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 Olaf Haraldson the Saint's Saga is the longest, the most
 important, and the most finished of all the sagas in
 "Heimskringla".  The life of Olaf will be found treated more or
 less freely in "Agrip", in "Historia Norvegiae", in "Thjodrek the
 Monk", in the legendary saga, and in "Fagrskinna".  Other old
 Norse literature relating to this epoch:
 Are's "Islendingabok", "Landnama", "Kristni Saga", "Biskupa-
 sogur", "Njala", "Gunlaugs Saga", "Ormstungu", "Bjarnar Saga
 Hitdaelakappa", "Hallfredar Thattr Vandraedaskalde", "Eyrbyggia",
 "Viga Styrs Saga", "Laxdaela", "Fostbraedra", "Gretla",
 "Liosvetninga", "Faereyinga", "Orkneyinga".
 Olaf Haraldson was born 995, went as a viking at the age of
 twelve, 1007; visited England, one summer and three winters,
 1009-1012; in France two summers and one winter, 1012-1013;
 spent the winter in Normandy, 1014; returned to Norway and was
 recognized as King, April 3, 1015; fled from Norway the winter
 of 1028-1029; fell at Stiklestad, July 29 (or August 31), 1030.
 Skalds quoted in this saga are: -- Ottar Svarte, Sigvat Skald,
 Thord Kolbeinson, Berse Torfason, Brynjolf, Arnor Jarlaskald,
 Thord Siarekson, Harek, Thorarin Loftunga, Halvard Hareksblese,
 Bjarne Gulbraskald, Jokul Bardson, Thormod Kolbrunarskald,
 Gissur, Thorfin Mun, Hofgardaref.
 (1)  King Olaf the Saint reigned from about the year 1015 to
      1030.  The death of King Olaf Trygvason was in the year
      1000: and Earl Eirik held the government for the Danish and
      Swedish kings about fifteen years. -- L.
 Olaf, Harald Grenske's son, was brought up by his stepfather
 Sigurd Syr and his mother Asta.  Hrane the Far-travelled lived in
 the house of Asta, and fostered this Olaf Haraldson.  Olaf came
 early to manhood, was handsome in countenance, middle-sized in
 growth, and was even when very young of good understanding and
 ready speech.  Sigurd his stepfather was a careful householder,
 who kept his people closely to their work, and often went about
 himself to inspect his corn-rigs and meadowland, the cattle, and
 also the smith-work, or whatsoever his people had on hand to do.
 It happened one day that King Sigurd wanted to ride from home,
 but there was nobody about the house; so he told his stepson Olaf
 to saddle his horse.  Olaf went to the goats' pen, took out the
 he-goat that was the largest, led him forth, and put the king's
 saddle on him, and then went in and told King Sigurd he had
 saddled his riding horse.  Now when King Sigurd came out and saw
 what Olaf had done, he said "It is easy to see that thou wilt
 little regard my orders; and thy mother will think it right that
 I order thee to do nothing that is against thy own inclination. 
 I see well enough that we are of different dispositions, and that
 thou art far more proud than I am."  Olaf answered little, but
 went his way laughing.
 When Olaf Haraldson grew up he was not tall, but middle-sized in
 height, although very thick, and of good strength.  He had light
 brown hair, and a broad face, which was white and red.  He had
 particularly fine eyes, which were beautiful and piercing, so
 that one was afraid to look him in the face when he was angry.
 Olaf was very expert in all bodily exercises, understood well to
 handle his bow, and was distinguished particularly in throwing
 his spear by hand: he was a great swimmer, and very handy, and
 very exact and knowing in all kinds of smithwork, whether he
 himself or others made the thing.  He was distinct and acute in
 conversation, and was soon perfect in understanding and strength.
 He was beloved by his friends and acquaintances, eager in his
 amusements, and one who always liked to be the first, as it was
 suitable he should be from his birth and dignity.  He was called
 Olaf the Great.
 Olaf Haraldson was twelve years old when he, for the first time,
 went on board a ship of war (A.D. 1007).  His mother Asta got
 Hrane, who was called the foster-father of kings, to command a
 ship of war and take Olaf under his charge; for Hrane had often
 been on war expeditions.  When Olaf in this way got a ship and
 men, the crew gave him the title of king; for it was the custom
 that those commanders of troops who were of kingly descent, on
 going out upon a viking cruise, received the title of king
 immediately although they had no land or kingdom.  Hrane sat at
 the helm; and some say that Olaf himself was but a common rower,
 although he was king of the men-at-arms.  They steered east along
 the land, and came first to Denmark.  So says Ottar Svarte, in
 his lay which he made about King Olaf: --
      "Young was the king when from his home
      He first began in ships to roam,
      His ocean-steed to ride
      To Denmark o'er the tide.
      Well exercised art thou in truth --
      In manhood's earnest work, brave youth!
      Out from the distant north
      Mighty hast thou come forth."
 Towards autumn he sailed eastward to the Swedish dominions, and
 there harried and burnt all the country round; for he thought he
 had good cause of hostility against the Swedes, as they killed
 his father Harald.  Ottar Svarte says distinctly that he came
 from the east, out by way of Denmark: --
      "Thy ship from shore to shore,
      With many a well-plied car,
      Across the Baltic foam is dancing. --
      Shields, and spears, and helms glancing!
      Hoist high the swelling sail
      To catch the freshening gale!
      There's food for the raven-flight
      Where thy sail-winged ship shall light;
           Thy landing-tread
           The people dread;
      And the wolf howls for a feast
      On the shore-side in the east."
 The same autumn Olaf had his first battle at Sotasker, which lies
 in the Swedish skerry circle.  He fought there with some vikings,
 whose leader was Sote.  Olaf had much fewer men, but his ships
 were larger, and he had his ships between some blind rocks, which
 made it difficult for the vikings to get alongside; and Olaf's
 men threw grappling irons into the ships which came nearest, drew
 them up to their own vessels, and cleared them of men.  The
 vikings took to flight after losing many men.  Sigvat the skald
 tells of this fight in the lay in which he reckons up King Olaf's
 battles: --
      "They launch his ship where waves are foaming --
           To the sea shore
           Both mast and oar,
      And sent his o'er the seas a-roaming.
      Where did the sea-king first draw blood?
           In the battle shock
           At Sote's rock;
      The wolves howl over their fresh food."
 King Olaf steered thereafter eastwards to Svithjod, and into the
 Lag (the Maelar lake), and ravaged the land on both sides.  He
 sailed all the way up to Sigtuna, and laid his ships close to the
 old Sigtuna.  The Swedes say the stone-heaps are still to be seen
 which Olaf had laid under the ends of the gangways from the shore
 to the ships.  When autumn was advanced, Olaf Haraldson heard
 that Olaf the Swedish king was assembling an army, and also that
 he had laid iron chains across Stoksund (the channel between the
 Maelar lake and the sea), and had laid troops there; for the
 Swedish king thought that Olaf Haraldson would be kept in there
 till frost came, and he thought little of Olaf's force knowing he
 had but few people.  Now when King Olaf Haraldson came to
 Stoksund he could not get through, as there was a castle west of
 the sound, and men-at-arms lay on the south; and he heard that
 the Swedish king was come there with a great army and many ships.
 He therefore dug a canal across the flat land Agnafit out to the
 sea.  Over all Svithjod all the running waters fall into the
 Maelar lake; but the only outlet of it to the sea is so small
 that many rivers are wider, and when much rain or snow falls the
 water rushes in a great cataract out by Stoksund, and the lake
 rises high and floods the land.  It fell heavy rain just at this
 time; and as the canal was dug out to the sea, the water and
 stream rushed into it.  Then Olaf had all the rudders unshipped
 and hoisted all sail aloft.  It was blowing a strong breeze
 astern, and they steered with their oars, and the ships came in a
 rush over all the shallows, and got into the sea without any
 damage.  Now went the Swedes to their king, Olaf, and told him
 that Olaf the Great had slipped out to sea; on which the king was
 enraged against those who should have watched that Olaf did not
 get away.  This passage has since been called King's Sound; but
 large vessels cannot pass through it, unless the waters are very
 high.  Some relate that the Swedes were aware that Olaf had cut
 across the tongue of land, and that the water was falling out
 that way; and they flocked to it with the intention to hinder
 Olaf from getting away, but the water undermined the banks on
 each side so that they fell in with the people, and many were
 drowned: but the Swedes contradict this as a false report, and
 deny the loss of people.  The king sailed to Gotland in harvest,
 and prepared to plunder; but the Gotlanders assembled, and sent
 men to the king, offering him a scat.  The king found this would
 suit him, and he received the scat, and remained there all
 winter.  So says Ottar Svarte: --
      "Thou seaman-prince! thy men are paid:
      The scat on Gotlanders is laid;
           Young man or old
           To our seamen bold
           Must pay, to save his head:
           The Yngling princes fled,
           Eysvssel people bled;
      Who can't defend the wealth they have
      Must die, or share with the rover brave."
 It is related here that King Olaf, when spring set in, sailed
 east to Eysyssel, and landed and plundered; the Eysyssel men came
 down to the strand and grave him battle.  King Olaf gained the
 victory, pursued those who fled, and laid waste the land with
 fire and sword.  It is told that when King Olaf first came to
 Eysvssel they offered him scat, and when the scat was to be
 brought down to the strand the king came to meet it with an armed
 force, and that was not what the bondes there expected; for they
 had brought no scat, but only their weapons with which they
 fought against the king, as before related.  So says Sigvat the
 skald: --
      "With much deceit and bustle
      To the heath of Eysyssel
      The bondes brought the king,
      To get scat at their weapon-thing.
      But Olaf was too wise
      To be taken by surprise;
      Their legs scarce bore them off
      O'er the common test enough."
 After this they sailed to Finland and plundered there, and went
 up the country.  All the people fled to the forest, and they had
 emptied their houses of all household goods.  The king went far
 up the country, and through some woods, and came to some
 dwellings in a valley called Herdaler, -- where, however, they
 made but small booty, and saw no people; and as it was getting
 late in the day, the king turned back to his ships.  Now when
 they came into the woods again people rushed upon them from all
 quarters, and made a severe attack.  The king told his men to
 cover themselves with their shields, but before they got out of
 the woods he lost many people, and many were wounded; but at
 last, late in the evening, he got to the ships.  The Finlanders
 conjured up in the night, by their witchcraft, a dreadful storm
 and bad weather on the sea; but the king ordered the anchors to
 be weighed and sail hoisted, and beat off all night to the
 outside of the land.  The king's luck prevailed more than the
 Finlanders' witchcraft; for he had the luck to beat round the
 Balagard's side in the night. and so got out to sea.  But the
 Finnish army proceeded on land, making the same progress as the
 king made with his ships.  So says Sigvat: --
      "The third fight was at Herdaler, where
      The men of Finland met in war
      The hero of the royal race,
      With ringing sword-blades face to face.
      Off Balagard's shore the waves
      Ran hollow; but the sea-king saves
      His hard-pressed ship, and gains the lee
      Of the east coast through the wild sea."
 King Olaf sailed from thence to Denmark, where he met Thorkel the
 Tall, brother of Earl Sigvalde, and went into partnership with
 him; for he was just ready to set out on a cruise.  They sailed
 southwards to the Jutland coast, to a place called Sudervik,
 where they overcame many viking ships.  The vikings, who usually
 have many people to command, give themselves the title of kings,
 although they have no lands to rule over.  King Olaf went into
 battle with them, and it was severe; but King Olaf gained the
 victory, and a great booty.  So says Sigvat: --
      "Hark!  hark!  The war-shout
           Through Sudervik rings,
      And the vikings bring out
           To fight the two kings.
      Great honour, I'm told,
      Won these vikings so bold:
      But their bold fight was vain,
      For the two brave kings gain."
 King Olaf sailed from thence south to Friesland, and lay under
 the strand of Kinlima in dreadful weather.  The king landed with
 his men; but the people of the country rode down to the strand
 against them, and he fought them.  So says Sigvat: --
      "Under Kinlima's cliff,
      This battle is the fifth.
      The brave sea-rovers stand
      All on the glittering sand;
      And down the horsemen ride
      To the edge of the rippling tide:
      But Olaf taught the peasant band
      To know the weight of a viking's hand."
 The king sailed from thence westward to England.  It was then the
 case that the Danish king, Svein Forked Beard, was at that time
 in England with a Danish army, and had been fixed there for some
 time, and had seized upon King Ethelred's kingdom.  The Danes had
 spread themselves so widely over England, that it was come so far
 that King Ethelred had departed from the country, and had gone
 south to Valland.  The same autumn that King Olaf came to
 England, it happened that King Svein died suddenly in the night
 in his bed; and it is said by Englishmen that Edmund the Saint
 killed him, in the same way that the holy Mercurius had killed
 the apostate Julian.  When Ethelred, the king of the English,
 heard this in Flanders, he returned directly to England; and no
 sooner was he come back, than he sent an invitation to all the
 men who would enter into his pay, to join him in recovering the
 country.  Then many people flocked to him; and among others, came
 King Olaf with a great troop of Northmen to his aid.  They
 steered first to London, and sailed into the Thames with their
 fleet; but the Danes had a castle within.  On the other side of
 the river is a great trading place, which is called Sudvirke.
 There the Danes had raised a great work, dug large ditches, and
 within had built a bulwark of stone, timber, and turf, where they
 had stationed a strong army.  King Ethelred ordered a great
 assault; but the Danes defended themselves bravely, and King
 Ethelred could make nothing of it.  Between the castle and
 Southwark (Sudvirke) there was a bridge, so broad that two
 wagons could pass each other upon it.  On the bridge were raised
 barricades, both towers and wooden parapets, in the direction of
 the river, which were nearly breast high; and under the bridge
 were piles driven into the bottom of the river.  Now when the
 attack was made the troops stood on the bridge everywhere, and
 defended themselves.  King Ethelred was very anxious to get
 possession of the bridge, and he called together all the chiefs
 to consult how they should get the bridge broken down.  Then said
 King Olaf he would attempt to lay his fleet alongside of it, if
 the other ships would do the same.  It was then determined in
 this council that they should lay their war forces under the
 bridge; and each made himself ready with ships and men.
 King Olaf ordered great platforms of floating wood to be tied
 together with hazel bands, and for this he took down old houses;
 and with these, as a roof, he covered over his ships so widely,
 that it reached over the ships' sides.  Under this screen he set
 pillars so high and stout, that there both was room for swinging
 their swords, and the roofs were strong enough to withstand the
 stones cast down upon them.  Now when the fleet and men were
 ready, they rode up along the river; but when they came near the
 bridge, there were cast down upon them so many stones and missile
 weapons, such as arrows and spears, that neither helmet nor
 shield could hold out against it; and the ships themselves were
 so greatly damaged, that many retreated out of it.  But King
 Olaf, and the Northmen's fleet with him, rowed quite up under the
 bridge, laid their cables around the piles which supported it,
 and then rowed off with all the ships as hard as they could down
 the stream.  The piles were thus shaken in the bottom, and were
 loosened under the bridge.  Now as the armed troops stood thick
 of men upon the bridge, and there were likewise many heaps of
 stones and other weapons upon it, and the piles under it being
 loosened and broken, the bridge gave way; and a great part of the
 men upon it fell into the river, and all the ethers fled, some
 into the castle, some into Southwark.  Thereafter Southwark was
 stormed and taken.  Now when the people in the castle saw that
 the river Thames was mastered, and that they could not hinder the
 passage of ships up into the country, they became afraid,
 surrendered the tower, and took Ethelred to be their king.  So
 says Ottar Svarte: --
      "London Bridge is broken down. --
      Gold is won, and bright renown.
           Shields resounding,
           War-horns sounding,
      Hild is shouting in the din!
           Arrows singing,
           Mail-coats ringing --
      Odin makes our Olaf win!"
 And he also composed these: --
      "King Ethelred has found a friend:
      Brave Olaf will his throne defend --
           In bloody fight
           Maintain his right,
           Win back his land
           With blood-red hand,
      And Edmund's son upon his throne replace --
      Edmund, the star of every royal race!"
 Sigvat also relates as follows: --
      "At London Bridge stout Olaf gave
      Odin's law to his war-men brave --
           `To win or die!'
           And their foemen fly.
      Some by the dyke-side refuge gain --
      Some in their tents on Southwark plain!
           The sixth attack
           Brought victory back."
 King Olaf passed all the winter with King Ethelred, and had a
 great battle at Hringmara Heath in Ulfkel's land, the domain
 which Ulfkel Snilling at that time held; and here again the king
 was victorious.  So says Sigvat the skald: --
      "To Ulfkel's land came Olaf bold,
      A seventh sword-thing he would hold.
      The race of Ella filled the plain --
      Few of them slept at home again!
      Hringmara heath
      Was a bed of death:
      Harfager's heir
      Dealt slaughter there."
 And Ottar sings of this battle thus: --
      "From Hringmara field
           The chime of war,
      Sword striking shield,
           Rings from afar.
      The living fly;
      The dead piled high
      The moor enrich;
      Red runs the ditch."
 The country far around was then brought in subjection to King
 Ethelred: but the Thingmen (1) and the Danes held many castles,
 besides a great part of the country.
 (1)  Thing-men were hired men-at-arms; called Thing-men probably
      from being men above the class of thralls or unfree men, and
      entitled to appear at Things, as being udal-born to land at
 King Olaf was commander of all the forces when they went against
 Canterbury; and they fought there until they took the town,
 killing many people and burning the castle.  So says Ottar
 Svarte: --
      "All in the grey of morn
           Broad Canterbury's forced.
      Black smoke from house-roofs borne
           Hides fire that does its worst;
      And many a man laid low
      By the battle-axe's blow,
      Waked by the Norsemen's cries,
      Scarce had time to rub his eyes."
 Sigvat reckons this King Olaf's eighth battle: --
      "Of this eighth battle I can tell
      How it was fought, and what befell,
           The castle tower
           With all his power
           He could not take,
           Nor would forsake.
           The Perthmen fought,
           Nor quarter sought;
           By death or flight
           They left the fight.
      Olaf could not this earl stout
      From Canterbury quite drive out."
 At this time King Olaf was entrusted with the whole land defence
 of England, and he sailed round the land with his ships of War.
 He laid his ships at land at Nyjamoda, where the troops of the
 Thingmen were, and gave them battle and gained the victory.  So
 says Sigvat the skald: --
      "The youthful king stained red the hair
      Of Angeln men, and dyed his spear
      At Newport in their hearts' dark blood:
      And where the Danes the thickest stood --
      Where the shrill storm round Olaf's head
      Of spear and arrow thickest fled.
      There thickest lay the Thingmen dead!
      Nine battles now of Olaf bold,
      Battle by battle, I have told."
 King Olaf then scoured all over the country, taking scat of the
 people and plundering where it was refused.  So says Ottar: --
      "The English race could not resist thee,
      With money thou madest them assist thee;
      Unsparingly thou madest them pay
      A scat to thee in every way;
      Money, if money could be got --
      Goods, cattle, household gear, if not.
      Thy gathered spoil, borne to the strand,
      Was the best wealth of English land."
 Olaf remained here for three years (A.D. 1010-1012).
 The third year King Ethelred died, and his sons Edmund and Edward
 took the government (A.D. 1012).  Then Olaf sailed southwards out
 to sea, and had a battle at Hringsfjord, and took a castle
 situated at Holar, where vikings resorted, and burnt the castle.
 So says Sigvat the skald: --
      "Of the tenth battle now I tell,
      Where it was fought, and what befell.
      Up on the hill in Hringsfjord fair
      A robber nest hung in the air:
      The people followed our brave chief,
      And razed the tower of the viking thief.
      Such rock and tower, such roosting-place,
      Was ne'er since held by the roving race."
 Then King Olaf proceeded westwards to Grislupollar, and fought
 there with vikings at Williamsby; and there also King Olaf gained
 the victory.  So says Sigvat: --
      "The eleventh battle now I tell,
      Where it was fought, and what befell.
      At Grislupol our young fir's name
      O'ertopped the forest trees in fame:
      Brave Olaf's name -- nought else was heard
      But Olaf's name, and arm, and sword.
      Of three great earls, I have heard say,
      His sword crushed helm and head that day."
 Next he fought westward on Fetlafjord, as Sigvat tells: --
      "The twelfth fight was at Fetlafjord,
      Where Olaf's honour-seeking sword
      Gave the wild wolf's devouring teeth
      A feast of warriors doomed to death."
 From thence King Olaf sailed southwards to Seljupollar, where he
 had a battle.  He took there a castle called Gunvaldsborg, which
 was very large and old.  He also made prisoner the earl who ruled
 over the castle and who was called Geirfin.  After a conference
 with the men of the castle, he laid a scat upon the town and
 earl, as ransom, of twelve thousand gold shillings: which was
 also paid by those on whom it was imposed.  So says Sigvat: --
      "The thirteenth battle now I tell,
      Where it was fought, and what befell.
      In Seljupol was fought the fray,
      And many did not survive the day.
      The king went early to the shore,
      To Gunvaldsborg's old castle-tower;
      And a rich earl was taken there,
      Whose name was Geridin, I am sure."
 Thereafter King Olaf steered with his fleet westward to Karlsar,
 and tarried there and had a fight.  And while King Olaf was lying
 in Karlsa river waiting a wind, and intending to sail up to
 Norvasund, and then on to the land of Jerusalem, he dreamt a
 remarkable dream -- that there came to him a great and important
 man, but of a terrible appearance withal, who spoke to him, and
 told him to give up his purpose of proceeding to that land.
 "Return back to thy udal, for thou shalt be king over Norway for
 ever."  He interpreted this dream to mean that he should be king
 over the country, and his posterity after him for a long time.
 After this appearance to him he turned about, and came to Poitou,
 where he plundered and burnt a merchant town called Varrande.  Of
 this Ottar speaks: --
      "Our young king, blythe and gay,
      Is foremost in the fray:
      Poitou he plunders, Tuskland burns, --
      He fights and wins where'er he turns."
 And also Sigvat says: --
      "The Norsemen's king is on his cruise,
           His blue steel staining,
           Rich booty gaining,
      And all men trembling at the news.
      The Norsemen's kings up on the Loire:
           Rich Partheney
           In ashes lay;
      Far inland reached the Norsemen's spear."
 King Olaf had been two summers and one winter in the west in
 Valland on this cruise; and thirteen years had now passed since
 the fall of King Olaf Trygvason.  During this time earls had
 ruled over Norway; first Hakon's sons Eirik and Svein, and
 afterwards Eirik's sons Hakon and Svein.  Hakon was a sister's
 son of King Canute, the son of Svein.  During this time there
 were two earls in Valland, William and Robert; their father was
 Richard earl of Rouen.  They ruled over Normandy.  Their sister
 was Queen Emma, whom the English king Ethelred had married; and
 their sons were Edmund, Edward the Good, Edwy, and Edgar. 
 Richard the earl of Rouen was a son of Richard the son of William
 Long Spear, who was the son of Rolf Ganger, the earl who first
 conquered Normandy; and he again was a son of Ragnvald the
 Mighty, earl of More, as before related.  From Rolf Ganger are
 descended the earls of Rouen, who have long reckoned themselves
 of kin to the chiefs in Norway, and hold them in such respect
 that they always were the greatest friends of the Northmen; and
 every Northman found a friendly country in Normandy, if he
 required it.  To Normandy King Olaf came in autumn (A.D. 1013),
 and remained all winter (A.D. 1014) in the river Seine in good
 peace and quiet.
 After Olaf Trygvason's fall, Earl Eirik gave peace to Einar
 Tambaskelfer, the son of Eindride Styrkarson; and Einar went
 north with the earl to Norway.  It is said that Einar was the
 strongest man and the best archer that ever was in Norway.  His
 shooting was sharp beyond all others; for with a blunt arrow he
 shot through a raw, soft ox-hide, hanging over a beam.  He was
 better than any man at running on snow-shoes, was a great man
 at all exercises, was of high family, and rich.  The earls Eirik
 and Svein married their sister Bergliot to Einar.  Their son was
 named Eindride.  The earls gave Einar great fiefs in Orkadal, so
 that he was one of the most powerful and able men in the
 Throndhjem country, and was also a great friend of the earls, and
 a great support and aid to them.
 When Olaf Trygvason ruled over Norway, he gave his brother-in-law
 Erling half of the land scat, and royal revenues between the Naze
 and Sogn.  His other sister he married to the Earl Ragnvald
 Ulfson, who long ruled over West Gautland.  Ragnvald's father,
 Ulf, was a brother of Sigrid the Haughty, the mother of Olaf the
 Swedish king.  Earl Eirik was ill pleased that Erling Skialgson
 had so large a dominion, and he took to himself all the king's
 estates, which King Olaf had given to Erling.  But Erling levied,
 as before, all the land scat in Rogaland; and thus the
 inhabitants had often to pay him the land scat, otherwise he laid
 waste their land.  The earl made little of the business, for no
 bailiff of his could live there, and the earl could only come
 there in guest-quarters, when he had a great many people with
 him.  So says Sigvat: --
      "Olaf the king
      Thought the bonde Erling
      A man who would grace
      His own royal race.
      One sister the king
      Gave the bonde Erling;
      And one to an earl,
      And she saved him in peril."
