The Saga of the Sister Saints: The Legend of Martha and Mary Magdalen in Old Norse-Icelandic Translation
Studies and Texts 214 • 2019 • xiv + 222 pp. • ISBN 978-0-88844-214-7 • Cloth • $80
This book examines the cults and legends of Martha and Mary Magdalen in medieval Scandinavia, especially Iceland. While a number of parallels may be drawn between Iceland and mainland Scandinavia in terms of liturgical and artistic representations of Martha and Mary Magdalen, the Old Norse-Icelandic literary tradition stands apart from its Scandinavian counterparts in the cultural significance and relevance it gives to each of the “sister saints” in medieval Iceland, where the composite Mǫrtu saga ok Maríu Magðalenu was compiled in the mid-fourteenth century. The book concludes with a normalized edition of the only complete redaction of Mǫrtu saga ok Maríu Magðalenu, followed by its first English translation.