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The capstone volume in Penguin Classics’ celebrated series of Icelandic sagas Comic Sagas and Tales from Iceland brings together the very finest Icelandic stories from the thirteenth to fifteenth centuries, a time of civil unrest and social upheaval. With feuding families and moments of grotesque violence, the sagas see such classic mythological figures as murdered fathers, disguised beggars, corrupt chieftains, and avenging sons who do battle with axes, words, and cunning. The tales, meanwhile, follow heroes and comical fools through dreams, voyages, and religious conversions in medieval Iceland and beyond. Shaped by Iceland’s oral culture and its people’s conversion to Christianity, these stories are works of ironic humor and stylistic innovation.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
About the Author
Vidar Hreinsson is an award-winning scholar of Icelandic literary and cultural history. He has served as director of the Reykjavik Academy in Iceland and lives in Reykjavik.