 Earl Eirik did not venture to fight with Erling, because he had
 very powerful and very many friends, and was himself rich and
 popular, and kept always as many retainers about him as if he
 held a king's court.  Erling vas often out in summer on
 plundering expeditions, and procured for himself means of living;
 for he continued his usual way of high and splendid living,
 although now he had fewer and less convenient fiefs than in the
 time of his brother-in-law King Olaf Trygvason.  Erling was one
 of the handsomest, largest, and strongest men; a better warrior
 than any other; and in all exercises he was like King Olaf
 himself.  He was, besides, a man of understanding, jealous in
 everything he undertook, and a deadly man at arms.  Sigvat talks
 thus of him: --
      "No earl or baron, young or old,
      Match with this bonde brave can hold.
      Mild was brave Erling, all men say,
      When not engaged in bloody fray:
      His courage he kept hid until
      The fight began, then foremost still
      Erling was seen in war's wild game,
      And famous still is Erling's name."
 It was a common saying among the people, that Erling had been the
 most valiant who ever held lands under a king in Norway.  Erlings
 and Astrid s children were these -- Aslak, Skialg, Sigurd, Lodin,
 Thorer, and Ragnhild, who was married to Thorberg Arnason. 
 Erling had always with him ninety free-born men or more, and both
 winter and summer it was the custom in his house to drink at the
 mid-day meal according to a measure (1), but at the night meal
 there was no measure in drinking.  When the earl was in the
 neighbourhood he had 200 (2) men or more.  He never went to sea
 with less than a fully-manned ship of twenty benches of rowers.
 Erling had also a ship of thirty-two benches of rowers, which was
 besides, very large for that size. and which he used in viking
 cruises, or on an expedition; and in it there were 200 men at the
 very least.
 (1)  There were silver-studs in a row from the rim to the bottom
      of the drinking born or cup; and as it went round each drank
      till the stud appeared above the liquor.  This was drinking
      by measure. -- L.
 (2)  I.e., 240.
 Erling had always at home on his farm thirty slaves, besides
 other serving-people.  He gave his slaves a certain day's work;
 but after it he gave them leisure, and leave that each should
 work in the twilight and at night for himself, and as he pleased.
 He gave them arable land to sow corn in, and let them apply their
 crops to their own use.  He laid upon each a certain quantity of
 labour to work themselves free by doing it; and there were many
 who bought their freedom in this way in one year, or in the
 second year, and all who had any luck could make themselves free
 within three years.  With this money he bought other slaves: and
 to some of his freed people he showed how to work in the herring-
 fishery, to others he showed some useful handicraft; and some
 cleared his outfields and set up houses.  He helped all to
 When Earl Eirik had ruled over Norway for twelve years. there
 came a message to him from his brother-in-law King Canute, the
 Danish king, that he should go with him on an expedition westward
 to England; for Eirik was very celebrated for his campaigns, as
 he had gained the victory in the two hardest engagements which
 had ever been fought in the north countries.  The one was that in
 which the Earls Hakon and Eirik fought with the Jomsborg vikings;
 the other that in which Earl Eirik fought with King Olaf
 Trygvason.  Thord Kolbeinson speaks of this: --
      "A song of praise
      Again I raise.
      To the earl bold
      The word is told,
      That Knut the Brave
      His aid would crave;
      The earl, I knew,
      To friend stands true."
 The earl would not sleep upon the message of the king, but sailed
 immediately out of the country, leaving behind his son Earl Hakon
 to take care of Norway; and, as he was but seventeen years of
 age, Einar Tambaskelfer was to be at his hand to rule the country
 for him.
 Eirik met King Canute in England, and was with him when he took
 the castle of London.  Earl Eirik had a battle also to the
 westward of the castle of London, and killed Ulfkel Snilling.  So
 says Thord Kolbeinson: --
      "West of London town we passed,
      And our ocean-steeds made fast,
      And a bloody fight begin,
      Eng1and's lands to lose or win.
      Blue sword and shining spear
      Laid Ulfkel's dead corpse there,
      Our Thingmen hear the war-shower sounding
      Our grey arrows from their shields rebounding."
 Earl Eirik was a winter in England, and had many battles there.
 The following autumn he intended to make a pilgrimage to Rome,
 but he died in England of a bloody flux.
 King Canute came to England the summer that King Ethelred died,
 and had many battles with Ethelred's sons, in which the victory
 was sometimes on one side, sometimes on the other.  Then King
 Canute took Queen Emma in marriage; and their children were
 Harald, Hardacanute, and Gunhild.  King Canute then made an
 agreement with King Edmund, that each of them should have a half
 of England.  In the same month Henry Strion murdered King Edmund.
 King Canute then drove all Ethelred's sons out of England.  So
 says Sigvat: --
      "Now all the sons of Ethelred
      Were either fallen, or had fled:
      Some slain by Canute, -- some they say,
      To save their lives had run away."
 King Ethelred's sons came to Rouen in Valland from England, to
 their mother's brother, the same summer that King Olaf Haraldson
 came from the west from his viking cruise, and they were all
 during the winter in Normandy together.  They made an agreement
 with each other that King Olaf should have Northumberland, if
 they could succeed in taking England from the Danes.  Therefore
 about harvest, Olaf sent his foster-father Hrane to England to
 collect men-at-arms; and Ethelred's sons sent tokens to their
 friends and relations with him.  King Olaf, besides, gave him
 much money with him to attract people to them.  Hrane was all
 winter in England, and got promises from many powerful men of
 fidelity, as the people of the country would rather have native
 kings over them; but the Danish power had become so great in
 England, that all the people were brought under their dominion.
 In spring (A.D. 1014) King Olaf and King Ethelred's sons set out
 together to the west, and came to a place in England called
 Jungufurda, where they landed with their army and moved forward
 against the castle.  Many men were there who had promised them
 their aid.  They took the castle; and killed many people.  Now
 when King Canute's men heard of this they assembled an army, and
 were soon in such force that Ethelred's sons could not stand
 against it; and they saw no other way left but to return to
 Rouen.  Then King Olaf separated from them, and would not go back
 to Valland, but sailed northwards along England, all the way to
 Northumberland, where he put into a haven at a place called
 Valde; and in a battle there with the townspeople and merchants
 he gained the victory, and a great booty.
 King Olaf left his long-ships there behind, but made ready two
 ships of burden; and had with him 220 men in them, well-armed,
 and chosen people.  He sailed out to sea northwards in harvest,
 but encountered a tremendous storm and they were in danger of
 being lost; but as they had a chosen crew, and the king s luck
 with them, all went on well.  So says Ottar: --
      "Olaf, great stem of kings, is brave --
      Bold in the fight, bold on the wave.
           No thought of fear
           Thy heart comes near.
      Undaunted, 'midst the roaring flood,
      Firm at his post each shipman stood;
           And thy two ships stout
           The gale stood out."
 And further he says: --
      "Thou able chief!  with thy fearless crew
      Thou meetest, with skill and courage true,
           The wild sea's wrath
           On thy ocean path.
      Though waves mast-high were breaking round.
      Thou findest the middle of Norway's ground,
           With helm in hand
           On Saela's strand."
 It is related here that King Olaf came from the sea to the very
 middle of Norway; and the isle is called Saela where they landed,
 and is outside of Stad.  King Olaf said he thought it must be a
 lucky day for them, since they had landed at Saela in Norway; and
 observed it was a good omen that it so happened.  As they were
 going up in the isle, the king slipped with one foot in a place
 where there was clay, but supported himself with the other foot.
 Then said he "The king falls."  "Nay," replies Hrane, "thou didst
 not fall, king, but set fast foot in the soil."  The king laughed
 thereat, and said, "It may be so if God will."  They went down
 again thereafter to their ships, and sailed to Ulfasund, where
 they heard that Earl Hakon was south in Sogn, and was expected
 north as soon as wind allowed with a single ship.
 King Olaf steered his ships within the ordinary ships' course
 when he came abreast of Fjaler district, and ran into
 Saudungssund.  There he laid his two vessels one on each side of
 the sound. with a thick cable between them.  At the same moment
 Hakon, Earl Eirik's son, came rowing into the sound with a manned
 ship; and as they thought these were but two merchant-vessels
 that were lying in the sound, they rowed between them.  Then Olaf
 and his men draw the cable up right under Hakon's ship's keel and
 wind it up with the capstan.  As soon as the vessel's course was
 stopped her stern was lifted up, and her bow plunged down; so
 that the water came in at her fore-end and over both sides, and
 she upset.  King Olaf's people took Earl Hakon and all his men
 whom they could get hold of out of the water, and made them
 prisoners; but some they killed with stones and other weapons,
 and some were drowned.  So says Ottar: --
      "The black ravens wade
      In the blood from thy blade.
      Young Hakon so gay,
      With his ship, is thy prey:
      His ship, with its gear,
      Thou hast ta'en; and art here,
      Thy forefather's land
      From the earl to demand."
 Earl Hakon was led up to the king's ship.  He was the handsomest
 man that could be seen.  He had long hair, as fine as silk, bound
 about his bead with a gold ornament.
 When he sat down in the fore-hold, the king said to him, "It is
 not false what is said of your family, that ye are handsome
 people to look at; but now your luck has deserted you."
 Hakon the earl replied, "It has always been the case that success
 is changeable; and there is no luck in the matter.  It has gone
 with your family as with mine, to have by turns the better lot. 
 I am little beyond childhood in years; and at any rate we could
 not have defended ourselves, as we did not expect any attack on
 the way.  It may turn out better with us another time."
 Then said King Olaf, "Dost thou not apprehend that thou art in
 that condition that, hereafter, there can be neither victory nor
 defeat for thee?"
 The earl replies, "That is what thou only canst determine, king,
 according to thy pleasure."
 Olaf says, "What wilt thou give me, earl, if for this time I let
 thee go, whole and unhurt?"
 The earl asks what he would take.
 "Nothing," says the king, "except that thou shalt leave the
 country, give up thy kingdom, and take an oath that thou shalt
 never go into battle against me."
 The earl answered, that he would do so.  And now Earl Hakon took
 the oath that he would never fight against Olaf, or seek to
 defend Norway against him, or attack him; and King Olaf thereupon
 gave him and all his men life and peace.  The earl got back the
 ship which had brought him there, and he and his men rowed their
 way.  Thus says Sigvat of him: --
      "In old Saudungs sound
      The king Earl Hakon found,
      Who little thought that there
      A foeman was so near.
      The best and fairest youth
      Earl Hakon was in truth,
      That speaks the Danish tongue,
      And of the race of great Hakon."
 After this (A.D. 1014) the earl made ready as fast as possible to
 leave the country and sail over to England.  He met King Canute,
 his mother's brother, there, and told him all that had taken
 place between him and King Olaf.  King Canute received him
 remarkably well, placed him in his court in his own house, and
 gave him great power in his kingdom.  Earl Hakon dwelt a long
 time with King Canute.  During the time Svein and Hakon ruled
 over Norway, a reconciliation with Erling Skialgson was effected,
 and secured by Aslak, Erling's son, marrying Gunhild, Earl
 Svein's daughter; and the father and son, Erling and Aslak,
 retained all the fiefs which King Olaf Trygvason had given to
 Erling.  Thus Erling became a firm friend of the earl's, and
 their mutual friendship was confirmed by oath.
 King Olaf went now eastward along the land, holding Things with
 the bondes all over the country.  Many went willingly with him;
 but some, who were Earl Svein's friends or relations, spoke
 against him.  Therefore King Olaf sailed in all haste eastward to
 Viken; went in there with his ships; set them on the land; and
 proceeded up the country, in order to meet his stepfather, Sigurd
 Syr.  When he came to Vestfold he was received in a friendly way
 by many who had been his father's friends or acquaintances; and
 also there and in Folden were many of his family.  In autumn
 (A.D. 1014) he proceeded up the country to his stepfather King
 Sigurd's, and came there one day very early.  As Olaf was coming
 near to the house, some of the servants ran beforehand to the
 house, and into the room.  Olaf's mother, Asta, was sitting in
 the room, and around her some of her girls.  When the servants
 told her of King Olaf's approach, and that he might soon be
 expected, Asta stood up directly, and ordered the men and girls
 to put everything in the best order.  She ordered four girls to
 bring out all that belonged to the decoration of the room and put
 it in order with hangings and benches.  Two fellows brought straw
 for the floor, two brought forward four-cornered tables and the
 drinking-jugs, two bore out victuals and placed the meat on the
 table, two she sent away from the house to procure in the
 greatest haste all that was needed, and two carried in the ale;
 and all the other serving men and girls went outside of the
 house.  Messengers went to seek King Sigurd wherever he might be,
 and brought to him his dress-clothes, and his horse with gilt
 saddle, and his bridle, which was gilt and set with precious
 stones.  Four men she sent off to the four quarters of the
 country to invite all the great people to a feast, which she
 prepared as a rejoicing for her son's return.  All who were
 before in the house she made to dress themselves with the best
 they had, and lent clothes to those who had none suitable.
 King Sigurd Syr was standing in his corn-field when the
 messengers came to him and brought him the news, and also told
 him all that Asta was doing at home in the house.  He had many
 people on his farm.  Some were then shearing corn, some bound it
 together, some drove it to the building, some unloaded it and put
 it in stack or barn; but the king, and two men with him, went
 sometimes into the field, sometimes to the place where the corn
 was put into the barn.  His dress, it is told, was this: -- he
 had a blue kirtle and blue breeches; shoes which were laced about
 the legs; a grey cloak, and a grey wide-brimmed hat; a veil
 before his face; a staff in his hand with a gilt-silver head on
 it and a silver ring around it.  Of Sigurd's living and
 disposition it is related that he was a very gain-making man who
 attended carefully to his cattle and husbandry, and managed his
 housekeeping himself.  He was nowise given to pomp, and was
 rather taciturn.  But he was a man of the best understanding in
 Norway, and also excessively wealthy in movable property.
 Peaceful he was, and nowise haughty.  His wife Asta was generous
 and high-minded.  Their children were, Guthorm, the eldest; then
 Gunhild; the next Halfdan, Ingerid, and Harald.  The messengers
 said to Sigurd, "Asta told us to bring thee word how much it lay
 at her heart that thou shouldst on this occasion comport thyself
 in the fashion of great men, and show a disposition more akin to
 Harald Harfager's race than to thy mother's father's, Hrane Thin-
 nose, or Earl Nereid the Old, although they too were very wise
 men."  The king replies, "The news ye bring me is weighty, and ye
 bring it forward in great heat.  Already before now Asta has been
 taken up much with people who were not so near to her; and I see
 she is still of the same disposition.  She takes this up with
 great warmth; but can she lead her son out of the business with
 the same splendour she is leading him into it?  If it is to
 proceed so methinks they who mix themselves up in it regard
 little property or life.  For this man, King Olaf, goes against a
 great superiority of power; and the wrath of the Danish and
 Swedish kings lies at the foot of his determination, if he
 ventures to go against them."
 When the king had said this he sat down, and made them take off
 his shoes, and put corduvan boots on, to which he bound his gold
 spurs.  Then he put off his cloak and coat, and dressed himself
 in his finest clothes, with a scarlet cloak over all; girded on
 his sword, set a gilded helmet upon his head, and mounted his
 horse.  He sent his labouring people out to the neighbourhood,
 and gathered to him thirty well-clothed men, and rode home with
 them.  As they rode up to the house, and were near the room, they
 saw on the other side of the house the banners of Olaf coming
 waving; and there was he himself, with about 100 men all well
 equipped.  People were gathered over all upon the house-tops.
 King Sigurd immediately saluted his stepson from horseback in a
 friendly way, and invited him and his men to come in and drink a
 cup with him.  Asta, on the contrary, went up and kissed her son,
 and invited him to stay with her; and land, and people, and all
 the good she could do for him stood at his service.  King Olaf
 thanked her kindly for her invitation.  Then she took him by the
 hand, and led him into the room to the high-seat.  King Sigurd
 got men to take charge of their clothes, and give their horses
 corn; and then he himself went to his high-seat, and the feast
 was made with the greatest splendour.
 King Olaf had not been long here before he one day called his
 stepfather King Sigurd, his mother Asta, and his foster-father
 Hrane to a conference and consultation.  Olaf began thus: "It has
 so happened," said he, "as is well known to you, that I have
 returned to this country after a very long sojourn in foreign
 parts, during all which time I and my men have had nothing for
 our support but what we captured in war, for which we have often
 hazarded both life and soul: for many an innocent man have we
 deprived of his property, and some of their lives; and foreigners
 are now sitting in the possessions which my father, his father,
 and their forefathers for a long series of generations owned, and
 to which I have udal right.  They have not been content with
 this, but have taken to themselves also the properties of all our
 relations who are descended from Harald Harfager.  To some they
 have left little, to others nothing at all.  Now I will disclose
 to you what I have long concealed in my own mind, that I intend
 to take the heritage of my forefathers; but I will not wait upon
 the Danish or Swedish king to supplicate the least thing from
 them, although they for the time call that their property which
 was Harald Harfager's heritage.  To say the truth, I intend
 rather to seek my patrimony with battle-axe and sword, and that
 with the help of all my friends and relations, and of those who
 in this business will take my side.  And in this matter I will so
 lay hand to the work that one of two things shall happen, --
 either I shall lay all this kingdom under my rule which they got
 into their hands by the slaughter of my kinsman Olaf Trygvason,
 or I shall fall here upon my inheritance in the land of my
 fathers.  Now I expect of thee, Sigurd, my stepfather, as well as
 other men here in the country who have udal right of succession
 to the kingdom, according to the law made by King Harald
 Harfager, that nothing shall be of such importance to you as to
 prevent you from throwing off the disgrace from our family of
 being slow at supporting the man who comes forward to raise up
 again our race.  But whether ye show any manhood in this affair
 or not, I know the inclination of the people well, -- that all
 want to be free from the slavery of foreign masters, and will
 give aid and strength to the attempt.  I have not proposed this
 matter to any before thee, because I know thou art a man of
 understanding, and can best judge how this my purpose shall be
 brought forward in the beginning, and whether we shall, in all
 quietness, talk about it to a few persons, or instantly declare
 it to the people at large.  I have already shown my teeth by
 taking prisoner the Earl Hakon, who has now left the country, and
 given me, under oath, the part of the kingdom which he had
 before; and I think it will be easier to have Earl Svein alone to
 deal with, than if both were defending the country against us."
 King Sigurd answers, "It is no small affair, King Olaf, thou hast
 in thy mind; and thy purpose comes more, methinks, from hasty
 pride than from prudence.  But it may be there is a wide
 difference between my humble ways and the high thoughts thou
 hast; for whilst yet in thy childhood thou wast full always of
 ambition and desire of command, and now thou art experienced in
 battles, and hast formed thyself upon the manner of foreign
 chiefs.  I know therefore well, that as thou hast taken this into
 thy head, it is useless to dissuade thee from it; and also it is
 not to be denied that it goes to the heart of all who have
 courage in them, that the whole Harfager race and kingdom should
 go to the ground.  But I will not bind myself by any promise,
 before I know the views and intentions of other Upland kings; but
 thou hast done well in letting me know thy purpose, before
 declaring it publicly to the people.  I will promise thee,
 however, my interest with the kings, and other chiefs, and
 country people; and also, King Olaf, all my property stands to
 thy aid, and to strengthen thee.  But we will only produce the
 matter to the community so soon as we see some progress, and
 expect some strength to this undertaking; for thou canst easily
 perceive that it is a daring measure to enter into strife with
 Olaf the Swedish king, and Canute, who is king both of Denmark
 and England; and thou requirest great support under thee, if it
 is to succeed.  It is not unlikely, in my opinion, that thou wilt
 get good support from the people, as the commonalty always loves
 what is new; and it went so before, when Olaf Trygvason came here
 to the country, that all rejoiced at it, although he did not long
 enjoy the kingdom."
 When the consultation had proceeded so far, Asta took up the
 word.  "For my part, my son, I am rejoiced at thy arrival, but
 much more at thy advancing thy honour.  I will spare nothing for
 that purpose that stands in my power, although it be but little
 help that can be expected from me.  But if a choice could be
 made, I would rather that thou shouldst be the supreme king of
 Norway, even if thou shouldst not sit longer in thy kingdom than
 Olaf Trygvason did, than that thou shouldst not be a greater king
 than Sigurd Syr is, and die the death of old age."  With this the
 conference closed.  King Olaf remained here a while with all his
 men.  King Sigurd entertained them, day about, the one day with
 fish and milk, the other day with flesh-meat and ale.
 At that time there were many kings in the Uplands who had
 districts to rule over, and the most of them were descended from
 Harald Harfager.  In Hedemark two brothers ruled -- Hrorek and
 Ring; in Gudbrandsdal, Gudrod; and there was also a king in
 Raumarike; and one had Hadaland and Thoten; and in Valders also
 there was a king.  With these district-kings Sigurd had a meeting
 up in Hadaland, and Olaf Haraldson also met with them.  To these
 district-kings whom Sigurd had assembled he set forth his stepson
 Olaf's purpose, and asked their aid, both of men and in counsel
 and consent; and represented to them how necessary it was to cast
 off the yoke which the Danes and Swedes had laid upon them.  He
 said that there was now a man before them who could head such an
 enterprise; and he recounted the many brave actions which Olaf
 had achieved upon his war-expeditions.
 Then King Hrorek says, "True it is that Harald Harfager's kingdom
 has gone to decay, none of his race being supreme king over
 Norway.  But the people here in the country have experienced many
 things.  When King Hakon, Athelstan's foster-son, was king, all
 were content; but when Gunhild's sons ruled over the country, all
 were so weary of their tyranny and injustice that they would
 rather have foreign men as kings, and be themselves more their
 own rulers; for the foreign kings were usually abroad and cared
 little about the customs of the people if the scat they laid on
 the country was paid.  When enmity arose between the Danish king
 Harald and Earl Hakon, the Jomsborg vikings made an expedition
 against Norway; then the whole people arose, and threw the
 hostilities from themselves; and thereafter the people encouraged
 Earl Hakon to keep the country, and defend it with sword and
 spear against the Danish king.  But when he had set himself fast
 in the kingdom with the help of the people, he became so hard and
 overbearing towards the country-folks, that they would no longer
 suffer him.  The Throndhjem people killed him, and raised to the
 kingly power Olaf Trygvason, who was of the udal succession to
 the kingdom, and in all respects well fitted to be a chief.  The
 whole country's desire was to make him supreme king, and raise
 again the kingdom which Harald Harfager had made for himself. 
 But when King Olaf thought himself quite firmly seated in his
 kingdom, no man could rule his own concerns for him.  With us
 small kings he was so unreasonable, as to take to himself not
 only all the scat and duties which Harald Harfager had levied
 from us, but a great deal more.  The people at last had so little
 freedom under him, that it was not allowed to every man to
 believe in what god he pleased.  Now since he has been taken away
 we have kept friendly with the Danish king; have received great
 help from him when we have had any occasion for it; and have been
 allowed to rule ourselves, and live in peace and quiet in the
 inland country, and without any overburden.  I am therefore
 content that things be as they are, for I do not see what better
 rights I am to enjoy by one of my relations ruling over the
 country; and if I am to be no better off, I will take no part in
 the affair."
 Then said King Ring, his brother, "I will also declare my opinion
 that it is better for me, if I hold the same power and property
 as now, that my relative is king over Norway, rather than a
 foreign chief, so that our family may again raise its head in the
 land.  It is, besides, my opinion about this man Olaf, that his
 fate and luck must determine whether he is to obtain the kingdom
 or not; and if he succeed in making himself supreme king, then he
 will be the best off who has best deserved his friendship.  At
 present he has in no respect greater power than any of us; nay,
 indeed, he has less; as we have lands and kingdoms to rule over,
 and he has nothing, and we are equally entitled by the udal right
 to the kingdom as he is himself.  Now, if we will be his men,
 give him our aid, allow him to take the highest dignity in the
 country, and stand by him with our strength, how should he not
 reward us well, and hold it in remembrance to our great
 advantage, if he be the honourable man I believe him to be, and
 all say he is?  Therefore let us join the adventure, say I, and
 bind ourselves in friendship with him."
 Then the others, one after the other, stood up and spoke; and the
 conclusion was, that the most of them determined to enter into a
 league with King Olaf.  He promised them his perfect friendship,
 and that he would hold by and improve the country's laws and
 rights, if he became supreme king of Norway.  This league was
 confirmed by oath.
 Thereafter the kings summoned a Thing, and there King Olaf set
 forth this determination to all the people, and his demand on the
 kingly power.  He desires that the bondes should receive him as
 king; and promises, on the other hand, to allow them to retain
 their ancient laws, and to defend the land from foreign masters
 and chiefs.  On this point he spoke well, and long; and he got
 great praise for his speech.  Then the kings rose and spoke, the
 one after the other, and supported his cause, and this message to
 the people.  At last it came to this, that King Olaf was
 proclaimed king over the whole country, and the kingdom adjudged
 to him according to law in the Uplands (A.D. 1014).
 King Olaf began immediately his progress through the country,
 appointing feasts before him wherever there were royal farms.
 First he travelled round in Hadaland, and then he proceeded north
 to Gudbrandsdal.  And now it went as King Sigurd Syr had
 foretold, that people streamed to him from all quarters; and he
 did not appear to have need for half of them, for he had nearly
 300 men.  But the entertainments bespoken did not half serve; for
 it had been the custom that kings went about in guest-quarters in
 the Uplands with 60 or 70 men only, and never with more than 100
 men.  The king therefore hastened over the country, only stopping
 one night at the same place.  When he came north to Dovrefield,
 he arranged his journey so that he came over the mountain and
 down upon the north side of it, and then came to Opdal, where he
 remained all night.  Afterwards he proceeded through Opdal
 forest, and came out at Medaldal, where he proclaimed a Thing,
 and summoned the bondes to meet him at it.  The king made a
 speech to the Thing, and asked the bondes to accept him as king;
 and promised, on his part, the laws and rights which King Olaf
 Trygvason had offered them.  The bondes had no strength to make
 opposition to the king; so the result was that they received him
 as king, and confirmed it by oath: but they sent word to Orkadal
 and Skaun of all that they knew concerning Olaf's proceedings.
