July 17, 2015
In this epic multi-part episode, we tell the story of Iceland’s most famous and
longest surviving outlaw, Grettir Asmundarson.
Join us as we trace his life, from its tempestuous beginning to its
tragic end. Before we delve into his
amazing exploits as an adult, we must look back to his origins. In traditional
saga fashion, we begin with his great grandfather, Onund Treefoot. We follow
Onund’s efforts to resist the increasing power of King Harald Fairhair and his struggles
to come to terms with the loss of his property and his leg. Forced to redefine his own identity and to
make a new life in foreign lands, he emerges as the truest hero in the saga,
renowned as “the bravest and most agile of all the one-legged men in
Iceland.” From Onund, we wend our way
through battles over whale corpses, murder, and legal cases in the genealogy until
we arrive at Grettir himself. We’ll look
briefly at Grettir’s inglorious youth, his troubled relationship with his
father, Asmund, and the events leading up to his first outlawry. Will Grettir learn to control his temper and
put his strength to good use? Or will he flout the norms of society and
continue to make his own way more difficult?
Find out as Saga Thing takes on Grettir’s
Saga (chapters 1-20).
This handy genealogy will help you keep some of the names straight in your minds