Reputation in The Sagas
The figure which Eric became in the Norse sagas is a heady mix of history, folklore and political propaganda. He is usually portrayed as a larger-than-life Viking hero, whose powerful and violent performances bring him many short-term successes, but ultimately make him flawed and impopular as a ruler and statesman. The Heimskringla describes Eric as “a large and handsome man, strong and of great prowess, a great and victorious warrior," but also "violent of disposition, cruel, gruff, and taciturn." The synoptic histories (Theodoricus, the Historia Norwegiae and Ágrip) to some degree seek to excuse Eric’s cruelty and fall out of favour with the Norwegian nobility by pointing out another weakness, that of his naive faith in the evil counsels of his wife.
Read more about this topic: Eric Bloodaxe
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... One of the richest sagas to deal with Eric Bloodaxe and his affairs in England is Egils saga, which is also a rich if problematic source for skaldic poems surviving from the ...
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“The relatives of a suicide hold it against him that out of consideration for their reputation he did not remain alive.”
—Friedrich Nietzsche (18441900)