Studies in the transmission history of Hrómundar saga Greipssonar
My doctoral research concerned the intertextuality in Norse poetry and prose from the Middle Ages to the nineteenth century. My thesis Studies in the transmission history of Hrómundar saga Greipssonar, defended at the University of Copenhagen in 2018, combines text-critical, transmission-historical and material-philological approaches to texts and manuscripts with application of innovative digital tools and methods.
Hrómundar saga Greipssonar is one of a number of “lost” Old Norse sagas and it is among the best known of these. A saga by this name is mentioned in a famous description of a wedding feast which took place at Reykjahólar in 1119 found in Þorgils saga ok Hafliða, but the story has only survived in a fifteenth-century metrical version called Hrómundar rímur Gripssonar (also known as Griplur), which are presumed to have been composed on the basis of that lost medieval saga. A younger prose version, Hrómundar saga Greipssonar, is a seventeenth-century adaptation derived from the rímur.
One of the most significant findings to result from my research is the discovery of a new Hrómundar saga Greipssonar previously unknown to scholarship. Additionally, as a result of my study I established first complete stemmas for both sagas and Griplur, which serve as basis for new editions of the sagas and rímur. The discovery of the younger Hrómundar saga Greipssonar, which is significantly different than the seventeenth-century saga, brought a series of research questions, which I would like to explore in the future.
My thesis is freely available for download here.