It’s time to put the Saga of the People of Vopnafjord on trial. Who will go home with the honor of Best Bloodshed? Does this saga have the numbers to overtake the Saga of the Greenlanders in Body Count Density? Who has the best Nickname? Was anyone witty enough to earn the prize? Will Brodd-Helgi make it through Outlawry? And who will be selected to join John and Andy as thingmen?
Along the way, we get into a few digressions (I know, you’re shocked). Among the more interesting digressions is a brief follow up on our Viking spearheads discussion from Njal’s Saga. We delve into the terminology once again and review different types of spearheads as well as their appearances in the sagas, with special emphasis on Egil’s Saga. You can find lots of information out there on Viking spearheads if you look. Most of it isn’t terribly helpful in identifying what each of the original terms actually means. We recommend Hurstwic’s page on the subject as a good primer. They’ve got a great page on Viking spears and a more specific page on the types of spears discussed in this episode.
We also pause to talk about the exciting new exhibit at the Reykjavik City Museum, Viking Animals, which opened this week. The exhibition is based on the research of Lara Hogg, who shares my fascination with the place of animals in early Icelandic life.
Just look at all those cattle skulls. I wonder if Brodd-Helgi helped her prepare this part of the exhibit. If you’re in Iceland any time soon, swing by the Reykjavik City Museum and check it out. If not, then follow the exhibit’s progress on Twitter @VikingAnimals or on the exhibit’s blog.
Next time on Saga Thing, we’ll play with the Tale of Thorstein Staff-Struck in our new side series tentatively titled Saga Shorts. That will be followed soon after by a two-part episode on The Saga of Droplaug’s Sons, which features many of the same characters from the Vopnafjord episode.
Intro Music – “Prelude and Action” by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Outro Music – “Stormfront” by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Selections from music by Kevin MacLeod licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/