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Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages

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Note to stanza

1. Anonymous Poems, 3. Óláfs drápa Tryggvasonar, 12 [Vol. 1, 1044]

[All]: In HN (MHN 115-16) and Ágr (ÍF 29, 22) King Óláfr is said to have Christianized five countries: Norway, Iceland, Shetland, Orkney and the Faroes. HSt Rst and Anon Óldr also list five lands, but replace the Faroes with Greenland, and ÓTOdd (ÍF 25, 271) increases the tally to six by including both these countries. The basis for including Greenland is probably the tradition that Óláfr sent Leifr Eiríksson there on a missionary voyage (Hkr, ÍF 26, 347; see also ÓT 1958-2000, II, 200). But this is almost certainly a fiction, perhaps stemming from Gunnlaugr Leifsson’s lost biography of Óláfr (Jón Jóhannesson 1962-5; Ólafur Halldórsson 1978, 379-89).


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