Histories of reception span countries and collections, and it is only by bringing these together that the bigger picture comes into view.

Ancient tales about the Norse gods and heroes, genealogies of Scandinavian kings, and stories about feuds between families that span generations were for centuries preserved in Iceland, a distant island in the middle of North Atlantic. When these stories came to the attention of book collectors and antiquarians in mainland Scandinavia in the seventeenth century, their alluring visions of Scandinavian history inspired scholars, artists, poets, and even political movements. 

This exhibition presents a gallery of paired objects from the Museum of National History at Frederiksborg Castle in Denmark, and the National Museum of Iceland. By pairing items between these two collections, we explore the relationships between medieval traditions and the later artworks they inspired.

Selection of items in this exhibition


Kapitan, Katarzyna Anna and Dale Kedwards. 2021. "Paired Objects," Reception and Reinvention: Old Norse in Time and Space, accessed dd/mm/yy,