The essay takes into account the influence of Nordic myths and medieval Icelandic culture on William Morris' works. The knowledge of Morris about Nordic past is followed from its origin till the main production of the author in the sixties and seventies of the 19th century. Morris's approach to Icelandic literature is substantially due to the Icelander Eiríkr Magnusson, with whom he published a large amount of sagas translations. Also his rewritings (in particular Sigurd the Volsung and The Lovers of Gudrun) are analyzed in this essay in order to peruse Morris's approach and interpretation of the Nordic past, with its heroes, heroines and gods. In them he was particularly touched by the sense of endurance with which gods and heroes carried on their lives. Morris's private biography gives reasons of that perception of the past which is sublimated in his journeys to Iceland and in his last extended poem on Nordic subjects: Sigurd the Volsung. The final part of his life is determined, as far as Nordic themes are concerned, by lectures in which he recovered his previous readings and works giving to them a new key of interpretation influenced by socialist perspectives. Particularly remarkable is one of his lectures he delivered probably in 1884. In it he emphasized the regenerative force of the Ragnarök (the ends of the Gods), which led to a new world with a new order.

Nordic Myths in William Morris' Works: Contextualization and Recontextualization

ZIRONI, ALESSANDRO
2015

Abstract

The essay takes into account the influence of Nordic myths and medieval Icelandic culture on William Morris' works. The knowledge of Morris about Nordic past is followed from its origin till the main production of the author in the sixties and seventies of the 19th century. Morris's approach to Icelandic literature is substantially due to the Icelander Eiríkr Magnusson, with whom he published a large amount of sagas translations. Also his rewritings (in particular Sigurd the Volsung and The Lovers of Gudrun) are analyzed in this essay in order to peruse Morris's approach and interpretation of the Nordic past, with its heroes, heroines and gods. In them he was particularly touched by the sense of endurance with which gods and heroes carried on their lives. Morris's private biography gives reasons of that perception of the past which is sublimated in his journeys to Iceland and in his last extended poem on Nordic subjects: Sigurd the Volsung. The final part of his life is determined, as far as Nordic themes are concerned, by lectures in which he recovered his previous readings and works giving to them a new key of interpretation influenced by socialist perspectives. Particularly remarkable is one of his lectures he delivered probably in 1884. In it he emphasized the regenerative force of the Ragnarök (the ends of the Gods), which led to a new world with a new order.
The Power of Form. Recycling Myths
29
56
Zironi, Alessandro
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/536189
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