Museum of Icelandic Sorcery and Witchcraft Feature on

Icelandic news and culture website has published a feature on the the Icelandic Museum of Sorcery and Witchcraft (Icelandic Strandagaldur). The feature provides history on this unique and fascination institution, as well as photographs of the site, and an some discussion with museum manager Sigurður Atlason.

According to

In Icelandic folklore and history, the Strandir region has forever been associated with sorcery and witchcraft, with records showing that alleged sorcerers were being burnt at the stake in nearby Trékyllisvík as late as the 17th century. This reputation served as inspiration for the museum, which offers visitors a chance to learn about Iceland’s folklore and witchcraft, and the various strange runes and contraptions with which it was performed.

The Vegvísir, a symbol from the mid-19th century Huld manuscript. The manuscript says that the bearer of the symbol will "one will never lose one's way in storms or bad weather, even when the way is not known" (Flowers 1989 trans.). File via Wikimedia Commons.

This quote refers to material derived from, for example, the magical staves of Icelandic grimoires such as the Galdrabók  (17th century) and the museum also appears to draw exhibition source material from Icelandic medieval material, such as the Old Norse saga corpus.

The Museum of Icelandic Sorcery and Witchcraft is located in Hólmavík, a small town in northwestern Iceland. The museum opened its doors in 2000. Since then, the museum has become a destination popular particularly with tourists.

* "In Strandir: Sorcery and Tourism" at
* The Icelandic Museum of Sorcery and Witchcraft Official Website

"Warrior Lore" by Ian Cumpstey

Ian Cumpstey has sent word that the second collection of his translations of Swedish folk ballads, "Warrior Lore", is now available. The collection contains original illustrations and features various references to North Germanic gods from Swedish folk tradition. Cumpstey's press release is as follows:

"Warrior Lore" by Ian Cumpstey

Medieval Scandinavian ballads in a new English verse translation

The medieval Scandinavian ballads in this collection tell stories of
champions and fighters, vikings, and trolls, drawing on Norse
mythology and heroic legend. There are riddles, and there are
appearances from Thor, Loki, Sigurd, and other figures from the myths
of the Edda and from history. Narrative ballads were part of an oral
folk music tradition in Scandinavia, and were first written down
around 1600, although the ballads themselves are older. These new
English verse translations are mainly based on Swedish tradition.

The hero Widrick Waylandsson comes face to face with a troll in the
forest. Thor resorts to cross-dressing in a bid to recover his stolen
hammer. The daughter of a King of Sweden is abducted from a convent in
the Swedish countryside. A young fighter has to show off his prowess
in skiing and shooting for King Harald Hardrada. And more...

"Warrior Lore" contents:
Widrick Waylandsson's Fight with Long-Ben Reyser; Twelve Strong
Fighters; Hilla-Lill; Sir Hjalmar; The Hammer Hunt; The Stablemates;
Sven Swan-White; The Cloister Raid; Heming and the Mountain Troll;
Heming and King Harald.

Paperback, 76 pages with 10 full-colour illustrations.
Published by Skadi Press Feb 2014
ISBN 978-0-9576120-1-3
RRP GBP 10.00

Further info / ordering etc:
Ebooks also available (from all the usual retailers)

"A charming introduction to Scandinavian Lore." -- Sam Smith, in The
Journal (once 'of Contemporary Anglo-Scandinavian Poetry')

Reader reviews: