Sagas of Imagination

The Troth is pleased to announce the publication of our largest and most ambitious translation project yet: _Sagas of Imagination_. This book presents no fewer than eleven sagas and six shorter texts, carefully translated and annotated by Ben Waggoner, some of them never before translated into English. These sagas chart the development of literary fantasy in medieval Iceland.

The Norse men and women who sailed to Iceland brought stories with them—stories of their lives and their ancestors, passed down for centuries. Some of their stories extend back in time to great Vikings, legendary heroes, and even the ancient gods and goddesses. A new wave of stories entered with Christianity; although intended to teach Christian doctrines and morals, many of them feature exotic lands and beasts, with saints and holy men facing demons and monsters. A third wave of stories came to Iceland via Norway, whose king had commissioned translations of tales of chivalry—of the courtly love of gallant knights and beautiful ladies.

Examples of all of these types of sagas survived in Iceland—and what’s more, Icelandic writers began to create swashbuckling “hybrid” sagas unlike any other medieval literature, where influences from all three saga genres can be traced. Here, pagan Viking heroes and knights in shining armor may rub shoulders with sinful sorcerors and demons. _Sagas of Imagination_, like no other book, allows you to explore this fantastic saga world. You’ll find the Norse legends of King Half and his warband, Asmund Champion’s Bane, and the Everlasting Battle. You’ll find the life of the Apostle Bartholomew, an account of Christ’s descent into Hell, and listings of distant lands and strange beasts. You’ll find sagas of King Arthur and Parceval, tales of courtly love, and an episode from the life of the German hero Theodoric of Verona. And influences from all of these mingle in the exciting tales of Halfdan Eysteinsson, Samson the Fair, Vilmund the Outsider, Yngvar the Far-Traveler, Eirek the Far-Traveller, and Helgi Thorisson. Any one who’s a fan of a well-told tale will enjoy Sagas of Imagination.

_Sagas of Imagination_ can currently be ordered from as a paperback (, hardcover (, or PDF e-book ( We now have it available on Amazon ( and other book retailers, and more e-book formats are coming soon!