Hlýði seggir, en ek segja mun
vígs völdundum frá vinum mínum.
Seint er at dylja; sé ek eigi mátti
skógs skæstafr við sköpum gera.
‘Listen men, and I will tell causers of slaughter [WARRIORS] about my friends. It is [too] late to deny; I see the advancing stave of the bow [WARRIOR = I] could not prevent fate. ’
Var mér fóstr gefit at föður ráði
— brátt vöndumk því — á Berurjóðri.
Var mér ekki vant til sælu,
þess er Ingjaldr átti kosti.
‘Fosterage was provided for me according to my father’s advice at Berurjóðr; we [I] quickly came to like it. I had no lack of enjoyment of that which Ingjaldr had at his disposal. ’
Óxum báðir á Berurjóðri,
Ásmundr ok ek, upp í bernsku.
Skófum skeyti, skip smíðuðum,
gerðum örvar okkr at gamni.
‘We both grew up in [our] childhood at Berurjóðr, Ásmundr and I. We shaved shafts, built ships, made arrows to amuse ourselves. ’
Sagði mér völva sannar rúnir,
en ek vætki því vildak hlýða.
Gat ek fyr ungum Ingjalds syni,
at ek föðurtúna fýstumk vitja.
‘The prophetess told me true secrets, but I wanted to heed nothing of it. I mentioned to the young son of Ingjaldr [= Ásmundr] that I was keen to visit my father’s homestead. ’
Búinn léz Ásmundr opt meðan lifði,
málmþings vanr, mér at fylgja.
Sagða ek karli, at ek koma mundak
aptr aldrigi; nú em ek orðrofi.
‘Ásmundr, accustomed to the weapon-meeting [BATTLE], often said he was prepared to follow me as long as he lived. I told the old man that I would never come back; now I have broken my word. ’
Létum beiti á brim þrauka;
stóð hörr dreginn höndum fjarri.
Kómum at eyju útan brattri,
þar er Grímr fyrir garða átti.
‘We allowed the ship to roll on the sea; the sail rope was pulled tight far from our hands. We arrived at the steep island, where Grímr owned properties. ’
Sá ek blíðliga, er til bæjar kom,
bekksagnir mér báðar fagna.
Víst mátta ek með vinum mínum
gulli skipta ok gamanmálum.
‘I saw, when I came to the farmstead, both bench-troops welcome me in friendly fashion. I was certainly able to share out gold and entertaining words with my friends. ’
Varð ek at vári víss, at gørðuz
brynþings boðar Bjarma at sækja.
Síðan kvaddak Sigurð ok Guðmund;
vilda ek með fræknum til farar ráðaz.
‘I became aware in the spring that the offerers of the mailcoat-assembly [BATTLE > WARRIORS] were making ready to visit the Permians. Then I called on Sigurðr and Guðmundr; I wanted to be included in the expedition with the brave ones. ’
Váru hoskir á herskipum
frændr mínir tveir at forráði.
Vildu hásetar hoskir eignaz
tak, þat er áttu Tyrfifinnar.
‘My two kinsmen were wise in their captaincy on the warships. The wise oarsmen wanted to get their hands on the possessions that the Ter-Saami owned. ’
Vér kaupskipi kómum heilu
at, þar er Bjarmar byggðir áttu.
Eyddum eldi ættir þeira;
unnum löskvan láðmann tekinn.
‘We brought our trading ship unharmed to where the Permians had their settlements. We destroyed their families with fire; we managed to capture a lazy guide. ’
Hann léz seggjum segja kunna,
hvar til hodda var hægt at ráða.
Hann bað oss ganga götu lengra,
ef vér fé vildim fleira eiga.
‘He said he was able to tell the men where it was easy to acquire treasures. He advised us to travel by a longer way if we wanted to have more wealth. ’
Réðu Bjarmar brátt at verja
haug hermönnum ok hamalt fylkja.
Létum þegna, áðr þaðan færim,
ófa marga öndu týna.
