The Saga of the Volsungs
The Norse Epic of Sigurd the Dragon Slayer
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Saga of the Volsungs by Jesse L. Byock
Book DescriptionBased on Viking Age poems, "The Saga of the Volsungs" combines mythology, legend and sheer human drama. At its heart are the heroic deeds of Sigurd the dragon slayer who acquires magical knowledge from one of Odin's Valkyries. Yet it is also set in a very human world, incorporating strands from the oral narratives of the fourth and fifth centuries, when Attila the Hun and other warriors fought on the northern frontiers of the Roman Empire. One of the great books of world literature, the saga is an unforgettable tale of princely jealousy, unrequited love, greed and vengeance. With its cursed treasure of the Rhine, sword reforged and magic ring of power, it was a major influence for writers including William Morris and J. R. R. Tolkein and for Wagner's Ring cycle.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780140447385
(198mm x 129mm x 9mm)
Imprint: Penguin Classics
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publish Date: 27-May-1999
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Jesse L. Byock
Saga of the Volsungs, Paperback (November 2013)
Tolkien spent much of his life studying, translating and teaching the great epic stories of northern Europe, filled with heroes, dragons, trolls, dwarves and magic. He was hugely influential for his advocacy of Beowulf as a great work of literature and, even if he had never written The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.
Grettir's Saga, Paperback (June 2009)
A sweeping epic of the Viking Age, Grettir's Saga follows the life of the outlaw Grettir the Strong as he battles against sorcery, bad luck, and the vengefulness of his enemies. Among the most famous and widely read of Iceland's sagas, this new translation features extensive illustrative material to elucidate the story.
Prose Edda, Paperback (July 2005)
One of the great storybooks of the middle ages: a master storyteller from the thirteenth century recounts classic tales of Icelandic mythology along with a lesson to young poets on the importance of learning, respecting, and continuing traditional Icelandic poetic styles.
Viking Age Iceland, Paperback (February 2001)» View all books by Jesse L. Byock
Medieval Iceland was unique amongst Western Europe, with no foreign policy, no defense forces, no king, no lords, no peasants and few battles. This book brings together findings in anthropology and ethnography interwoven with historical fact and masterful insights into the popular Icelandic sagas.
UK Kirkus Review » A tale of princely jealousy, unrequited love, greed and vengeance, this is one of the great source books of world literature. Based on Viking-age poems, incorporating oral memories of the 4th and 5th centuries, it follows the heroic deeds of Sigurd the dragon slayer. With its ill-fated Rhinegold, the sword reforged and the magic ring of power, the saga has clearly been an inspiration for fantasy writers such as J R R Tolkein and for Richard Wagner's Ring cycle, not to mention the Star Wars films. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Jesse L. Byock
The Icelandic author of THE SAGA OF THE VOLSUNGS is unknown and based his prose epic on strories found in earlier Norse poetry. Jesse Bycock is Professor of Icelandic and Old Norse Literature at the University of California and has published work on Medieval Iceland.
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