The life and literary legacy of Jón Halldórsson, Bishop of Skálholt : a profile of a preacher in fourteenth-century Iceland
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This thesis is an investigation into the life and literary legacy of Jón Halldórsson, a Norwegian Dominican who was bishop of Skálholt in Iceland between 1322 and 1339. Little is known about Jon before his consecration, apart from the facts that he entered the priory of the Friars Preachers in Bergen early in his youth, that he studied for a considerable time in Paris and Bologna, and that after his return he became a canon at the cathedral of Bergen. Because of Jón's remarkable role in medieval Icelandic literature this aspect of his life receives greatest attention in this study, especially his celebrated use of exempla or sermon tales. The central source pertaining to this activity of the Preacher is a piece in Old Icelandic known as Jóns páttr. This anonymous work is studied in some detail, a theory is presented about its authorship, and finally, its portrayal of Jón is compared with his personage as it appears in other sources.
Thesis, MPhil Master of Philosophy
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