Heimildir um seyðamjólking í Føroyum

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Published Jan 1, 1977
Arne Thorsteinsson

Abstract

Sources on Sheep-Milking in the Faroes. In modern historical treatises one frequently encounters the postulate that it has been the practice to milk sheep in the Faroes in the past. However, on reference to the source material it becomes clear that sheep-milking has definitely not been practised since circa 1600. Furthermore, on examination of the Seyðabrnevið of 1298, a special enactment for the Faroes mainly concerning sheep-breeding, it emerges that the structure of sheep-breeding in the 13th century was appreciably the same as deschribed in later times, and in that structure there was no place for sheep-milking
(i. e. because of the poor domesticity of the sheep). The postulate, first stated by J. C. Svabo in 1782, was based on vague,
unrecorded traditions and undocumented explanations of the place-name element kví(ggj).

If sheep-milking has ever been practised in the Faroes, and that possibility during the earliest phases of settlement cannot be here dismissed, it will only be documented by archæological means and through a survey of the structures comparable to other structures which are definitely known to have existed in sheep-milking contexts in other countries. This must be the next avenue of investigation towards a final solution to this problem.

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Section
Humanities