Burning of Njáll Repeated on 1000th Anniversary Skip to content

Burning of Njáll Repeated on 1000th Anniversary

One thousand years have passed since the historical fire of the farm Bergthórshvoll in Landeyjar, south Iceland, took place, where Icelandic saga protagonist Njáll was burnt to death along with his wife Bergthóra, three sons and other residents, as described in Njáls saga.

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Photo by Geir Ólafsson.

The Icelandic Saga Center at Hvolsvöllur, where Njáls saga is featured, will remember the event in various ways throughout this year, Morgunbladid reports.

Among the events is a series of lectures where Njáls saga is discussed. The saga will also be the theme of an art exhibition in the center’s exhibition hall, which includes paintings by late journalist and visual artist Gísli Sigurdsson, and wood carvings of memorable characters from the story.

A large Burning of Njáll Festival will be held at Hvolsvöllur next summer, probably around the first weekend of August, which is known as the Merchants’ Weekend in Iceland and is celebrated with outdoor festivals across the country.

“We will allow ourselves a slight head start,” said director of the Saga Center Sigurdur Hróarsson, explaining that Njáll’s farm was set aflame in the late summer, probably at the end of August or beginning of September.

Plans for the festival include building a set showing the farm Bergthórshvoll and staging a play where Flosi’s attack occurred, along with indoor scenes and demonstrations of battles mentioned in the saga, ending with the burning of the farm.

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