Friday, 23 July 2010

wow. i mean, wow

You, like me, know Snorri Sturluson (1179-1241) as the Icelandic author of the Prose Edda, a historico-mythologogical thing-of-some-kind incorporating all kinds of Norse and Christian elements. But this just means we can answer the most basic quiz questions about him. It doesn't give him anything like the credit he deserves, assuming Wikipedia to be right when it says:
As a historian and mythographer, Snorri is remarkable for proposing the theory (in the Prose Edda) that mythological gods begin as human war leaders and kings whose funeral sites develop cults (see euhemerism). As people call upon the dead war leader as they go to battle, or the dead king as they face tribal hardship, they begin to venerate the figure. Eventually, the king or warrior is remembered only as a god. He also proposed that as tribes defeat others, they explain their victory by proposing that their own gods were in battle with the gods of the others.
Wow. I mean, wow. Look at those dates.

Snorri, in addition, was twice elected lawspeaker of the Althing. That has only happened to me once, if at all.

1 comment:

Claire said...

A photo of Thingvillir where I'm sure Snorri Sturluson would have spoken