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    Viking Age Iceland (Penguin History) (Paperback) By (author) Jesse L. Byock

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    DescriptionMedieval Iceland was unique amongst Western Europe, with no foreign policy, no defense forces, no king, no lords, no peasants and few battles. It should have been a utopia yet its literature is dominated by brutality and killing. The reasons for this, argues Jesse Byock, lie in the underlying structures and cultural codes of the islands' social order. "Viking Age Iceland" is an engaging, multi-disciplinary work bringing together findings in anthropology and ethnography interwoven with historical fact and masterful insights into the popular Icelandic sagas, this is a brilliant reconstruction of the inner workings of a unique and intriguing society.

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  • Full bibliographic data for Viking Age Iceland

    Viking Age Iceland
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Jesse L. Byock
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 480
    Width: 122 mm
    Height: 196 mm
    Thickness: 25 mm
    Weight: 272 g
    ISBN 13: 9780140291155
    ISBN 10: 0140291156

    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 25520
    B&T Merchandise Category: GEN
    B&T Book Type: NF
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T5.2
    BIC E4L: HIS
    BIC subject category V2: HBJD
    BIC time period qualifier V2: 3H
    Libri: I-HP
    BIC geographical qualifier V2: 1DNC
    Ingram Subject Code: HP
    Ingram Theme: CHRN/MEDIVL
    B&T General Subject: 431
    BISAC Merchandising Theme: ET190
    Ingram Theme: CULT/SCANDN
    BIC subject category V2: HBJQ
    BISAC V2.8: HIS037010
    DC22: 949.1/01
    LC classification: DL352 .B96 2001
    LC subject heading:
    BISAC V2.8: HIS044000
    DC22: 949.12
    LC subject heading:
    DC21: 949.1201
    BIC subject category V2: 3H, 1DNC
    Thema V1.0: NHD, NHQ
    Illustrations note
    maps, plans
    Penguin Books Ltd
    Imprint name
    Penguin Books Ltd
    Publication date
    01 September 2001
    Publication City/Country
    Author Information
    Jesse Byock is Director of Norse Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. Educated at Harvard, the Sorbonne, Georgetown University Law School, the Universities of Iceland and Lund, he is also a member of UCLA's archaeology, folklore and Indo-European faculties. His books include 'Feud in the Icelandic Saga'; 'Medieval Iceland Society, Sagas and Power', a translation of 'The Saga of the Volsungs: The Norse Epic of Sigurd the Dragon Slayer'
    Review quote
    "Byock brings several disciplines to his work, crossing the boundaries between history, literature, law, and archaeology. This well-written book takes up a wide variety of subjects, including the social fabric, domestic realities, cultural codes, politics and legal infrastructures, and the mechanisms that defused conflicts among the fiercely independent early Icelanders." --Viking Heritage Magazine "A vital and original reinterpretation both of the sagas and of the society which created them. Byock's book is an essential guide at once to living conditions and to mentalities."--The London Review of Books
    Table of contents
    An immigrant society; resources and subsistence - life on a northern island; curdled milk and calamities - an inward-looking farming society; a devolving and evolving social order; the founding of a new society and the historical sources; limitations on a chieftain's ambitions, and strategies; chietfain-thingmen relationships and advocacy; the family and Sturlunga sagas -mediaeval narratives; the legislative and judicial system; systems of power - advocates, friendship and family; aspects of blood feud; feud and vendetta in a "great village" community; friendship, blood feud and power - "the saga of the people of weapon's fjord"; the obvious sources of wealth; lucrative sources of wealth for chieftains; a peaceful conversion - the Viking age church; "Gragas" - the "grey goose" law; bishops and secular authority - the later church; big chieftains, big farmers and their sagas at the end of the free state; appendix 1 - the law-speakers; appendix 2 - bishops during the free state; appendix 3 -turf construction; appendix 4 - a woman who travelled from Vinland to Rome.