A Farewell Gift

Publication type Article
Status Published
Affiliation: Institute of World History RAS
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameVestnik drevnei istorii
EditionVolume 80 Issue 4

This paper, written for this collection of articles in memory of Sergei Tokhta-syev and being my “farewell gift” to him, is devoted to the motif of gift-giving that is widespread in the Old Icelandic sagas, and more specifically, to the farewell gift. It is based on the evidence of the Knýtlinga saga composed in the middle of the thirteenth century. A systematic review of the five incidents described in the saga allows us to conclude that the spectrum of ideas about the farewell gift in Iceland at that time was very wide. The language of gifts was, no doubt, well known to medieval Icelanders, listeners and readers of the sagas. As a result, the use of gift-giving situations by the saga author gave him an opportunity, while preserving the imaginary “objectivity” of the saga, to express what, according to the canons of the genre, he “could not know”, namely, to describe the thoughts, feelings and intentions of his heroes.

Keywordsgift-giving motif, farewell gift, Icelandic sagas, “objectivity” of the sagas, Knýtlinga saga, mid-thirteenth century
Publication date28.12.2020
Number of characters22122
100 rub.
When subscribing to an article or issue, the user can download PDF, evaluate the publication or contact the author. Need to register.

Number of purchasers: 0, views: 777

Readers community rating: votes 0

1. Althoff, G., Boytsov, M.A. (eds.) 2016: Na yazyke darov. Pravila simvoli-cheskoy kommunikatsii v Evrope 1000–1700 gg. [In the Language of Gifts. The Rules of Symbolic Communication in Europe (1000–1700)]. Transl. by M.A. Boytsov and M.V. Dmitriev. Moscow, 2016.

2. Andersson, Th.M. 2012: The Partisan Muse in the Early Icelandic Sagas (1200–1250). Ithaca.

3. Bjarni Guðnason (ed.) 1982: Knýtlinga saga. In: Bjarni Guðnason (ed.), Danakonunga sögur. Skjöldunga saga. Knýtlinga saga. Ágrip af sögu Danakonunga. (Íslenzk fornrit, XXXV). Reykjavík.

4. Glazyrina, G.V., Jackson, T.N. 2013: [Friendly gift]. Stratum plus 5, 247–254.

5. Gurevich, A.Ya. 1984: Kategorii srednevekovoy kul’tury [Categories of Medieval Culture]. 2nd ed. Moscow.

6. Hope, S., Bjerregaard, M.M., Krag, A.H., Runge, M. (eds.) 2019: Life and Cult of Cnut the Holy. The First Royal Saint of Denmark. Report from an Interdisciplinary Research Seminar in Odense. November 6th to 7th 2017. Odense.

7. Jackson, T.N. 2019: [Foreign policy contacts interpreted by Icelandic sagamen (marriage of Ingibjörg Haraldsdóttir and Knútr Lávarðr according to “Knýtlinga Saga”)]. Elektronniy nauchno-obrazovatel’niy zhurnal “Istori-ya” [The E-Journal of Education and Science “History”] 10/9 (83). URL: https://history.jes.su/s207987840006963-8-1/; accessed on: 05.10.2020.

8. Jackson, T.N. 2020: Saga o Knyutlingakh: Perevod i kommentariy. Issledovaniya [Knýtlinga Saga: Translation and Comments. Studies]. Saint-Petersburg

9. Mauss, M. 2011: [Essai sur le don. Forme et raison de l’échange dans les sociétés archaïques]. In: M. Mauss, Obshchestva. Obmen. Lichnost’. Trudy po sotsial’noy antropologii [Society. Exchange. Personality. Proceedings of Social Anthropology]. Ed., transl. and commentary by A.B. Gofman. 2nd ed. Moscow, 134–285.

Система Orphus