Gesta Danorum ("Deeds of the Danes") is a work of Danish history, by the 12th century author Saxo Grammaticus ("Saxo the Literate", literally "the Grammarian"). The Kingdom of Denmark ( ˈd̥ænmɑɡ̊ (archaic ˈd̥anmɑːɡ̊ commonly known as Denmark, is a country in the Scandinavian region of northern Europe "Saxo" redirects here For the car see Citroën Saxo and for the bank see Saxo Bank Saxo Grammaticus (c It is the most ambitious literary undertaking of medieval Denmark and is an essential source for the nation's early history.
Consisting of sixteen books written in Latin on the invitation of Archbishop Absalon, Gesta Danorum describes Danish history and to some degree Scandinavian history in general, from prehistory to the late 12th century. Latin ( lingua Latīna, laˈtiːna is an Italic language, historically spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. In Christianity, an archbishop is an elevated Bishop. In the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion and others this means that they lead Absalon (c 1128 &ndash March 21, 1201) was a Danish Archbishop and statesman Terminology and usage As a cultural term "Scandinavia" has no official definition and is subject to usage by those who identify with the culture in question as well In addition, Gesta Danorum offers singular reflections on European affairs in the High Middle Ages from a unique Scandinavian perspective, supplementing what has been handed down by historians from Western and Southern Europe. The High Middle Ages was the period of European history in the 11th 12th and 13th centuries (AD 1000&ndash1299 Western Europe at its most general meaning means 'all the countries in the West of Europe ' The term Southern Europe can have four definitions geographical political climatic phytogeographic
The sixteen books, in prose with an occasional excursions into poetry, can be categorized into two parts, book 1-9 dealing with Norse mythology part and Book 10-16 handling medieval history. Norse mythology comprises the indigenous pre-Christian religion, beliefs and Legends of the Scandinavian peoples including those who settled on Iceland Book 9 ends with Gorm the Old, the first factual documented King of Denmark. Gorm the Old (Gorm den Gamle Gormr gamli) also called Gorm the Sleepy (Gorm Løge dvaske was King of Denmark from c This is a list of Danish Monarchs, that is the Kings and Queens regnant of Denmark. The last three books (14-16), describe Danish conquests on the south shore of the Baltic Sea and wars against Slavic peoples (the Northern Crusades), are very valuable for the history of West Slavic tribes (Polabian Slavs, Pomeranians) and Slavic paganism. The Northern Crusades or Baltic Crusades were Crusades undertaken by the Catholic kings of Denmark and Sweden, the German Livonian The Pomeranians (Pomeranen Pòmòrzónie Pomorzanie were a group of West Slavic Tribes who lived along the shore of the Baltic Sea between Oder Slavic mythology is the Mythological aspect of the Religion that was practised by the ancient Slavs. Book 14 contains a unique description of the temple at Rügen Island. Rügen (ˈʁyːgən or Rugia is Germany 's largest Island. It is located in the Baltic Sea off the coast of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
When exactly Gesta Danorum was written is the subject of numerous works, however it is generally agreed that Gesta Danorum was not finished before 1208. The last event described in the last book (Book 16) is King Canute VI of Denmark subduing Pomerania under Duke Bogislaw I, in 1186. Canute VI (1163 &ndash 12 November 1202) was King of Denmark (1182-1202 However the preface of the work, dictated to Archbishop Anders Sunesen, mentions the Danish conquest of the areas north of the Elbe river in 1208. Anders Sunesen (also Andreas, Suneson, Sunesøn, Latin: Andreas Sunonis) (c The Elbe ( die Elbe Low German: de Ilv) is one of the major Rivers of Central Europe.
