Thomas Grant, King's

Degree: PhD
Course: ASNC
Supervisor: Dr Judy Quinn

Biographical Information

I am a PhD student working on Old Norse literature in the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic, University of Cambridge. I completed my BA in the same department in 2015, and went on to graduate with an MPhil in 2016.

Research Interests

During my MPhil, I focused on the different representations of the myth of Þórr's journey to visit the jǫtunn Geirrøðr – namely Þórsdrápa; Snorra Edda; the Gesta Danorum of Saxo Grammaticus and the late fornaldarsaga Þorsteins þáttr bœjarmagns. This work was a continuation of my BA research, where I was interested in the characterisation of and relationship between jǫtnar and risar in the fornaldarsögur. 

My PhD is entitled 'Craftsmen and Wordsmiths: An Investigation into the Links Between Material Crafting, Poetic Composition and Their Practitioners in Old Norse Literature'. It explores parallels between physical and verbal crafting and their practitioners in a variety of sources from medieval Scandinavia, including, but not limited to, Old Norse literature and archaeology. My interests and expertise in Old Norse language and literature are varied. I have worked with both eddic and skaldic poetry and a range of sagas, including the Íslendingasögurkonungasögur and fornaldarsögur.

Areas of Supervision

My interests in a wide range of Old Norse texts are reflected in my teaching. I have given supervisions on heroic and mythological eddic poetry; Snorra Edda; skaldic kennings; Íslendingasögur; and Loki in a range of Old Norse texts. I have taught lectures on the skaldic poem Þórsdrápa and on the eddic poems Hávamál, Völunarkviða and Grímnismál. I have taught translation classes on extracts of Heimskringla, Kormáks saga and Snorra Edda, and have given seminars on Christian skaldic poetry and the myth of the poetic mead.

Selected Publications

Grant, Tom and Jonathan Hui, 'Between Myths and Legends: The Guises of Goðmundr of Glæsisvellir', in Margins, Monsters, Deviants: Alterities in Old Norse Literature and Culture, ed. by Rebecca Merkelbach and Gwendolyne Knight (forthcoming 2020; 14,700 words).

Grant, Tom, 'A Problem of Giant Proportions: Distinguishing Risar and Jötnar in Old Icelandic Saga Material', Gripla 30 (2019), 77–106.

Grant, Tom, 'Þórr the War God: Polemicizing Myth in Eilífr Goðrúnarson's Þórsdrápa', Viking and Medieval Scandinavia 12 (2016), 41—60.