The Scandinavian medieval ballad "Olav Liljekrans" (TSB A 63) tells the story of a knight whose fate is determined by a meeting with the elves on the night before his marriage celebration. In this article the ballad is read in a social and historical context. It is argued that the ballad's main theme is Olav's lack of faithfulness to his coming bride, reflecting the transition in Scandinavia, as well as in Europe, from a pre-Christian marriage customs accepting polygamy, to an ecclesiastical marriage, only accepting monogamy.
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Opphavsrett 2021 Hanne Weisser