 Einar Tambaskelfer had a farm and house at Husaby in Skaun; and
 now when he got news of Olaf's proceedings, he immediately split
 up a war-arrow, and sent it out as a token to the four quarters
 -- north, south, east, west, -- to call together all free and
 unfree men in full equipment of war: therewith the message, that
 they were to defend the land against King Olaf.  The message-
 stick went to Orkadal, and thence to Gaulardal, where the whole
 war-force was to assemble.
 King Olaf proceeded with his men down into Orkadal, and advanced
 in peace and with all gentleness; but when he came to Griotar he
 met the assembled bondes, amounting to more than 700 men.  Then
 the king arrayed his army, for he thought the bondes were to give
 battle.  When the bondes saw this, they also began to put their
 men in order; but it went on very slowly, for they had not agreed
 beforehand who among them should be commander.  Now when King
 Olaf saw there was confusion among the bondes, he sent to them
 Thorer Gudbrandson; and when he came he told them King Olaf did
 not want to fight them, but named twelve of the ablest men in
 their flock of people, who were desired to come to King Olaf. 
 The bondes agreed to this; and the twelve men went over a rising
 ground which is there, and came to the place where the king's
 army stood in array.  The king said to them, "Ye bondes have done
 well to give me an opportunity to speak with you, for now I will
 explain to you my errand here to the Throndhjem country.  First I
 must tell you, what ye already must have heard, that Earl Hakon
 and I met in summer; and the issue of our meeting was, that he
 gave me the whole kingdom he possessed in the Throndhjem country,
 which, as ye know, consists of Orkadal, Gaulardal, Strind, and
 Eyna district.  As a proof of this, I have here with me the very
 men who were present, and saw the earl's and my own hands given
 upon it, and heard the word and oath, and witnessed the agreement
 the earl made with me.  Now I offer you peace and law, the same
 as King Olaf Trygvason offered before me."
 The king spoke well, and long; and ended by proposing to the
 bondes two conditions -- either to go into his service and be
 subject to him, or to fight him.  Thereupon the twelve bondes
 went back to their people, and told the issue of their errand,
 and considered with the people what they should resolve upon.
 Although they discussed the matter backwards and forwards for a
 while, they preferred at last to submit to the king; and it was
 confirmed by the oath of the bondes.  The king now proceeded on
 his journey, and the bondes made feasts for him.  The king then
 proceeded to the sea-coast, and got ships; and among others he
 got a long-ship of twenty benches of rowers from Gunnar of
 Gelmin; another ship of twenty benches he got from Loden of
 Viggia; and three ships of twenty benches from the farm of Angrar
 on the ness which farm Earl Hakon had possessed, but a steward
 managed it for him, by name Bard White.  The king had, besides,
 four or five boats; and with these vessels he went in all haste
 into the fjord of Throndhjem.
 Earl Svein was at that time far up in the Throndhjem fjord at
 Steinker, which at that time was a merchant town, and was there
 preparing for the yule festival (A.D. 1015).  When Einar
 Tambaskelfer heard that the Orkadal people had submitted to King
 Olaf, he sent men to Earl Svein to bring him the tidings.  They
 went first to Nidaros, and took a rowing-boat which belonged to
 Einar, with which they went out into the fjord, and came one day
 late in the evening to Steinker, where they brought to the earl
 the news about all King Olaf's proceedings.  The earl owned a
 long-ship, which was lying afloat and rigged just outside the
 town: and immediately, in the evening, he ordered all his movable
 goods, his people's clothes, and also meat and drink, as much as
 the vessel could carry, to be put on board, rowed immediately out
 in the night-time, and came with daybreak to Skarnsund.  There he
 saw King Olaf rowing in with his fleet into the fjord.  The earl
 turned towards the land within Masarvik, where there was a thick
 wood, and lay so near the rocks that the leaves and branches hung
 over the vessel.  They cut down some large trees, which they laid
 over the quarter on the sea-side, so that the ship could not be
 seen for leaves, especially as it was scarcely clear daylight
 when the king came rowing past them.  The weather was calm, and
 the king rowed in among the islands; and when the king's fleet
 was out of sight the earl rowed out of the fjord, and on to
 Frosta, where his kingdom lay, and there he landed.
 Earl Svein sent men out to Gaulardal to his brother-in-law, Einar
 Tambaskelfer; and when Einar came the earl told him how it had
 been with him and King Olaf, and that now he would assemble men
 to go out against King Olaf, and fight him.
 Einar answers, "We should go to work cautiously, and find out
 what King Olaf intends doing; and not let him hear anything
 concerning us but that we are quiet.  It may happen that if he
 hears nothing about our assembling people, he may sit quietly
 where he is in Steinker all the Yule; for there is plenty
 prepared for him for the Yule feast: but if he hears we are
 assembling men, he will set right out of the fjord with his
 vessels, and we shall not get hold of him."  Einar's advice was
 taken; and the earl went to Stjoradal, into guest-quarters among
 the bondes.
 When King Olaf came to Steinker he collected all the meat
 prepared for the Yule feast, and made it be put on board,
 procured some transport vessels, took meat and drink with him,
 and got ready to sail as fast as possible, and went out all the
 way to Nidaros.  Here King Olaf Trygvason had laid the foundation
 of a merchant town, and had built a king's house: but before that
 Nidaros was only a single house, as before related.  When Earl
 Eirik came to the country, he applied all his attention to his
 house of Lade, where his father had had his main residence, and
 he neglected the houses which Olaf had erected at the Nid; so
 that some were fallen down, and those which stood were scarcely
 habitable.  King Olaf went now with his ships up the Nid, made
 all the houses to be put in order directly that were still
 standing, and built anew those that had fallen down, and employed
 in this work a great many people.  Then he had all the meat and
 drink brought on shore to the houses, and prepared to hold Yule
 there; so Earl Svein and Einar had to fall upon some other plan.
 There was an Iceland man called Thord Sigvaldaskald, who had been
 long with Earl Sigvalde, and afterwards with the earl's brother,
 Thorkel the Tall; but after the earl's death Thord had become a
 merchant.  He met King Olaf on his viking cruise in the west, and
 entered into his service, and followed him afterwards.  He was
 with the king when the incidents above related took place.  Thord
 had a son called Sigvat fostered in the house of Thorkel at
 Apavatn, in Iceland.  When he was nearly a grown man he went out
 of the country with some merchants; and the ship came in autumn
 to the Throndhjem country, and the crew lodged in the hered
 (district).  The same winter King Olaf came to Throndhjem, as
 just now related by us.  Now when Sigvat heard that his father
 Thord was with the king, he went to him, and stayed a while with
 him.  Sigvat was a good skald at an early age.  He made a lay in
 honour of King Olaf, and asked the king to listen to it.  The
 king said he did not want poems composed about him, and said he
 did not understand the skald's craft.  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "Rider of dark-blue ocean's steeds!
      Allow one skald to sing thy deeds;
      And listen to the song of one
      Who can sing well, if any can.
      For should the king despise all others,
      And show no favour to my brothers,
      Yet I may all men's favour claim,
      Who sing, still of our great king's fame."
 King Olaf gave Sigvat as a reward for his verse a gold ring that
 weighed half a mark, and Sigvat was made one of King Olaf's
 court-men.  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "I willingly receive this sword --
      By land or sea, on shore, on board,
      I trust that I shall ever be 
      Worthy the sword received from thee.
      A faithful follower thou hast bound --
      A generous master I have found;
      Master and servant both have made
      Just what best suits them by this trade."
 Earl Svein had, according to custom, taken one half of the
 harbour-dues from the Iceland ship-traders about autumn (A.D.
 1014); for the Earls Eirik and Hakon had always taken one half of
 these and all other revenues in the Throndhjem country.  Now when
 King Olaf came there, he sent his men to demand that half of the
 tax from the Iceland traders; and they went up to the king's
 house and asked Sigvat to help them.  He went to the king, and
 sang: --
      "My prayer, I trust, will not be vain --
      No gold by it have I to gain:
      All that the king himself here wins
      Is not red gold, but a few skins.
      it is not right that these poor men
      Their harbour-dues should pay again.
      That they paid once I know is true;
      Remit, great king, what scarce is due."
 Earl Svein and Einar Tambaskelfer gathered a large armed force,
 with which they came by the upper road into Gaulardal, and so
 down to Nidaros, with nearly 2000 men.  King Olaf's men were out
 upon the Gaular ridge, and had a guard on horseback.  They became
 aware that a force was coming down the Gaulardal, and they
 brought word of it to the king about midnight.  The king got up
 immediately, ordered the people to be wakened, and they went on
 board of the ships, bearing all their clothes and arms on board,
 and all that they could take with them, and then rowed out of the
 river.  Then came the earl's men to the town at the same moment,
 took all the Christmas provision, and set fire to the houses.
 King Olaf went out of the fjord down to Orkadal, and there landed
 the men from their ships.  From Orkadal they went up to the
 mountains, and over the mountains eastwards into Gudbrandsdal. 
 In the lines composed about Kleng Brusason, it is said that Earl
 Eirik burned the town of Nidaros: --
      "The king's half-finished hall,
      Rafters, root, and all,
      Is burned down by the river's side;
      The flame spreads o'er the city wide."
 King Olaf went southwards through Gudbrandsdal, and thence out to
 Hedemark.  In the depth of winter (A.D. 1015) he went about in
 guest-quarters; but when spring returned he collected men, and
 went to Viken.  He had with him many people from Hedemark, whom
 the kings had given him; and also many powerful people from among
 the bondes joined him, among whom Ketil Kalf from Ringanes.  He
 had also people from Raumarike.  His stepfather, Sigurd Syr, gave
 him the help also of a great body of men.  They went down from
 thence to the coast, and made ready to put to sea from Viken. 
 The fleet, which was manned with many fine fellows, went out then
 to Tunsberg.
 After Yule (A.D. 1015) Earl Svein gathers all the men of the
 Throndhjem country, proclaims a levy for an expedition, and fits
 out ships.  At that time there were in the Throndhjem country a
 great number of lendermen; and many of them were so powerful and
 well-born, that they descended from earls, or even from the royal
 race, which in a short course of generations reckoned to Harald
 Harfager, and they were also very rich.  These lendermen were of
 great help to the kings or earls who ruled the land; for it was
 as if the lenderman had the bonde-people of each district in his
 power.  Earl Svein being a good friend of the lendermen, it was
 easy for him to collect people.  His brother-in-law, Einar
 Tambaskelfer, was on his side, and with him many other lendermen;
 and among them many, both lendermen and bondes, who the winter
 before had taken the oath of fidelity to King Olaf.  When they
 were ready for sea they went directly out of the fjord, steering
 south along the land, and drawing men from every district.  When
 they came farther south, abreast of Rogaland, Erling Skialgson
 came to meet them, with many people and many lendermen with him.
 Now they steered eastward with their whole fleet to Viken, and
 Earl Svein ran in there towards the end of Easter.  The earl
 steered his fleet to Grenmar, and ran into Nesjar (A.D. 1015).
 King Olaf steered his fleet out from Viken, until the two fleets
 were not far from each other, and they got news of each other the
 Saturday before Palm Sunday.  King Olaf himself had a ship called
 the Carl's Head, on the bow of which a king's head was carved
 out, and he himself had carved it.  This head was used long after
 in Norway on ships which kings steered themselves.
 As soon as day dawned on Sunday morning, King Olaf got up, put on
 his clothes, went to the land, and ordered to sound the signal
 for the whole army to come on shore.  Then he made a speech to
 the troops, and told the whole assembly that he had heard there
 was but a short distance between them and Earl Svein.  "Now,"
 said he, "we shall make ready; for it can be but a short time
 until we meet.  Let the people arm, and every man be at the post
 that has been appointed him, so that all may be ready when I
 order the signal to sound for casting off from the land.  Then
 let us row off at once; and so that none go on before the rest of
 the ships, and none lag behind when I row out of the harbour: for
 we cannot tell if we shall find the earl where he was lying, or
 if he has come out to meet us.  When we do meet, and the battle
 begins, let people be alert to bring all our ships in close
 order, and ready to bind them together.  Let us spare ourselves
 in the beginning, and take care of our weapons, that we do not
 cast them into the sea, or shoot them away in the air to no
 purpose.  But when the fight becomes hot and the ships are bound
 together, then let each man show what is in him of manly spirit."
 King Olaf had in his ship 100 men armed in coats of ring-mail,
 and in foreign helmets.  The most of his men had white shields,
 on which the holy cross was gilt; but some had painted it in blue
 or red.  He had also had the cross painted in front on all the
 helmets, in a pale colour.  He had a white banner on which was a
 serpent figured.  He ordered a mass to be read before him, went
 on board ship, and ordered his people to refresh themselves with
 meat and drink.  He then ordered the war-horns to sound to
 battle, to leave the harbour, and row off to seek the earl.  Now
 when they came to the harbour where the earl had lain, the earl's
 men were armed, and beginning to row out of the harbour; but when
 they saw the king's fleet coming they began to bind the ships
 together, to set up their banners, and to make ready for the
 fight.  When King Olaf saw this he hastened the rowing, laid his
 ship alongside the earl's, and the battle began.  So says Sigvat
 the skald: --
      "Boldly the king did then pursue
      Earl Svein, nor let him out of view.
      The blood ran down the reindeer's flank
      Of each sea-king -- his vessel's plank.
      Nor did the earl's stout warriors spare
      In battle-brunt the sword and spear.
      Earl Svein his ships of war pushed on,
      And lashed their stout stems one to one."
 It is said that King Olaf brought his ships into battle while
 Svein was still lying in the harbour.  Sigvat the skald was
 himself in the fight; and in summer, just after the battle, he
 composed a lay, which is called the "Nesjar Song", in which he
 tells particularly the circumstances: --
      "In the fierce fight 'tis known how near
      The scorner of the ice-cold spear
      Laid the Charles' head the earl on board,
      All eastward of the Agder fjord."
 Then was the conflict exceedingly sharp, and it was long before
 it could be seen how it was to go in the end.  Many fell on both
 sides, and many were the wounded.  So says Sigvat: --
      "No urging did the earl require,
      Midst spear and sword -- the battle's fire;
      No urging did the brave king need
      The ravens in this shield-storm to feed.
      Of limb-lopping enough was there,
      And ghastly wounds of sword and spear.
      Never, I think, was rougher play
      Than both the armies had that day."
 The earl had most men, but the king had a chosen crew in his
 ship, who had followed him in all his wars; and, besides, they
 were so excellently equipped, as before related, that each man
 had a coat of ring-mail, so that he could not be wounded.  So
 says Sigvat: --
      "Our lads, broad-shouldered, tall, and hale,
      Drew on their cold shirts of ring-mail.
      Soon sword on sword was shrilly ringing,
      And in the air the spears were singing.
      Under our helms we hid our hair,
      For thick flew arrows through the air.
      Right glad was I our gallant crew,
      Steel-clad from head to foot, to view."
 When the men began to fall on board the earl's ships, and many
 appeared wounded, so that the sides of the vessels were but
 thinly beset with men, the crew of King Olaf prepared to board.
 Their banner was brought up to the ship that was nearest the
 earl's, and the king himself followed the banner.  So says
 Sigvat: --
      "`On with the king!' his banners waving:
      `On with the king!' the spears he's braving!
      `On, steel-clad men! and storm the deck,
      Slippery with blood and strewed with wreck.
      A different work ye have to share,
      His banner in war-storm to bear,
      From your fair girl's, who round the hall
      Brings the full mead-bowl to us all.'"
 Now was the severest fighting.  Many of Svein's men fell, and
 some sprang overboard.  So says Sigvat: --
      "Into the ship our brave lads spring, --
      On shield and helm their red blades ring;
      The air resounds with stroke on stroke, --
      The shields are cleft, the helms are broke.
      The wounded bonde o'er the side
      Falls shrieking in the blood-stained tide --
      The deck is cleared with wild uproar --
      The dead crew float about the shore."
 And also these lines: --
      "The shields we brought from home were white,
      Now they are red-stained in the fight:
      This work was fit for those who wore
      Ringed coats-of-mail their breasts before.
      Where for the foe blunted the best sword
      I saw our young king climb on board.
      He stormed the first; we followed him --
      The war-birds now in blood may swim."
 Now defeat began to come down upon the earl's men.  The king's
 men pressed upon the earl's ship and entered it; but when the
 earl saw how it was going, he called out to his forecastle-men to
 cut the cables and cast the ship loose, which they did.  Then the
 king's men threw grapplings over the timber heads of the ship,
 and so held her fast to their own; but the earl ordered the
 timber heads to be cut away, which was done.  So says Sigvat: --
      "The earl, his noble ship to save,
      To cut the posts loud order gave.
      The ship escaped: our greedy eyes
      Had looked on her as a clear prize.
      The earl escaped; but ere he fled
      We feasted Odin's fowls with dead: --
      With many a goodly corpse that floated
      Round our ship's stern his birds were bloated."
 Einar Tambaskelfer had laid his ship right alongside the earl's.
 They threw an anchor over the bows of the earl's ship, and thus
 towed her away, and they slipped out of the fjord together.
 Thereafter the whole of the earl's fleet took to flight, and
 rowed out of the fjord.  The skald Berse Torfason was on the
 forecastle of the earl's ship; and as it was gliding past the
 king's fleet, King Olaf called out to him -- for he knew Berse,
 who was distinguished as a remarkably handsome man, always well
 equipped in clothes and arms -- "Farewell, Berse!"  He replied,
 "Farewell, king!"  So says Berse himself, in a poem he composed
 when he fell into King Olaf's power, and was laid in prison and
 in fetters on board a ship: --
      "Olaf the Brave
      A `farewell' gave,
      (No time was there to parley long,)
      To me who knows the art of song.
           The skald was fain
           `Farewell' again
      In the same terms back to send --
      The rule in arms to foe or friend.
           Earl Svein's distress
           I well can guess,
      When flight he was compelled to take:
      His fortunes I will ne'er forsake,
           Though I lie here
      In chains a year,
      In thy great vessel all forlorn,
      To crouch to thee I still will scorn:
           I still will say,
           No milder sway
      Than from thy foe this land e'er knew:
      To him, my early friend, I'm true."
 Now some of the earl's men fled up the country, some surrendered
 at discretion; but Svein and his followers rowed out of the
 fjord, and the chiefs laid their vessels together to talk with
 each other, for the earl wanted counsel from his lendermen.
 Erling Skialgson advised that they should sail north, collect
 people, and fight King Olaf again; but as they had lost many
 people, the most were of opinion that the earl should leave the
 country, and repair to his brother-in-law the Swedish King, and
 strengthen himself there with men.  Einar Tambaskelfer approved
 also of that advice, as they had no power to hold battle against
 Olaf.  So they discharged their fleet.  The earl sailed across
 Folden, and with him Einar Tambaskelfer.  Erling Skialgson again,
 and likewise many other lendermen who would not abandon their
 udal possessions, went north to their homes; and Erling had many
 people that summer about him.
 When King Olaf and his men saw that the earl had gathered his
 ships together, Sigurd Syr was in haste for pursuing the earl,
 and letting steel decide their cause.  But King Olaf replies,
 that he would first see what the earl intended doing -- whether
 he would keep his force together or discharge his fleet.  Sigurd
 Syr said, "It is for thee, king, to command; but," he adds, "I
 fear, from thy disposition and wilfulness, that thou wilt some
 day be betrayed by trusting to those great people, for they are
 accustomed of old to bid defiance to their sovereigns."  There
 was no attack made, for it was soon seen that the earl's fleet
 was dispersing.  Then King Olaf ransacked the slain, and remained
 there some days to divide the booty.  At that time Sigvat made
 these verses: --
      "The tale I tell is true
      To their homes returned but few
      Of Svein's men who came to meet
      King Olaf's gallant fleet.
      From the North these warmen came
      To try the bloody game, --
      On the waves their corpses borne
      Show the game that Sunday morn.
      The Throndhjem girls so fair
      Their jeers, I think, will spare,
      For the king's force was but small
      That emptied Throndhjem's hall.
      But if they will have their jeer,
      They may ask their sweethearts dear,
      Why they have returned shorn
      Who went to shear that Sunday morn."
 And also these: --
      "Now will the king's power rise,
      For the Upland men still prize
      The king who o'er the sea
      Steers to bloody victory.
      Earl Svein!  thou now wilt know
      That our lads can make blood flow --
      That the Hedemarkers hale
      Can do more than tap good ale."
 King Olaf gave his stepfather King Sigurd Syr, and the other
 chiefs who had assisted him, handsome presents at parting.  He
 gave Ketil of Ringanes a yacht of fifteen benches of rowers,
 which Ketil brought up the Raum river and into the Mjosen lake.
 King Olaf sent spies out to trace the earl's doings (A.D. 1015);
 and when he found that the earl had left the country he sailed
 out west, and to Viken, where many people came to him.  At the
 Thing there he was taken as king, and so he proceeded all the way
 to the Naze; and when he heard that Erling Skialgson had gathered
 a large force, he did not tarry in North Agder, but sailed with a
 steady fair wind to the Throndhjem country; for there it appeared
 to him was the greatest strength of the land, if he could subdue
 it for himself while the earl was abroad.  When Olaf came to
 Throndhjem there was no opposition, and he was elected there to
 be king.  In harvest (A.D. 1015) he took his seat in the town of
 Nidaros, and collected the needful winter provision (A.D. 1016).
 He built a king's house, and raised Clement's church on the spot
 on which it now stands.  He parcelled out building ground, which
 he gave to bondes, merchants, or others who he thought would
 build.  There he sat down with many men-at-arms around him; for
 he put no great confidence in the Throndhjem people, if the earl
 should return to the country.  The people of the interior of the
 Throndhjem country showed this clearly, for he got no land-scat
 from them.
 Earl Svein went first to Svithjod to his brother-in-law Olaf the
 Swedish king, told him all that had happened between him and Olaf
 the Thick, and asked his advice about what he should now
 undertake.  The king said that the earl should stay with him if
 he liked, and get such a portion of his kingdom to rule over as
 should seem to him sufficient; "or otherwise," says he, "I will
 give thee help of forces to conquer the country again from Olaf."
 The earl chose the latter; for all those among his men who had
 great possessions in Norway, which was the case with many who
 were with him, were anxious to get back; and in the council they
 held about this, it was resolved that in winter they should take
 the land-way over Helsingjaland and Jamtaland, and so down into
 the Throndhjem land; for the earl reckoned most upon the faithful
 help and strength of the Throndhjem people of the interior as
 soon as he should appear there.  In the meantime, however, it was
 determined to take a cruise in summer in the Baltic to gather
 Earl Svein went eastward with his forces to Russia, and passed
 the summer (A.D. 1015) in marauding there; but on the approach of
 autumn returned with his ships to Svithjod.  There he fell into a
 sickness, which proved fatal.  After the earl's death some of the
 people who had followed him remained in Svithjod; others went to
 Helsingjaland, thence to Jamtaland, and so from the east over the
 dividing ridge of the country to the Throndhjem district, where
 they told all that had happened upon their journey: and thus the
 truth of Earl Svein's death was known (A.D. 1016).
 Einar Tambaskelfer, and the people who had followed him went in
 winter to the Swedish king, and were received in a friendly
 manner.  There were also among them many who had followed the
 earl.  The Swedish king took it much amiss that Olaf the Thick
 had set himself down in his scat-lands, and driven the earl out
 of them, and therefore he threatened the king with his heaviest
 vengeance when opportunity offered.  He said that Olaf ought not
 to have had the presumption to take the dominions which the earl
 had held of him; and all the Swedish king's men agreed with him.
 But the Throndhjem people, when they heard for certain that the
 earl was dead. and could not be expected back to Norway, turned
 all to obedience to King Olaf.  Many came from the interior of
 the Throndhjem country, and became King Olaf's men; others sent
 word and tokens that they would service him.  Then, in autumn, he
 went into the interior of Throndhjem, and held Things with the
 bondes, and was received as king in each district.  He returned
 to Nidaros, and brought there all the king's scat and revenue,
 and had his winter-seat provided there (A.D. 1016).
 King Olaf built a king's house in Nidaros, and in it was a large
 room for his court, with doors at both ends.  The king's high-
 seat was in the middle of the room; and within sat his court-
 bishop, Grimkel, and next him his other priests; without them sat
 his counsellors; and in the other high-seat opposite to the king
 sat his marshal, Bjorn, and next to him his pursuivants.  When
 people of importance came to him, they also had a seat of honour.
 The ale was drunk by the fire-light.  He divided the service
 among his men after the fashion of other kings.  He had in his
 house sixty court-men and thirty pursuivants; and to them he gave
 pay and certain regulations.  He had also thirty house-servants
 to do the needful work about the house, and procure what was
 required.  He had, besides, many slaves.  At the house were many
 outbuildings, in which the court-men slept.  There was also a
 large room, in which the king held his court-meetings.
 It was King Olaf's custom to rise betimes in the morning, put on
 his clothes, wash his hands, and then go to the church and hear
 the matins and morning mass.  Thereafter he went to the Thing-
 meeting, to bring people to agreement with each other, or to talk
 of one or the other matter that appeared to him necessary.  He
 invited to him great and small who were known to be men of 
 understanding.  He often made them recite to him the laws which
 Hakon Athelstan's foster-son had made for Throndhjem; and after
 considering them with those men of understanding, he ordered laws
 adding to or taking from those established before.  But Christian
 privileges he settled according to the advice of Bishop Grimbel
 and other learned priests; and bent his whole mind to uprooting
 heathenism, and old customs which he thought contrary to
 Christianity.  And he succeeded so far that the bondes accepted
 of the laws which the king proposed.  So says Sigvat: --
      "The king, who at the helm guides
      His warlike ship through clashing tides,
      Now gives one law for all the land --
      A heavenly law, which long will stand."
 King Olaf was a good and very gentle man, of little speech, and
 open-handed although greedy of money.  Sigvat the skald, as
 before related, was in King Olaf's house, and several Iceland
 men.  The king asked particularly how Christianity was observed
 in Iceland, and it appeared to him to be very far from where it
 ought to be; for, as to observing Christian practices, it was
 told the king that it was permitted there to eat horse-flesh, to
 expose infants as heathens do, besides many other things contrary
 to Christianity.  They also told the king about many principal
 men who were then in Iceland.  Skapte Thorodson was then the
 lagman of the country.  He inquired also of those who were best
 acquainted with it about the state of people in other distant
 countries; and his inquiries turned principally on how
 Christianity was observed in the Orkney, Shetland, and Farey
 Islands: and, as far as he could learn, it was far from being as
 he could have wished.  Such conversation was usually carried on
 by him; or else he spoke about the laws and rights of the
 The same winter (A.D. 1016) came messengers from the Swedish
 king, Olaf the Swede, out of Svithjod: and their leaders were two
 brothers, Thorgaut Skarde and Asgaut the bailiff; and they, had
 twenty-four men with them, when they came from the eastward, over
 the ridge of the country down into Veradal, they summoned a Thing
 of the bondes, talked to them, and demanded of them scat and
 duties upon account of the king of Sweden.  But the bondes, after
 consulting with each other, determined only to pay the scat which
 the Swedish king required in so far as King Olaf required none
 upon his account, but refused to pay scat to both.  The
 messengers proceeded farther down the valley; but received at
 every Thing they held the same answer, and no money.  They went
 forward to Skaun, held a Thing there, and demanded scat; but it
 went there as before.  Then they came to Stjoradal, and summoned
 a Thing, but the bondes would not come to it.  Now the messengers
 saw that their business was a failure; and Thorgaut proposed that
 they should turn about, and go eastward again. "I do not think,"
 says Asgaut, "that we have performed the king's errand unless we
 go to King Olaf the Thick, since the bondes refer the matter to
 him."  He was their commander; so they proceeded to the town
 (Nidaros), and took lodging there.  The day after they presented
 themselves to the king, just as he was seated at table, saluted
 him, and said they came with a message of the Swedish king.  The
 king told them to come to him next day.  Next day the king,
 having heard mass, went to his Thing-house, ordered the
 messengers of the Swedish king to be called, and told them to
 produce their message.  Then Thorgaut spoke, and told first what
 his errand was, and next how the Throndhjem people of the
 interior had replied to it; and asked the king's decision on the
 business, that they might know what result their errand there was
 to have.  The king answers, "While the earls ruled over the
 country, it was not to be wondered at if the country people
 thought themselves bound to obey them, as they were at least of
 the royal race of the kingdom.  But it would have been more just
 if those earls had given assistance and service to the kings who
 had a right to the country, rather than to foreign kings, or to
 stir up opposition to their lawful kings, depriving them of their
 land and kingdom.  With regard to Olaf the Swede, who calls
 himself entitled to the kingdom of Norway, I, who in fact am so
 entitled, can see no ground for his claim; but well remember the
 skaith and damage we have suffered from him and his relations."
 Then says Asgaut. "It is not wonderful that thou art called Olaf
 the Thick, seeing thou answerest so haughtily to such a prince's
 message, and canst not see clearly how heavy the king's wrath
 will be for thee to support, as many have experienced who had
 greater strength than thou appearest to have.  But if thou
 wishest to keep hold of thy kingdom, it will be best for thee to
 come to the king, and be his man; and we shall beg him to give
 thee this kingdom in fief under him."
 The king replies with all gentleness, "I will give thee an
 advice, Asgaut, in return.  Go back to the east again to thy
 king, and tell him that early in spring I will make myself ready,
 and will proceed eastward to the ancient frontier that divided
 formerly the kingdom of the kings of Norway from Sweden.  There
 he may come if he likes, that we may conclude a peace with each
 other; and each of us will retain the kingdom to which he is
 Now the messengers turned back to their lodging, and prepared for
 their departure, and the king went to table.  The messengers came
 back soon after to the king's house; but the doorkeepers saw it,
 and reported it to the king, who told them not to let the
 messengers in.  "I will not speak with them," said he.  Then the
 messengers went off, and Thorgaut said he would now return home
 with his men; but Asgaut insisted still that he would go forward
 with the king's errand: so they separated.  Thorgaut proceeded
 accordingly through Strind; but Asgaut went into Gaulardal and
 Orkadal, and intended proceeding southwards to More, to deliver
 his king's message.  When King Olaf came to the knowledge of this
 he sent out his pursuivants after them, who found them at the
 ness in Stein, bound their hands behind their backs, and led them
 down to the point called Gaularas, where they raised a gallows,
 and hanged them so that they could be seen by those who travelled
 the usual sea-way out of the fjord.  Thorgaut heard this news
 before he had travelled far on his way home through the
 Throndhjem country; and he hastened on his journey until he came
 to the Swedish king, and told him how it had gone with them.  The
 king was highly enraged when he heard the account of it; and he
 had no lack of high words.
 The spring thereafter (A.D. 1016) King Olaf Haraldson calls out
 an army from the Throndhjem land, and makes ready to proceed
 eastward.  Some of the Iceland traders were then ready to sail
 from Norway.  With them King Olaf sent word and token to Hjalte
 Skeggjason, and summoned him to come to him, and at the same time
 sent a verbal message to Skapte the lagman, and other men who
 principally took part in the lawgiving of Iceland, to take out of
 the law whatever appeared contrary to Christianity.  He sent,
 besides, a message of friendship to the people in general.  The
 king then proceeded southwards himself along the coast, stopping
 at every district, and holding Things with the bondes; and in
 each Thing he ordered the Christian law to be read, together with
 the message of salvation thereunto belonging, and with which many
 ill customs and much heathenism were swept away at once among the
 common people: for the earls had kept well the old laws and
 rights of the country; but with respect to keeping Christianity,
 they had allowed every man to do as he liked.  It was thus come
 so far that the people were baptized in the most places on the
 sea-coast, but the most of them were ignorant of Christian law.
 In the upper ends of the valleys, and in the habitations among
 the mountains, the greater part of the people were heathen; for
 when the common man is left to himself, the faith he has been
 taught in his childhood is that which has the strongest hold over
 his inclination.  But the king threatened the most violent
 proceedings against great or small, who, after the king's
 message, would not adopt Christianity.  In the meantime Olaf was
 proclaimed king in every Law Thing in the country, and no man
 spoke against him.  While he lay in Karmtsund messengers went
 between him and Erling Skjalgson, who endeavoured to make peace
 between them; and the meeting was appointed in Whitings Isle.
 When they met they spoke with each other about agreement
 together; but Erling found something else than he expected in the
 conversation: for when he insisted on having all the fiefs which
 Olaf Trygvason, and afterwards the Earls Svein and Hakon, had
 given him, and on that condition would be his man and dutiful
 friend, the king answered, "It appears to me, Erling, that it
 would be no bad bargain for thee to get as great fiefs from me
 for thy aid and friendship as thou hadst from Earl Eirik, a man
 who had done thee the greatest injury by the bloodshed of thy
 men; but even if I let thee remain the greatest lenderman in
 Norway, I will bestow my fiefs according to my own will, and not
 act as if ye lendermen had udal right to my ancestor's heritage,
 and I was obliged to buy your services with manifold rewards."
 Erling had no disposition to sue for even the smallest thing; and
 he saw that the king was not easily dealt with.  He saw also that
 he had only two conditions before him: the one was to make no
 agreement with the king, and stand by the consequences; the other
 to leave it entirely to the king's pleasure.  Although it was
 much against his inclination, he chose the latter, and merely
 said to the king, "The service will be the most useful to thee
 which I give with a free will."  And thus their conference ended.
 Erling's relations and friends came to him afterwards, and
 advised him to give way, and proceed with more prudence and less
 pride.  "Thou wilt still," they said, "be the most important and
 most respected lenderman in Norway, both on account of thy own
 and thy relations' abilities and great wealth."  Erling found
 that this was prudent advice, and that they who gave it did so
 with a good intention, and he followed it accordingly.  Erling
 went into the king's service on such conditions as the king
 himself should determine and please.  Thereafter they separated
 in some shape reconciled, and Olaf went his way eastward along
 the coast (A.D. 1016).
 As soon as it was reported that Olaf had come to Viken, the Danes
 who had offices under the Danish king set off for Denmark,
 without waiting for King Olaf.  But King Olaf sailed in along
 Viken, holding Things with the bondes.  All the people of the
 country submitted to him, and thereafter he took all the king's
 taxes, and remained the summer (A.D. 1016) in Viken.  He then
 sailed east from Tunsberg across the fjord, and all the way east
 to Svinasund.  There the Swedish king's dominions begin, and he
 had set officers over this country; namely, Eilif Gautske over
 the north part, and Hroe Skialge over the east part, all the way
 to the Gaut river.  Hroe had family friends on both sides of the
 river, and also great farms on Hising Island, and was besides a
 mighty and very rich man.  Eilif was also of great family, and
 very wealthy.  Now when King Olaf came to Ranrike he summoned the
 people to a Thing, and all who dwelt on the sea-coast or in the
 out-islands came to him.  Now when the Thing was seated the
 king's marshal, Bjorn, held a speech to them, in which he told
 the bondes to receive Olaf as their king, in the same way as had
 been done in all other parts of Norway.  Then stood up a bold
 bonde by name Brynjolf Ulfalde, and said, "We bondes know where
 the division-boundaries between the Norway and Danish and Swedish
 kings' lands have stood by rights in old times; namely, that the
 Gaut river divided their lands between the Vener lake and the
 sea; but towards the north the forests until Eid forest, and from
 thence the ridge of the country all north to Finmark.  We know,
 also, that by turns they have made inroads upon each other's
 territories, and that the Swedes have long had power all the way
 to Svinasund.  But, sooth to say, I know that it is the
 inclination of many rather to serve the king of Norway, but they
 dare not; for the Swedish king's dominions surround us, both
 eastward, southwards, and also up the country; and besides, it
 may be expected that the king of Norway must soon go to the
 north, where the strength of his kingdom lies, and then we have
 no power to withstand the Gautlanders.  Now it is for the king to
 give us good counsel, for we have great desire to be his men."
 After the Thing, in the evening, Brynjolf was in the king's tent,
 and the day after likewise, and they had much private
 conversation together.  Then the king proceeded eastwards along
 Viken.  Now when Eilif heard of his arrival, he sent out spies to
 discover what he was about; but he himself, with thirty men, kept
 himself high up in the habitations among the hills, where he had
 gathered together bondes.  Many of the bondes came to King Olaf,
 but some sent friendly messages to him.  People went between King
 Olaf and Eilif, and they entreated each separately to hold a
 Thing-meeting between themselves, and make peace in one way or
 another.  They told Eilif that they might expect violent
 treatment from King Olaf if they opposed his orders; but promised
 Eilif he should not want men.  It was determined that they should
 come down from the high country, and hold a thing with the bondes
 and the king.  King Olaf thereupon sent the chief of his
 pursuivants, Thorer Lange, with six men, to Brynjolf.  They were
 equipped with their coats-of-mail under their cloaks, and their
 hats over their helmets.  The following day the bondes came in
 crowds down with Eilif; and in his suite was Brynjolf, and with
 him Thorer.  The king laid his ships close to a rocky knoll that
 stuck out into the sea, and upon it the king went with his
 people, and sat down.  Below was a flat field, on which the
 bondes' force was; but Eilif's men were drawn up, forming a
 shield-fence before him.  Bjorn the marshal spoke long and
 cleverly upon the king's account, and when he sat down Eilif
 arose to speak; but at the same moment Thorer Lange rose, drew
 his sword, and struck Eilif on the neck, so that his head flew
 off.  Then the whole bonde-force started up; but the Gautland men
 set off in full flight and Thorer with his people killed several
 of them.  Now when the crowd was settled again, and the noise
 over the king stood up, and told the bondes to seat themselves.
 They did so, and then much was spoken.  The end of it was that
 they submitted to the king, and promised fidelity to him; and he,
 on the other hand, promised not to desert them, but to remain at
 hand until the discord between him and the Swedish Olaf was
 settled in one way or other.  King Olaf then brought the whole
 northern district under his power, and went in summer eastward as
 far as the Gaut river, and got all the king's scat among the
 islands.  But when summer (A.D. 1016) was drawing towards an end
 he returned north to Viken, and sailed up the Raum river to a
 waterfall called Sarp.  On the north side of the fall, a point of
 land juts out into the river.  There the king ordered a rampart
 to be built right across the ness, of stone, turf, and wood, and
 a ditch to be dug in front of it; so that it was a large earthen
 fort or burgh, which he made a merchant town of.  He had a king's
 house put up, and ordered the building of Mary church.  He also
 laid out plans for other houses, and got people to build on them.
 In harvest (A.D. 1016) he let everything be gathered there that
 was useful for his winter residence (A.D. 1017), and sat there
 with a great many people, and the rest he quartered in the
 neighbouring districts.  The king prohibited all exports from
 Viken to Gautland of herrings and salt, which the Gautland people
 could ill do without.  This year the king held a great Yule
 feast, to which he invited many great bondes.
 There was a man called Eyvind Urarhorn, who was a great man, of
 high birth, who had his descent from the East Agder country.
 Every summer he went out on a viking cruise, sometimes to the
 West sea, sometimes to the Baltic, sometimes south to Flanders,
 and had a well-armed cutter (snekkia) of twenty benches of
 rowers.  He had been also at Nesjar, and given his aid to the
 king; and when they separated the king promised him his favour,
 and Eyvind, again, promised to come to the king's aid whenever he
 was required.  This winter (A.D. 1017) Eyvind was at the Yule
 feast of the king, and received goodly gifts from him.  Brynjolf
 Ulfalde was also with the king, and he received a Yule present
 from the king of a gold-mounted sword, and also a farm called
 Vettaland, which is a very large head-farm of the district.
 Brynjolf composed a song about these gifts, of which the refrain
 was --
      "The song-famed hero to my hand
      Gave a good sword, and Vettaland."
 The king afterwards gave him the title of Lenderman, and Brynjolf
 was ever after the king's greatest friend.
 This winter (A.D. 1017) Thrand White from Throndhjem went east to
 Jamtaland, to take up scat upon account of King Olaf.  But when
 he had collected the scat he was surprised by men of the Swedish
 king, who killed him and his men, twelve in all, and brought the
 scat to the Swedish king.  King Olaf was very ill-pleased when he
 heard this news.
 King Olaf made Christian law to be proclaimed in Viken, in the
 same way as in the North country.  It succeeded well, because the
 people of Viken were better acquainted with the Christian customs
 than the people in the north; for, both winter and summer, there
 were many merchants in Viken, both Danish and Saxon.  The people
 of Viken, also, had much trading intercourse with England, and
 Saxony, and Flanders, and Denmark; and some had been on viking
 expeditions, and had had their winter abode in Christian lands.
 About spring-time (A.D. 1017) King Olaf sent a message that
 Eyvind Urarhorn should come to him; and they spake together in
 private for a long time.  Thereafter Eyvind made himself ready
 for a viking cruise.  He sailed south towards Viken, and brought
 up at the Eikreys Isles without Hising Isle.  There he heard that
 Hroe Skialge had gone northwards towards Ordost, and had there
 made a levy of men and goods on account of the Swedish king, and
 was expected from the north.  Eyvind rowed in by Haugasund, and
 Hroe came rowing from the north, and they met in the sound and
 fought.  Hroe fell there, with nearly thirty men; and Eyvind took
 all the goods Hroe had with him.  Eyvind then proceeded to the
 Baltic, and was all summer on a viking cruise.
 There was a man called Gudleik Gerske, who came originally from
 Agder.  He was a great merchant, who went far and wide by sea,
 was very rich, and drove a trade with various countries.  He
 often went east to Gardarike (Russia), and therefore was called
 Gudleik Gerske (the Russian).  This spring (A.D. 1017) Gudleik
 fitted out his ship, and intended to go east in summer to Russia.
 King Olaf sent a message to him that he wanted to speak to him;
 and when Gudleik came to the king he told him he would go in
 partnership with him, and told him to purchase some costly
 articles which were difficult to be had in this country.  Gudleik
 said that it should be according to the king's desire.  The king
 ordered as much money to be delivered to Gudleik as he thought
 sufficient, and then Gudleik set out for the Baltic.  They lay in
 a sound in Gotland; and there it happened, as it often does, that
 people cannot keep their own secrets, and the people of the
 country came to know that in this ship was Olaf the Thick's
 partner.  Gudleik went in summer eastwards to Novgorod, where he
 bought fine and costly clothes, which he intended for the king as
 a state dress; and also precious furs, and remarkably splendid
 table utensils.  In autumn (A.D. 1017), as Gudleik was returning
 from the east, he met a contrary wind, and lay for a long time at
 the island Eyland.  There came Thorgaut Skarde, who in autumn had
 heard of Gudleik's course, in a long-ship against him, and gave
 him battle.  They fought long, and Gudleik and his people
 defended themselves for a long time; but the numbers against them
 were great, and Gudleik and many of his ship's crew fell, and a
 great many of them were wounded.  Thorgaut took all their goods,
 and King Olaf's, and he and his comrades divided the booty among
 them equally; but he said the Swedish king ought to have the
 precious articles of King Olaf, as these, he said, should be
 considered as part of the scat due to him from Norway. 
 Thereafter Thorgaut proceeded east to Svithjod.  These tidings
 were soon known; and as Eyvind Urarhorn came soon after to
 Eyland, he heard the news, and sailed east after Thorgaut and his
 troop, and overtook them among the Swedish isles on the coast,
 and gave battle.  There Thorgaut and the most of his men were
 killed, and the rest sprang overboard.  Eyvind took all the goods
 and all the costly articles of King Olaf which they had captured
 from Gudleik, and went with these back to Norway in autumn, and
 delivered to King Olaf his precious wares.  The king thanked him
 in the most friendly way for his proceeding, and promised him
 anew his favour and friendship.  At this time Olaf had been three
 years king over Norway (A.D. 1015-1017).
 The same summer (A.D. 1017) King Olaf ordered a levy, and went
 out eastwards to the Gaut river, where he lay a great part of the
 summer.  Messages were passing between King Olaf, Earl Ragnvald,
 and the earl's wife, Ingebjorg, the daughter of Trygve.  She was
 very zealous about giving King Olaf of Norway every kind of help,
 and made it a matter of her deepest interest.  For this there
 were two causes.  She had a great friendship for King Olaf; and
 also she could never forget that the Swedish king had been one at
 the death of her brother, Olaf Trygvason; and also that he, on
 that account only, had any presence to rule over Norway.  The
 earl, by her persuasion, turned much towards friendship with King
 Olaf; and it proceeded so far that the earl and the king
 appointed a meeting, and met at the Gaut river.  They talked
 together of many things, but especially of the Norwegian and
 Swedish kings' relations with each other; both agreeing, as was
 the truth also, that it was the greatest loss, both to the people
 of Viken and of Gautland, that there was no peace for trade
 between the two countries; and at last both agreed upon a peace,
 and still-stand of arms between them until next summer; and they
 parted with mutual gifts and friendly speeches.
 The king thereupon returned north to Viken, and had all the royal
 revenues up to the Gaut river; and all the people of the country
 there had submitted to him.  King Olaf the Swede had so great a
 hatred of Olaf Haraldson, that no man dared to call him by his
 right name in the king's hearing.  They called him the thick man;
 and never named him without some hard by-name.
 The bondes in Viken spoke with each other about there being
 nothing for it but that the kings should make peace and a league
 with each other, and insisted upon it that they were badly used
 by the kings going to war; but nobody was so bold as to bring
 these murmurs before the king.  At last they begged Bjorn the
 marshal to bring this matter before the king, and entreat him to
 send messengers to the Swedish king to offer peace on his side.
 Bjorn was disinclined to do this, and put it off from himself
 with excuses; but on the entreaties of many of his friends, he
 promised at last to speak of it to the king; but declared, at the
 same time, that he knew it would be taken very ill by the king to
 propose that he should give way in anything to the Swedish king.
 The same summer (A.D. 1017) Hjalte Skeggjason came over to Norway
 from Iceland, according to the message sent him by King Olaf, and
 went directly to the king.  He was well received by the king, who
 told him to lodge in his house, and gave him a seat beside Bjorn 
 the marshal, and Hjalte became his comrade at table.  There was
 good-fellowship immediately between them.
 Once, when King Olaf had assembled the people and bondes to
 consult upon the good of the country, Bjorn the marshal said,
 "What think you, king, of the strife that is between the Swedish
 king and you?  Many people have fallen on both sides, without its
 being at all more determined than before what each of you shall
 have of the kingdom.  You have now been sitting in Viken one
 winter and two summers, and the whole country to the north is
 lying behind your back unseen; and the men who have property or
 udal rights in the north are weary of sitting here.  Now it is
 the wish of the lendermen, of your other people, and of the
 bondes that this should come to an end.  There is now a truce,
 agreement, and peace with the earl, and the West Gautland people
 who are nearest to us; and it appears to the people it would be
 best that you sent messengers to the Swedish king to offer a
 reconciliation on your side; and, without doubt, many who are
 about the Swedish king will support the proposal, for it is a
 common gain for those who dwell in both countries, both here and
 there."  This speech of Bjorn's received great applause.
 Then the king said, "It is fair, Bjorn, that the advice thou hast
 given should be carried out by thyself.  Thou shalt undertake
 this embassy thyself, and enjoy the good of it, if thou hast
 advised well; and if it involve any man in danger, thou hast
 involved thyself in it.  Moreover, it belongs to thy office to
 declare to the multitude what I wish to have told."  Then the
 king stood up, went to the church, and had high mass sung before
 him; and thereafter went to table.
 The following day Hjalte said to Bjorn, "Why art thou so
 melancholy, man?  Art thou sick, or art thou angry at any one?"
 Bjorn tells Hjalte his conversation with the king, and says it is
 a very dangerous errand.
 Hjalte says, "It is their lot who follow kings that they enjoy
 high honours, and are more respected than other men, but stand
 often in danger of their lives: and they must understand how to
 bear both parts of their lot.  The king's luck is great; and much
 honour will be gained by this business, if it succeed."
 Bjorn answered, "Since thou makest so light of this business in
 thy speech, wilt thou go with me?  The king has promised that I
 shall have companions with me on the journey."
 "Certainly," says Hjalte; "I will follow thee, if thou wilt: for
 never again shall I fall in with such a comrade if we part."
 A few days afterwards. when the king was at a Thing-meeting,
 Bjorn came with eleven others.  He says to the king that they
 were now ready to proceed on their mission, and that their horses
 stood saddled at the door.  "And now," says he, "I would know
 with what errand I am to go, or what orders thou givest us."
 The king replies, "Ye shall carry these my words to the Swedish
 king -- that I will establish peace between our countries up to
 the frontier which Olaf Trygvason had before me; and each shall
 bind himself faithfully not to trespass over it.  But with regard
 to the loss of people, no man must mention it if peace there is
 to be; for the Swedish king cannot with money pay for the men the
 Swedes have deprived us of."  Thereupon the king rose, and went
 out with Bjorn and his followers; and he took a gold-mounted
 sword and a gold ring, and said, in handing over the sword to
 Bjorn, "This I give thee: it was given to me in summer by Earl
 Ragnvald.  To him ye shall go; and bring him word from me to
 advance your errand with his counsel and strength.  This thy
 errand I will think well fulfilled if thou hearest the Swedish
 king's own words, be they yea or nay: and this gold ring thou
 shalt give Earl Ragnvald.  These are tokens (1) he must know
 Hjalte went up to the king, saluted him, and said, "We need much,
 king, that thy luck attend us;" and wished that they might meet
 again in good health. 
 The king asked where Hjalte was going.
 "With Bjorn," said he.
 The king said, "It will assist much to the good success of the
 journey that thou goest too, for thy good fortune has often been
 proved; and be assured that I shall wish that all my luck, if
 that be of any weight, may attend thee and thy company."
 Bjorn and his followers rode their way, and came to Earl
 Ragnvald's court, where they were well received.  Bjorn was a
 celebrated and generally known man, -- known by sight and speech
 to all who had ever seen King Olaf; for at every Thing, Bjorn
 stood up and told the king's message.  Ingebjorg, the earl's
 wife, went up to Hjalte and looked at him.  She recognized him,
 for she was living with her brother Olaf Trygvason when Hjalte
 was there: and she knew how to reckon up the relationship between
 King Olaf and Vilborg, the wife of Hjalte; for Eirik Bjodaskalle
 father of Astrid, King Olaf Trygvason's mother, and Bodvar father
 of Olaf, mother of Gissur White the father of Vilborg, were
 brother's sons of the lenderman Vikingakare of Vors.
