KAPJn_F-vUiWi4kMGsTPhQ Hávarðar Saga Ísfirðings

Hávarðar Saga Ísfirðings

The Story of Howard the Halt an 1891 translation into English by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon

Section Reference 22


Of the Peace made at the Thing

Tell we now how men come to the Thing a very many: many chieftains there were and of great account; there were Guest Oddleifson, and Steinthor of Ere, and Dyri and Thorarin.

So they fell all together to talking of the case, and Steinthor was for Howard and his fellows, and he craved peace for them, and; Guest Oddleifson to be judge, whereas the matter was fully known to him; and because they were well ware afore of their privy dealings, they fell in to it gladly.

Then spake Guest: "Forasmuch as ye both will have an award of me, I shall not be slow to give it: and first we must turn back to what was said last summer about the slaying of Olaf Howard-son, for the which I award three man-fines; against this shall the slaying be set of Sturla and Thiodrek and Liot, who were slain quite sackless; but Thorbiorn Thiodrekson shall have fallen unatoned be* cause of his injustice, and those his unheard-of dealings with Howard, and many other ill-deeds : unatoned also shall be Vakr and Scart, his sister's sons; but the slaying of Brand the Strong shall be set against An's slaying, the fosterer of Hall-grim : one man-fine shall be paid for the serving-man of Liot of Moonberg, whom Howard and his folk slew.

"So is it concerning the slaying of Holmgang-Liot that I can award no atonement for him, for plain to see is the wrongfulness of his dealings with Thorbiorn, and all them over whom he might prevail; and according to right was it that two little lads should slay such a champion as was Liot. Thorbiorn also shall have freely all the meadow that they had in common. On the other hand, to ease the mind of Thorarin, these men shall fare abroad; to wit: Hallgrim Asbrand's son, Torfi and Eyjulf, sons of Valbrand, Thorir and Odd, sons of Thorbrand, Thorstein and Grim, sons of Thorbiorn : and whereas thou, Thorarin, art old exceedingly, they shall not come back before they hear that thou art passed away ; but Howard shall change his dwelling, and not abide in this quarter of the land, and Thorhall his kinsman in likewise.

"Now will I that ye hold the peace well and truly without guile on either side."

Then came Steinthor forth, and took peace for Howard and all those fellows on the terms aforesaid by Guest; and he paid also the hundred of silver due. And Thorarin and Dyri stood forth ill seeming manly wise, and were well content with the award.

But when the case was ended, thither to the Thing came those earless ones, and in the hearing of all told what was betid in their journey. To all seemed the tidings great, and yet that things had gone as meet was: men deemed that Thorgrim had thrust himself into enmity against them, and had gotten but his due.

But now spake Guest: "Most sooth it is to say that ye kinsmen are unlike to other men for evil heart and unmanliness: how came it into thine head, Thorarin, to make as if thou wouldst have peace, and yet fare so guilefully ? But whereas I have spoken somewhat afore, so that this thy case might have a peaceful end, even so will I let it abide according to my word and my judgment; though forsooth, ye Thorarm and Dyri, were well worthy to come off the worser for your fraud's sake; for which cause indeed I will nevermore be at your back in whatever case ye may have on hand. But thou, Steinthor, be well content, for henceforward I will help thee in thy cases, with whomsoever thou hast to do; for herein hast thou fared well and manly."

Steinthor said that Guest should have his will herein: "Meseemeth they have come to the worse, losing many of their men and their honour withal." Therewith came the Thing to an end, and Guest and Steinthor parted in all friendship, but Thorarin and Dyri are very ill-pleased. So when Steinthor came home he sent after the folk in Otterdale, and when they met either told each other how they had sped, and they deemed that things had gone well considering the plight of matters.

They thanked Steinthor well for his furtherance, and said withal that Atli his brother-in-law had done well by them, and had been doughty of deeds moreover, and they called him the valiantest of fellows. So the greatest friendship grew up between the brethren-in-law, and Atli was holden thenceforward for the doughtiest of men wheresoever he came.


27 December 2019 saga, Howard, norse, viking, translated, english Read Book