VTU Review: Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences
“ST. CYRIL AND ST. METHODIUS” UNIVERSITY OF VELIKO TARNOVO - UNIVERSITY PRESS

Travelling to Grikkland and Mikligarðr: The Byzantine Empire and the Byzantines in Two Scandinavian Sagas


Authors:
Ivelin Ivanov St. Cyril and St. Methodius University of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria

Pages: 68-75
DOI: https://doi.org/10.54664/HLKX4590

Abstract:

The article focuses on representations of the Byzantine Empire and the Greeks in two sagas from Snorri Sturluson’s Heimskringla: The Saga of Harald Sigurtharson (Hardruler) and The Saga of Sigurth the Crusader and His Brothers, which provide examples of contacts between the Scandinavian and Byzantine worlds in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. The author employs a quantitative analysis, exploring names, such as Grikkland (Greece), Mikligarðr (Constantinople), Grikkjakonungr (Emperor), Grikk(j)ar (Greek), and Grikklandshaf (Greek archipelago, Greek sea). Separating objective from legendary information, he seeks to answer the question: to what extent are the representations of the Byzantine Empire, its Emperor, and its capital in the two sagas reliable from a historical point of view?

Keywords:

Snorri Sturluson, Heimskringla, Byzantine Empire, imagology, quantitative analysis

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