 They enjoyed here good entertainment.  One day Bjorn entered into
 conversation with the earl and Ingebjorg, in which he set forth
 his errand, and produced to the earl his tokens.
 The earl replies, "What hast thou done, Bjorn, that the king
 wishes thy death?  For, so far from thy errand having any
 success, I do not think a man can be found who could speak these
 words to the Swedish king without incurring wrath and punishment.
 King Olaf, king of Sweden, is too proud for any man to speak to
 him on anything he is angry at."
 Then Bjorn says, "Nothing has happened to me that King Olaf is
 offended at; but many of his disposition act both for themselves
 and others, in a way that only men who are daring can succeed in.
 But as yet all his plans have had good success, and I think this
 will turn out well too; so I assure you, earl, that I will
 actually travel to the Swedish king, and not turn back before I
 have brought to his ears every word that King Olaf told me to say
 to him, unless death prevent me, or that I am in bonds, and
 cannot perform my errand; and this I must do, whether you give
 any aid or no aid to me in fulfilling the king's wishes."
 Then said IngebJorg, "I will soon declare my opinion.  I think,
 earl, thou must turn all thy attention to supporting King Olaf
 the king of Norway's desire that this message be laid before the
 Swedish king, in whatever way he may answer it.  Although the
 Swedish king's anger should be incurred, and our power and
 property be at stake, yet will I rather run the risk, than that
 it should be said the message of King Olaf was neglected from
 fear of the Swedish king.  Thou hast that birth, strength of
 relations, and other means, that here in the Swedish land it is
 free to thee to tell thy mind, if it be right and worthy of being
 heard, whether it be listened to by few or many, great or little
 people, or by the king himself."
 The earl replies, "It is known to every one how thou urgest me:
 it may be, according to thy counsel, that I should promise the
 king's men to follow them, so that they may get their errand laid
 before the Swedish king, whether he take it ill or take it well.
 But I will have my own counsel followed, and will not run hastily
 into Bjorn's or any other man's measures, in such a highly
 important matter.  It is my will that ye all remain here with me,
 so long as I think it necessary for the purpose of rightly
 forwarding this mission."  Now as the earl had thus given them to
 understand that he would support them in the business, Bjorn
 thanked him most kindly, and with the assurance that his advice
 should rule them altogether.  Thereafter Bjorn and his fellow-
 travellers remained very long in the earl's house.
 (1)  Before writing was a common accomplishment in courts, the
      only way of accrediting a special messenger between kings
      and great men was by giving the messenger a token; that is.
      some article well known by the person receiving the message
      to be the property of and valued by the person sending it.
 Ingebjorg was particularly kind to them; and Bjorn often spoke
 with her about the matter, and was ill at ease that their journey
 was so long delayed.  Hjalte and the others often spoke together
 also about the matter; and Hjalte said; "I will go to the king if
 ye like; for I am not a man of Norway, and the Swedes can have
 nothing to say to me.  I have heard that there are Iceland men in
 the king's house who are my acquaintances, and are well treated;
 namely, the skalds Gissur Black and Ottar Black.  From them I
 shall get out what I can about the Swedish king; and if the
 business will really be so difficult as it now appears, or if
 there be any other way of promoting it, I can easily devise some
 errand that may appear suitable for me."
 This counsel appeared to Bjorn and Ingebjorg to be the wisest,
 and they resolved upon it among themselves.  Ingebjorg put Hjalte
 in a position to travel; gave him two Gautland men with him, and
 ordered them to follow him, and assist him with their service,
 and also to go wherever he might have occasion to send them.
 Besides, Ingebjorg gave him twenty marks of weighed silver money
 for travelling expenses, and sent word and token by him to the
 Swedish king Olaf's daughter, Ingegerd, that she should give all
 her assistance to Hjalte's business, whenever he should find
 himself under the necessity of craving her help.  Hjalte set off
 as soon as he was ready.  When he came to King Olaf he soon found
 the skalds Gissur and Ottar, and they were very glad at his
 coming.  Without delay they went to the king, and told him that a
 man was come who was their countryman, and one of the most
 considerable in their native land, and requested the king to
 receive him well.  The king told them to take Hjalte and his
 fellow-travellers into their company and quarters.  Now when
 Hjalte had resided there a short time, and got acquainted with
 people, he was much respected by everybody.  The skalds were
 often in the king's house, for they were well-spoken men; and
 often in the daytime they sat in front of the king's high-seat,
 and Hjalte, to whom they paid the highest respect in all things,
 by their side.  He became thus known to the king, who willingly
 entered into conversation with him, and heard from him news about
 It happened that before Bjorn set out from home he asked Sigvat
 the skald, who at that time was with King Olaf, to accompany him
 on his journey.  It was a journey for which people had no great
 inclination.  There was, however, great friendship between Bjorn
 and Sigvat.  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "With the king's marshals all have I,
           In days gone by,
           Lived joyously, --
      With all who on the king attend,
      And knee before him humbly bend,
      Bjorn, thou oft hast ta'en my part --
           Pleaded with art,
           And touched the heart.
      Bjorn!  brave stainer of the sword,
      Thou art my friend -- I trust thy word."
 While they were riding up to Gautland, Sigvat made these verses:
      "Down the Fjord sweep wind and rain,
      Our stout ship's sails and tackle strain;
           Wet to the skin.
           We're sound within,
      And gaily o'er the waves are dancing,
      Our sea-steed o'er the waves high prancing!
           Through Lister sea
           Flying all free;
      Off from the wind with swelling sail,
      We merrily scud before the gale,
           And reach the sound
           Where we were bound.
      And now our ship, so gay and grand,
      Glides past the green and lovely land,
           And at the isle
           Moors for a while.
      Our horse-hoofs now leave hasty print;
      We ride -- of ease there's scanty stint --
           In heat and haste
           O'er Gautland's waste:
      Though in a hurry to be married,
      The king can't say that we have tarried."
 One evening late they were riding through Gautland, and Sigvat
 made these verses: --
      "The weary horse will at nightfall
      Gallop right well to reach his stall;
      When night meets day, with hasty hoof
      He plies the road to reach a roof.
      Far from the Danes, we now may ride
      Safely by stream or mountain-side;
      But, in this twilight, in some ditch
      The horse and rider both may pitch."
 They rode through the merchant town of Skara, and down the street
 to the earl's house.  He sang: --
      "The shy sweet girls, from window high
      In wonder peep at the sparks that fly
      From our horses heels, as down the street
      Of the earl's town we ride so fleet.
      Spur on! -- that every pretty lass
      May hear our horse-hoofs as we pass
      Clatter upon the stones so hard,
      And echo round the paved court-yard."
 One day Hjalte, and the skalds with him, went before the king,
 and he began thus: -- "It has so happened, king, as is known to
 you, that I have come here after a long and difficult journey;
 but when I had once crossed the ocean and heard of your
 greatness, it appeared to me unwise to go back without having
 seen you in your splendour and glory.  Now it is a law between
 Iceland and Norway, that Iceland men pay landing due when they
 come into Norway, but while I was coming across the sea I took
 myself all the landing dues from my ship's people; but knowing
 that thou have the greatest right to all the power in Norway, I
 hastened hither to deliver to you the landing dues."  With this
 he showed the silver to the king, and laid ten marks of silver in
 Gissur Black's lap.
 The king replies, "Few have brought us any such dues from Norway
 for some time; and now, Hjalte, I will return you my warmest
 thanks for having given yourself so much trouble to bring us the
 landing dues, rather than pay them to our enemies.  But I will
 that thou shouldst take this money from me as a gift, and with it
 my friendship."
 Hjalte thanked the king with many words, and from that day set
 himself in great favour with the king, and often spoke with him;
 for the king thought, what was true, that he was a man of much
 understanding and eloquence.  Now Hjalte told Gissur and Ottar
 that he was sent with tokens to the king's daughter Ingegerd, to
 obtain her protection and friendship; and he begged of them to
 procure him some opportunity to speak with her.  They answered,
 that this was an easy thing to do; and went one day to her house,
 where she sat at the drinking table with many men.  She received
 the skalds in a friendly manner, for they were known to her.
 Hjalte brought her a salutation from the earl's wife, Ingebjorg;
 and said she had sent him here to obtain friendly help and
 succour from her, and in proof whereof produced his tokens.  The
 king's daughter received him also kindly, and said he should be
 welcome to her friendship.  They sat there till late in the day
 drinking.  The king's daughter made Hjalte tell her much news,
 and invited him to come often and converse with her.  He did so:
 came there often, and spoke with the king's daughter; and at last
 entrusted her with the purpose of Bjorn's and his comrade's
 journey, and asked her how she thought the Swedish king would
 receive the proposal that there should be a reconciliation
 between the kings.  The king's daughter replied, that, in her
 opinion, it would be a useless attempt to propose to the king any
 reconciliation with Olaf the Thick; for the king was so enraged
 against him, that he would not suffer his name to be mentioned
 before him.  It happened one day that Hjalte was sitting with the
 king and talking to him, and the king was very merry and drunk.
 Then Hjalte said, "Manifold splendour and grandeur have I seen
 here; and I have now witnessed with my eyes what I have often
 heard of, that no monarch in the north is so magnificent: but it
 is very vexatious that we who come so far to visit it have a road
 so long and troublesome, both on account of the great ocean, but
 more especially because it is not safe to travel through Norway
 for those who are coming here in a friendly disposition.  But why
 is there no one to bring proposals for a peace between you and
 King Olaf the Thick?  I heard much in Norway, and in west
 Gautland, of the general desire that this peace should have taken
 place; and it has been told me for truth, as the Norway king's
 words, that he earnestly desires to be reconciled to you; and the
 reason I know is, that he feels how much less his power is than
 yours.  It is even said that he intends to pay his court to your
 daughter Ingegerd; and that would lead to a useful peace, for I 
 have heard from people of credit that he is a remarkably
 distinguished man."
 The king answers. "Thou must not speak thus, Hjalte; but for this
 time I will not take it amiss of thee, as thou dost not know what
 people have to avoid here.  That fat fellow shall not be called
 king in my court, and there is by no means the stuff in him that
 people talk of: and thou must see thyself that such a connection
 is not suitable; for I am the tenth king in Upsala who, relation
 after relation, has been sole monarch over the Swedish, and many
 other great lands, and all have been the superior kings over
 other kings in the northern countries.  But Norway is little
 inhabited, and the inhabitants are scattered.  There have only
 been small kings there; and although Harald Harfager was the
 greatest king in that country, and strove against the small
 kings, and subdued them, yet he knew so well his position that he
 did not covet the Swedish dominions, and therefore the Swedish
 kings let him sit in peace, especially as there was relationship
 between them.  Thereafter, while Hakon Athelstan's foster-son was
 in Norway he sat in peace, until he began to maraud in Gautland
 and Denmark; on which a war-force came upon him, and took from
 him both life and land.  Gunhild's sons also were cut off when
 they became disobedient to the Danish kings; and Harald Gormson
 joined Norway to his own dominions, and made it subject to scat
 to him.  And we reckon Harald Gormson to be of less power and
 consideration than the Upsala kings, for our relation Styrbjorn
 subdued him, and Harald became his man; and yet Eirik the
 Victorious, my father, rose over Styrbjorn's head when it came to
 a trial between them.  When Olaf Trygvason came to Norway and
 proclaimed himself king, we would not permit it, but we went with
 King Svein, and cut him off; and thus we have appropriated
 Norway, as thou hast not heard, and with no less right than if I
 had gained it in battle, and by conquering the kings who ruled it
 before.  Now thou canst well suppose, as a man of sense, that I
 will not let slip the kingdom of Norway for this thick fellow. 
 It is wonderful he does not remember how narrowly he made his
 escape, when we had penned him in in the Malar lake.  Although he
 slipped away with life from thence, he ought, methinks, to have
 something else in his mind than to hold out against us Swedes.
 Now, Hjalte, thou must never again open thy mouth in my presence
 on such a subject."
 Hjalte saw sufficiently that there was no hope of the king's
 listening to any proposal of a peace, and desisted from speaking
 of it, and turned the conversation to something else.  When
 Hjalte, afterwards, came into discourse with the king's daughter
 Ingegerd, he tells her his conversation with the king.  She told
 him she expected such an answer from the king.  Hjalte begged of
 her to say a good word to the king about the matter, but she
 thought the king would listen as little to what she said: "But
 speak about it I will, if thou requirest it."  Hjalte assured her
 he would be thankful for the attempt.  One day the king's
 daughter Ingegerd had a conversation with her father Olaf; and as
 she found her father was in a particularly good humour, she said,
 "What is now thy intention with regard to the strife with Olaf
 the Thick?  There are many who complain about it, having lost
 their property by it; others have lost their relations by the
 Northmen, and all their peace and quiet; so that none of your men
 see any harm that can be done to Norway.  It would be a bad
 counsel if thou sought the dominion over Norway; for it is a poor
 country, difficult to come at, and the people dangerous: for the
 men there will rather have any other for their king than thee. 
 If I might advise, thou wouldst let go all thoughts about Norway,
 and not desire Olaf's heritage; and rather turn thyself to the
 kingdoms in the East country, which thy forefathers the former
 Swedish kings had, and which our relation Styrbjorn lately
 subdued, and let the thick Olaf possess the heritage of his
 forefathers and make peace with him."
 The king replies in a rage, "It is thy counsel, Ingegerd, that I
 should let slip the kingdom of Norway, and give thee in marriage
 to this thick Olaf. - No," says he, "something else shall first
 take place.  Rather than that, I shall, at the Upsala Thing in
 winter, issue a proclamation to all Swedes, that the whole people
 shall assemble for an expedition, and go to their ships before
 the ice is off the waters; and I will proceed to Norway, and lay
 waste the land with fire and sword, and burn everything, to
 punish them for their want of fidelity."
 The king was so mad with rage that nobody ventured to say a word,
 and she went away.  Hjalte, who was watching for her, immediately
 went to her and asked how her errand to the king had turned out.
 She answered, it turned out as she had expected; that none could
 venture to put in a word with the king; but, on the contrary, he
 had used threats; and she begged Hjalte never to speak of the
 matter again before the king.  As Hjalte and Ingegerd spoke
 together often, Olaf the Thick was often the subject, and he told
 her about him and his manners; and Hjalte praised the king of
 Norway what he could, but said no more than was the truth, and
 she could well perceive it.  Once, in a conversation, Hjalte said
 to her, "May I be permitted, daughter of the king, to tell thee
 what lies in my mind?"
 "Speak freely," says she; "but so that I alone can hear it."
 "Then," said Hjalte, "what would be thy answer, if the Norway
 king Olaf sent messengers to thee with the errand to propose
 marriage to thee?"
 She blushed, and answered slowly but gently, "I have not made up
 my mind to answer to that; but if Olaf be in all respects so
 perfect as thou tellest me, I could wish for no other husband;
 unless, indeed, thou hast gilded him over with thy praise more
 than sufficiently."
 Hjalte replied, that he had in no respect spoken better of the
 king than was true.  They often spoke together on the same
 subject.  Ingegerd begged Hjalte to be cautious not to mention it
 to any other person, for the king would be enraged against him if
 it came to his knowledge.  Hjalte only spoke of it to the skalds
 Gissur and Ottar, who thought it was the most happy plan, if it
 could but be carried into effect.  Ottar, who was a man of great
 power of conversation, and much beloved in the court, soon
 brought up the subject before the king's daughter, and recounted
 to her, as Hjalte had done, all King Olaf's excellent qualities.
 Often spoke Hjalte and the others about him; and now that Hjalte
 knew the result of his mission, he sent those Gautland men away
 who had accompanied him, and let them return to the earl with
 letters (1) which the king's daughter Ingegerd sent to the earl
 and Ingebjorg.  Hjalte also let them give a hint to the earl
 about the conversation he had had with Ingegerd, and her answer
 thereto: and the messengers came with it to the earl a little
 before Yule.
 (1)  This seems the first notice we have in the sagas of written
      letters being sent instead of tokens and verbal messages. --
 When King Olaf had despatched Bjorn and his followers to
 Gautland, he sent other people also to the Uplands, with the
 errand that they should have guest-quarters prepared for him, as
 he intended that winter (A.D. 1018) to live as guest in the
 Uplands; for it had been the custom of former kings to make a
 progress in guest-quarters every third year in the Uplands.  In
 autumn he began his progress from Sarpsborg, and went first to
 Vingulmark.  He ordered his progress so that he came first to
 lodge in the neighbourhood of the forest habitations, and
 summoned to him all the men of the habitations who dwelt at the
 greatest distance from the head-habitations of the district; and
 he inquired particularly how it stood with their Christianity,
 and, where improvement was needful, he taught them the right
 customs.  If any there were who would not renounce heathen ways,
 he took the matter so zealously that he drove some out of the
 country, mutilated others of hands or feet, or stung their eyes
 out; hung up some, cut down some with the sword; but let none go
 unpunished who would not serve God.  He went thus through the
 whole district, sparing neither great nor small.  He gave them
 teachers, and placed these as thickly in the country as he saw
 needful.  In this manner he went about in that district, and had
 300 deadly men-at-arms with him; and then proceeded to Raumarike.
 He soon perceived that Christianity was thriving less the farther
 he proceeded into the interior of the country.  He went forward
 everywhere in the same way, converting all the people to the
 right faith, and severely punishing all who would not listen to
 his word.
 Now when the king who at that time ruled in Raumarike heard of
 this, he thought it was a very bad affair; for every day came men
 to him, both great and small, who told him what was doing. 
 Therefore this king resolved to go up to Hedemark, and consult
 King Hrorek, who was the most eminent for understanding of the
 kings who at that time were in the country.  Now when these kings
 spoke with each other, they agreed to send a message to Gudrod,
 the valley-king north in the Gudbrandsdal, and likewise to the
 king who was in Hadaland, and bid them to come to Hedemark, to
 meet Hrorek and the other kings there.  They did not spare their
 travelling; for five kings met in Hedemark, at a place called
 Ringsaker.  Ring, King Hrorek's brother, was the fifth of these
 kings.  The kings had first a private conference together, in
 which he who came from Raumarike first took up the word, and told
 of King Olaf's proceedings, and of the disturbance he was causing
 both by killing and mutilating people.  Some he drove out of the
 country, some he deprived of their offices or property if they
 spoke anything against him; and, besides, he was travelling over
 the country with a great army, not with the number of people
 fixed by law for a royal progress in guest-quarters.  He added,
 that he had fled hither upon account of this disturbance, and
 many powerful people with him had fled from their udal properties
 in Raumarike.  "But although as yet the evil is nearest to us, it
 will be but a short time before ye will also be exposed to it;
 therefore it is best that we all consider together what
 resolution we shall take."  When he had ended his speech, Hrorek
 was desired to speak; and he said, "Now is the day come that I
 foretold when we had had our meeting at Hadaland, and ye were all
 so eager to raise Olaf over our heads; namely, that as soon as he
 was the supreme master of the country we would find it hard to
 hold him by the horns.  We have but two things now to do: the one
 is, to go all of us to him, and let him do with us as he likes,
 which I think is the best thing we can do; or the other is, to
 rise against him before he has gone farther through the country.
 Although he has 300 or 400 men, that is not too great a force for
 us to meet, if we are only all in movement together: but, in
 general, there is less success and advantage to be gained when
 several of equal strength are joined together, than when one
 alone stands at the head of his own force; therefore it is my
 advice, that we do not venture to try our luck against Olaf
 Thereafter each of the kings spoke according to his own mind some
 dissuading from going out against King Olaf, others urging it;
 and no determination was come to, as each had his own reasons to
 Then Gudrod, the valley-king, took up the word, and spoke: -- "It
 appears wonderful to me, that ye make such a long roundabout in
 coming to a resolution; and probably ye are frightened for him.
 We are here five kings, and none of less high birth than Olaf.
 We gave him the strength to fight with Earl Svein, and with our
 forces he has brought the country under his power.  But if he
 grudges each of us the little kingdom he had before, and
 threatens us with tortures, or gives us ill words, then, say I
 for myself, that I will withdraw myself from the king's slavery;
 and I do not call him a man among you who is afraid to cut him
 off, if he come into your hands here up in Hedemark.  And this I
 can tell you, that we shall never bear our heads in safety while
 Olaf is in life."  After this encouragement they all agreed to
 his determination.
 Then said Hrorek, "With regard to this determination, it appears
 to me necessary to make our agreement so strong that no one shall
 fail in his promise to the other.  Therefore, if ye determine
 upon attacking Olaf at a fixed time, when he comes here to
 Hedemark, I will not trust much to you if some are north in the
 valleys, others up in Hedemark; but if our resolution is to come
 to anything, we must remain here assembled together day and
 This the kings agreed to, and kept themselves there all
 assembled, ordering a feast to be provided for them at Ringsaker,
 and drank there a cup to success; sending out spies to Raumarike,
 and when one set came in sending out others, so that day and
 night they had intelligence of Olaf's proceedings, and of the
 numbers of his men.  King Olaf went about in Raumarike in
 guest-quarters, and altogether in the way before related; but as
 the provision of the guest-quarter was not always sufficient,
 upon account of his numerous followers, he laid it upon the
 bondes to give additional contributions wherever he found it
 necessary to stay.  In some places he stayed longer, in others,
 shorter than was fixed; and his journey down to the lake Miosen
 was shorter than had been fixed on.  The kings, after taking
 their resolution, sent out message-tokens, and summoned all the
 lendermen and powerful bondes from all the districts thereabout;
 and when they had assembled the kings had a private meeting with
 them, and made their determination known, setting a day for
 gathering together and carrying it into effect; and it was
 settled among them that each of the kings should have 300 (1)
 men.  Then they sent away the lendermen to gather the people, and
 meet all at the appointed place.  The most approved of the
 measure; but it happened here, as it usually does, that every one
 has some friend even among his enemies.
 (1)  I.e., 360.
 Ketil of Ringanes was at this meeting.  Now when he came home in
 the evening he took his supper, put on his clothes, and went down
 with his house-servants to the lake; took a light vessel which he
 had, the same that King Olaf had made him a present of, and
 launched it on the water.  They found in the boat-house
 everything ready to their hands; betook themselves to their oars,
 and rowed out into the lake.  Ketil had forty well-armed men with
 him, and came early in the morning to the end of the lake.  He
 set off immediately with twenty men, leaving the other twenty to
 look after the ship.  King Olaf was at that time at Eid, in the
 upper end of Raumarike.  Thither Ketil arrived just as the king
 was coming from matins.  The king received Ketil kindly.  He said
 he must speak with the king in all haste; and they had a private
 conference together.  There Ketil tells the king the resolution
 which the kings had taken, and their agreement, which he had come
 to the certain knowledge of.  When the king learnt this he called
 his people together, and sent some out to collect riding-horses
 in the country; others he sent down to the lake to take all the
 rowing-vessels they could lay hold of, and keep them for his use.
 Thereafter he went to the church, had mass sung before him, and
 then sat down to table.  After his meal he got ready, and
 hastened down to the lake, where the vessels were coming to meet
 him.  He himself went on board the light vessel, and as many men
 with him as it could stow, and all the rest of his followers took
 such boats as they could get hold of; and when it was getting
 late in the evening they set out from the land, in still and calm
 weather.  He rowed up the water with 400 men, and came with them
 to Ringsaker before day dawned; and the watchmen were not aware
 of the army before they were come into the very court.  Ketil
 knew well in what houses the kings slept, and the king had all
 these houses surrounded and guarded, so that nobody could get
 out; and so they stood till daylight.  The kings had not people
 enough to make resistance, but were all taken prisoners, and led
 before the king.  Hrorek was an able but obstinate man, whose
 fidelity the king could not trust to if he made peace with him;
 therefore he ordered both his eyes to be punched out, and took
 him in that condition about with him.  He ordered Gudrod's tongue
 to be cut out; but Ring and two others he banished from Norway,
 under oath never to return.  Of the lendermen and bondes who had
 actually taken part in the traitorous design, some he drove out
 of the country, some he mutilated, and with others he made peace.
 Ottar Black tells of this: --
      "The giver of rings of gold,
      The army leader bold,
           In vengeance springs
           On the Hedemark kings.
      Olaf the bold and great,
      Repays their foul deceit --
           In full repays
           Their treacherous ways.
      He drives with steel-clad hand
      The small kings from the land, --
           Greater by far
           In deed of war.
      The king who dwelt most north
      Tongueless must wander forth:
           All fly away
           In great dismay.
      King Olaf now rules o'er
      What five kings ruled before.
           To Eid's old bound
           Extends his ground.
      No kings in days of yore
      E'er won so much before:
           That this is so
           All Norsemen know."
 King Olaf took possession of the land these five kings had
 possessed, and took hostages from the lendermen and bondes in it.
 He took money instead of guest-quarters from the country north of
 the valley district, and from Hedemark; and then returned to
 Raumarike, and so west to Hadaland.  This winter (A.D. 1018) his
 stepfather Sigurd Syr died; and King Olaf went to Ringerike,
 where his mother Asta made a great feast for him.  Olaf alone
 bore the title of king now in Norway.
 It is told that when King Olaf was on his visit to his mother
 Asta, she brought out her children, and showed them to him.  The
 king took his brother Guthorm on the one knee, and his brother
 Halfdan on the other.  The king looked at Guthorm, made a wry
 face, and pretended to be angry at them: at which the boys were
 afraid.  Then Asta brought her youngest son, called Harald, who
 was three years old, to him.  The king made a wry face at him
 also; but he looked the king in the face without regarding it.
