SCANDERBEG IN ICELANDIC RIMURS - (On the occasion of 600 anniversary of birth of Georges Castrioti Scanderbeg) Cover Image
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SCANDERBEG IN ICELANDIC RIMURS - (On the occasion of 600 anniversary of birth of Georges Castrioti Scanderbeg)

Author(s): Xhevat Lloshi
Subject(s): Language and Literature Studies
Published by: Instituti Albanologjik i Prishtinës
Keywords: SCANDERBEG ; ICELANDIC RIMURS ; 600 anniversary of birth ; Georges Castrioti Scanderbeg

Summary/Abstract: Thanks to the efforts of the director of National Library of Iceland, dr. Finnbogi Guthmundsson, in 1985 we learned about two kinds of Icelandic sources concerning the Albanian hero, Scanderbeg. In the Manuscripts Department there are a number of materials, translated from Danish, starting form around 1800. Secondly, there is a number of poems dedicated to Scanderbeg, beginning from 1803-804 and going up to 20th century. The first source of these manuscripts is Ludvig Holberg’s (1684-1754) “The Comparative History and Deeds of Various Great Heroes…”, published in Danish in 1763. In vol. I, pp. 353-385, there is a chapter on Scanderbeg. A version translated in Icelandic was written early in 1832 by the farmer Thorstein Gislason. A similar version was given to the Rev. Hannes Bjarnason (1777-1838) with the request to turn it into rimur. Rimurs or Icelandic ballads are a type of poetry, practised in Iceland since the 14th century. A detailed look on this particular poetry was given by Sir William Craigie in a lecture published in 1950 by the University of Glasgow. “Rimur af Skanderbeg Epirótakappa eftir séra Hannes Bjarnason” were composed in 1825, but printed in Akureyri in 1861. They are also preserved in several manuscripts in the National Library of Iceland. After 15 introductory stanzas the poet starts versifying the Scanderbeg account, dividing the whole story in ten rimur. The poet follows the Icelandic translation in 10 chapters. The Rimur compared with the Icelandic prose are much more voluminous. The reason for this lies in the nature of the rimur type of poetry. The Icelandic materials in prose and poetry extend the Scanderbeg’s bibliography to new countries and to new languages. It is our duty to have the collection of all Icelandic documents in order to translate them into Albanian, and to make comparisons between them. It is clear that the first source has been the well known work by Marinus Barletius (1508-1510). Dr. F. Guthmundsson was associate professor of Icelandic language and literature in the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, 1951-56. In 1971-75 he edited in three volumes Selected Letters to Stephan G. Stephanson, and seven essays In retrospect in 1982. His paper “Scanderbeg in Icelandic sources”, together with W. Craigie’s “The Romantic Poetry of Iceland” were published in “Studia Albanica”, no 1, 1985.

  • Issue Year: 2004
  • Issue No: 34-35
  • Page Range: 177-188
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: Albanian