Written sources

We have no contemporary written sources about Sámi faith and mythology which have been written by Sámi. In earlier historical works, travellers’ journals and court records, we find descriptions of Sámi faith and rituals as perceived by outsiders.

The most important written sources were written down by the priests and missionaries who were attempting to convert the Sámi in the 17th and 18th centuries. Here we must make allowances for linguistic problems, prejudice and the limitations on what priests and missionaries were able to learn having led to many misunderstandings and misconceptions. Even so these sources are quite central to our knowledge of Sámi faith and mythology.

Written sources before 1600

Written sources from the 17th century

Written sources from the 18th century

Written sources after 1800

Isaac Olsen giehtačála/Isaac Olsens håndskrift