2004-09-17

Njal

I'm reading Njals saga, in bits before bedtime. Its weird. Stylised, like some Japanese opera (which of course I've never seen, but its the standard unit of stylisation).

Favourite bits: the Christians go around killing people who won't convert. When Christianity is declared, eating horseflesh is forbidden (???). Skarp-Hedin gratuitously insulting people as they go around seeking support. Why did the law forbid the insult "used as a woman every nine days"? Would eight days be OK? Before people attack, they say things like "I have a feeling this may be a bad day for you".

Is Njal good? If so, why does he rig the court system to get a chieftainship for his foster-son? Why does he not say that he put the cloak there when thingy gets all annoyed?

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