 The king took the boy by the hair, and plucked it; but the boy
 seized the king's whiskers, and gave them a tug.  "Then," said
 the king, "thou wilt be revengeful, my friend, some day."  The
 following day the king was walking with his mother about the
 farm, and they came to a playground, where Asta's sons, Guthorm
 and Halfdan, were amusing themselves.  They were building great
 houses and barns in their play, and were supposing them full of
 cattle and sheep; and close beside them, in a clay pool, Harald
 was busy with chips of wood, sailing them, in his sport along the
 edge.  The king asked him what these were; and he answered, these
 were his ships of war.  The king laughed, and said, "The time may
 come, friend, when thou wilt command ships."
 Then the king called to him Halfdan and Guthorm; and first he
 asked Guthorm, "What wouldst thou like best to have?"
 "Corn land," replied he.
 "And how great wouldst thou like thy corn land to be?"
 "I would have the whole ness that goes out into the lake sown
 with corn every summer."  On that ness there are ten farms.
 The king replies, "There would be a great deal of corn there."
 And, turning to Halfdan, he asked, "And what wouldst thou like
 best to have?"
 "Cows," he replied.
 "How many wouldst thou like to have?"
 "When they went to the lake to be watered I would have so many,
 that they stood as tight round the lake as they could stand."
 "That would be a great housekeeping," said the king; "and therein
 ye take after your father."
 Then the king says to Harald, "And what wouldst thou like best to
 "And how many wouldst thou have?"
 "Oh!  so many I would like to have as would eat up my brother
 Halfdan's cows at a single meal."
 The king laughed, and said to Asta, "Here, mother, thou art
 bringing up a king."  And more is not related of them on this
 In Svithjod it was the old custom, as long as heathenism
 prevailed, that the chief sacrifice took place in Goe month at
 Upsala.  Then sacrifice was offered for peace, and victory to the
 king; and thither came people from all parts of Svithjod.  All
 the Things of the Swedes, also, were held there, and markets, and
 meetings for buying, which continued for a week: and after
 Christianity was introduced into Svithjod, the Things and fairs
 were held there as before.  After Christianity had taken root in
 Svithjod, and the kings would no longer dwell in Upsala, the
 market-time was moved to Candlemas, and it has since continued
 so, and it lasts only three days.  There is then the Swedish
 Thing also, and people from all quarters come there.  Svithjod is
 divided into many parts.  One part is West Gautland, Vermaland,
 and the Marks, with what belongs to them; and this part of the
 kingdom is so large, that the bishop who is set over it has 1100
 churches under him.  The other part is East Gautland, where there
 is also a bishop's seat, to which the islands of Gotland and
 Eyland belong; and forming all together a still greater
 bishopric.  In Svithjod itself there is a part of the country
 called Sudermanland, where there is also a bishopric.  Then comes
 Westmanland, or Fiathrundaland, which is also a bishopric.  The
 third portion of Svithjod proper is called Tiundaland; the fourth
 Attandaland; the fifth Sialand, and what belongs to it lies
 eastward along the coast.  Tiundaland is the best and most
 inhabited part of Svithjod, under which the other kingdoms stand.
 There Upsala is situated, the seat of the king and archbishop;
 and from it Upsala-audr, or the domain of the Swedish kings,
 takes its name.  Each of these divisions of the country has its
 Lag-thing, and its own laws in many parts.  Over each is a
 lagman, who rules principally in affairs of the bondes: for that
 becomes law which he, by his speech, determines them to make law:
 and if king, earl, or bishop goes through the country, and holds
 a Thing with the bondes, the lagmen reply on account of the
 bondes, and they all follow their lagmen; so that even the most
 powerful men scarcely dare to come to their Al-thing without
 regarding the bondes' and lagmen's law.  And in all matters in
 which the laws differ from each other, Upsala-law is the
 directing law; and the other lagmen are under the lagman who
 dwells in Tiundaland.
 In Tiundaland there was a lagman who was called Thorgny, whose
 father was called Thorgny Thorgnyson.  His forefathers had for a
 long course of years, and during many kings' times, been lagmen
 of Tiundaland.  At this time Thorgny was old, and had a great
 court about him.  He was considered one of the wisest men in
 Sweden, and was Earl Ragnvald's relation and foster-father.
 Now we must go back in our story to the time when the men whom
 the king's daughter Ingegerd and Hjalte had sent from the east
 came to Earl Ragnvald.  They relate their errand to the earl and
 his wife Ingebjorg, and tell how the king's daughter had oft
 spoken to the Swedish king about a peace between him and King
 Olaf the Thick, and that she was a great friend of King Olaf; but
 that the Swedish king flew into a passion every time she named
 Olaf, so that she had no hopes of any peace.  The Earl told Bjorn
 the news he had received from the east; but Bjorn gave the same
 reply, that he would not turn back until he had met the Swedish
 king, and said the earl had promised to go with him.  Now the
 winter was passing fast, and immediately after Yule the earl made
 himself ready to travel with sixty men, among whom where the
 marshal Bjorn and his companions.  The earl proceeded eastward
 all the way to Svithjod; but when he came a little way into the
 country he sent his men before him to Upsala with a message to
 Ingegerd the king's daughter to come out to meet him at
 Ullaraker, where she had a large farm.  When the king's daughter
 got the earl's message she made herself ready immediately to
 travel with a large attendance, and Hjalte accompanied her.  But
 before he took his departure he went to King Olaf, and said,
 "Continue always to be the most fortunate of monarchs!  Such
 splendour as I have seen about thee I have in truth never
 witnessed elsewhere, and wheresoever I come it shall not be
 concealed.  Now, king, may I entreat thy favour and friendship in
 time to come?"
 The king replies, "Why art thou in so great a haste, and where
 art thou going?"
 Hjalte replies, "I am to ride out to Ullaraker with Ingegerd thy
 The king says, "Farewell, then: a man thou art of understanding
 and politeness, and well suited to live with people of rank."
 Thereupon Hjalte withdrew.
 The king's daughter Ingegerd rode to her farm in Ullaraker, and
 ordered a great feast to be prepared for the earl.  When the earl
 arrived he was welcomed with gladness, and he remained there
 several days.  The earl and the king's daughter talked much, and
 of many things, but most about the Swedish and Norwegian kings;
 and she told the earl that in her opinion there was no hope of
 peace between them.
 Then said the earl, "How wouldst thou like it, my cousin, if Olaf
 king of Norway were to pay his addresses to thee?  It appears to
 us that it would contribute most towards a settled peace if there
 was relationship established between the kings; but I would not
 support such a matter if it were against thy inclination."
 She replies, "My father disposes of my hand; but among all my
 other relations thou art he whose advice I would rather follow in
 weighty affairs.  Dost thou think it would be advisable?"  The
 earl recommended it to her strongly, and reckoned up many
 excellent achievements of King Olaf's.  He told her, in
 particular, about what had lately been done; that King Olaf in an
 hours time one morning had taken five kings prisoners, deprived
 them all of their governments, and laid their kingdoms and
 properties under his own power.  Much they talked about the
 business, and in all their conversations they perfectly agreed
 with each other.  When the earl was ready he took leave, and
 proceeded on his way, taking Hjalte with him.
 Earl Ragnvald came towards evening one day to the house of Lagman
 Thorgny.  It was a great and stately mansion, and many people
 stood outside, who received the earl kindly, and took care of the
 horses and baggage.  The earl went into the room, where there was
 a number of people.  In the high-seat sat an old man; and never
 had Bjorn or his companions seen a man so stout.  His beard was
 so long that it lay upon his knee, and was spread over his whole
 breast; and the man, moreover, was handsome and stately in
 appearance.  The earl went forward and saluted him.  Thorgny
 received him joyfully and kindly, and bade him go to the seat he
 was accustomed to take.  The earl seated himself on the other
 side, opposite Thorgny.  They remained there some days before the
 earl disclosed his errand, and then he asked Thorgny to go with
 him into the conversing room.  Bjorn and his followers went there
 with the earl.  Then the earl began, and told how Olaf king of
 Norway had sent these men hither to conclude a peaceful
 agreement.  He showed at great length what injury it was of to
 the West Gautland people, that there was hostility between their
 country and Norway.  He further related that Olaf the king of
 Norway had sent ambassadors, who were here present, and to whom
 he had promised he would attend them to the Swedish king; but he
 added, "The Swedish king takes the matter so grievously, that he
 has uttered menaces against those who entertain it.  Now so it
 is, my foster-father, that I do not trust to myself in this
 matter; but am come on a visit to thee to get good counsel and
 help from thee in the matter."
 Now when the earl had done speaking Thorgny sat silent for a
 while, and then took up the word. "Ye have curious dispositions
 who are so ambitious of honour and renown, and yet have no
 prudence or counsel in you when you get into any mischief.  Why
 did you not consider, before you gave your promise to this
 adventure, that you had no power to stand against King Olaf?  In
 my opinion it is not a less honourable condition to be in the
 number of bondes and have one's words free, and be able to say
 what one will, even if the king be present.  But I must go to the
 Upsala Thing, and give thee such help that without fear thou
 canst speak before the king what thou findest good."
 The earl thanked him for the promise, remained with Thorgny, and
 rode with him to the Upsala Thing.  There was a great assemblage
 of people at the Thing, and King Olaf was there with his court.
 The first day the Thing sat, King Olaf was seated on a stool, and
 his court stood in a circle around him.  Right opposite to him
 sat Earl Ragnvald and Thorgny in the Thing upon one stool, and
 before them the earl's court and Thorgny's house-people.  Behind
 their stool stood the bonde community, all in a circle around
 them.  Some stood upon hillocks and heights, in order to hear the
 better.  Now when the king's messages, which are usually handled
 in the Things, were produced and settled, the marshal Bjorn rose
 beside the earl's stool, and said aloud, "King Olaf sends me here
 with the message that he will offer to the Swedish king peace,
 and the frontiers that in old times were fixed between Norway and
 Svithjod."  He spoke so loud that the Swedish king could
 distinctly hear him; but at first, when he heard King Olaf's name
 spoken, he thought the speaker had some message or business of
 his own to execute; but when he heard of peace, and the frontiers
 between Norway and Svithjod, he saw from what root it came, and
 sprang up, and called out that the man should be silent, for that
 such speeches were useless.  Thereupon Bjorn sat down; and when
 the noise had ceased Earl Ragnvald stood up and made a speech.
 He spoke of Olaf the Thick's message, and proposal of peace to
 Olaf the Swedish king; and that all the West Gautland people sent
 their entreaty to Olaf that he would make peace with the king of
 Norway.  He recounted all the evils the West Gautlanders were
 suffering under; that they must go without all the things from
 Norway which were necessary in their households; and, on the
 other hand, were exposed to attack and hostility whenever the
 king of Norway gathered an army and made an inroad on them.  The
 earl added, that Olaf the Norway king had sent men hither with
 the intent to obtain Ingegerd the king's daughter in marriage.
 When the earl had done speaking Olaf the Swedish king stood up
 and replied, and was altogether against listening to any
 proposals of peace, and made many and heavy reproaches against
 the earl for his impudence in entering into a peaceful truce with
 the thick fellow, and making up a peaceful friendship with him,
 and which in truth he considered treason against himself.  He
 added, that it would be well deserved if Earl Ragnvald were
 driven out of the kingdom.  The earl had, in his opinion, the
 influence of his wife Ingebjorg to thank for what might happen;
 and it was the most imprudent fancy he could have fallen upon to
 take up with such a wife.  The king spoke long and bitterly,
 turning his speech always against Olaf the Thick.  When he sat
 down not a sound was to be heard at first.
 Then Thorgny stood up; and when he arose all the bondes stood up
 who had before been sitting, and rushed together from all parts
 to listen to what Lagman Thorgny would say.  At first there was a
 great din of people and weapons; but when the noise was settled
 into silent listening, Thorguy made his speech. "The disposition
 of Swedish kings is different now from what it has been formerly.
 My grandfather Thorgny could well remember the Upsala king Eirik
 Eymundson, and used to say of him that when he was in his best
 years he went out every summer on expeditions to different
 countries, and conquered for himself Finland, Kirjalaland,
 Courland, Esthonia, and the eastern countries all around; and at
 the present day the earth-bulwarks, ramparts, and other great
 works which he made are to be seen.  And, more over, he was not
 so proud that he would not listen to people who had anything to
 say to him.  My father, again, was a long time with King Bjorn,
 and was well acquainted with his ways and manners.  In Bjorn's
 lifetime his kingdom stood in great power, and no kind of want
 was felt, and he was gay and sociable with his friends.  I also
 remember King Eirik the Victorious, and was with him on many a
 war-expedition.  He enlarged the Swedish dominion, and defended
 it manfully; and it was also easy and agreeable to communicate
 our opinions to him.  But the king we have now got allows no man
 to presume to talk with him, unless it be what he desires to
 hear.  On this alone he applies all his power, while he allows
 his scat-lands in other countries to go from him through laziness
 and weakness.  He wants to have the Norway kingdom laid under
 him, which no Swedish king before him ever desired, and therewith
 brings war and distress on many a man.  Now it is our  will, we
 bondes, that thou King Olaf make peace with the Norway king, Olaf
 the Thick, and marry thy daughter Ingegerd to him.  Wilt thou,
 however, reconquer the kingdoms in the east countries which thy
 relations and forefathers had there, we will all for that purpose
 follow thee to the war.  But if thou wilt not do as we desire, we
 will now attack thee, and put thee to death; for we will no
 longer suffer law and peace to be disturbed.  So our forefathers
 went to work when they drowned five kings in a morass at the
 Mula-thing, and they were filled with the same insupportable
 pride thou hast shown towards us.  Now tell us, in all haste,
 what resolution thou wilt take."  Then the whole public approved,
 with clash of arms and shouts, the lagman's speech.
 The king stands up and says he will let things go according to
 the desire of the bondes.  "All Swedish kings," he said, "have
 done so, and have allowed the bondes to rule in all according to
 their will."  The murmur among the bondes then came to an end,
 and the chiefs, the king, the earl, and Thorgny talked together,
 and concluded a truce and reconciliation, on the part of the
 Swedish king, according to the terms which the king of Norway had
 proposed by his ambassadors; and it was resolved at the Thing
 that Ingegerd, the king's daughter, should be married to Olaf
 Haraldson.  The king left it to the earl to make the contract
 feast, and gave him full powers to conclude this marriage affair;
 and after this was settled at the Thing, they separated.  When
 the earl returned homewards, he and the king's daughter Ingegerd
 had a meeting, at which they talked between themselves over this
 matter.  She sent Olaf a long cloak of fine linen richly
 embroidered with gold, and with silk points.  The earl returned
 to Gautland, and Bjorn with him; and after staying with him a
 short time, Bjorn and his company returned to Norway.  When he
 came to King Olaf he told him the result of his errand, and the
 king returned him many thanks for his conduct, and said Bjorn had
 had great success in bringing his errand to so favourabie a
 conclusion against such animosity.
 On the approach of spring (A.D. 1018) King Olaf went down to the
 coast, had his ships rigged out, summoned troops to him, and
 proceeded in spring out from Viken to the Naze, and so north to
 Hordaland.  He then sent messages to all the lendermen, selected
 the most considerable men in each district, and made the most
 splendid preparations to meet his bride.  The wedding-feast was
 to be in autumn, at the Gaut river, on the frontiers of the two
 countries.  King Olaf had with him the blind king Hrorek.  When
 his wound was healed, the king gave him two men to serve him, let
 him sit in the high-seat by his side, and kept him in meat and
 clothes in no respect Norse than he had kept himself before.
 Hrorek  was taciturn, and answered short and cross when any one
 spoke to him.  It was his custom to make his footboy, when he
 went out in the daytime, lead him away from people, and then to
 beat the lad until he ran away.  He would then complain to King
 Olaf that the lad would not serve him.  The king changed his
 servants, but it was as before; no servant would hold it out with
 King Hrorek.  Then the king appointed a man called Svein to wait
 upon and serve King Hrorek.  He was Hrorek's relation, and had
 formerly been in his service.  Hrorek continued with his habits
 of moroseness, and of solitary walks; but when he and Svein were
 alone together, he was merry and talkative.  He used to bring up
 many things which had happened in former days when he was king.
 He alluded, too, to the man who had, in his former days, torn him
 from his kingdom and happiness, and made him live on alms.  "It
 is hardest of all," says he, "that thou and my other relations,
 who ought to be men of bravery, are so degenerated that thou wilt
 not avenge the shame and disgrace brought upon our race."  Such
 discourse he often brought out.  Svein said, they had too great a
 power to deal with, while they themselves had but little means.
 Hrorek said, "Why should we live longer as mutilated men with
 disgrace?  I, a blind man, may conquer them as well as they
 conquered me when I was asleep.  Come then, let us kill this
 thick Olaf.  He is not afraid for himself at present.  I will lay
 the plan, and would not spare my hands if I could use them, but
 that I cannot by reason of my blindness; therefore thou must use
 the weapons against him, and as soon as Olaf is killed I can see
 well enough that his power must come into the hands of his
 enemies, and it may well be that I shall be king, and thou shalt
 be my earl."  So much persuasion he used that Svein at last
 agreed to join in the deed.  The plan was so laid that when the
 king was ready to go to vespers, Svein stood on the threshold
 with a drawn dagger under his cloak.  Now when the king came out
 of the room, it so happened that he walked quicker than Svein
 expected; and when he looked the king in the face he grew pale,
 and then white as a corpse, and his hand sank down.  The king
 observed his terror and said, "What is this, Svein?  Wilt thou
 betray me?"  Svein threw down his cloak and dagger, and fell at
 the king's feet, saying, "All is in Gods hands and thine, king!"
 The king ordered his men to seize Svein, and he was put in irons.
 The king ordered Hrorek's seat to be moved to another bench.  He
 gave Svein his life, and he left the country.  The king appointed
 a different lodging for Hrorek to sleep in from that in which he
 slept himself, and in which many of his court-people slept.  He
 set two of his court-men, who had been long with him, and whose
 fidelity he had proof of, to attend Hrorek day and night; but it
 is not said whether they were people of high birth or not.  King
 Hrorek's mood was very different at different times.  Sometimes
 he would sit silent for days together, so that no man could get a
 word out of him; and sometimes he was so merry and gay, that
 people found a joke in every word he said.  Sometimes his words
 were very bitter.  He was sometimes in a mood that he would drink
 them  all under the benches, and made all his neighbours drunk;
 but in general he drank but little.  King Olaf gave him plenty of
 pocket-money.  When he went to his lodgings he would often,
 before going to bed, have some stoups of mead brought in, which
 he gave to all the men in the house to drink, so that he was much
 There was a man from the Uplands called Fin the Little, and some
 said of him that he was of Finnish (1) race.  He was a remarkable
 little man, but so swift of foot that no horse could overtake
 him.  He was a particularly well-excercised runner with snow-
 shoes, and shooter with the bow.  He had long been in the service
 of King Hrorek, and often employed in errands of trust.  He knew
 the roads in all the Upland hills, and was well known to all the
 great people.  Now when King Hrorek was set under guards on the
 journey Fin would often slip in among the men of the guard, and
 followed, in general, with the lads and serving-men; but as often
 as he could he waited upon Hrorek, and entered into conversation
 with him.  The king, however, only spoke a word or two with him
 at a time, to prevent suspicion.  In spring, when they came a
 little way beyond Viken, Fin disappeared from the army for some
 days, but came back, and stayed with them a while.  This happened
 often, without anyone observing it particularly; for there were
 many such hangers-on with the army.
 (1)  The Laplanders are called Fins In Norway and Sweden. -- L.
 King Olaf came to Tunsberg before Easter (A.D. 1018), and
 remained there late in spring.  Many merchant vessels came to the
 town, both from Saxon-land and Denmark, and from Viken, and from
 the north parts of the country.  There was a great assemblage of
 people; and as the times were good, there was many a drinking
 meeting.  It happened one evening that King Hrorek came rather
 late to his lodging; and as he had drunk a great deal, he was
 remarkably merry.  Little Fin came to him with a stoup of mead
 with herbs in it, and very strong.  The king made every one in
 the house drunk, until they fell asleep each in his berth.  Fin
 had gone away, and a light was burning in the lodging.  Hrorek
 waked the men who usually followed him, and told them he wanted
 to go out into the yard.  They had a lantern with them, for
 outside it was pitch dark.  Out in the yard there was a large
 privy standing upon pillars, and a stair to go up to it.  While
 Hrorek and his guards were in the yard they heard a man say, "Cut
 down that devil;" and presently a crash, as if somebody fell.
 Hrorek said, "These fellows must be dead drunk to be fighting
 with each other so: run and separate them."  They rushed out; but
 when they came out upon the steps both of them were killed: the
 man who went out the last was the first killed.  There were
 twelve of Hrorek's men there, and among them Sigurd Hit, who had
 been his banner-man, and also little Fin.  They drew the dead
 bodies up between the houses, took the king with them, ran out to
 a boat they had in readiness, and rowed away.  Sigvat the skald
 slept in King Olaf's lodgings.  He got up in the night, and his
 footboy with him, and went to the privy.  But as they were
 returning, on going down the stairs Sigvat's foot slipped, and he
 fell on his knee; and when he put out his hands he felt the
 stairs wet.  "I think," said he, laughing, "the king must have
 given many of us tottering legs tonight."  When they came into
 the house in which light was burning the footboy said, "Have you
 hurt yourself that you are all over so bloody?"  He replied, "I
 am not wounded, but something must have happened here." 
 Thereupon he wakened Thord Folason, who was standard-bearer, and
 his bedfellow.  They went out with a light, and soon found the
 blood.  They traced it, and found the corpses, and knew them.
 They saw also a great stump of a tree in which clearly a gash had
 been cut, which, as was afterwards known, had been done as a
 stratagem to entice those out who had been killed.  Sigvat and
 Thord spoke together and agreed it was highly necessary to let
 the king know of this without delay.  They immediately sent a lad
 to the lodging where Hrorek had been.  All the men in it were
 asleep; but the king was gone.  He wakened the men who were in
 the house, and told them what had happened.  The men arose, and
 ran out to the yard where the bodies were; but, however needful
 it appeared to be that the king should know it, nobody dared to
 waken him.
 Then said Sigvat to Thord, "What wilt thou rather do, comrade,
 waken the king, or tell him the tidings?"
 Thord replies, "I do not dare to waken him, and I would rather
 tell him the news."
 Then said Sigvat, "There is minch of the night still to pass, and
 before morning Hrorek may get himself concealed in such a way
 that it may be difficult to find him; but as yet he cannot be
 very far off, for the bodies are still warm.  We must never let
 the disgrace rest upon us of concealing this treason from the
 king.  Go thou, up to the lodging, and wait for me there."
 Sigvat then went to the church, and told the bell-ringer to toll
 for the souls of the king's court-men, naming the men who were
 killed.  The-bell-ringer did as he was told.  The king awoke at
 the ringing, sat up in his bed, and asked if it was already the
 hours of matins.
 Thord replies, "It is worse than that, for there has occurred a
 very important affair.  Hrorek is fled, and two of the court-men
 are killed."
 The king asked how this had taken place, and Thord told him all
 he knew.  The king got up immediately, ordered to sound the call
 for a meeting of the court, and when the people were assembled he
 named men to go out to every quarter from the town, by sea and
 land, to search for Hrorek.  Thorer Lange took a boat, and set
 off with thirty men; and when day dawned they saw two small boats
 before them in the channel, and when they saw each other both
 parties rowed as hard as they could.  King Hrorek was there with
 thirty men.  When they came quite close to each other Hrorek and
 his men turned towards the land, and all sprang on shore except
 the king, who sat on the aft seat.  He bade them farewell, and
 wished they might meet each other again in better luck.  At the
 same moment Thorer with his company rowed to the land.  Fin the
 Little shot off an arrow, which hit Thorer in the middle of the
 body, and was his death; and Sigurd Hit, with his men, ran up
 into the forest.  Thorer's men took his body, and transported it,
 together with Hrorek, to Tunsberg.  King Olaf undertook himself
 thereafter to look after King Hrorek, made him be carefully
 guarded, and took good care of his treason, for which reason he
 had a watch over him night and day.  King Hrorek thereafter was
 very gay, and nobody could observe but that he was in every way
 well satisfied.
 It happened on Ascension-day that King Olaf went to high mass,
 and the bishop went in procession around the church, and
 conducted the king; and when they came back to the church the
 bishop led the king to his seat on the north side of the choir.
 There Hrorek sat next to the king, and concealed his countenance
 in his upper cloak.  When Olaf had seated himself Hrorek laid his
 hand on the king's shoulder, and felt it.
 "Thou hast fine clothes on, cousin, today," said he.
 King Olaf replies, "It is a festival today, in remembrance that
 Jesus Christ ascended to heaven from earth."
 King Hrorek says, "I understand nothing about it so as to hold in
 my mind what ye tell me about Christ. Much of what ye tell me
 appears to me incredible, although many wonderful things may have
 come to pass in old times."