‘The Permians soon defended the mound with warriors and drew [them] up in a wedge-shaped phalanx. We caused exceedingly many men to lose their lives before we went from there. ’
Réðum skunda til skipa ofan,
þá er flótti var á fen rekinn.
Mistum bæði báts ok knarrar,
auðs ok ýta, er ofan kómum.
‘We hurried down to the ships, when the fleeing troop was driven into the fen. We missed both boat and trading ship, wealth and men, when we came down. ’
Skjótt nam kynda í skóg þykkum
eld brennanda uppi á landi.
Svá við lopti létum leika
hávan ok rauðan hrottgarm viðar.
‘Quickly I kindled burning fire in a thick wood up in the countryside. So we [I] caused the towering and red howling hound of wood [FIRE] to play against the sky. ’
Sáum skjótliga skunda at landi
skeiðr vegligar ok skrautmenni.
Fegnir urðu, þeir er fyrir váru;
frændr mínir þá finnaz gerðum.
‘We saw magnificent warships and finely equipped men speeding quickly towards land. They who were there first became glad; my kinsmen [and I] then met together. ’
Létum skeika at sköpuðu
drengmenn snarir í drifaveðri.
Sýndiz seggjum — sandr var á þiljum —
lands ván liðin; lá ek eigi þar.
‘[We] bold heroes let things go according to the will of fate in the storm of sea-spray. The hope of land seemed over to the men; sand was on the decks; I did not lie there. ’
Kómum at eyju útan brattri
sumar síðla; þá var segl rifat.
Gerðu fyrðar flestir allir
skipum til hlunns skjótt at ráða.
‘We arrived late in the summer at the steep island; then the sail was reefed. Almost all the men quickly set about pulling up the ships onto rollers. ’
Slógum tjöldum, en sumir fóru
björnu at veiða, þeir er boga kunnu.
Réðum í eyju upp at kynda
bál brenniligt; stóð björn fyrir.
‘We pitched tents, and some went to hunt bears, those who could handle bows. We lit a blazing bonfire up on the island; a bear stood in front of it. ’
Kóðuz fjallbúar flytja mundu
oss ór eyju, nema út* færim.
Þótti ei rekkum rómr at heyra
hagligr, sá er var hraunskjöldunga.
‘The mountain dwellers [GIANTS] said they would move us off the island, unless we went away. The voice that belonged to the rock-princes [GIANTS] did not seem to the men pleasant to hear. ’
Uggðum ekki, sízt eyjar til
vápns vígligir viðir kómu.
Hlóðu bragnar fyr bjarg framan
vegg sterkligan; var ek enn at því.
‘We were not afraid after warlike trees of the weapon [WARRIORS] came to the island. [Our] men piled up a strong wall in front of the cliff; I also took part. ’
Réð ek at ganga með Gusisnauta
beggja á milli bjargs ok eisu.
Laust ek í auga einu flagði,
en í brjóst framan bjarga Freyju.
‘I went with Gusir’s gifts <arrows> between both the cliff and the embers. I hit an ogress in the eye, and the Freyja <goddess> of cliffs [GIANTESS] in the breast from the front. ’
Þá fekk ek heiti, þat er ek hafa vilda,
er mik ór fjöllum flögð kölluðu.
Kóðuz Oddi örvar vilja
byr bráðliga í braut gefa.
‘Then I got the name that I wanted to have, when the ogres called me from the mountains. They said they wanted to give Örvar-Oddr (‘Arrow-Oddr’) a favourable wind [to get] away quickly. ’
Búnir létumz á burt þaðan
brátt ór eyju, þegar byr fengi.
Heilir kómum heim ór þeiri;
gerðu fagna frændr hollvinum.
‘We were ready to go away from there quickly from the island as soon as a favourable wind appeared. We came home unharmed from that [journey]; kinsmen made their loyal friends welcome. ’
Várum allir vetr þann saman,
gulli gladdir ok gamanmálum.
Drógu fyrðar, þegar frerum létti,
skrautligar heldr skeiðr at vatni.
