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18th International Saga Conference

The 18th International Saga Conference

International community discusses the Viking Age in Estonia

On 7–12 August, the University of Tartu arranges the 18th International Saga Conference,  Sagas and the Circum-Baltic Arena, in collaboration with the Universities of Tallinn and Helsinki, gathering the leading experts from all the world.

The Viking Age is internationally one of the most well-known phenomena of Nothern Europe, well attested in modern popular culture as well as in traditional art and literature. In international scholarship, the Viking Age also constitutes the most active field of research within Scandinavian Studies.

Every third year, the international community of Viking Age studies gathers at the International Saga Conference, the leading interdisciplinary forum for Old Norse literature, philology, history, archaeology, and folklore. The venue of the conference alternates between different countries, and this year, the conference will for the first time be held in Estonia. The main theme of this year has, consequently, a focus proper for the venue: “Sagas and the Circum-Baltic Arena”. The arrangement of this year’s conference is a collaboration between the Universities of Tartu, Tallinn, and Helsinki, and a unique feature of it is that it is held in two different countries: the first half in Finland and the second half in Estonia. The placing of the conference in Estonia underscores that Estonia, too, is a Nordic country which has a part in the Viking Age heritage and plays an important role in Viking Age history as well as in Old Norse sagas.

More than 300 scholars participate in the conference, most of them with papers connected with the main theme of this year. Among the contributors might be mentioned Stephen Mitchell from Harvard University, Neil Price from Uppsala University and Haraldur Bernharðsson from the University of Iceland. Daniel Sävborg from the University of Tartu will contribute with a paper on the courtly literature in medieval Norway. The conference marks Estonia as an international centre of Viking Age and Old Norse studies and will certainly increase the interest in Estonia’s part in Viking Age history and culture.

The representative of Estonia in the International Saga Conference Board as well as one of the organizers of this year’s conference is Daniel Sävborg, Professor of Scandinavian Studies at the University of Tartu, who has published about 90 books and articles on Old Norse literature and folklore.

Contact person: Daniel Sävborg,; +372 56630038 (mobile phone); +372 737 6250 (work)

Conference web page:…


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