Image of Sigrid Undset


Lifetime: 1882 - 1949 Passed: ≈ 75 years ago


Norwegian novelist



Sigrid Undset

Sigrid Undset (1882-1949) was a Norwegian novelist who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1928. She is best known for her historical novels, which explore the lives of women in medieval Norway.

Undset was born in Kalundborg, Denmark, to Norwegian parents. She moved to Norway with her family when she was a child. She studied literature and history at the University of Oslo, and then worked as a journalist and translator.

Undset's first novel, The Feast at Gamleby, was published in 1908. It was a critical and commercial success, and established her as a major Norwegian writer. Her subsequent novels, including Kristin Lavransdatter (1920-1922) and The Master of Hestviken (1925-1927), were also well-received.

Undset's novels are known for their historical accuracy, their strong female characters, and their exploration of themes such as faith, love, and family. She was a devout Catholic, and her religious beliefs often influenced her writing.

Undset was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1928 "for her powerful epic writing, which with great psychological penetration depicts the Norwegian way of life in the Middle Ages." She was the first Norwegian woman to win the Nobel Prize.

Undset died in Oslo, Norway, in 1949. She is remembered as one of the greatest Norwegian writers of all time.

Here are some of the principles that guided Undset's writing:

  • Historical accuracy: Undset was a meticulous researcher, and she took great pains to ensure that her novels were historically accurate. She often traveled to the places where her novels were set, and she consulted with historians and archaeologists.
  • Strong female characters: Undset's novels feature strong and independent women who are often ahead of their time. She was a feminist, and she believed that women should be treated equally to men.
  • Exploration of themes: Undset's novels explore a wide range of themes, including faith, love, family, and the human condition. She was a deeply philosophical writer, and her novels often deal with complex issues.

Undset's philosophy was based on her Christian faith. She believed that love, compassion, and forgiveness were the most important values in life. She also believed that women should be treated equally to men.

Undset's work has had a lasting impact on Norwegian literature and culture. She is considered one of the greatest Norwegian writers of all time, and her novels are still read and studied today.

She is remembered for her powerful writing, her strong female characters, and her exploration of important themes. She was a pioneer for women writers, and her work helped to change the way women were portrayed in literature.

Books by Sigrid Undset

The Bridal Wreath Cover image

The Bridal Wreath

Fiction History
Family Love Historical Fiction Faith Medieval Loss Patriarchalism Woman Power

In the rugged and unforgiving landscape of 14th-century Norway, a young woman's heart is torn between the divine and the desires of the flesh. "The Bridal Wreath" by Sigrid Undset is a sweeping historical epic that unravels the intricate tapestry of...

Jenny Cover image


Jenny Winge is a Norwegian expatriate studying art in Rome, part of a Bohemian group of friends who explore the ancient City in an intoxicating passion for Beauty. Yearning for an immortal Love, she allows herself to fall into less-than-ideal romanti...