Erik Thorvaldsson, known as Erik the Red, is remembered in medieval and Icelandic saga sources as having founded the first Norse settlement in Greenland. The Icelandic tradition indicates that he was born in the Jæren district of Rogaland, Norway, as the son of Thorvald Asvaldsson, he therefore also appears, patronymically, as Erik Thorvaldsson (Eiríkr Þorvaldsson). The appellation "the Red" most likely refers to his hair.
Erik the Red gave Greenland its name over 1,000 years ago and ushered in the country’s Viking era. It is said that he was a particularly hot-headed fellow who, after being exiled from first Norway and later Iceland, finally settled in Greenland. Erik the Red married Tjodhilde, but history now repeated itself and his father's fate also befell Erik. In 982 he was sentenced to exile from Iceland for three years for murder...
"The different sailing routes to Greenland, Vinland (Newfoundland), Helluland (Baffin Island) and Markland (Labrador) travelled by different characters in the Icelandic Sagas, mainly Saga of Erik the Red and Saga of the Greenlanders. The names are the common modern English versions of the old Norse names."
Erik the Red (950-1003/04) sets sail for Greenland, illustration from 'The Book of Discovery' by T.C. Bridges, published 1931 (colour litho), Reid, Stephen (1873-1948) / Private Collection / Bridgeman Images