Kristin Lavransdatter

Undset, Sigrid: Kristin Lavransdatter Winner of the 1928 Nobel Prize for Literature

The three books The Wreath (Kransen), The Wife (Husfrue) and The Cross (Korset) form this magnificient historical trilogy. Sigrid Undset was warded was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1928 for this trilogy and her two books on Olav Audunssøn.

In these books we follow Kristin's life in fourteenth-century Norway, from a young girl, through marriage and childbearing, to her death. This story of a woman’s life in fourteenth-century Norway has kept its hold on generations of readers, and the heroine, Kristin – beautiful, strong-willed and passionate – stands with the world’s great literary figures.

Volume I, The Wreath, describes young Kristin’s stormy romance with the dashing Erlend Nikulaussön, a young man perhaps overly fond of women, of whom her father strongly disapproves.

Volume II, The Wife, tells of Kristin’s troubled and eventful married life on the great estate of Husaby, to which her husband has taken her.

Volume III, The Cross, shows Kristin as still indomitable, reconstructing her world after the devastation of the Black Death and the loss of almost everything that she has loved. Old and tired, she finds peace at last, and can finally put her lifelong battle with God behind her.

Praise for Kristin Lavransdatter:

"No other novelist, past or present, has bodied forth the medieval world with such richness and fulness of indisputable genius... One of the finest minds in European literature"
(New York Herald Tribune)

“Sigrid Undset’s trilogy embodies more of life, seen understandingly and seriously…than any novel since Dostoyevsky’s Brothers Karamazov“
(Commonweal)

"The finest historical novel our 20th century has yet produced; indeed it dwarfs most of the fiction of any kind that Europe has produced in the last twenty years"
(Contemporary Movements in European Literature)

First published: 1920-1922

Sigrid Undset: Biography and bibliography

Printer friendly versionPrinter friendly version