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Literature and Writing

Icelandic Literature

Icelandic Literature, Lutheran pastor, outstanding work, Hymns, Bible

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Icelandic Literature, literature created by the inhabitants of Iceland from the country's settlement in the 9th century ad to the present. Because Old Norse and Icelandic are, for all practical purposes, the same language, Icelandic medieval writings are sometimes referred to as Old Norse literature.

Period of Literary Sterility

After Iceland's loss of independence in the 1260s, Icelandic literature declined, and from about 1400 to the 19th century hardly any literary prose was written, with the exception of a notable Icelandic translation of the Bible by 16th-century Protestant theologians. Sacred verse, however, was composed, and so were rimur, an Icelandic form of balladry more remarkable for metrical ingenuity than literary value, which continued to be popular until the end of the 19th century. The outstanding work of these centuries—and the one that is more often printed than any other in Iceland—is the Passiusalmar (Hymns of the Passion, 1666) by Hallgrimur Petursson, a Lutheran pastor.

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Icelandic Literature, Lutheran pastor, outstanding work, Hymns, Bible, exception, Passion, centuries, present, settlement, language, country

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