This incident has been fatally embroidered by many local historians, taking their cue from various sources, so that the popular accounts have distorted what was already a confusing set of events.
Marriage between King Harald Fairhair and Snæfriðr, and their Offspring: Mythological Foundation of the Norwegian Medieval Dynasty?
Historians in Nordic countries since the turn of the twentieth century have become increasingly aware of the problem using these primary sources from earlier times, especially the sagas from the late twelfth- and thirteenth centuries, about three hundred years after Harald assumedly lived. It was Halvdan Koht(1873-1965)who introduced this point of view into Norwegian historiography, although some researchers, including Yngvar Nielsen, had cast doubt on the accuracy of the account before him.
An interview with author Nancy Brown on her latest medieval offering: “Song of the Vikings: Snorri and the Making of Norse Myths”.