Book 14, comprising nearly one-quarter of the text of the entire work, ends with Absalon's appointment to Archbishop in 1178. Absalon (c 1128 &ndash March 21, 1201) was a Danish Archbishop and statesman Since this book is so large and Absalon has greater importance than King Valdemar I, this book may have been written first and comprised a work on its own. Valdemar I may refer to Valdemar I of Denmark Valdemar I of Sweden It is possible that Saxo then enlarged it with Books 15 and 16, telling the story of King Valdemar I's last years and King Canute VI's first years. Valdemar I may refer to Valdemar I of Denmark Valdemar I of Sweden Canute VI (1163 &ndash 12 November 1202) was King of Denmark (1182-1202
It is believed that Saxo then wrote Books 11, 12, and 13. Svend Aagesen's history of Denmark, Brevis Historia Regum Dacie (circa 1186), states that Saxo had decided to write about "The king-father and his sons," which would be King Sweyn Estridson, in Books 11, 12, and 13. Svend Aagesen (or "Sven" also known as Aggessøn, Aggesøn or Aggesen; the most correct name is probably Sven Aggesen, in Latin Sweyn II Estridsson Ulfsson (c 1019 &ndash April 28, 1074 or 1076 was the King of Denmark from 1047 until his death He would later add the first ten books. This would also explain the 22 years between the last event described in the last book (Book 16) and the 1208 event described in the preface.
The original manuscripts of the work are lost, except for four fragments: the Angers Fragment, Lassen Fragment, Kall-Rasmussen Fragment and Plesner Fragment. The Angers Fragment is four Parchment pages from ca 1200. It is one of the four fragments remaining of the original Saxo Gesta Danorum. Lassen Fragment. A Parchment page from ca 1275. One of the four fragments remaining of the original or early copy of Saxo 's Gesta Danorum Kall-Rasmussen Fragment, a Parchment page from c 1275. One of the four fragments remaining or early copy of of the original Saxo 's Plesner Fragment, a Parchment page from ca 1275. One of the 4 fragments remaining or early copy of of the original Saxo Gesta Danorum The Angers Fragment is the biggest fragment, and the only one attested to be in Saxo’s own handwriting. The Angers Fragment is four Parchment pages from ca 1200. It is one of the four fragments remaining of the original Saxo Gesta Danorum. "Saxo" redirects here For the car see Citroën Saxo and for the bank see Saxo Bank Saxo Grammaticus (c The other ones are copies from ca. 1275. All four fragments are in the collection of the Danish Royal Library in Copenhagen, Denmark. Copenhagen (ˌkəʊpənˈheɪgən ˌkəʊpənˈhɑːgən ˈkəʊpənˌheɪgən ˈkəʊpənˌhɑːgən kʰøb̥ənˈhɑʊ̯ˀn kʰøb̥m̩ˈhɑʊ̯ˀn is the capital and largest city
The text has, however, survived. In 1510-1512, Christiern Pedersen, a Danish translator working in Paris, searched Denmark high and low for an existing copy of Saxo’s works, which by that time was nearly all but lost. Christiern Pedersen (c 1480 in Helsingør, Denmark &ndash 16 January 1554 in Helsinge) was a man of many labels canon By that time most knowledge of Saxo’s work came from a summary located in Chronica Jutensis, from around 1342, called Compendium Saxonis. Chronica Jutensis ( Danish: Jyske Krønike English: Jutland Chronicle) also known as Continuatio compendii Saxonis or Chronica Compendium Saxonis (also known as Abbreviatio Saxonis) is a summary located in Chronica Jutensis. It is also in this summary that the name Gesta Danorum is found. The title Saxo himself used for his work is unknown.
Christiern Pedersen finally found a copy in the collection of Archbishop Birger Gunnersen of Lund, modern Sweden, which he gladly lent him. (lɵnd is a city in the province of Scania, southern Sweden. The town has 76188 inhabitants out of a muncipal total of 105000 "Sverige" redirects here For other uses see Sweden (disambiguation and Sverige (disambiguation. With the help of printer Jodocus Badius, Gesta Danorum was refined and printed. Jodocus Badius (or Josse Badius) (1462-1535 was a pioneer of the printing industry
The first printed press publication and the oldest known complete text of Saxo’s works is Christiern Pedersen's Latin edition, printed and published by Jodocus Badius in Paris, France, March 15, 1514 under the title of Danorum Regum heroumque Historiae ("History of the Kings and heroes of the Danes"). Jodocus Badius (or Josse Badius) (1462-1535 was a pioneer of the printing industry The edition features the following colophon: . A colophon in publishing can refer to A brief description usually located at the end of a book describing production notes relevant to the edition A printer's . . impressit in inclyta Parrhisorum academia Iodocus Badius Ascensius Idibus Martiis. MDXIIII. Supputatione Romana. (the Ides of March, 1514). The Ides of March ( Latin: Idus Martiae is the name of the date 15 March in the Roman calendar.
