejarl. He is sometimes referred to with bynames that may be translated into modern English as "Rognvald the Wise" or "Rognvald the Powerful".
Snorri Thorfinnsson probably born between 1004 and 1013, and died c. 1090) was the son of explorers Þorfinnur Karlsefni and Guðríður Þorbjarnardóttir. He is considered to be the first white child to be born in the Americas, apart from Greenland. He became an important figure in the Christianisation of Iceland.
Thorfinn Karlsefni was an Icelandic explorer. Around the year 1010 AD, he followed Leif Eriksson's route to Vinland, in a short-lived attempt to establish a permanent settlement there with his wife Guðríður Víðförla Þorbjarnardóttir and their followers.
Aud the Deep-Minded, also known as Unn, Aud Ketilsdatter or Unnur Ketilsdottir, was a 9th-century settler during the age of Settlement of Iceland.
Ketill Björnsson, nicknamed Flatnose, was a Norse King of the Isles of the 9th century.
Sigurd Hlodvirsson, popularly known as Sigurd the Stout from the Old Norse Sigurðr digri, was an Earl of Orkney. The main sources for his life are the Norse Sagas, which were first written down some two centuries or more after his death. These engaging stories must therefore be treated with caution rather than as reliable historical documents.
Arson in medieval Scandinaviawas a technique sometimes employed in blood feuds and political conflicts in order to assassinate someone. In committing arson, a group of attackers would set fire to the home of an opponent, sometimes by quickly and surreptitiously piling wood, brush and other combustible materials against the exterior of a dwelling and set it on fire. Typically the attackers would surround the house to prevent the escape of its inhabitants, although women, the elderly, and small children were sometimes allowed to leave.
Kári Sölmundarson was a Hebridean viking and soldier of fortune who lived in the late tenth and early eleventh centuries. He is a major character in Njál's Saga. Kári was the son of Solmund, who was the son of Thorbjorn "Jarl's Champion," an Icelander exiled before the establishment of the Althing for murder.
Olaf the Peacock or Olaf Hoskuldsson was a merchant and chieftain of the early Icelandic Commonwealth, who was nicknamed "the Peacock" because of his proud bearing and magnificent wardrobe. He is a major character in the Laxdæla saga and is mentioned in a number of other Icelandic sources. The son of a slave woman, Olaf became one of the wealthiest landowners in Iceland and played a major role in its politics and society during the latter half of the tenth century. In addition to the Laxdæla Saga in which he takes a leading role, Olaf also is mentioned in Egils saga, Njáls saga, Gunnlaugs saga, Kormáks saga, Grettirs saga and the Landnámabók, among others.
Melkorka is the name given in Landnámabók and Laxdæla saga for the Irish mother of the Icelandic goði Ólafr Höskuldsson. It is possible that her name represents the Early Irish Mael Curcaig. According to Laxdæla saga, Höskuldr purchased Melkorka, who he believed to be a selective mute thrall-woman, from a Rus' merchant on Brännöyar while on a trading expedition to Norway, and made her his concubine while away from his wife Jorunn Bjarnadottir. When Höskuldr returned home to Iceland, he took her with him. Despite Jórunn's irritation, the concubine was accepted into Höskuldr's household, though he remained faithful to Jórunn while in Iceland. The following winter the concubine gave birth to a son, to whom they gave the name Ólafr after Höskuldr's uncle, Olaf Feilan, who had recently died. Landnámabók mentions that Höskuldr and Melkorka had another son, Helgi, but he does not appear in Laxdæla. According to Laxdæla saga, Ólafr was a precocious child, and could speak and walk perfectly by the age of two. One day Höskuldr discovered Ólafr's mother speaking to her son; she was not, in fact, mute. When he confronted her she told him that she was an Irish princess named Melkorka carried off in a viking raid, and that her father was an Irish king named "Myrkjartan" (Muirchertach). Shortly thereafter squabbling between Jórunn and Melkorka forced Höskuldr to move his concubine and his son by her to a different farm, which thereafter was known as Melkorkustaðir. The fact that there is another site known by this name, at Borgarfordur, could indicate that Melkorka's name is not Gaelic in origin, but is instead derived from a name composed of the elements melr and korka. Around 956, Ólafr, at Melkorka's urging, decided to go abroad to seek his fortune. Melkorka taught Ólafr Irish Gaelic and urged him to visit her family. Höskuldr was opposed to the expedition and would not provide trade wares, and the property of Ólafr's foster-father Þórðr was mostly in immobile goods and land. In part to arrange financing for his expedition, his mother Melkorka married Þorbjörn skrjúpur, a farmer who had previously assisted her in the management of Melkorkustaðir. Melkorka and Þorbjörn had a son named Lambi.
