In my eleven years of playing in Calontir, I have encountered several "Viking" personae, but they are almost all from the mainland: Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Lapland, et cetera. I wanted to embrace an early-period, Northern Germanic persona, but simply did not feel like joining the ranks of the hundreds already claiming Norway as their home. Also, I could not envision myself a Norsewoman who hates the cold. ;)
Knowing that Norseman go a-viking, why do most of us limit ourselves to the mainland? More than likely, it is because the area is easier to document. One set of islands has gone virtually unnoticed for ages: the Faroe Islands. The Faroes are mentioned in the Icelandic Færeyinga Saga. This, combined with the Sigmundskvæði, are the two primary historical documents of the Faroe Islands. At one time, Denmark seized control of the Islands, banned the language in the 16th century, and sent all the governmental documents to Denmark; the ship never made it. The language survived for 400 years unwritten, but spoken and sung.
My goal is to write regular posts on the Faroes, including folk song materials and translations of the kvæði (thanks to the generous help of my friend, Uni).
An outline of up-and-coming articles:
- an introduction to the Faroe Islands; history of settlement
- the history of the Faroese language
- the history of Faroese song and dance
- the early political structure
- early domestic life, architecture
I am certain there will be more to come.