King Harald's Saga
Harald Hardradi of Norway: From Snorri Sturluson's Heimskringla
The biography of one of the most remarkable and memorable of the medieval kings of Norway.
King Harald’s Saga forms part of the Heimskringla, a complete history of Norway from prehistoric times to 1177, by the prolific Icelandic historian Snorri Sturluson. It records the turbulent life of King Harald Hardradi of Norway, who served and fought in every corner of Europe, from Russia to Sicily. It is a superb portrait of a man who could well have changed the whole course of English history. William the Conqueror defeated King Harold of England at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. But less than three weeks earlier Harold had defeated the giant Harald of Norway at Stamford Bridge in Yorkshire, and Harald’s only reward for his claim to the English throne was seven feet of English soil’.
The interest of King Harald’s Saga is more than merely historical. People and events spring to life in a fast-moving, imaginative narrative, ably translated by Magnus Magnusson and Hermann Pálsson, who also supply a useful Introduction.