‘We were all together that winter, gladdened with gold and entertaining words. Men dragged rather splendid warships down to the water, as soon as the frosts let up. ’
Sigldum síðan suðr með landi
tállaust skipum tveimr ok einu.
Væntu fengjar, þeir er fyrir vissu,
ef vér Elfarsker öll kannaðim.
‘We sailed then south along the coast without deceit with three ships. They who knew beforehand hoped for booty, if we explored all the Götaälv skerries. ’
Fundum um síðir fyrir í sundi
þegna nýta, Þórð ok Hjálmar.
Fréttu fyrðar, þeir er fyrir váru,
hvárt frið vildim eða á för halda.
‘At length we found able men, Þórðr and Hjálmarr, before [us] in the sound. The men, who were there beforehand, asked whether we wanted peace or to continue our journey. ’
Báru rekkar ráð sín saman;
þótti ei fyrðum féván mikil.
Kuru Háleygir kost inn vildra;
réðum leggja lag várt saman.
‘The warriors consulted together; there did not seem to the men to be great expectation of money. The Háleygir [we] chose the better alternative; we decided to enter into fellowship together. ’
Heldum allir ór höfn skipum,
þegar fullhugar fengjar væntum.
Hræddumz ekki, meðan höfðingjar
heilir réðu fyr herskipum.
‘We all steered the ships out of the harbour, as soon as we, courageous ones, expected booty. I was not afraid as long as upright chieftains controlled the warships. ’
Várum reiðir, þá er randberendr
hoska hittum fyr Hólmsnesi.
Réðum eignaz allar gerðar
snyrtidrengja af sex skipum.
‘We were angry when we encountered wise shield-bearers [WARRIORS] before Hólmsnes. We got hold of all the armour of the fine fellows from six ships. ’
Várum allir vestr með Skolla;
þar at landi sat lýða dróttinn.
Báru bragnar blóðgar undir,
sverðum skornar, en vér sigr höfðum.
‘We were all in the west with Skolli; there the lord of men [RULER = Játmundr] ruled over the land. Warriors bore bloody wounds, cut with swords, but we had the victory. ’
Höfðu jarls liðar útnes hroðit,
rógþings vanir sem refar hundum.
Unnum vit Hjálmarr, er hinig fórum,
eldi ok usla eytt langskipum.
‘The jarl’s troops accustomed to the strife-assembly [BATTLE] like foxes to dogs, had cleared the outlying headland. Hjálmarr and I destroyed the longships with fire and embers when we got there. ’
Frétti Guðmundr, ef ek fara vilda
heim at hausti ok honum fylgja.
Sagða ek svinnum, at ek sjá vilda
norðr aldrigi niðja mína.
‘Guðmundr asked whether I wanted to go home in the autumn and follow him. I told the wise one that I never again wanted to see my kinsmen in the north. ’
Mæltum allir mót at sumri
austr í Elfi til útfarar.
Vildi Hjálmarr inn hugumstóri
sveit mína suðr með sér hafa.
‘We all agreed on a meeting the following summer east in the Götaälv for a viking expedition. Hjálmarr inn hugumstóri (‘the Great-minded’) wanted to have my troop go south with him. ’
Fóru teitir tveggja vegna
brynþings boðar, þegar byrir fenguz.
Sigldum síðan Svíþjóðar til;
sóttum Yngva til Uppsala.
‘The cheerful offerers of the mailcoat-assembly [BATTLE > WARRIORS] went on their two ways, once they got favourable winds. Then we sailed to Sweden; we visited Yngvi in Uppsala. ’
Mér gaf Hjálmarr inn hugumstóri
fimm bólstaði á fold saman.
Unða ek auði, meðan aðrir mik
hringa kvöddu ok heils friðar.
‘Hjálmarr inn hugumstóri (‘the Great-minded’) gave me five homesteads together in the land. I enjoyed my prosperity, while others demanded rings and sound peace from me. ’
Funduz allir á feginsdægri,
svenskir seggir ok Sigurðr norðan.
