Cite as: Hubert Seelow (ed.) 2017, ‘Hálfs saga ok Hálfsrekka 68 (Hrókr inn svarti, Hrókskviða 18)’ in Margaret Clunies Ross (ed.), Poetry in fornaldarsögur. Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages 8. Turnhout: Brepols, p. 357.
|Naut ekki svá aldrs, sem skyldi,
frækn landreki við frama dáðir.
|Tólf vetra nam tiggi at herja, |
en þá var þengill þrítugr, er dó.
Frækn landreki naut ekki aldrs svá, sem skyldi, við dáðir frama. Tiggi nam at herja tólf vetra, en þengill var þrítugr, þá er dó.
The valiant land-ruler did not enjoy as long a life as he should have done with deeds of fame. The prince started harrying at the age of twelve and the king was thirty when he died.
Mss: 2845(38v) (Hálf)
Editions: Skj: Anonyme digte og vers [XIII], E. 6. Vers af Fornaldarsagaer: Af Hálfssaga IX 18: AII, 267, BII, 290, Skald II, 152; Hálf 1864, 36-7, Hálf 1909, 127, FSGJ 2, 129, Hálf 1981, 194-5; Edd. Min. 47.
Notes: [5-8]: The information that Hálfr was twelve years old when he began his viking career is in the prose text (Hálf 1981, ch. 5, 177, ll. 1-3). From a statement in the same chapter (Hálf 1981, ch. 5, 178, l. 33) that he carried on harrying for eighteen years (cf. Hálf 36/1-4), it can be deduced that he was thirty years old when he died. The age of twelve seems to have been regarded as traditionally the age of majority for Viking-Age rulers, like Óláfr Haraldsson (cf. Foote and Wilson 1980, 116).