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Hrafnkels Saga freysgoða

The Story of Hrafnkell, Frey's Priest an 1882 translation into English by John Coles

Section Reference 6


In the evening Hrafnkell went to his bed as usual, and slept through the night. In the morning he had a horse brought home to him, and ordered it to be saddled, and rode up to the dairy. He rode in blue raiment: he had an axe in his hand, but no other weapons about him. At that time Einarr had just driven the ewes into the pen, and lay on the wall of the pen, casting up the number of the sheep; but the women were busy a-milking. They all greeted Hrafnkell, and he asked how they got on. Einarr answered: "I have had no good speed myself, for no less than thirty ewes were missing for a week, though now I have found them again." Hrafnkell said, he had no fault to find with tilings of that kind; "It has not happened so often as might have been expected, that thou hast lost the ewes. But has not something worse befallen than that? Didst thou not have a ride on 'Freymane' yesterday?" Einarr said he could not gainsay that utterly. "Why didst thou ride on this horse which was forbidden thee, while there were plenty of others on which thou art free to ride? Now this one trespass I should have forgiven thee, if I had not used words of such earnest already. And yet thou hast manfully confessed thy guilt." But by reason of the belief that those who fulfil their vows never come to grief, he leaped off his horse, sprang upon Einarr, and dealt him his death-blow. After that, having done the deed, he rode home to Aðalból and there told these tidings. He got him another shepherd to take charge of the dairy. But he had Einarr's dead body brought westward upon the terrace by the dairy, and there set up a beacon beside his cairn; and it is called Einarr's beacon, where, when the sun is right above it, they count mid-eve hour (six o'clock) at the dairy.


28 December 2019 saga, Hrafnkell, norse, viking, translated, english Read Book