Ræntu ýtar eyjarskeggja
auði öllum, en þeir elds biðu.
‘All met on a day of joy, Swedish men and Sigurðr from the north. Men robbed the island-beards of all their wealth, and they suffered fire. ’
Létum vestr þaðan vandar fáka
Írlands á vit öldur kanna.
Höfðu þeira, er þagat kómum,
drengir ok drósir drifit ór húsum.
‘We made the horses of the mast [SHIPS] explore the waves west from there on the way to Ireland. Their men and women had fled from the houses when we arrived there. ’
Rann ek at víðri vagns slóðgötu,
áðr ek strengvölum stríðum mættak.
Munda ek Ásmund auði mínum
aptr ódáinn öllum kaupa.
‘I ran along a wide waggon trackway, before I met with fierce bow-string sticks [ARROWS]. I would [rather] buy Ásmundr back to life with all my riches. ’
Sá ek um síðir, hvar saman fóru
karlar röskvir ok konur þeira.
Þá lét ek fjóra frændr Ölvarar,
eggleiks hvata, öndu týna.
‘I saw at last where brave men and their women were moving together. Then I caused four of Ǫlvǫr’s kinsmen, keen in the play of swords [BATTLE], to lose their lives. ’
Réð mik ór vagni víf at kveðja,
ok þær hoddum mér hétu góðum.
Bað mik snót koma sumar it næsta;
léz þá at launum leita mundu.
‘A woman greeted me from a waggon, and they promised me fine treasures. The lady bade me come the following summer; she said she would then look for rewards. ’
Vara, sem brynja eða bláir hringar
ísköld um mik áðan felli,
þá er of síður silkiskyrta,
gulli saumuð, gekk fastofin.
‘It was not like when a mail-coat or dark mailrings fell ice-cold around me previously, when the silken shirt, sewn with gold, went firmly woven about my sides. ’
Fórum vestan fengjar vitja,
svá at bragnar mér bleyði kendu,
unz á Skíðu skatnar fundu
bræðr bölharða ok at bana urðu.
‘We travelled from the west in search of booty, so that the warriors charged me with cowardice, until the men came upon evil-hardened brothers on Skien and killed them. ’
Sóti ok Hálfdan í Svíaskerjum
mörgum manni at morði varð.
Unnum þeira, áðr þaðan færim,
hundrað skipa hroðit með stöfnum.
‘Sóti and Hálfdan caused the death of many a man in the skerries of the Swedes. We succeeded in clearing a hundred of their ships from stem to stern, before we departed from there. ’
Fundum þegna, er þaðan fórum,
teita ok sleitna í Trönuvágum.
Var ei Ögmundi andrán tegat;
kómumz þrír þaðan, en þeir níu.
‘We encountered some happy, aggressive men in Trǫnuvágar, when we were going from there. Life-robbery [DEATH] had not shown itself ready for Ǫgmundr; three of us came away from there and they were nine. ’
Mátta ek banorði fyr brögnum hrósa
snotra seggja, er til sævar kom.
Höfðum vit Hjálmarr haldit illa,
þá er Glámi stóð í gegnum spjör.
‘I was able to boast about the death of wise men in the presence of warriors, when I came to the sea. Hjálmarr and I had taken it badly when a spear pierced Glámr. ’
Fórum heim þaðan hoskir drengir,
en haug Þórði hávan urpum.
Maðr engi þorði oss mót gera;
var oss vættegis vant ins góða.
‘We travelled home from there, wise fellows, and threw up a high burial mound for Þórðr. No man dared to act against us; there was no lack to us of what was good. ’
Váru vit Hjálmarr hvert dægr glaðir,
meðan herskipum heilir réðum,
unz í Sámseyju seggi fundum,
þá er benlogum bregða kunnu.
‘Hjálmarr and I were happy every day while, unscathed, we steered our warships, until we came upon men on Samsø who knew how to brandish wound-flames [SWORDS]. ’
Létum falla und fætr ara
tírarlausa tólf berserki.
