Originally written in Icelandic, sometime in the 13th Century
As is the case with many of the Icelandic sagas, the author of The Story of Burnt Njal is unknown. It is thought to have been written in the 13th century, and covers events that took place between 960 CE and 1020 CE. Considered by many to be the ultimate Icelandic saga, it contains many elements common to other sagas: a focus on genealogical and familiar history, detailed accounts of battle, and a window into the life of everyday Icelanders. The historical accuracy of The Story of Burnt Njal remains a subject of debate, however it is thought to fairly accurately depict the major historical events detailed, even if other components of the work are entirely fictional.
The Sagas of Icelanders, of which The Story of Burnt Njal is part, are the best examples of Icelandic literature and provide the reader with some of the greatest accounts of Viking life.
For serious scholars and students of Norse history, The Story of Burnt Njal is an absolute must read. It is a frequently violent tale of life in the Viking Age, focused particularly on the process of blood feuds. For those willing to invest the energy into properly examining this text, Dasent's translation is a fascinating and illuminating read.