The full front page reads (with abbreviations expanded) in Latin:
Danorum Regum heroumque Historiae stilo eleganti a Saxone Grammatico natione Zialandico necnon Roskildensis ecclesiae praeposito, abhinc supra trecentos annos conscriptae et nunc primum literaria serie illustratae tersissimeque impressae.
De danske Kongers og Heltes Historie, skrevet I pyntelig Stil for over 300 Aar siden af Saxo Grammaticus, en Sjællandsfar og Provst ved Kirken I Roskilde, og nu for første Gang oplyst ved et Register og omhyggeligt trykt. Danish ( d̥ænsɡ̊ is one of the North Germanic languages (also called Scandinavian languages a sub-group of the Germanic branch of the
Histories of the Kings and heroes of the Danes, composed in elegant style by Saxo Grammaticus, a Sjællander and also provost of the church of Roskilde, over three hundred years ago, and now for the first time illustrated and printed correctly in a learned compilation. English is a West Germanic language originating in England and is the First language for most people in the United Kingdom, the United States Zealand (also Sealand Danish: Sjælland;) is the largest Island (7031 km² of Denmark (excluding Greenland Roskilde (ˈʁʌskilə is the main city in Roskilde Municipality, Denmark on the island of Zealand.
The source of all existing translations and new editions is Christiern Pedersen's Latin Danorum Regum heroumque Historiae. There exist a number different translations today, some complete, some partial:
Gesta Danorum is also translated partially in other English, French and German releases. English is a West Germanic language originating in England and is the First language for most people in the United Kingdom, the United States French ( français,) is a Romance language spoken around the world by 118 million people as a native language and by about 180 to 260 million people The German language (de ''Deutsch'') is a West Germanic language and one of the world's major languages.
Certain aspects of Gesta Danorum formed the basis for William Shakespeare's play, Hamlet. The sources of Hamlet, a Tragedy by William Shakespeare believed to have been written between 1599 and 1601 trace back as far as pre-13th William Shakespeare ( baptised Hamlet is a Tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written between 1599 and 1601 It is thought that Shakespeare never read Gesta Danorum, and instead had access to an auxiliary version of the tale describing the downfall of the Prince of Denmark, whose real name - Amleth - was used in anagram by Shakespeare for Hamlet. The Ur-Hamlet (the German prefix Ur- means "primordial" is the name given to a theoretical play believed lost that may have been extant before 1589 a Hamlet is a striking figure in Scandinavian romance and the hero of Shakespeare's tragedy Hamlet Prince of Denmark. An anagram ( Greek anagramma 'letters written anew' passive participle of ana- 'again' + gramma 'letter' is a type of Word play
Saxo’s version, told of in Book 3 and 4, is very similar to that of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. In Saxo's version, two brothers, Orvendil and Fengi are given the rule over Jutland by King Rørik Slyngebond of the Danes. Horwendill was a Legendary Jutish chieftain who is the prototype for William Shakespeare 's King Hamlet, Prince Hamlet 's father Feng was a Legendary Jutish chieftain and the prototype for William Shakespeare 's King Claudius. This article is about the region of Denmark. For the World War I naval battle see Battle of Jutland. Hrœrekr Ringslinger or Ringscatterer, Old Icelandic: Hrærekr slöngvanbaugi, Old Danish: Rørik Slængeborræ or Rørik Slyngebond Soon after, Orvendil marries King Rørik’s daughter, Geruth (Gertrude in Hamlet). Amleth is their first and only child.
Fengi becomes resentful of his brother’s marriage, and also wants sole leadership of Jutland, so therefore murders Orvendil. After a very brief period of mourning, Fengi marries Geruth, and declares himself sole leader of Jutland. Eventually, Amleth avenges his father’s murder and plans the murder of his uncle, making him the new and rightful king of Jutland. However, while Hamlet dies in Shakespeare's version just after his uncle's death, in Saxo's version Amleth survives and begins ruling his kingdom, going on to other adventures.