 When the mass was finished Olaf stood up, held his hands up over
 his head, and bowed down before the altar, so that his cloak hung
 down behind his shoulders.  Then King Hrorek started up hastily
 and sharply, and struck at the king with a long knife of the kind
 called ryting; but the blow was received in the upper cloak at
 the shoulder, because the king was bending himself forwards.  The
 clothes were much cut, but the king was not wounded.  When the
 king perceived the attack he sprang upon the floor; and Hrorek
 struck at him again with the knife, but did not reach him, and
 said, "Art thou flying, Olaf, from me, a blind men?"  The king
 ordered his men to seize him and lead him out of the church,
 which was done.  After this attempt many hastened to King Olaf,
 and advised that King Hrorek should be killed.  "It is," said
 they, "tempting your luck in the highest degree, king, to keep
 him with you, and protect him, whatever mischief he may
 undertake; for night and day he thinks upon taking your life. 
 And if you send him away, we know no one who can watch him so
 that he will not in all probability escape; and if once he gets
 loose he will assemble a great multitude, and do much evil."
 The king replies, "You say truly that many a one has suffered
 death for less offence than Hrorek's; but willingly I would not
 darken the victory I gained over the Upland kings, when in one
 morning hour I took five kings prisoners, and got all their
 kingdoms: but yet, as they were my relations, I should not be
 their murderer but upon need.  As yet I can scarcely see whether
 Hrorek puts me in the necessity of killing him or not."
 It was to feel if King Olaf had armour on or not that Hrorek had
 laid his hand on the king's shoulder.
 There was an Iceland man, by name Thorarin Nefiulfson, who had
 his relations in the north of the country.  He was not of high
 birth, but particularly prudent, eloquent, and agreeable in
 conversation with people of distinction.  He was also a far-
 travelled man, who had been long in foreign parts.  Thorarin was
 a remarkably ugly man, principally because he had very ungainly
 limbs.  He had great ugly hands, and his feet were still uglier.
 Thorarin was in Tunsberg when this event happened which has just
 been related, and he was known to King Olaf by their having had
 conversations together.  Thorarin was just then done with rigging
 out a merchant vessel which he owned, and with which he intended
 to go to Iceland in summer.  King Olaf had Thorarin with him as a
 guest for some days, and conversed much with him; and Thorarin
 even slept in the king's lodgings.  One morning early the king
 awoke while the others were still sleeping.  The sun had newly
 risen in the sky, and there was much light within.  The king saw
 that Thorarin had stretched out one of his feet from under the
 bed-clothes, and he looked at the foot a while.  In the meantime
 the others in the lodging awoke; and the king said to Thorarin,
 "I have been awake for a while, and have seen a sight which was
 worth seeing; and that is a man's foot so ugly that I do not
 think an uglier can be found in this merchant town."  Thereupon
 he told the others to look at it, and see if it was not so; and
 all agreed with the king.  When Thorarin observed what they were
 talking about, he said, "There are few things for which you
 cannot find a match, and that may be the case here."
 The king says, "I would rather say that such another ugly foot
 cannot be found in the town, and I would lay any wager upon it."
 Then said Thorarin, "I am willing to bet that I shall find an
 uglier foot still in the town."
 The king -- "Then he who wins shall have the right to get any
 demand from the other he chooses to make."
 "Be it so," said Thorarin.  Thereupon he stretches out his other
 foot from under the bed-clothes, and it was in no way handsomer
 than the other, and moreover, wanted the little toe.  "There,"
 said Thorarin, "see now, king, my other foot, which is so much
 uglier; and, besides, has no little toe.  Now I have won."
 The king replies, "That other foot was so much uglier than this
 one by having five ugly toes upon it, and this has only four; and
 now I have won the choice of asking something from thee."
 "The sovereign's decision must be right," says Thorarin; "but
 what does the king require of me?"
 "To take Hrorek," said the king, "to Greenland, and deliver him
 to Leif Eirikson."
 Thorarin replies, "I have never been in Greenland."
 The king -- "Thou, who art a far-travelled man, wilt now have an
 opportunity of seeing Greenland, if thou hast never been there
 At first Thorarin did not say much about it; but as the king
 insisted on his wish he did not entirely decline, but said, "I
 will let you hear, king, what my desire would have been had I
 gained the wager.  It would have been to be received into your
 body of court-men; and if you will grant me that, I will be the
 more zealous now in fulfilling your pleasure."  The king gave his
 consent, and Thorarin was made one of the court-men.  Then
 Thorarin rigged out his vessel, and when he was ready he took on
 board King Hrorek.  When Thorarin took leave of King Olaf, he
 said, "Should it now turn out, king, as is not improbable, and
 often happens, that we cannot effect the voyage to Greenland, but
 must run for Iceland or other countries, how shall I get rid of
 this king in a way that will be satisfactory to you?"
 The king -- "If thou comest to Iceland, deliver him into the
 hands of Gudmund Eyolfson, or of Skapte, the lagman, or of some
 other chief who will receive my tokens and message of friendship.
 But if thou comest to other countries nearer to this, do so with
 him that thou canst know with certainty that King Hrorek never
 again shall appear in Norway; but do so only when thou seest no
 other way of doing whatsoever."
 When Thorarin was ready for sea, and got a wind, he sailed
 outside of all the rocks and islands, and when he was to the
 north of the Naze set right out into the ocean.  He did not
 immediately get a good wind, but he avoided coming near the land.
 He sailed until he made land which he knew, in the south part of
 Iceland, and sailed west around the land out into the Greenland
 There he encountered heavy storms, and drove long about upon the
 ocean; but when summer was coming to an end he landed again in
 Iceland in Breidafjord.  Thorgils Arason (1) was the first man of
 any consequence who came to him.  Thorarin brings him the king's
 salutation, message, and tokens, with which was the desire about
 King Hrorek's reception.  Thorgils received these in a friendly
 way, and invited King Hrorek to his house, where he stayed all
 winter.  But he did not like being there, and begged that
 Thorgils would let him go to Gudmund; saying he had heard some
 time or other that there in Gudmund's house, was the most
 sumptuous way of living in Iceland, and that it was intended he
 should be in Gudmund's hands.  Thorgils let him have his desire,
 and conducted him with some men to Gudmund at Modruveller.
 Gudmund received Hrorek kindly on account of the king's message,
 and he stayed there the next winter.  He did not like being there
 either; and then Gudmund gave him a habitation upon a small farm
 called Kalfskin, where there were but few neighbours.  There
 Hrorek passed the third winter, and said that since he had laid
 down his kingdom he thought himself most comfortably situated
 here; for here he was most respected by all.  The summer after
 Hrorek fell sick, and died; and it is said he is the only king
 whose bones rest in Iceland.  Thorarin Nefiulfson was afterwards
 for a long time upon voyages; but sometimes he was with King
 (1)  Thorgils was the son of Are Marson, who visited America
      (Vindland).  Thorgils, who was still alive in the year 1024,
      was noted for his kindness toward all persecuted persons.
 The summer that Thorarin went with Hrorek to Iceland, Hjalte
 Skeggjason went also to Iceland, and King Olaf gave him many
 friendly gifts with him when they parted.  The same summer Eyvind
 Urarhorn went on an expedition to the west sea, and came in
 autumn to Ireland, to the Irish king Konofogor (1).  In autumn
 Einar earl of Orkney and this Irish king met in Ulfreks-fjord,
 and there was a great battle, in which Konofogor gained the
 victory, having many more people.  The earl fled with a single
 ship and came back about autumn to Orkney, after losing most of
 his men and all the booty they had made.  The earl was much
 displeased with his expedition, and threw the blame upon the
 Northmen, who had been in the battle on the side of the Irish
 king, for making him lose the victory.
 (1)  Konofogor's Irish name was Connor.
 Now we begin again our story where we let it slip -- at King
 Olaf's travelling to his bridal, to receive his betrothed
 Ingegerd the king's daughter.  The king had a great body of men
 with him, and so chosen a body that all the great people he could
 lay hold of followed him; and every man of consequence had a
 chosen band of men with him distinguished by birth or other
 qualifications.  The whole were well appointed, and equipped in
 ships, weapons, and clothes.  They steered the fleet eastwards to
 Konungahella; but when they arrived there they heard nothing of
 the Swedish king and none of his men had come there.  King Olaf
 remained a long time in summer (A.D. 1018) at Konungahella, and
 endeavored carefully to make out what people said of the Swedish
 king's movements, or what were his designs; but no person could
 tell him anything for certain about it.  Then he sent men up to
 Gautland to Earl Ragnvald, to ask him if he knew how it came to
 pass that the Swedish king did not come to the meeting agreed on.
 The earl replies, that he did not know.  "But as soon," said he,
 "as I hear, I shall send some of my men to King Olaf, to let him
 know if there be any other cause for the delay than the multitude
 of affairs; as it often happens that the Swedish king's movements
 are delayed by this more than he could have expected."
 This Swedish king, Olaf Eirikson, had first a concubine who was
 called Edla, a daughter of an earl of Vindland, who had been
 captured in war, and therefore was called the king's slave-girl.
 Their children were Emund, Astrid, Holmfrid....  They had,
 besides, a son, who was born the day before St. Jacob's-day. 
 When the boy was to be christened the bishop called him Jacob,
 which the Swedes did not like, as there never had been a Swedish
 king called Jacob.  All King Olaf's children were handsome in
 appearance, and clever from childhood.  The queen was proud, and
 did not behave well towards her step-children; therefore the king
 sent his son Emund to Vindland, to be fostered by his mother's
 relations, where he for a long time neglected his Christianity.
 The king's daughter, Astrid, was brought up in West Gautland, in
 the house of a worthy man called Egil.  She was a very lovely
 girl: her words came well into her conversation; she was merry,
 but modest, and very generous.  When she was grown up she was
 often in her father's house, and every man thought well of her.
 King Olaf was haughty and harsh in his speech.  He took very ill
 the uproar and clamour the country people had raised against him
 at the Upsala Thing, as they had threatened him with violence,
 for which he laid the chief blame on Earl Ragnvald.  He made no
 preparation for the bridal, according to the agreement to marry
 his daughter Ingegerd to Olaf the king of Norway, and to meet him
 on the borders for that purpose.  As the summer advanced many of
 his men were anxious to know what the kings intentions were;
 whether to keep to the agreement with King Olaf, or break his
 word, and with it the peace of the country.  But no one was so
 bold as to ask the king, although they complained of it to
 Ingegerd, and besought her to find out what the king intended.
 She replied "I have no inclination to speak to the king again
 about the matters between him and King Olaf; for he answered me
 ill enough once before when I brought forward Olaf's name."  In
 the meantime Ingegerd, the king's daughter, took it to heart,
 became melancholy and sorrowful and yet very curious to know what
 the king intended.  She had much suspicion that he would not keep
 his word and promise to King Olaf; for he appeared quite enraged
 whenever Olaf the Thick's name was in any way mentioned.
 One morning early the king rode out with his dogs and falcons,
 and his men around him.  When they let slip the falcons the
 king's falcon killed two black-cocks in one flight, and three in
 another.  The dogs ran and brought the birds when they had fallen
 to the ground.  The king ran after them, took the game from them
 himself, was delighted with his sport, and said, "It will be long
 before the most of you have such success."  They agreed in this;
 adding, that in their opinion no king had such luck in hunting as
 he had.  Then the king rode home with his followers in high
 spirits.  Ingegerd, the king's daughter, was just going out of
 her lodging when the king came riding into the yard, and she
 turned round and saluted him.  He saluted her in return,
 laughing; produced the birds, and told her the success of his
 "Dost thou know of any king," said he, "who made so great a
 capture in so short a time?"
 "It is indeed," replied she, "a good morning's hunting, to have
 got five black-cocks; but it was a still better when, in one
 morning, the king of Norway, Olaf, took five kings, and subdued
 all their kingdoms."
 When the king heard this he sprang from his horse, turned to
 Ingegerd, and said, "Thou shalt know, Ingegerd, that however
 great thy love may be for this man, thou shalt never get him, nor
 he get thee.  I will marry thee to some chief with whom I can be
 in friendship; but never can I be a friend of the man who has
 robbed me of my kingdom, and done me great mischief by marauding
 and killing through the land."  With that their conversation
 broke off, and each went away.
 Ingegerd, the king's daughter, had now full certainty of King
 Olaf's intention, and immediately sent men to West Gautland to
 Earl Ragnvald, and let him know how it stood with the Swedish
 king, and that the agreement made with the king of Norway was
 broken; and advising the earl and people of West Gautland to be
 upon their guard, as no peace from the people of Norway was to be
 expected.  When the earl got this news he sent a message through
 all his kingdom, and told the people to be cautious, and prepared
 in case of war or pillage from the side of Norway.  He also sent
 men to King Olaf the Thick, and let him know the message he had
 received, and likewise that he wished for himself to hold peace
 and friendship with King Olaf; and therefore he begged him not to
 pillage in his kingdom.  When this message came to King Olaf it
 made him both angry and sorry; and for some days nobody got a
 word from him.  He then held a House-Thing with his men, and in
 it Bjorn arose, and first took the word.  He began his speech by
 telling that he had proceeded eastward last winter to establish a
 peace, and he told how kindly Earl Ragnvald had received him;
 and, on the other hand, how crossly and heavily the Swedish king
 had accepted the proposal. "And the agreement," said he, "which
 was made, was made more by means of the strength of the people,
 the power of Thorgny, and the aid of the earl, than by the king's
 good-will.  Now, on these grounds, we know for certain that it is
 the king who has caused the breach of the agreement; therefore we
 ought by no means to make the earl suffer, for it is proved that
 he is King Olaf's firm friend."  The king wished now to hear from
 the chiefs and other leaders of troops what course he should
 adopt.  "Whether shall we go against Gautland, and maraud there
 with such men as we have got; or is there any other course that
 appears to you more advisable?"  He spoke both long and well.
 Thereafter many powerful men spoke, and all were at last agreed
 in dissuading from hostilities.  They argued thus: -- "Although
 we are a numerous body of men who are assembled here, yet they
 are all only people of weight and power; but, for a war
 expedition, young men who are in quest of property and
 consideration are more suitable.  It is also the custom of people
 of weight and power, when they go into battle or strife, to have
 many people with them whom they can send out before them for
 their defence; for the men do not fight worse who have little
 property, but even better than those who are brought up in the
 midst of wealth."  After these considerations the king resolved
 to dismiss this army from any expedition, and to give every man
 leave to return home; but proclaimed, at the same time, that next
 summer the people over the whole country would be called out in a
 general levy, to march immediately against the Swedish king, and
 punish him for his want of faith.  All thought well of this plan.
 Then the king returned northwards to Viken, and took his abode at
 Sarpsborg in autumn, and ordered all things necessary for winter
 provision to be collected there; and he remained there all winter
 (A.D. 1019) with a great retinue.
 People talked variously about Earl Ragnvald; some said he was
 King Olaf's sincere friend; others did not think this likely, and
 thought it stood in his power to warn the Swedish king to keep
 his word, and the agreement concluded on between him and King
 Olaf.  Sigvat the poet often expressed himself in conversation as
 Earl Ragnvald's great friend, and often spoke of him to King
 Olaf; and he offered to the king to travel to Earl Ragnvald's and
 spy after the Swedish kings doings, and to attempt, if possible,
 to get the settlement of the agreement.  The king thought well of
 this plan; for he oft, and with pleasure, spoke to his
 confidential friends about Ingegerd, the king's daughter.  Early
 in winter (A.D. 1019) Sigvat the skald, with two companions, left
 Sarpsborg, and proceeded eastwards over the moors to Gautland.
 Before Sigvat and King Olaf parted he composed these verses: --
      "Sit happy in thy hall, O king!
      Till I come back, and good news bring:
      The skald will bid thee now farewell,
      Till he brings news well worth to tell.
      He wishes to the helmed hero
      Health, and long life, and a tull flow
      Of honour, riches. and success --
      And, parting, ends his song with this.
      The farewell word is spoken now __
      The word that to the heart lies nearest;
      And yet, O king!  before I go,
      One word on what I hold the dearest,
      I fain would say, "O!  may God save
      To thee the bravest of the brave,
      The land, which is thy right by birth!"
      This is my dearest with on earth."
 Then they proceeded eastwards towards Eid, and had difficulty in
 crossing the river in a little cobble; but they escaped, though
 with danger: and Sigvat sang: --
      "On shore the crazy boat I drew,
      Wet to the skin, and frightened too;
      For truly there was danger then;
      The mocking hill elves laughed again. 
      To see us in this cobble sailing,
      And all our sea-skill unavailing.
      But better did it end, you see,
      Than any of us could foresee."
 Then they went through the Eid forest, and Sigvat sang: --
      "A hundred miles through Eid's old wood,
      And devil an alehouse, bad or good, --
      A hundred miles, and tree and sky
      Were all that met the weary eye.
      With many a grumble, many a groan.
      A hundred miles we trudged right on;
      And every king's man of us bore
      On each foot-sole a bleeding sore."
 They came then through Gautland, and in the evening reached a
 farm-house called Hof.  The door was bolted so that they could
 not come in; and the servants told them it was a fast-day, and
 they could not get admittance.  Sigvat sang: --
      "Now up to Hof in haste I hie,
      And round the house and yard I pry.
      Doors are fast locked -- but yet within,
      Methinks, I hear some stir and din.
      I peep, with nose close to the ground.
      Below the door, but small cheer found.
      My trouble with few words was paid --
      "`Tis holy time,' the house-folkd said.
      Heathens!  to shove me thus away!
      I' the foul fiend's claws may you all lay."
 Then they came to another farm, where the good-wife was standing
 at the door. and told them not to come in, for they were busy
 with a sacrifice to the elves.  Sigvat sang of it thus: --
      "`My poor lad, enter not, I pray!'
      Thus to me did the old wife say;
      `For all of us are heathens here,
      And I for Odin's wrath do fear.'
      The ugly witch drove me away,
      Like scared wolf sneaking from his prey.
      When she told me that there within
      Was sacrifice to foul Odin."
 Another evening, they came to three bondes, all of them of the
 name of Olver, who drove them away.  Sigvat sang: --
      "Three of one name,
      To their great shame,
      The traveller late
      Drove from their gate!
      Travellers may come
      From our viking-home,
      Unbidden guests
      At these Olvers' feasts."
 They went on farther that evening, and came to a fourth bonde,
 who was considered the most hospitable man in the country; but he
 drove them away also.  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "Then on I went to seek night's rest
      From one who was said to be the best,
      The kindest host in the land around,
      And there I hoped to have quarters found.
      But, faith,'twas little use to try;
      For not so much as raise an eye
      Would this huge wielder of the spade:
      If he's the hest, it must he said
      Bad is the best, and the skald's praise
      Cannot be given to churls like these.
      I almost wished that Asta's son
      In the Eid forest had been one
      When we, his men, were even put
      Lodging to crave in a heathen's hut.
      I knew not where the earl to find;
      Four times driven off by men unkind,
      I wandered now the whole night o'er,
      Driven like a dog from door to door."
 Now when they came to Earl Ragnvald's the earl said they must
 have had a severe journey.  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "The message-bearers of the king
      From Norway came his words to bring;
      And truly for their master they
      Hard work have done before to-day.
      We did not loiter on the road,
      But on we pushed for thy abode:
      Thy folk, in sooth, were not so kind
      That we cared much to lag hehind.
      But Eid to rest safe we found,
      From robbers free to the eastern bound:
      This praise to thee, great earl, is due --
      The skald says only what is true."
 Earl Ragnvald gave Sigvat a gold arm-ring, and a woman said "he
 had not made the journey with his black eyes for nothing." 
 Sigvat sang: --
      "My coal-black eyes
      Dost thou despise?
      They have lighted me
      Across the sea
      To gain this golden prize:
      They have lighted me,
      Thy eyes to see,
      O'er Iceland's main,
      O'er hill and plain:
      Where Nanna's lad would fear to be
      They have lighted me."
 Sigvat was long entertained kindly and well in the house of Earl
 Ragnvald.  The earl heard by letters, sent by Ingegerd the king's
 daughter, that ambassadors from King Jarisleif were come from
 Russia to King Olaf of Svithjod to ask his daughter Ingegerd in
 marriage, and that King Olaf had given them hopes that he would
 agree to it.  About the same time King Olaf's daughter Astrid
 came to Earl Ragnvald's court, and a great feast was made for
 her.  Sigvat soon became acquainted by conversation with the
 king's daughter, and she knew him by name and family, for Ottar
 the skald, Sigvat's sister's son, had long intimate acquaintance
 with King Olaf, the Swedish king.  Among other things talked of,
 Earl Ragnvald asked Sigvat if the king of Norway would not marry
 the king's daughter Astrid.  "If he would do that," said he, "I
 think we need not ask the Swedish king for his  consent." 
 Astrid, the kings daughter, said exactly the same.  Soon after
 Sigvat returns home, and comes to King Olaf at Sarpsborg a little
 before Yule.
 When Sigvat came home to King Olaf he went into the hall, and,
 looking around on the walls, he sang: --
      "When our men their arms are taking
      The raven's wings with greed are shaking;
      When they come back to drink in hall
      Brave spoil they bring to deck the wall --
      Shield, helms, and panzers (1), all in row,
      Stripped in the field from lifeless fow.
      In truth no royal nail comes near
      Thy splendid hall in precious gear."
 Afterwards Sigvat told of his journey, and sang these verses: --
      "The king's court-guards desire to hear
      About our journey and our cheer,
      Our ships in autumn reach the sound,
      But long the way to Swedish ground.
      With joyless weather, wind and raind,
      And pinching cold, and feet in pain --
      With sleep, fatigue, and want oppressed,
      No songs had we -- we scarce had rest."
 And when he came into conversation with the king he sang: --
      "When first I met the earl I told
      How our king loved a friend so bold;
      How in his heart he loved a man
      With hand to do, and head to plan.
      Thou generous king!  with zeal and care
      I sought to advance thy great affair;
      For messengers from Russian land
      Had come to ask Ingegerd's hand.
      The earl, thy friend, bids thee, who art
      So mild and generous of heart,
      His servants all who here may come
      To cherish in thy royal home;
      And thine who may come to the east
      In Ragnvald's hall shall find a feast --
      In Ragnvald's house shall find a home --
      At Ragnvald's court be still welcome.
      When first I came the people's mind
      Incensed by Eirik's son I find;
      And he refused the wish to meet,
      Alleging treachery and deceit.
      But I explained how it was here,
      For earl and king, advantage clear
      With thee to hold the strictest peace,
      And make all force and foray cease.
      The earl is wise, and understands
      The need of peace for both the lands;
      And he entreats thee not to break
      The present peace for vengeance's sake!"
 He immediately tells King Olaf the news he had heard; and at
 first the king was much cast down when he heard of King
 Jarisleif's suit, and he said he expected nothing but evil from
 King Olaf; but wished he might be able to return it in such a way
 as Olaf should remember.  A while afterwards the king asks Sigvat
 about various news from Gautland.  Sigvat spoke a great deal
 about Astrid, the kings daughter; how beautiful she was, how
 agreeable in her conversation; and that all declared she was in
 no respect behind her sister Ingegerd.  The king listened with
 pleasure to this.  Then Sigvat told him the conversation he and
 Astrid had had between themselves, and the king was delighted at
 the idea.  "The Swedish king," said he, "will scarcely think that
 I will dare to marry a daughter of his without his consent."  But
 this speech of his was not known generally.  King Olaf and Sigvat
 the skald often spoke about it.  The king inquired particularly
 of Sigvat what he knew about Earl Ragnvald, and "if he be truly
 our friend," said the king.  Sigvat said that the earl was King
 Olaf's best friend, and sang these verses: --
      "The mighty Olaf should not cease
      With him to hold good terms and peace;
      For this good earl unwearied shows
      He is thy friend where all are foes.
      Of all who dwell by the East Sea
      So friendly no man is as he:
      At all their Things he takes thy part,
      And is thy firm friend, hand and heart."
 (1)  The Pantzer -- a complete suit of plate-armour.
 After Yule (A.D. 1019), Thord Skotakol, a sister's son of Sigvat,
 attended by one of Sigvat's footboys, who had been with Sigvat
 the autumn before in Gautland, went quite secretly from the
 court, and proceeded to Gautland.  When they came to Earl
 Ragnvald's court, they produced the tokens which Olaf himself had
 sent to the earl, that he might place confidence in Thord.
 Without delay the earl made himself ready for a journey, as did
 Astrid, the king's daughter; and the earl took with him 120 men,
 who were chosen both from among his courtmen and the sons of
 great bondes, and who were carefully equipped in all things,
 clothes, weapons, and horses.  Then they rode northwards to
 Sarpsborg, and came there at Candlemas.
 King Olaf had put all things in order in the best style.  There
 were all sorts of liquors of the best that could be got, and all
 other preparations of the same quality.  Many people of
 consequence were summoned in from their residences.  When the
 earl arrived with his retinue the king received him particularly
 well; and the earl was shown to a large, good, and remarkably
 well-furnished house for his lodging; and serving-men and others
 were appointed to wait on him; and nothing was wanting, in any
 respect, that could grace a feast.  Now when the entertainment
 had lasted some days, the king, the earl, and Astrid had a
 conference together; and the result of it was, that Earl Ragnvald
 contracted Astrid, daughter of the Swedish king Olaf, to Olaf
 king of Norway, with the same dowry which had before been settled
 that her sister Ingegerd should have from home.  King Olaf, on
 his part, should give Astrid the same bride-gift that had been
 intended for her sister Ingegerd.  Thereupon an eke was made to
 the feast, and King Olaf and Queen Astrid's wedding was drunk in
 great festivity.  Earl Ragnvald then returned to Gautland, and
 the king gave the earl many great and good gifts at parting; and
 they parted the dearest of friends, which they continued to be
 while they lived.
