The Origins of Drama in Scandinavia
This book takes a new approach to the question of whether some form of drama existed in early Scandinavia. Dr Gunnell examines the dialogic poems of the Poetic Edda, preserved in manuscripts from the late thirteenth century, from the viewpoints of both performer and audience. He argues that in order to be fully understood by the audience, the poems must have been presented in some dramatic fashion, and not merely chanted. He substantiates his claims by exploring characteristics found only in the manuscripts of these dialogic poems and in contemporary manuscripts of dramatic works from England and Northern France, suggesting that even in the thirteenth century, the dialogic poems must have been regarded as dramatic works. The examination is accompanied by the most complete review to date of the evidence for some kind of ritual drama having existed in pagan Scandinavia, looking at archaeological evidence for the use of masks and costumes, information contained in the sagas, and contemporary historical accounts. TERRY GUNNELL teaches English at Hamrahlid College, Iceland.
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The archaeological evidence
Literary evidence for ritual dramatic activities
Costumed combat traditions in Scandinavia
The battle between Summer and Winter from Olaus Magnus
F The prose in the mythological dialogic poems
G The difficulties involved in a oneman performance of the
B Other early medieval Scandinavian manuscripts containing
European manuscripts of dramatic works 10001300
E The continuation of pagan ritual in Scandinavia?
Wooden mask found at Storaborg by Eyjafjoll Iceland
The Eddie Poems and Drama
The prose in the Eddie poems
Codex Regius of the Elder Edda MS Gl kgl sml 23654t0
6lafur appear Arets audience Babio Bohuslan Chapter Christmas Codex Regius contained context costumed customs dialogic poems disguise drama earlier early Eddie poems Einar Elder Edda Ellekilde evidence example existed extant Fafnir Fafnismal Faroese Fdfnismdl figures Finnur Jonsson fols fornyrdislag Freyr further Gerdr Gesta Danorum given goat Gryla harrowing of Hell Hdrbardsljod Helgakvida Heusler horned Icelandic Ijodahdttr poems involving Islenzkar Joleband Jon Samsonarson Julbocken julebukk Kvcedi later leikr Lokasenna Loki manuscripts marginal notation mask medieval mentioned narrative Nonetheless Norway Norwegian Olrik oral original Orkney Orvar-Odds Oseberg pagan parallels pdttr performance petroglyphs Phillpotts pingdlp play poetic poetry present Prose Edda question references Regarding Reginn Reginsmdl ritual saga Scandinavian scholars scribe seidr senna Shetland Sigurdr similar Skirnir Sktrnismdl Snorri song speaker indications speech Stromback strophes Sturlunga saga suggests Swedish sword dance Torslunda tradition Vafprudnismdl verse Volsunga saga words