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Early Medieval Europe 14(3)2006: Reconstructing the past in medieval Iceland

Олег: Chris Callow (University of Birmingham). Reconstructing the past in medieval Iceland // Early Medieval Europe, 2006, 14, 3, 297-324. Locating and dating sagas is a difficult but still important task. This paper examines the relationship between the Sagas of Icelanders, which are concerned with tenth- and eleventh-century events, and the contemporary sagas of the mid-thirteenth century. Drawing upon models from anthropology, it looks at how contemporary ideas permeated these historicizing texts and how genealogy and geography act as structures around which the past is remembered. The many political relationships which occur in Laxdaela saga are analysed in relation to those from contemporary sagas from the same area of western Iceland. Since it appears that there is relatively little in common between the political situations depicted in Laxdaela saga and those portrayed in the contemporary sagas, it is likely that Laxdaela saga and the contemporary sagas were actually written down in different periods. It is possible, therefore, that the Sagas of Icelanders give us a view of the past which originates earlier than is usually suggested.

Ответов - 5

Лена М.: Там еще любопытная рецензия Флорина Курта на книгу Владислава Дучко: Florin Curta (University of Florida). Viking Rus: Studies on the Presence of Scandinavians in Eastern Europe. By Wladyslaw Duczko. Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2004 // Early Medieval Europe, 2006, 14, 3, 328-330. Жаль, не получается вытащить сюда сей текст из pdf-файла...

Глюкоза: Лена М. пишет: Жаль, не получается вытащить сюда сей текст из pdf-файла Скорее всего там просто требуется пароль для извлечения текста. Выложите PDF куда-нибудь и опубликуйте адрес. Если у меня получится, пришлю Вам текст. Вот здесь это еще не успели, только старые рецензии того же автора: http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/fcurta/opus.html

Лена М.: Скорее всего там просто требуется пароль для извлечения текста. Нет, текст извлекается, но некорректно отображается. Выложите PDF куда-нибудь и опубликуйте адрес. Если у меня получится, пришлю Вам текст. Спасибо, за предложение, но пока я связана обязательствами по, так сказать, нераспространению...

Глюкоза: Лена М. пишет: Нет, текст извлекается, но некорректно отображается. Одно из двух: 1) в PDF используется шрифт, который у Вас отсутствует или 2) у шрифта нестандартная кодировка или набор символов. Иногда это бывает с файлами, сделанными на Apple или Macintosh. Лена М. пишет: Спасибо, за предложение Предложение остается в силе. Да, я забыла, что у Blackwell Publishing годичный мораторий на распространение Early Medieval Europe :) А цена на книгу у них завышена. Её можно купить долларов на 20 дешевле: 165-166 вместо 184. Review Archaeologist Duczko explores Norse settlements in Eastern Europe between the middle eight and the late tenth centuries, and addresses only tangentially the heated debate over the degree to which Scandinavians participated in the creation of the Kievan State, the first of the East Slavs. A deficiency of most earlier studies, he says, is that the archaeological material has been differentiated between Scandinavian and non-Scandinavian, but not placed in any cultural, social, and specific historical context so that its function can be at least speculated upon. He intends to produce a second volume to complete coverage of Central East Europe during the first millennium AD. Annotation 2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com) Вот пока оглавление. Справа от названия номер страницы и в скобках - число страниц: Table of Contents List of Illustrations vii Preface xiii Introduction 1 (9) Chapter One The Rus and Scandinavia: The case of the Rhos in Ingelheim A.D. 839 10 (50) 1. Background 10 (5) 2. Sub wino 839 in Annales Bertiniani 15 (21) 2.1 The name of the people 19 (5) 2.2 The title of the ruler 24 (5) 2.3 The kaganate of the Rus 29 (5) 2.4 The Rhos and Sweden 34 (2) 3. Early Viking-age Denmark 36 (5) 4. Byzantium, Islamic threat and Greek diplomacy 41 (2) 5. Why did the Rhos go to Byzantium and later join the Greek embassy? 43 (7) 6. The return voyage of the Rhos 50 (10) Chapter Two People, places and things in the first "land of Rus" in the East 60 (55) 1. The early period: trade and political organisation 60 (18) 1.1 Aldeigja-the focal place of the early Rus 64 (14) 1.1.1 The smithy and the man with horns 70 (4) 1.1.2 Ladoga and the middle Danube 74 (4) 2. After 850: more Rus and continued expansion 78 (21) 2.1 The attack on Constantinople in 860 83 (3) 2.2 Staraja Ladoga from the mid-ninth to the end of tenth century 86 (10) 2.3 Scandinavian culture in Priladozhe 96 (3) 3. The Upper Volkhov Holmgardr 99 (11) 3.1 Hólmr-place of a new beginning 101 (14) 3.1.1 Dragon's head 106 (1) 3.1.2 Lady in long dress 107 (1) 3.1.3 Mount from a bridle 108 (2) 3.1.4 Amulets with runic inscriptions 110 (1) 4. The Rus west of the Volkhov: the case of Izborsk-Pskov 110 (5) Chapter Three The Rus and their culture 115 (40) 1. The Rus of the tenth century 115 (12) 1.1 Who were the Rus? 122 (5) 2. The Norse culture of the Rus 127 (28) 2.1 The magic miniatures 130 (3) 2.2 The message of graffiti 133 (4) 2.3 The funeral of a Rus chieftain in the Risala of ibn Fadlan 137 (18) Chapter Four The Upper Dnieper 155 (34) 1. The centre at Gnëzdovo 155 (47) 1.1 Big mounds 161 (9) 1.2 Norse items from smaller barrows and settlements 170 (4) 1.3 Chamber-burials 174 (5) 1.4 Exclusive jewellery 179 (8) 1.5 The Rus of Gnëzdovo 187 (2) Chapter Five The Volga-Oka region 189 (13) Chapter Six Towards the Rus state 202 (51) 1. The Rus in the South 202 (36) 1.2 Kiev the centre of the new Rus 217 (21) 1.2.1 Exclusive Norse jewellery art in Kiev 226 (2) 1.2.2 The "Sign of Rurik": the dynastic badge of identity 228 (10) 2. The Rus at Chernigov and Shestovitsa 238 (8) 3. The Druzhina-the retinue among the Rus 246 (2) 4. On the way to Byzantium through the Lower Dnieper 248 (5) Summing up and concluding 253 (6) Bibliography 259 (22) Index

