Chapter 60 - Egil performed Hfulausn "Head's Lease".

King Eric went to table according to his wont, and much people were with him. And when Arinbjorn knew this, then went he with all his followers fully armed to the king's palace while the king sate at table. Arinbjorn craved entrance into the hall; it was granted. He and Egil went in with half of his followers, but the other half stood without before the door. Arinbjorn saluted the king; the king received him well. Arinbjorn spoke: 'Here now is come Egil. He has not sought to run away in the night. Nor would we fain know, my lord, what his lot is to be. I hope thou wilt let him get good from my words, for I think it a matter of great moment to me that Egil gain terms from thee. I have so acted (as was right) that neither in word nor deed have I spared aught whereby thy honour should be made greater than before. I have also abandoned all my possessions, kinsmen, and friends that I had in Norway, and followed thee when all other barons deserted thee; and herein do I what is meet, for thou hast often done great good to me.'

Then spoke Gunnhilda: 'Cease, Arinbjorn, nor prate so at length of this. Thou hast done much good to king Eric, and this he hath fully rewarded. Thou owest far more duty to king Eric than to Egil. It is not for thee to ask that Egil go unpunished hence from king Eric's presence, seeing what crimes he hath wrought.'

Then said Arinbjorn: 'If thou, O king, and thou Gunnhilda, if ye two have resolved that Egil shall here get no terms, then is this the manly course, to give him respite and leave to go for a week, that he may look out for himself; of his own free will any way he came hither to seek you, and therefore hoped for peace. Thereafter, this done, let your dealings together end as they may.'

Gunnhilda said, 'Well can I see by this, Arinbjorn, that thou art more faithful to Egil than to king Eric. If Egil is to ride hence for a week, then will he in this time be come to king Athelstan. But king Eric cannot now hide this from himself, that every king is now stronger than is he, whereas a little while ago it had been deemed incredible that king Eric would not have the will and energy to avenge his wrongs on such a one as Egil.'

Said Arinbjorn: 'No one will call Eric a greater man for slaying a yeoman's son, a foreigner, who has freely come into his power. But if the king wishes to achieve greatness hereby, then will I help him in this, so that these tidings shall be thought more worthy of record; for I and Egil will now back each other, so that we must both be met at once. Thou wilt then, O king, dearly buy the life of Egil, when we be all laid dead on the field, I and my followers. Far other treatment should I have expected of thee, than that thou wouldst prefer seeing me laid dead on the earth to granting me the boon I crave of one man's life.'

Then answered the king: 'A wondrous eager champion art thou, Arinbjorn, in this thy helping of Egil. Loth were I to do thee scathe, if it comes to this; if thou wilt rather give away thine own life than that he be slain. But sufficient are the charges against Egil, whatever I cause to be done with him.'

And when the king had said this, then Egil advanced before him and began the poem, and recited in a loud voice, and at once won silence.

      HEAD-RANSOM

      1.

      'Westward I sailed the wave,
      Within me Odin gave
      The sea of song I bear
      (So 'tis my wont to fare):
      I launched my floating oak
      When loosening ice-floes broke,
      My mind a galleon fraught
      With load of minstrel thought.

      2.

      'A prince doth hold me guest,
      Praise be his due confess'd:
      Of Odin's mead let draught
      In England now be quaff'd.
      Laud bear I to the king,
      Loudly his honour sing;
      Silence I crave around,
      My song of praise is found.

      3.

      'Sire, mark the tale I tell,
      Such heed beseems thee well;
      Better I chaunt my strain,
      If stillness hush'd I gain.
      The monarch's wars in word
      Widely have peoples heard,
      But Odin saw alone
      Bodies before him strown.

      4.

      'Swell'd of swords the sound
      Smiting bucklers round,
      Fiercely waxed the fray,
      Forward the king made way.
      Struck the ear (while blood
      Streamed from glaives in flood)
      Iron hailstorm's song,
      Heavy, loud and long.

      5.

      'Lances, a woven fence,
      Well-ordered bristle dense;
      On royal ships in line
      Exulting spearmen shine.
      Soon dark with bloody stain
      Seethed there an angry main,
      With war-fleet's thundering sound,
      With wounds and din around.

      6.

      'Of men many a rank
      Mid showering darts sank:
      Glory and fame
      Gat Eric's name.

      7.

      'More may yet be told,
      An men silence hold:
      Further feats and glory,
      Fame hath noised in story.
      Warriors' wounds were rife,
      Where the chief waged strife;
      Shivered swords with stroke
      On blue shield-rims broke.

      8.

      'Breast-plates ringing crashed,
      Burning helm-fire flashed,
      Biting point of glaive
      Bloody wound did grave.
      Odin's oaks (they say)
      In that iron-play
      Baldric's crystal blade
      Bowed and prostrate laid.

      9.

      'Spears crossing dashed,
      Sword-edges clashed:
      Glory and fame
      Gat Eric's name.

      10.

