Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)

Olav Audunssøn

Olav Audunssøn, the master of Hestviken. When his wife dies, he goes to England. There he is tempted by the pleasures of the flesh and of violence—part of his redemption, he believes, for his unconfessed crime of murder. He returns to Hestviken, where there is conflict between him and his supposed son Eirik. Wounded while fighting the invading Swedes, Olav recovers but feels that he has become an old man.


Eirik, the son of Olav’s late wife Ingunn and falsely claimed by Olav. After much conflict, he leaves Hestviken and is reported to be among the men-at-arms at Oslo. Olav goes there to provide Eirik with money and a squire’s gear, and the two part amiably.

Cecilia Olavsdatter

Cecilia Olavsdatter, the daughter of Olav and Ingunn. A healthy, spirited girl, on one occasion she slashes a man who, after a drinking party, tries to seize her. Olav feels that she should be the boy of the house.

Asger Magnusson

Asger Magnusson, an old friend of Olav. Dying, he asks Olav to foster his daughter.

Bothild Asgersdatter

Bothild Asgersdatter, who, after her father’s death, goes to Hestviken, where she and Cecilia live as sisters.

Maerta Birgersdatter

Maerta Birgersdatter, the mother-in-law of Asger. She comes with her granddaughter Bothild to Hestviken. Grim, gaunt, but capable,...

(The entire section is 426 words.)