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About Ari the wise

Ari the wise, the priest.

Breidafjord and Snæfellsnes are the starting points in the voyage to Old Greenland, as is the Island of Flatey, the Helgafell monastery, the monastery at Videy near Reykjavik, and the priest Ari the wise.  Ari was born in the year 1068 at Helgafell and he died in the year 1148.  Ari was the most valuable source of information on Old Greenland and what had happened there in the beginning of the settlement in the year of 985 and later.   Ari had a strong Clan tree in Iceland.  His mother Valgerdur was the daughter to Sidu-Hallur, the calm one,  a man involved with others in the Christianity of Iceland in the year 1000.

Þorgils, Ari´s father was the son to Gellir, a dominant heathen figure, around Breidafjord.  When Þorgils drowned in Breidarfjord, Ari was sent to his grandfather Hallur, the calm one, living at Haukadalur in south Iceland, near Skálaholt,  receiving the status of a priest in the process.  Ari starts his carrier serving the bishops of Skálaholt in the years 1118 to 1145.

Ari´s main task for the church was to travel between the dominant settlers and ask for family status of each one, together with information on property and write that down into his best work, Íslendingabók, the book on Icelandic settlers.  From the story we learn that Ari settles down at his father´s farm at Helgafell, near the Monastery, bearing the same name.

The family tree of Ari on his father side was over to the famous Audur djupudga, daughter to Ketill flatt nose, bearing the title of Earl of Sudureyjar, near Scottland, serving the king of Norway at the time.  Ketill´s father was the Earl of Mæri, in Norway, by the name of Hrollaugur Rögnvaldsson, the brother to the famous Viking, Göngu- Hrólfur, better known as Rollo, the Duke of Normandy in France.

Göngu-Hrólfur spoke the same language as the rest of the family in Iceland and with his men gets a contract to defend and protect the shores of France, in the name of the King of France, residing at the city of Rouen, the main base of the operation.  He marries the princess of Brittany and gets with her the Kingdom of Brittany.

The Rollo group in Normandy grew bigger and bigger, they marry local woman and get stronger and stronger with time.  In the year 1066, they see the moment of invading England and succseed in doing so.  This is the start for Norman rule in England, they settle down in Bristol and Norfolk, strong commercial points at the time.  Normanns in England and Normandy have stronge commercial connections to Navarra, Spain.  This is the stronghold of the Basque territory of Spain and from her the Normanns became mercenaries in the war against the Moors.  The Icelandic monastery at Helgafell was one of the places protecting these stories as Riddarasögur from the Basque area of Spain, the Crusader stories, Normanns at war with the Moors.

When traders from Iceland and Greenland, start sailing and trading and commence commercial activities over to Ireland, England, Normandy and France, they were met with friendly faces.  Old blood brothers and family members asking about family ties in Iceland and Greenland.  These old relations and trade connections where active until the dissolution of the monasteries and Norman rule in Iceland, Greenland, England, Normandy and Basque, Spain and finally collapsed with the dissolution of the Catholic Church in the year 1550.  







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