Þá varð ek skiljaz á skapadægri
við þann inn mesta minn fulltrúa.
‘We caused twelve berserks to fall, lacking glory, beneath the eagle’s claws. Then I was obliged to part on that fated day from the one who was my greatest confidant. ’
Hafða ek eigi á aldri mínum
höfuð hraustara hvergi fundit.
Bar ek mér á herðum hjálmum grimman,
ok til Sigtúna síðan hafðak.
‘I had not in my life anywhere found a braver warrior. I carried the man fierce to helmets on my shoulders and afterwards brought him to Sigtuna. ’
Lét ek eigi þess langt at bíða,
at Sæundi at sjónum varð.
Unnu skatnar skip mín hroðin,
en sjálfr þaðan sunds kostaðak.
‘I did not let a long time pass before I was seen by Sæundr. Men cleared my ships, but I myself swam away from there. ’
Gekk ek um Gautland í grimmum hug
sex dægr í samt, áðr Sæund fyndak.
Lét ek hans liðmenn hjörvi mæta,
sex ok átta með sjálfum gram.
‘I travelled through Götaland in angry mood for six days together before I came upon Sæundr. I caused his company to meet the sword, six and eight together with the chief himself. ’
Sigldum síðan suðr langt í haf,
áðr ek grunnsævi grimmu mættak,
svá at einn saman en öllu firðr
gumna sinni gekk ek annan veg.
‘We sailed then a long way south in the ocean before I came upon treacherous shallows, so that I went another way alone and deprived of all company of men. ’
Þar kom ek útarst, er Akvitána
bragna kindir borgum réðu.
Þar lét ek fjóra fallna liggja
hrausta drengi; nú em ek hér kominn.
‘I came furthest out to where the kin of the men of the Aquitainians ruled the towns. There I caused four strong men to lie dead; now I have come here. ’
Þat var fyrri, at ek fat senda
orð inum nyrztum niðjum mínum.
Varð ek svá feginn fundi þeira
sem hungraðr haukr bráðum.
‘It happened previously that I sent word to my most northerly kinsmen. I was as joyful at meeting them as a famished hawk at [finding] raw flesh. ’
Brögnum þrimr buðu skatnar
margir síðan metorð þaðra,
en ek þeygi þat þiggja vilda;
urðu báðir þar bræðr eptir.
‘Many men then offered noble status there to the three heroes, but I did not want to accept that; both brothers remained behind there. ’
Réð ek skunda frá skatna liði,
unz hittak breiða borg Jórsala,
Þar réð ek allr í á fara,
ok kunna ek þá Kristi at þjóna.
‘I hurried away from the band of men until I reached wide Jerusalem. There I immersed myself completely in the river, and I was then able to serve Christ. ’
Veit ek, at fossum falla lét
Jórdán um mik fyr útan Grikki.
Helt þó sínum, sem hverr vissi,
ítrgör skyrta öllum kostum.
‘I know that the Jordan caused [water] to fall in torrents about me beyond the Greeks. Yet the splendidly made shirt retained all its special qualities, as everyone knows. ’
Mætta ek gammi gljúfrum næri;
flaug hann með mik fjarri löndum,
þar til er háva hamra fundum;
lét mik hvílaz í hreiðri sínu.
‘I met with a vulture near some gullies; he flew with me far from lands until we came upon high cliffs; he allowed me to rest in his nest. ’
Unz mik Hildir hafði á burtu,
rísi ramligr á róðraskútu.
Lét mik veitir Vimrar elda
tólf mánaði hjá sér hvílaz.
‘Until Hildir took me away, the strong giant in his rowing boat. The granter of the fires of Vimur <mythical river> [GOLD > GENEROUS MAN] allowed me to stay with him for twelve months. ’
Þýddumz ek hjá Hildi, hoska ok stóra,
raunsjáliga rísa dóttur,
ok við henni heldr sterkligan
ítran son eiga gerðak,
ok ólíkan öðrum þegnum.
