The Biography of Ingibjorg Haraldsdottir

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The Biography of Ingibjorg Haraldsdottir

I was born on the countryside, just outside of Stafangri(Stavanger) where I lived with my parents and grandparents in our long-house. When I was 14 years old, my parents had along with my relatives found me a suitable husband; Magnus Olavson. Magnus and I had never met each other, but learned to respect and love each other in time. As I went in to the marriage, my parents had set a “medgift” , gifts or belongings from my family that I could take with me into the marriage and that would always be my property, and were to be passed on to my children when I die. With me I took some clothing off linen and wool, and a weaving chair. My parents wanted me to take a their bed, but I didn’t want to take it away from them. If our marriage didn’t work out, however, if Magnus was mistreating me or our children, if he was to lazy to support us, or he were to insult my family, I could divorce him by calling in witnesses and proclaim my self divorced in front of them. But if I didn’t have a legit reason to divorce him, Magnus would be entitled to my belongings, but they would still later be passed on to our children.
When we got married, I was handed all the farms and chests keys, as a clear symbol of my position and power. This I carry around my waist on a leather belt, on a big key-ring. But even though I now live with my husbands family, I will never be considered apart of it, and always belong to my own parents.
Our house is called a long-house and it is situated on the top of a hill on the countryside. This both so that we can spot friends, or enemies, long before they reach the farm. And so that my husband can show off his position with the farm being there to anyone passing by. The house it self only has one large room, which we have divided into one section for the farm, and one for the people to live. The house is placed so that the wind would mostly hit the short-wall side at the barns end, and In this work as a “air-conditioner” by the draft from the barn carrying the heat from the animals to the end where the people are.

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