      'Red blade the king did wield,
      Ravens flocked o'er the field.
      Dripping spears flew madly,
      Darts with aim full deadly.
      Scotland's scourge let feed
      Wolf, the Ogress' steed:
      For erne of downtrod dead
      Dainty meal was spread.

      11.

      'Soared battle-cranes
      O'er corse-strown lanes,
      Found flesh-fowl's bill
      Of blood its fill.
      While deep the wound
      He delves, around
      Grim raven's beak
      Blood-fountains break.

      12.

      'Axe furnished feast
      For Ogress' beast:
      Eric on the wave
      To wolves flesh-banquet gave.

      13.

      'Javelins flying sped,
      Peace affrighted fled;
      Bows were bent amain,
      Wolves were battle-fain:
      Spears in shivers split,
      Sword-teeth keenly bit;
      Archers' strings loud sang,
      Arrows forward sprang.

      14.

      'He back his buckler flings
      From arm beset with rings,
      Sword-play-stirrer good,
      Spiller of foemen's blood.
      Waxing everywhere
      (Witness true I bear),
      East o'er billows came
      Eric's sounding name.

      15.

      'Bent the king his yew,
      Bees wound-bearing flew:
      Eric on the wave
      To wolves flesh-banquet gave.

      16.

      'Yet to make more plain
      I to men were fain
      High-soul'd mood of king,
      But must swiftly sing.
      Weapons when he takes,
      The battle-goddess wakes,
      On ships' shielded side
      Streams the battle-tide.

      17.

      'Gems from wrist he gives,
      Glittering armlets rives:
      Lavish ring-despiser
      Loves not hoarding miser.
      Frodi's flour of gold
      Gladdens rovers bold;
      Prince bestoweth scorning
      Pebbles hand-adorning.

      18.

      'Foemen might not stand
      For his deathful brand;
      Yew-bow loudly sang,
      Sword-blades meeting rang.
      Lances aye were cast,
      Still he the land held fast,
      Proud Eric prince renowned;
      And praise his feats hath crowned.

      19.

      'Monarch, at thy will
      Judge my minstrel skill:
      Silence thus to find
      Sweetly cheered my mind.
      Moved my mouth with word
      From my heart's ground stirred,
      Draught of Odin's wave
      Due to warrior brave.

      20.

      'Silence I have broken,
      A sovereign's glory spoken:
      Words I knew well-fitting
      Warrior-council sitting.
      Praise from heart I bring,
      Praise to honoured king:
      Plain I sang and clear
      Song that all could hear.'

 



60. kafli - Egill flutti Hfulausn.

Eirkr konungr gekk til bora at vana snum, ok var fjlmenni mikit me honum. Ok er Arinbjm var ess varr, gekk hann me alla sveit sna alvpnaa konungsgar, er konungr sat yfir borum. Arinbjrn krafi sr inngngu hllina. Honum var at ok heimult gert. Ganga eir Egill inn me helming sveitarinnar. Annarr helmingr st ti fyrir durum.

Arinbjrn kvaddi konung, en konungr fagnai honum vel. Arinbjrn mlti: "N er hr kominn Egill. Hefir hann ekki leitat til brotthlaups ntt. N viljum vr vita, herra, hverr hans hluti skal vera. Vnti ek gs af yr. Hefi ek at gert, sem vert var, at ek hefi engan hlut til ess sparat at gera ok mla sv, at yvarr vegr vri meiri en r. Hefi ek ok ltit allar mnar eigur ok frndr ok vini, er ek tta Nregi, ok fylgt yr, en allir lendir menn yrir skilust vi yr, ok er at makligt, v at hefir marga hluti til mn strvel gert."

mlti Gunnhildr: "Httu, Arinbjrn, ok tala ekki sv langt um etta. Margt hefir vel gert vi Eirk konung, ok hefir hann at fullu launat. Er r miklu meiri vandi vi Eirk konung en Egil. Er r ess ekki bijanda, at Egill fari refsingalaust hean af fundi Eirks konungs, slkt sem hann hefir til saka gert."

segir Arinbjrn: "Ef , konungr, ok it Gunnhildr hafi at einrit, at Egill skal hr enga stt f, er at drengskapr at gefa honum frest ok fararleyfi um viku sakar, at hann fori sr, hefir hann at sjlfvilja snum farit hingat fund yvarn ok vnti sr af v friar. Fara enn skipti yur sem vera m aan fr."

Gunnhildr mlti: "Sj kann ek essu, Arinbjrn, at ert hollari Agli en Eirki konungi. Ef Egill skal ra hean viku brott frii, mun hann kominn til Aalsteins konungs essi stundu. En Eirkr konungr arf n ekki at dyljast v, at honum vera n allir konungar ofreflismenn, en fyrir skmmu myndi at ykkja ekki lkligt, at Eirkr konungr myndi eigi hafa til ess vilja ok afer at hefna harma sinna hverjum manni slkum sem Egill er."