‘I had a relationship with Hildr, the wise and large one, the stately daughter of the giant, and I had with her a very strong, glorious son, who was [lit. and] unlike other men. ’
Þann drap Ögmundr Eyþjófsbani
í Hellulands hraunsóbygðum.
Félaga hans níu fjörvi næmðak;
hefik ei víking verra fundit.
‘Ǫgmundr Eyþjófsbani (‘Eyþjófr’s killer’) slew him in the uninhabited rocky wilderness of Helluland. I took the lives of his nine companions; I have not found a worse murderer. ’
Fleiri hefir mína fóstbræðr drepit,
Garðar ok Sírni; gekk skegg af flagði.
Var hann engum líkr at yfirliti,
ok kallaðr síðan Kvillánus blesi.
‘He has killed more of my foster-brothers, Garðarr and Sírnir; the beard left the ogre. He was like no one in appearance, and was afterwards called Kvillánus blesi (‘Blaze’). ’
Þótta ek hæfr at hjörregni,
þá er vér börðumz á Brávelli.
Bað Hringr þá hamalt fylkja
Odd inn víðförla at orrostu.
‘I was thought to be fit for sword-rain [BATTLE], when we fought at Brávǫllr. Then Hringr ordered Oddr inn víðförli (‘the Widely-travelled’) to draw up a wedge-shaped column at the battle. ’
Unða ek eigi, áðr Ungara
lofðunga tvá líta knáttak.
Réð ek með öðrum arfs at kveðja;
veitta ek jöfri vilt ofsinni.
‘I was not happy until I saw the two princes of the Hungarians. I claimed the inheritance with one [of them]; I granted the prince desired support. ’
Kom ek um síðir, þar er snarir þóttuz
Sigurðr ok Sjólfr í sveit konungs.
Réð oss skatna lið skots at beiða
ok skjaldfimi við skata mengi.
‘I came at last to where Sigurðr and Sjólfr considered themselves smart in the king’s company. The troop of warriors advised us [me] to try shooting and agility with the shield against the crowd of men. ’
Skaut ek ei skemra en skilfingar;
var léttskafin lind í hendi.
Réðum síðan sunds at kosta;
lét ek báða þá blóði snýta.
‘I did not shoot shorter than the princes; a lightly shaved linden spear-shaft was in my hand. Then we contended in swimming; I gave both of them bloody noses. ’
Var mér skjaldmeyju skipat it næsta,
þá er orrostu eiga skyldum.
Veit ek, at ýtar í Antekju
andrán biðu, en vér auð fjár.
‘I was placed next to a shield maiden when we had to engage in battle. I know that men suffered life-robbery [DEATH] in Antioch, but we [got] great wealth. ’
Færðum seggi frá svikaráðum
ok trégoðum tynda ek þeira.
Barða ek Bjálka í borghliði
eikikylfu, áðr hann önd um lét.
‘We [I] turned men away from a deceitful state of life and I destroyed their wooden gods. I hit Bjálki with an oaken club in the fortress gateway before he gave up the ghost. ’
Var mér Hárekr hollr fulltrúi,
er hann festi mér fóstru sína.
Átta ek hoska hilmis dóttur;
réðum snót saman sigri ok löndum.
‘Hárekr was a faithful patron to me when he betrothed his foster-daughter to me. I married the wise daughter of the ruler; the lady and I ruled together over victory and lands. ’
Sat ek at sælu síðan minni
vilgi lengi, sem ek vita þóttumz.
Fjölð er at segja frá förum mínum
snotrum seggjum; sjá mun in efsta.
‘I remained afterwards in my good fortune for a very long time, as I seemed to know. There is a great deal to tell wise men about my journeys; this one will be the last. ’
Þér skuluð skunda til skips ofan
heilir allir hér mun ek dveljaz.
Berið Silkisif ok sonum okrum
kveðju góða; kem ek eigi þar.
‘You must all hurry safe down to the ship; I will stay here. Carry [my] good greeting to Silkisif and our sons; I will not come there. ’