Сибиряк: Florin Curta (University of Florida). Viking Rus: Studies on the Presence of Scandinavians in Eastern Europe. By Wladyslaw Duczko. Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2004 // Early Medieval Europe, 2006, 14, 3, 328-330. Viking Rus: Studies on the Presence of Scandinavians in Eastern Europe. By Wladyslaw Duczko. Leiden and Boston: Brill. 2004. xii  290 pp.  78 ill. (including maps). $184.00. ISBN 90 04 13874 9. For more than three decades, Wladyslaw Duczko has written numerous studies that have been central to our understanding of the Viking Age in eastern Europe. In this latest work, his goal is to combine written with archaeological sources. He begins with the analysis of a passage in the Annals of St. Bertin mentioning Rus’ envoys arriving in Ingelheim in 839. The author believes that the Rus’ had been sent by Emperor Theophilus to establish contact with the Danes, whose military assistance the Byzantines needed against the Arabs. Using finds of Byzantine coins minted for Emperor Theophilus, Duczko traces the route on which the envoys returned to northern Russia. There are of course serious problems with this interpretation, such as the fact that no evidence exists for a Byzantine use of Norse military assistance before the late tenth century. Coin finds are hardly an indication of embassies and, in any case, require an explanation that takes into account the archaeological context. Duczko finds plenty of evidence to support the idea of a much earlier Scandinavian presence in northern Russia than previously thought. Dendrochronological dates established for Staraia Ladoga show that the earliest occupation phase on that site pre-dates by almost a century the Rus’ visit to Ingelheim. Trade is the factor that explains how this initial settlement expanded. It is only after c.850 that the expansion began in earnest, a fact that Duczko links to the first Rus’ attack on Constantinople mentioned in Byzantine sources. While containing numerous insights and presenting some fascinating details about the archaeology of the Rus’, the book is uneven, and the author’s reach often exceeds his grasp. In the introduction, Duczko cautiously warns the reader against the simplistic association of artefacts and people, which is the foundation of the culture-historical approach to archaeology. However, he believes that archaeological assemblages in Russia ‘show a practically pure breed of Norse culture’ (p. 128). Reification of ethnicity is remarkable in such statements as ‘when objects with runes are found outside the North they should always be considered as the strongest testimony of the existence in the area of a Norse milieu’ (p. 70). By the same token, Duczko explains the presence in the Rus’ lands of pelta pendants similar to those found in ninth-century assemblages in Moravia as an indication of Rus’ travelling south to obtain salt from the Moravian markets (p. 78). The chapters on assemblages in the Upper Dnieper and Volga-Oka regions is a detailed presentation of archaeological features and artefacts, but little more than that. There is almost no attempt at interpretation beyond concerns with chronology and ethnic attribution. The author is certainly right in emphasizing that, throughout the tenth century, there was more than one centre of power in the Rus’ lands, but offers no explanation for why Kiev, and not Gnezdovo or, for that matter, Chernihiv, became the major centre of the early eleventh-century Rus’ lands. Duczko believes that when Scandianvians stopped coming from Scandinavia, the Norse in Russia turned into Rus’. If so, why then did the process already start in the 900s, when Scandinavians were still coming to the Rus’ lands? There is an unfortunate air of sloppiness about this book. In the preface, the author acknowledges Paul Barford for having turned his English into a publishable text. To be sure, the consistent lack of definite articles or wrong use of adverbs is a most annoying indication of a poor translation into English of an original text most likely written in Polish. But not all errors can be attributed to the translator. The Annals of St. Bertin are confusingly referred to as ‘Bertinian Annals’ (p. 24) and as ‘Flandrian’ (instead of Flemish, p. 10). Errors can sometimes be really funny, as when Duczko calls the Vikings ‘gallant’ (p. 45) and has them prey on the ‘ingenuous [sic !] people by extorting tributes’ (p. 78). The use of boats for burial is clear evidence of a ‘Scandinavian pedigree of the deceased’ (p. 94). A Byzantine embassy could not have been dispatched in 839 to the court of the Ummayad caliph in Spain (p. 42), because a caliphate of Cуrdoba was proclaimed only in 929. To Duczko, Byzantium is ‘the mighty Greek Empire’ (p. 36), in which the ‘nasty persecutions of iconophiles conducted by the fanatical emperor [Theophilus] were not good at all for the internal harmony of the state’ (p. 41). The author seems to have no doubts that ‘the pragmatism of Byzantines and their ruthlessness in political matters is known’ to everyone (p. 47). The important questions with which this book deals deserve a more careful treatment. University of Florida FLORIN CURTA

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