Arinbjrn segir: "Engi mar mun Eirk kalla at meira mann, at hann drepi einn bndason tlendan, ann er gengit hefir vald hans. En ef hann vill miklast af essu, skal ek at veita honum, at essi tendi skulu heldr ykkja frsagnarver, v at vit Egill munum n veitast at, sv at jafnsnemma skal okkr mta bum. Muntu, konungr, drt kaupa lf Egils, um at er vr erum allir at velli lagir, ek ok sveitungar mnir. Myndi mik annars vara af yr en myndir mik vilja leggja heldr at jru en lta mik iggja lf eins manns, er ek bi."

segir konungr: "Allmikit kapp leggr etta Arinbjrn, at veita Agli li. Traur mun ek til vera at gera r skaa, ef v er at skipta, ef vill heldr leggja fram lf itt en hann s drepinn. En rnar eru sakar til vi Egil, hvat sem ek lt gera vi hann."

Ok er konungr hafi etta mlt, gekk Egill fyrir hann ok hf upp kvit ok kva htt ok fekk egar hlj:

      1.

      Vestr frk of ver,
      en ek Viris ber
      munstrandar mar.
      Sv's mitt of far.
      Drk eik flot
      vi sa brot.
      Hlk mrar hlut
      mns knarrar skut.

      2.

      Buumk hilmir l.
      ar k hrrar kv.
      Berk ins mj
      Engla bj.
      Lofat vsa vann.
      Vst mrik ann.
      Hljs bijum hann,
      v at hrr of fann.

      3.

      Hygg, vsi, at,
      vel smir at,
      hv ek ylja fet,
      ef ek gn of get.
      Flestr mar of fr,
      hvat fylkir v,
      en Virir s,
      hvar valr of l.

      4.

      x hjrva glm
      vi hlfar rm.
      Gur x of gram.
      Gramr stti fram.
      ar heyrisk ,
      aut mkis ,
      malmhrar sp.
      S vas mest of l.

      5.

      Vasat villr staar
      vefr darraar
      of grams glaar
      geirvangs raar.
      ars bli
      enn briml-mi
      vllr of rumi,
      und vum glumi.

      6.

      Hn folk fit
      vi fleina hnit.
      Orstr of gat
      Eirkr at at.

      7.

      Fremr munk segja,
      ef firar egja.
      Frgum fleira
      til frama eira.
      xu undir
      vi jfurs fundi.
      Brustu brandar
      vi blar randar.

      8.

      Hlam heinsul
      vi hjaldrrul.
      Beit bengrefill,
      at vas blrefill.
      Frk, at felli
      fyr fetilsvelli
      ins eiki
      arnleiki.

      9.

      ar vas eggja at
      ok odda gnat.
      Orstr of gat
      Eirkr at at.

      10.

      Rau hilmir hjr.
      ar vas hrafna gjr.
      Fleinn hitti fjr.
      Flugu dreyrug spjr.
      l flags gota
      frbjr Skota.
      Tra nift Nara
      nttver ara.

      11.

      Flugu hjaldrs tranar
      hrs lanar.
      rut bls vanar
      benms granar.
      Sleit und freki,
      en oddbreki
      gni hrafni
      hfustafni.

      12.

      Kom grar l
      at Gjalpar sk.
      Bau ulfum hr
      Eirkr of s.

      13.

      Ltr snt saka
      sver-Frey vaka,
      en skers Haka
      skgar braka.
      Brustu broddar,
      en bitu oddar.
      Bru hrvar
      af bogum rvar.

      14.

      Beit fleinn floginn.
      vas frir loginn.
      Vas almr dreginn.
      Var ulfr feginn.
      Stzk folkhagi
      vi fjrlagi.
      Gall bogi
      at eggtogi.

      15.

      Jfurr sveigi ,
      flugu unda b.
      Bau ulfum hr
      Eirkr of s.

      16.

      Enn munk vilja
      fyr verum skilja
      skapleik skata.
      Skal mr hvata.
      Verpr brndum,
      en jfurr lndum
      heldr hornklofi.
      Hann's nstr lofi.

      17.

      Brtr bgvita
      bjr hrammvita.
      Muna hodd-dofa
      hringbrjtr lofa.
      Mjk's hnum fl
      haukstrandar ml.
      Glaar flotna fjl
      vi Fra mjl.

      18.

      Verpr broddfleti
      af baugseti
      hjrleiks hvati.
      Hann es baugskati.
      rask hr sem hvar,
      hugat mlik ar,
      frtt's austr of mar,
      Eirks of far.

      19.

      Jfurr hyggi at,
      hv ek yrkja fat.
      Gtt ykkjumk at,
      es ek gn of gat.
      Hrrak munni
      af munar grunni
      ins gi
      of jru fgi.

      20.

      Bark engils lof
      agnar rof.
      Kannk mla mjt
      of manna sjt.
      r hltra ham
      hrr bark fyr gram.
      Sv fr at fram,
      at flestr of nam.



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