Hoskuld Dala-Kollsson was an Icelandic gothi or chieftain of the early Icelandic Commonwealth period. He was the son of Dala-Koll who has a fjörd named after him, and Thorgerd Thorsteinsdottir, daughter of Thorstein the Red. His father died when he was a child and his mother married a landowner named Herjolf, who became the father of Hoskuld's half-brother Hrútr Herjólfsson. Hoskuld was enormously influential in northwestern Iceland, particularly in the Laxardal region, and is one of the main characters of the first half of Laxdæla saga. By his wife Jorunn he was the father of Bard, Thorleik, and Hallgerd and the grandfather of Bolli Thorleiksson. By his Irish concubine Melkorka he was the father of Olaf the Peacock and possibly of another son named Helgi.
Thorgerd Egilsdottir was an Icelandic woman of the tenth century. She was the daughter of Egill Skallagrímsson and the wife of Olaf the Peacock. Olaf and Thorgerd had a number of children: the sons Kjartan, Steinthór, Halldór, Helgi, and Höskuldur and the daughters Thurídur, Thorbjörg, Thorgerd and Bergthóra. The ill-fated Kjartan would be his father's favorite.
Geirmund the Noisy was a Viking adventurer of the 10th century. Around 975, he hosted Olaf the Peacock during the latter's second expedition to Norway. On his return home to Iceland Olaf brought Geirmund with him and Geirmund fell in love with Olaf's daughter Thurid. Though Olaf was opposed to the match, Geirmund bribed Thorgerd to be his advocate, and Olaf relented. The marriage was an unhappy one, and after three years Geirmund decided to return home without leaving any money for the support of his ex-wife and daughter. Enraged, Thurid boarded his ship before he departed, stole his famous sword "Leg-Biter," and left their infant daughter Groa on the ship. Geirmund cursed the sword, and on his return to Norway he and all of his shipmates, including little Groa, were drowned.
Mord Sighvatsson, better known as Mord "Fiddle" was a wealthy Icelandic farmer and expert on Icelandic law who lived during the late Settlement Period and early Commonwealth Period. According to Njals Saga, he was the son of Sighvat the Red, but Landnámabók asserts that Mord was Sighvat's grandson. Mord was the father of Unn Mordardottir, who for a time was married to Hrútr Herjólfsson.
Snorri Þorgrímsson or Snorri Goði was a prominent chieftain in Western Iceland, who featured in a number of Icelandic sagas. The main source of his life is the Eyrbyggja saga, in which he is the main character, although he also figures prominently in Njál's saga and the Laxdæla saga. Snorri was the nephew of Gísli Súrsson, the hero of Gísla saga, and son of Þorgrímr Þorsteinsson whom Gísli killed in revenge to fulfill a blood-oath.
Bjǫrn Ketilsson, nicknamed the Easterner, was a Norwegian Viking of the 9th century, son of Ketill 'Flatnose' Bjǫrnsson and Yngvild Ketilsdottir. He emigrated to Iceland following his father Ketill's expulsion from Norway by King Harald Fairhair and the seizure of their lands in the north of Norway.
Oistin mac Amlaíb was a ninth-century Norse or Norse-Gael leader who is sometimes identified as a King of Dublin. He was a son of Amlaíb Conung and nephew of Ímar, founder of the Uí Ímair dynasty. He is sometimes identified with Thorstein the Red, a figure who features in the Norse sagas.
Landnámabók, often shortened to Landnáma, is a medieval Icelandic written work which describes in considerable detail the settlement (landnám) of Iceland by the Norse in the 9th and 10th centuries CE.
The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier which is intended to be unique. Publishers purchase ISBNs from an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency.