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22.12.2019

Trondur i Gotu

Tróndur í Gøtu (Old Icelandic: Þrándr í Götu, Old Norse Þrǫ́ndr í Gǫtu) (ca. 945 – 1035) was a Viking era chieftain from the Faroe Islands.

Biography

Tróndur í Gøtu lived at his father's home Gøta on the island of Eysturoy. Initially Tróndur and his brother Thorlac drew lots to decide who should inherit the estate. After losing, Thorlac went to live in neighbouring islands with his wife. The siblings eventually lived together at Gøta with their children.

Tróndur opposed Christianization of the Faroes and pronounced a curse against the religion and rival chieftain Sigmundur Brestisson who was promulgating it. He and Sigmundur Brestisson are central figures in the Færeyinga saga, which tells the early history of the Faroe Islands and the coming of Christianity to the islands. This is also the subject of the poem "Gandkvæði Tróndar" by Faroese poet Janus Djurhuus (1881–1948).

Icelandic saying

Færeyinga saga was written in Iceland shortly after 1200. The saga is the oldest recorded source of the history of the Faroe Islands. It is commonly believed to have relied upon oral testimonies from the Faroe Islands. Tróndur í Gøtu himself was probably unknown to most Icelanders, explaining why the words þrándur and götu may be commonly lower cased. Because Tróndur opposed royal taxation, Icelanders might think that þrándur literally means an obstacle.

The saying in the Icelandic language, vera einhverjum Þrándur í Götu (e. being someones Þrándur í Götu) or just að vera þrándur í götu (e. to be a þrándur í götu), means to be an obstacle to somebody. 

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