Chapter 10 - The ending of Sinfjatli, Sigmund's Son.
Now the Volsungs fare back home, and have gained great renown by these deeds. But Sinfjotli betook himself to warfare anew; and therewith he had sight of
an exceeding fair woman, and yearned above all things for her, but that same woman was wooed also of the brother of Borghild, the king's wife: and this matter
they fought out betwixt them, and Sinfjotli slew that king; and thereafter he harried far and wide, and had many a battle and even gained the day; and he
became hereby honoured and renowned above all men; but in autumn tide he came home with many ships and abundant wealth.
Then he told his tidings to the king his father, and he again to the queen, and she for her part bids him get him gone from the realm, and made as if she
would in nowise see him. But Sigmund said he would not drive him away, and offered her atonement of gold and great wealth for her brother's life, albeit
he said he had never erst given weregild1 to any for the slaying of a man, but no fame it was to uphold wrong against a woman.
So seeing she might not get her own way herein, she said, "Have thy will in this matter, O my lord, for it is seemly so to be."
And now she holds the funeral feast for her brother by the aid and counsel of the king, and makes ready all things thereœor in the best of wise, and bade
thither many great men.
At that feast, Borghild the queen bare the drink to folk, and she came over against Sinfjofli with a great horn, and said--
"Fall to now and drink, fair stepson!"
Then he took the horn to him, and looked therein, and said--
"Nay, for the drink is charmed drink"
Then said Sigmund, "Give it unto me then;" and therewith he took the horn and drank it off.
But the queen said to Sinfjotli, "Why must other men needs drink thine ale for thee?" And she came again the second time with the horn, and said, "Come now
and drink!" and goaded him with many words.
And he took the horn, and said--
"Guile is in the drink."
And thereon, Sigmund cried out--
"Give it then unto me!"
Again, the third time, she came to him, and bade him drink off his drink, if he had the heart of a Volsung; then he laid hand on the horn, but said--
"Venom is therein."
"Nay, let the lip strain it out then, O son," quoth Sigmund; and by then was he exceeding drunk with drink, and therefore spake he in that wise.
So Sinfjotli drank, and straightway fell down dead to the ground.
Sigmund rose up, and sorrowed nigh to death over him; then he took the corpse in his arms and fared away to the wood, and went till he came to a certain
firth; and then he saw a man in a little boat; and that man asked if he would be wafted by him over the firth, and he said yes thereto; but so little was
the boat, that they might not all go in it at once, so the corpse was first laid therein, while Sigmund went by the firth-side. But therewith the boat and
the man therein vanished away from before Sigmund's eyes.2
So thereafter Sigmund turned back home, and drave away the queen, and a little after she died. But Sigmund the king yet ruled his realm, and is deemed ever
the greatest champion and king of the old law.
[1.Weregild, fine for man-slaying ("wer", man, and "gild", a payment).
2. The man in the boat is Odin, doubtless.]
Völsungar fara nú heim ok hafa enn mikit aukit sitt agæti. Sinfjötli leggst nú í hernað af nýju. Hann sér eina fagra konu ok girnist mjök at fá
hennar. Þeirar konu bað ok bróðir Borghildar, er átti Sigmundr konungr. Þeir þreyta þetta mál með orrostu, ok fellir Sinfjötli þenna konung. Hann herjar nú víða
ok á margar orrostur ok hefir ávallt sigr. Gerist hann manna frægstr ok ágætastr ok kemur heim um haustit með mörgum skipum ok miklu fé.
Hann segir feðr sínum tíðendin, en hann segir drottningu. Hún biðr Sinfjötla fara brott ór ríkinu ok læzt eigi vilja sjá hann. Sigmundr kveðst eigi láta hann í
brott fara ok býðr at bæta henni með gulli ok miklu fé, þótt hann hefði engan fyrri bætt mann, kvað engi frama at sakast við konur. Hún má nú þessu eigi á leið
Hún mælti: "Þér skuluð ráða, herra, þat samir."
Hún gerir nú erfi bróður síns með ráði konungs, býr nú þessa veizlu með inum beztum föngum ok bauð þangat mörgu stórmenni. Borghildr bar mönnum
drykk. Hún kemr fyrir Sinfjötla með miklu horni.
Hún mælti: "Drekk nú, stjúpsonr."
Hann tók við ok sá í hornit ok mælti: "Göróttr er drykkrinn."
Sigmundr mælti: "Fá mér þá."
Hann drakk af. Drottningin mælti: "Hví skulu aðrir menn drekka fyrir þik öl?"
Hún kom í annat sinn með hornit: "Drekk nú," ok frýði honum með mörgum orðum.
Hann tekr við horninu ok mælti: "Flærðr er drykkrinn."
Sigmundr mælti: "Fá mér þá."
It þriðja sinn kom hún ok bað hann drekka af, ef hann hefði hug Völsunga. Sinfjötli tók við horninu ok mælti:
"Eitr er í drykknum."
Sigmundr svarar: "Lát grön sía, sonr," sagði hann.
Þá var konungr drukkinn mjök, ok því sagði hann svá. Sinfjötli drekkr ok fellr þegar niðr. Sigmundr ríss upp ok gekk harmr sinn nær bana ok tók líkit í fang sér
ok ferr til skógar ok kom loks at einum firði. Þar sá hann mann á einum báti litlum. Sá maðr spyrr, ef hann vildi þiggja at honum far yfir fjörðinn. Hann játtar
því. Skipit var svá lítit, at þat bar þá eigi, ok var líkit fyrst flutt, en Sigmundr gekk með firðinum. Ok því næst hvarf Sigmundi skipit ok svá maðrinn.
Ok eptir þat snýr Sigmundr heim, rekr nú í brott drottningina, ok litlu síðar dó hún. Sigmundr konungr ræðr nú enn ríki sínu ok þykkir verit hafa inn mesti kappi ok
konungr í fornum sið.