Royal concubine. Parents: Thorberg Arnason Giske (ca. 1000-1050) and Ragnhild Erling Daughter. Married about 1048 with Harald III Hardråde (1015-1066). Daughter of lenderman Thorberg Arnason of Giske and granddaughter of Erling Skjalgsson (died 1027); mother of Magnus II Haraldsson (ca. 1049-1069) and Olav III Haraldsson Kyrre (ca. 1050-1093).
Around 1048, the winter after King Magnus the Good died, Tora Torbergsdatter from Giske according saga married to Harald Hardrada. King Harald was already married to Ellisiv from Russia the relationship with Tora must initially have been a frilleforhold or concubine. What is it when saga writes that the king married Tora, one may therefore wonder. Polygamy in the traditional sense was hardly accepted, while "frilleforhold" was very ordinary. It's almost a pattern among the kings in this period that they marry Swedish, Danish or Russian prince daughters. Such marriage alliances borne for peace and friendship between the Nordic kingdoms and was important that the Norwegian kings were to be accepted by the good Nordic companies. Equally common was that they had extramarital relationship which happily resulted in children, which was also the case with the relationship between Tora Torbergsdatter and Harald Hardrada.
Relations between Tora Torbergsdatter and King Harald can thus largely be explained by politics and alliances. Tora stemmed from one of his time most powerful families. The chiefs of Giske played a key role in power politics, and the relationship between Tora Torbergsdatter and Harald Hardrada created strong ties between the royal family and nobles from Giske. This relation was plenty of mutual importance, and we see how it further strengthened through marriage between Jorunn, Tora sister and Wolf Uspaksson, king Marshal. The fact that two of Giske-chief's daughters married into the royal family or the close circle around the king, clearly shows how important it was for the king to have a good relationship with Giske tribesmen.
After King Harald died in 1066 Tora again married, either with the Danish king Svend Estridsen or with the Swedish king Håkan. It is impossible to determine for sure which of them she actually married, but again it seems that Tora played an important role in a kind of Nordic alliances. Both her sons, Magnus and Olav Kyrre, the Norwegian kings. When the mother was married either a Swedish or a Danish king, were ties between both nations were strengthened, which could contribute to political stability in the region.
Tora Torbergsdatter discussed in the sagas primarily because of her relations with some of its contemporary powerful men, and it is all in all little we know about her life. As such sets she fully in line with most female characters who act in the saga.
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On 6 Aug 2018 at 10:29 GMT C. Mackinnon wrote:
On 1 Nov 2013 at 22:03 GMT Sheri (Petersen) Sturm wrote: