Sturlungar family clan

The Sturlungs (Icelandic: Sturlungar) were a powerful family clan in 13th century Iceland, in the time of the Icelandic Commonwealth. Their story is partly told in Sturlunga saga, and members of the clan were significant participants in the civil war of the Age of the Sturlungs. The Sturlungs were a wealthy and influential clan. They controlled western Iceland, the Westfjords and north eastern Iceland.

The patriarch of the Sturlungs was Sturla 脼贸r冒arson, whom scholars believe was born around 1115. He inherited his go冒or冒 (domain, realm or area of influence) from his father 脼贸r冒ur Gilsson. Sturla quarrelled extensively with Einar 脼orgilsson of Sta冒arh贸ll and many other chieftains. J贸n Loftsson, a well-respected man, mediated in one of these disputes. Following this, he was entrusted with the upbringing of Sturla's son Snorri Sturluson, who later became the most influential of the Sturlungs and the most famous because of his literary endeavours. Snorri had two brothers, 脼贸r冒ur Sturluson and Sighvatur Sturluson.

The descendants of Sturla played an important role in the Age of the Sturlungs civil war, most notably his sons Snorri and Sighvatur, and Sighvatur's son 脼贸r冒ur kakali Sighvatsson. Another notable Sturlung was Sturla 脼贸r冒arson, son of 脼贸r冒ur Sturluson, who fought with 脼贸r冒ur kakali. He wrote 脥slendinga saga, the longest part of Sturlunga saga, and H谩konar saga gamla, the story of Haakon IV of Norway. Some scholars also attribute to him the authorship of Kristni saga and a transcript of Landn谩mab贸k.

The writing of the Icelandic sagas began with the Sturlungs, and many of those written before 1280 were their work, or were written at their behest.


  • 脕rni Dan铆el J煤l铆usson, J贸n 脫lafur 脥sberg, Helgi Sk煤li Kjartansson 脥slenskur s枚gu atlas: 1. bindi: Fr谩 枚ndver冒u til 18. aldar Almenna b贸kaf茅lagi冒, Reykjav铆k 1989