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Grail Maiden: Public Domain Image by Arthur Rackham Legends and Sagas
Image: How at the Castle of Corbin a maiden bare in the Sangreal [Holy Grail] and foretold the achievements of Galahad (Arthur Rackham)."

Northern European  Arabia  Baltic  Basque  Celtic  Eastern European  England  Finland  France  Germany  Iceland  Persia  Roma (Gypsy)  Scandinavia  Spain 

This section of BeyondWeird archives the rich literature of Sagas and Legends. These are mostly (but not all) from Northern Europe, and primarily based on legendary events and people from the Middle Ages. Many of these narratives are based on archetypal stories that date even further back in time.

Northern European

Teutonic Myth and Legend by Donald Mackenzie [1912]

Arabian Nights

The 1001 Arabian Nights (Burton, tr.) This is an 'unexpurgated' version, translated from the Arabic by the Orientalist Sir Richard Burton.
The 1001 Arabian Nights (Lang, ed.) This is a version suitable for Victorian children, translated and abridged from the French version of Galland by the folklorist Andrew Lang.


The Hero of Esthonia by W. F. Kirby [1895] (2 vols)
This includes a extensive 'prose outline' of the Estonian national epic, the Kalevipoeg, and some Estonian folklore.

Baltic Wizards by Frances Jenkins Olcott [1928]
This is a diverse collection of folklore, retold for young readers, from the Baltic region, including Finland.


Basque Folklore


Celtic Folklore

In order to deal properly with this extensive subject, all of the Celtic texts and books now have their own page. Topics include:

Celtic Fairies
General Celtic

Eastern European

The Songs of the Russian People by W.R.S. Ralston [1872]
A treasure trove of Russian and Slavic folklore, mythology and tradition. Covers pre-Christian Slavic Paganism.

Roumanian Fairy Tales and Legends by E.B. Mawr [1881]
A small collection of Romanian folk tales and historical legends.

Sixty Folk-Tales from Exclusively Slavonic Sources by A. H. Wratisalw [1890]
An excellent (and long out of print) collection of Slavic folktales, with hints of some very ancient lore.

Folk Tales From the Russian by Verra Xenophontovna Kalamatiano de Blumenthal [1903]
Heroic Ballads of Servia by George Rapnall Noyes and Leonard Bacon [1913]
Translations of Serbian oral poetry.

Stories of Russian Folk-Life by Donald A. Mackenzie [1916]
The Key of Gold: 23 Czech Folk Tales By Josef Baudis [1917].



All of the texts and books about England also now have their own page. Topics include:

English Folklore


The Kalevala is the national saga of Finland. Pieced together (and embellished) by Elias Lönnrot from traditional storytellers in the late 19th Century, the tales which constitute the Kalevala show signs of great antiquity.

The Kalevala (English) John Martin Crawford, tr. [1888]
This etext was the first English version of the Kalevala available on the Internet; it was scanned at BeyondWeird, and has been submitted to the Gutenberg project.

The Kalevala (Finnish) This etext is from the Runeberg project.
Baltic Wizards by Frances Jenkins Olcott [1928]
This includes a section on Finnish folklore.


The Song of Roland
This saga depicts a pivotal episode in the conflict between the Islamic and Christian world in the late Middle ages.


Wagner's Ring of the Niblung translated by Margaret Armour; Illustrations by Arthur Rackham [1910].
This is an excellent translation of the librettos of Richard Wagner's operas Siegfried and Die Götterdammerung (Twilight of the Gods), with beautiful illustrations by the best fairy tale illustrator of the 19th Century.

The Nibelungenlied
The Nibelungenlied is derived from the Ancient Norse Eddas. The Nibelungenlied also supplied source material for Wagner's Ring opera cycle.
Hero Tales and Legends of the Rhine, by Lewis Spence [1915]
Lore of the Rhine valley, including the Nibelunglied saga.
Grimm's Household Tales
Summer Legends, by Rudolph Baumbach, Translated by Helen B. Dole [1888]

The Germany of Tacitus [1858]
One of the only ancient descriptions of the Germanic tribes.


Icelandic Lore

All of the texts and books about Icelandic lore now have their own page. Subjects include:

The Eddas.
The Sagas.

Roma (Gypsy)

The Roma people and their lore now have their own page:

Roma Index.


The Shah Namah 460,993 bytes


Popular Tales from the Norse by George Dasent [1904]
The Danish History of Saxo Grammaticus
Heimskringla or The Chronicle of the Kings of Norway by Snorri Sturlson. tr. Samuel Laing [1844]


Legends and Romances of Spain By Lewis Spence [1920]
The Lay of the Cid 240,127 bytes