 The spring (A.D. 1019) thereafter came ambassadors from King
 Jarisleif in Novgorod to Svithjod, to treat more particularly
 about the promise given by King Olaf the preceding summer to
 marry his daughter Ingegerd to King Jarisleif.  King Olaf tallied
 about the business with Ingegerd, and told her it was his
 pleasure that she should marry King Jarisleif.  She replied. "If
 I marry King Jarisleif, I must have as my bride-gift the town and
 earldom of Ladoga."  The Russian ambassadors agreed to this, on
 the part of their sovereign.  Then said Ingegerd, "If I go east
 to Russia, I must choose the man in Svithjod whom I think most
 suitable to accompany me; and I must stipulate that he shall not
 have any less title, or in any respect less dignity, privilege,
 and consideration there, than he has, here."  This the king and
 the ambassadors agreed to, and gave their hands upon it in
 confirmation of the condition.
 "And who," asked the king, "is the man thou wilt take with thee
 as thy attendant?"
 "That man," she replied, "is my relation Earl Ragnvald."
 The king replies, "I have resolved to reward Earl Ragnvald in a
 different manner for his treason against his master in going to
 Norway with my daughter, and giving her as a concubine to that
 fellow, who he knew was my greatest enemy.  I shall hang him up
 this summer."
 Then Ingegerd begged her father to be true to the promise he had
 made her, and had confirmed by giving his hand upon it.  By her
 entreaties it was at last agreed that the king should promise to
 let Earl Ragnvald go in peace from Svithjod, but that he should
 never again appear in the king's presence, or come back to
 Svithjod while Olaf reigned.  Ingegerd then sent messengers to
 the earl to bring him these tidings, and to appoint a place of
 meeting.  The earl immediately prepared for his journey; rode up
 to East Gautland; procured there a vessel, and, with his retinue,
 joined Ingegerd, and they proceeded together eastward to Russia.
 There Ingegerd was married to King Jarisleif; and their children
 were Valdemar, Vissivald, and Holte the Bold.  Queen Ingegerd
 gave Earl Ragnvald the town of Ladoga, and earldom belonging to
 it.  Earl Ragnvald was there a long time, and was a celebrated
 man.  His sons and Ingebjorg's were Earl Ulf and Earl Eilif.
 There was a man called Emund of Skara, who was lagman of west
 Gautland, and was a man of great understanding and eloquence, and
 of high birth, great connection, and very wealthy; but was
 considered deceitful, and not to be trusted.  He was the most
 powerful man in West Gautland after the earl was gone.  The same
 spring (A.D. 1019) that Earl Ragnvald left Gautland the Gautland
 people held a Thing among themselves, and often expressed their
 anxiety to each other about what the Swedish king might do.  They
 heard he was incensed because they had rather held in friendship
 with the king of Norway than striven against him; and he was also
 enraged against those who had attended his daughter Astrid to
 Norway.  Some proposed to seek help and support from the king of
 Norway, and to offer him their services; others dissuaded from
 this measure, as West Gautland had no strength to oppose to the
 Swedes.  "And the king of Norway," said they, "is far from us,
 the chief strength of his country very distant; and therefore let
 us first send men to the Swedish king to attempt to come to some
 reconciliation with him.  If that fail, we can still turn to the
 king of Norway."  Then the bondes asked Emund to undertake this
 mission, to which he agreed; and he proceeded with thirty men to
 East Gautland, where there were many of his relations and
 friends, who received him hospitably.  He conversed there with
 the most prudent men about this difficult business; and they were
 all unanimous on one point, -- that the king's treatment of them
 was against law and reason.  From thence Emund went into
 Svithjod, and conversed with many men of consequence, who all
 expressed themselves in the same way.  Emund continued his
 journey thus, until one day, towards evening, he arrived at
 Upsala, where he and his retinue took a good lodging, and stayed
 there all night.  The next day Emund waited upon the king, who
 was just then sitting in the Thing surrounded by many people.
 Emund went before him, bent his knee, and saluted him.  The king
 looked at him, saluted him, and asked him what news he brought.
 Emund replies, "There is little news among us Gautlanders; but it
 appears to us a piece of remarkable news that the proud, stupid
 Atte, in Vermaland, whom we look upon as a great sportsman, went
 up to the forest in winter with his snow-shoes and his bow. 
 After he had got as many furs in the mountains as filled his
 hand-sledge so full that he could scarcely drag it, he returned
 home from the woods.  But on the way he saw a squirrel in the
 trees, and shot at it, but did not hit; at which he was so angry,
 that he left the sledge to run after the squirrel: but still the
 squirrel sprang where the wood was thickest, sometimes among the
 roots of the trees, sometimes in the branches, sometimes among
 the arms that stretch from tree to tree.  When Atte shot at it
 the arrows flew too high or too low, and the squirrel never
 jumped so that Atte could get a fair aim at him.  He was so eager
 upon this chase that he ran the whole day after the squirrel, and
 yet could not get hold of it.  It was now getting dark; so he
 threw himself down upon the snow, as he was wont, and lay there
 all night in a heavy snow-storm.  Next day Atte got up to look
 after his sledge, but never did he find it again; and so he
 returned home.  And this is the only news, king, I have to tell."
 The king says, "This is news of but little importance, if it be
 all thou hast to tell."
 Ernund replies, "Lately something happened which may well be
 called news.  Gaute Tofason went with five warships out of the
 Gaut river, and when he was lying at the Eikrey Isles there came
 five large Danish merchant-ships there.  Gaute and his men
 immediately took four of the great vessels, and made a great
 booty without the loss of a man: but the fifth vessel slipped out
 to sea, and sailed away.  Gaute gave chase with one ship, and at
 first came nearer to them; but as the wind increased, the Danes
 got away.  Then Gaute wanted to turn back; but a storm came on so
 that he lost his ship at Hlesey, with all the goods, and the
 greater part of his crew.  In the meantime his people were
 waiting for him at the Eikrey Isles: but the Danes came over in
 fifteen merchant-ships, killed them all, and took all the booty
 they had made.  So but little luck had they with their greed of
 The king replied.  "That is great news, and worth being told; but
 what now is thy errand here?"
 Emund replies, "I travel, sire, to obtain your judgment in a
 difficult case, in which our law and the Upsala law do not
 The king asks, "What is thy appeal case?"
 Emund replies, "There were two noble-born men of equal birth, but
 unequal in property and disposition.  They quarrelled about some
 land, and did each other much damage; but most was done to him
 who was the more powerful of the two.  This quarrel, however, was
 settled, and judged of at a General Thing; and the judgment was,
 that the most powerful should pay a compensation.  But at the
 first payment, instead of paying a goose, he paid a gosling; for
 an old swine he paid a sucking pig; and for a mark of stamped
 gold only a half- mark, and for the other half-mark nothing but
 clay and dirt; and, moreover, threatened, in the most violent
 way, the people whom he forced to receive such goods in payment.
 Now, sire, what is your judgment?"
 The king replies, "He shall pay the full equivalent whom the
 judgment ordered to do so, and that faithfully; and further,
 threefold to his king: and if payment be not made within a year
 and a day, he shall be cut off from all his property, his goods
 confiscated, and half go the king's house, and half to the other
 Emund took witnesses to this judgment among the most considerable
 of the men who were present, according to the laws which were
 held in the Upsala Thing.  He then saluted the king, and went his
 way; and other men brought their cases before the king, and he
 sat late in the day upon the cases of the people.  Now when the
 king came to table, he asked where Lagman Emund was.  It was
 answered, he was home at his lodgings.  "Then," said the king,
 "go after him, and tell him to be my guest to-day."  Thereafter
 the dishes were borne in; then came the musicians with harps,
 fiddles, and musical instruments; and lastly, the cup-bearers.
 The king was particularly merry, and had many great people at
 table with him, so that he thought little of Emund.  The king
 drank the whole day, and slept all the night after; but in the
 morning the king awoke, and recollected what Emund had said the
 day before: and when he had put on his clothes, he let his wise
 men be summoned to him; for he had always twelve of the wisest
 men who sat in judgment with him, and treated the more difficult
 cases; and that was no easy business, for the king was ill-
 pleased if the judgment was not according to justice, and yet it
 was of no use to contradict him.  In this meeting the king
 ordered Lagman Emund to be called before them.  The messenger
 returned, and said, "Sire, Lagman Emund rode away yesterday as
 soon as he had dined."  "Then," said the king, "tell me, ye good
 chiefs, what may have been the meaning of that law-case which
 Emund laid before us yesterday?"
 They replied, "You must have considered it yourself, if you think
 there was any other meaning under it than what he said."
 The king replied, "By the two noble-born men whom he spoke of,
 who were at variance, and of whom one was more powerful than the
 other, and who did each other damage, he must have meant us and
 Olaf the Thick."
 They answered, "It is, sire, as you say."
 The king -- "Our case was judged at the Upsala Thing.  But what
 was his meaning when he said that bad payment was made; namely, a
 gosling for a goose, a pig for a swine, and clay and dirt for
 half of the money instead of gold?"
 Arnvid the Blind replied, "Sire, red gold and clay are things
 very unlike; but the difference is still greater between king and
 slave.  You promised Olaf the Thick your daughter Ingegerd, who,
 in all branches of her descent, is born of kings, and of the
 Upland Swedish race of kings, which is the most noble in the
 North; for it is traced up to the gods themselves.  But now Olaf
 has got Astrid; and although she is a king's child, her mother
 was but a slave-woman, and, besides, of Vindish race.  Great
 difference, indeed, must there be between these kings, when the
 one takes thankfully such a match; and now it is evident, as
 might be expected, that no Northman is to be placed by the side
 of the Upsala kings.  Let us all give thanks that it has so
 turned out; for the gods have long protected their descendants,
 although many now neglect this faith."
 There were three brothers: -- Arnvid the Blind, who had a great
 understanding, but was so weak-sighted that he was scarcely fit
 for war; the second was Thorvid the Stammerer, who could not
 utter two words together at one time, but was remarkably bold and
 courageous; the third was Freyvid the Deaf, who was hard of
 hearing.  All these brothers were rich and powerful men, of noble
 birth, great wisdom, and all very dear to the king.
 Then said King Olaf, "What means that which Emund said about Atte
 the Dull?"
 None made any reply, but the one looked at the other.
 "Speak freely," said the king.
 Then said Thorvid the Stammerer, "Atte -- quarrel -- some --
 greedy -- jealous -- deceitful -- dull."
 Then said the king, "To whom are these words of reproach and
 mockery applied?"
 Freyvid the Deaf replied, "We will speak more clearly if we have
 your permission."
 The king -- "Speak freely, Freyvid, what you will."
 Freyvid took up the word, and spoke.  "My brother Thorvid, who is
 considered to be the wisest of us brothers, holds the words
 `quarrelsome, greedy, jealous, dull,' to be one and the same
 thing; for it applies to him who is weary of peace, longs for
 small things without attaining them, while he lets great and
 useful things pass away as they came.  I am deaf; yet so loud
 have many spoken out, that I can perceive that all men, both
 great and small, take it ill that you have not kept your promise
 to the king of Norway; and, worse than that, that you broke the
 decision of the community as it was delivered at Upsala Thing.
 You need not fear either the king of Norway, or the king of
 Denmark, or any other, so long as the Swedish army will follow
 you; but if the people of the country unanimously turn against
 you, we, your friends, see no counsel that can be of advantage to
 The king asks, "Who is the chief who dares to betray the country
 and me?"
 Freyvid replies, "All Swedes desire to have the ancient laws, and
 their full rights.  Look but here, sire, how many chiefs are
 sitting in council with you.  I think, in truth, we are but six
 whom you call your councillors: all the others, so far as I know,
 have ridden forth through the districts to hold Things with the
 people; and we will not conceal it from you, that the message-
 token has gone forth to assemble a Retribution-thing (1).  All of
 us brothers have been invited to take part in the decisions of
 this council, but none of us will bear the name of traitor to the
 sovereign; for that our father never was."
 Then the king said, "What council shall we take in this dangerous
 affair that is in our hands?  Good chiefs give me council, that I
 may keep my kingdom, and the heritage of my forefathers; for I
 cannot enter into strife against the whole Swedish force."
 Arnvid the Blind replies, "Sire, it is my advice that you ride
 down to Aros with such men as will follow you; take your ship
 there and go out into the Maeler lake; summon all people to meet
 you; proceed no longer with haughtiness, but promise every man
 the law and rights of old established in the country; keep back
 in this way the message-token, for it cannot as yet, in so short
 a time have travelled far through the land.  Send, then those of
 your men in whom you have the most confidence to those who have
 this business on hand, and try if this uproar can be appeased."
 The king says that he will adopt this advice. "I will," says he,
 "that ye brothers undertake this business; for I trust to you the
 most among my men."
 Thorvid the Stammerer said, "I remain behind.  Let Jacob, your
 son, go with them, for that is necessary."
 Then said Freyvid, "Let us do as Thorvid says: he will not leave
 you, and I and Arnvid must travel."
 This counsel was followed.  Olaf went to his ships, and set out
 into the Maelar lake, and many people came to him.  The brothers
 Arnvid and Freyvid rode out to Ullaraker, and had with them the
 king's son Jacob; but they kept it a secret that he was there.
 The brothers observed that there was a great concourse and war-
 gathering, for the bondes held the Thing night and day.  When
 Arnvid and Freyvid met their relations and friends, they said
 they would join with the people; and many agreed to leave the
 management of the business in the hands of the brothers.  But
 all, as one man, declared they would no longer have King Olaf
 over them, and no longer suffer his unlawful proceedings, and
 over-weening pride which would not listen to any man's
 remonstrances, even when the great chiefs spoke the truth to him.
 When Freyvid observed the heat of the people, he saw in what a
 bad situation the king's cause was.  He summoned the chiefs of
 the land to a meeting with him and addressed them thus: -- "It
 appears to me, that if we are to depose Olaf Eirikson from his
 kingdom, we Swedes of the Uplands should be the leading men in
 it: for so it has always been, that the counsel which the Upland
 chiefs have resolved among themselves has always been followed
 by the men of the rest of the country.  Our forefathers did not
 need to take advice from the West Gautlanders about the
 government of the Swedes.  Now we will not be so degenerate as to
 need Emund to give us counsel; but let us, friends and relations,
 unite ourselves for the purpose of coming to a determination."
 All agreed to this, and thought it was well said.  Thereafter the
 people joined this union which the Upland chiefs made among
 themselves, and Freyvid and Arnvid were chiefs of the whole
 assemblage.  When Emund heard this he suspected how the matter
 would end, and went to both the brothers to have a conversation
 with them.  Then Freyvid asked Emund, "Who, in your opinion,
 should we take for king, in case Olaf Eirikson's days are at an
 Emund -- "He whom we think best suited to it, whether he be of
 the race of chiefs or not."
 Freyvid answers, "We Uplanders will not, in our time, have the
 kingdom go out of the old race of our ancestors, which has given
 us kings for a long course of generations, so long as we have so
 good a choice as now.  King Olaf has two sons, one of whom we
 will choose for king, although there is a great difference
 between them.  The one is noble-born, and of Swedish race on both
 sides; the other is a slave-woman's son, and of Vindish race on
 the mother's side."
 This decision was received with loud applause, and all would have
 Jacob for king.
 Then said Emund. "Ye Upland Swedes have the power this time to
 determinate the matter; but I will tell you what will happen: --
 some of those who now will listen to nothing but that the kingdom
 remain in the old race will live to see the day when they will
 wish the kingdom in another race, as being of more advantage."
 Thereupon the brothers Freyvid and Arnvid led the king's son
 Jacob into the Thing, and saluted him with the title of king; and
 the Swedes gave him the name of Onund, which he afterwards
 retained as long as he lived.  He was then ten or twelve years
 old.  Thereafter King Onund took a court, and chose chiefs to be
 around him; and they had as many attendants in their suite as
 were thought necessary, so that he gave the whole assemblage of
 bondes leave to return home.  After that ambassadors went between
 the two kings; and at last they had a meeting, and came to an
 agreement.  Olaf was to remain king over the country as long as
 he lived; but should hold peace and be reconciled with King Olaf
 of Norway, and also with all who had taken part in this business.
 Onund should also be king, and have a part of the land, such as
 the father and son should agree upon; but should be bound to
 support the bondes in case King Olaf did anything which the
 bondes would not suffer.
 (1)  Refsithing -- a Thing for punishment by penalty or death for
      crimes and misdemeanours. -- L.
     AT DICE.
 Thereafter ambassadors were sent to Norway to King Olaf, with the
 errand that he should come with his retinue to a meeting at
 Konungahella with the Swedish kings, and that the Swedish kings
 would there confirm their reconciliation.  When King Olaf heard
 this message, he was willing, now as formerly, to enter into the
 agreement, and proceeded to the appointed place.  There the
 Swedish kings also came; and the relations, when they met, bound
 themselves mutually to peace and agreement.  Olaf the Swedish
 king was then remarkably mild in manner, and agreeable to talk
 with.  Thorstein Frode relates of this meeting, that there was an
 inhabited district in Hising which had sometimes belonged to
 Norway, and sometimes to Gautland.  The kings came to the
 agreement between themselves that they would cast lots by the
 dice to determine who should have this property, and that he who
 threw the highest should have the district.  The Swedish king
 threw two sixes, and said King Olaf need scarcely throw.  He
 replied, while shaking the dice in his hand, "Although there be
 two sixes on the dice, it would be easy, sire, for God Almighty
 to let them turn up in my favour."  Then he threw, and had sixes
 also.  Now the Swedish king threw again, and had again two sixes.
 Olaf king of Norway then threw, and had six upon one dice, and
 the other split in two, so as to make seven eyes in all upon it;
 and the district was adjudged to the king of Norway.  We have
 heard nothing else of any interest that took place at this
 meeting; and the kings separated the dearest of friends with each
 After the events now related Olaf returned with his people to
 Viken.  He went first to Tunsberg, and remained there a short
 time, and then proceeded to the north of the country.  In
 harvest-time he sailed north to Throndhjem, and had winter
 provision laid in there, and remained there all winter (A.D.
 1090).  Olaf Haraldson was now sole and supreme king of Norway,
 and the whole of that sovereignty, as Harald Harfager had
 possessed it, and had the advantage over that monarch of being
 the only king in the land.  By a peaceful agreement he had also
 recovered that part of the country which Olaf the Swedish king
 had before occupied; and that part of the country which the
 Danish king had got he retook by force, and ruled over it as
 elsewhere in the country.  The Danish king Canute ruled at that
 time both over Denmark and England; but he himself was in England
 for the most part, and set chiefs over the country in Denmark,
 without at that time making any claim upon Norway.
 It is related that in the days of Harald Harfager, the king of
 Norway, the islands of Orkney, which before had been only a
 resort for vikings, were settled . The first earl in the Orkney
 Islands was called Sigurd, who was a son of Eystein Giumra, and
 brother of Ragnvald earl of More.  After Sigurd his son Guthorm
 was earl for one year.  After him Torf-Einar, a son of Ragnvald,
 took the earldom, and was long earl, and was a man of great
 power.  Halfdan Haleg, a son of Harald Harfager, assaulted Torf-
 Einar, and drove him from the Orkney Islands; but Einar came back
 and killed Halfdan in the island Ronaldsha.  Thereafter King
 Harald came with an army to the Orkney Islands.  Einar fled to
 Scotland, and King Harald made the people of the Orkney Islands
 give up their udal properties, and hold them under oath from him.
 Thereafter the king and earl were reconciled, so that the earl
 became the king's man, and took the country as a fief from him;
 but that it should pay no scat or feu-duty, as it was at that
 time much plundered by vikings.  The earl paid the king sixty
 marks of gold; and then King Harald went to plunder in Scotland,
 as related in the "Glym Drapa".  After Torf-Einar, his sons
 Arnkel, Erlend, and Thorfin Hausakljufer (1) ruled over these
 lands. In their days came Eirik Blood-axe from Norway, and
 subdued these earls.  Arnkel and Erlend fell in a war expedition;
 but Thorfin ruled the country long, and became an old man.  His
 sons were Arnfin, Havard, Hlodver, Liot, and Skule.  Their mother
 was Grelad, a daughter of Earl Dungad of Caithness.  Her mother
 was Groa, a daughter of Thorstein Raud.  In the latter days of
 Earl Thorfin came Eirik Blood-axe's sons, who had fled from Earl
 Hakon out of Norway, and committed great excesses in Orkney. 
 Earl Thorfin died on a bed of sickness, and his sons after him
 ruled over the country, and there are many stories concerning
 them.  Hlodver lived the longest of them, and ruled alone over
 this country.  His son was Sigurd the Thick, who took the earldom
 after him, and became a powerful man and a great warrior.  In his
 days came Olaf Trygvason from his viking expedition in the
 western ocean, with his troops, landed in Orkney and took Earl
 Sigurd prisoner in South Ronaldsha, where he lay with one ship.
 King Olaf allowed the earl to ransom his life by letting himself
 be baptized, adopting the true faith, becoming his man, and
 introducing Christianity into all the Orkney Islands.  As a
 hostage, King Olaf took his son, who was called Hunde or Whelp.
 Then Olaf went to Norway, and became king; and Hunde was several
 years with King Olaf in Norway, and died there.  After his death
 Earl Sigurd showed no obedience or fealty to King Olaf.  He
 married a daughter of the Scottish king Malcolm, and their son
 was called Thorfin.  Earl Sigurd had, besides, older sons; 
 namely, Sumarlide, Bruse, and Einar Rangmund.  Four or five years
 after Olaf Tryrgvason's fall Earl Sigurd went to Ireland, leaving
 his eldest sons to rule the country, and sending Thorfin to his
 mother's father, the Scottish king.  On this expedition Earl
 Sigurd fell in Brian's battle (l).  When the news was received in
 Orkney, the brothers Sumarlide, Bruse, and Einar were chosen
 earls, and the country was divided into three parts among them.
 Thorfin Sigurdson was five years old when Earl Sigurd fell.  When
 the Scottish king heard of the earl's death he gave his relation
 Thorfin Caithness and Sutherland, with the title of earl, and
 appointed good men to rule the land for him.  Earl Thorfin was
 ripe in all ways as soon as he was grown up: he was stout and
 strong, but ugly; and as soon as he was a grown man it was easy
 to see that he was a severe and cruel but a very clever man.  So
 says Arnor, the earls' skald: --
      "Under the rim of heaven no other,
      So young in years as Einar's brother,
      In battle had a braver hand,
      Or stouter, to defend the land."
 (1)  Hausakljufer -- the splitter of skulls. -- L.
 (2)  Brian's battle is supposed to have taken place on the 23rd
      April 1014, at Clontart, near Dublin; and is known in Irish
      history as the battle of Clontarf, and was one of the
      bloodiest of the age.  It was fought between a viking called
      Sigtryg and Brian king of Munster, who gained the victory,
      but lost his life. -- L.
 The brothers Einar and Bruse were very unlike in disposition.
 Bruse was a soft-minded, peaceable man, -- sociable, eloquent,
 and of good understanding.  Einar was obstinate, taciturn, and
 dull; but ambitious, greedy of money, and withal a great warrior.
 Sumarlide, the eldest of the brothers, was in disposition like
 Bruse, and lived not long, but died in his bed.  After his death
 Thorfin claimed his share of the Orkney Islands.  Einar replied,
 that Thorfin had the dominions which their father Sigurd had
 possessed, namely, Caithness and Sutherland, which he insisted
 were much larger than a third part of Orkney; therefore he would
 not consent to Thorfin's having any share.  Bruse, on the other
 hand, was willing, he said, to divide with him.  "I do not-
 desire," he said, "more than the third part of the land, and
 which of right belongs to me."  Then Einar took possession of two
 parts of the country, by which he became a powerful man,
 surrounded by many followers.  He was often in summer out on
 marauding expeditions, and called out great numbers of the people
 to join him; but it went always unpleasantly with the division of
 the booty made on his viking cruises.  Then the bondes grew weary
 of all these burdens; but Earl Einar held fast by them with
 severity, calling in all services laid upon the people, and
 allowing no opposition from any man; for he was excessively proud
 and overbearing.  And now there came dearth and scarcity in his
 lands, in consequence of the services and money outlay exacted
 from the bondes; while in the part of the country belonging to
 Bruse there were peace and plenty, and therefore he was the best
 beloved by the bondes.
 There was a rich and powerful man who was called Amunde, who
 dwelt in Hrossey at Sandvik, in Hlaupandanes.  His son, called
 Thorkel, was one of the ablest men in the islands.  Amunde was a
 man of the best understanding, and most respected in Orkney.  One
 spring Earl Einar proclaimed a levy for an expedition, as usual.
 The bondes murmured greatly against it, and applied to Amunde
 with the entreaty that he would intercede with the earl for them.
 He replied, that the earl was not a man who would listen to other
 people, and insisted that it was of no use to make any entreaty
 to the earl about it.  "As things now stand, there is a good
 understanding between me and the earl; but, in my opinion, there
 would be much danger of our quarrelling, on account of our
 different dispositions and views on both sides; therefore I will
 have nothing to do with it."  They then applied to Thorkel, who
 was also very loath to interfere, but promised at last to do so,
 in consequence of the great entreaty of the people.  Amunde
 thought he had given his promise too hastily.  Now when the earl
 held a Thing, Thorkel spoke on account of the people, and
 entreated the earl to spare the people from such heavy burdens,
 recounting their necessitous condition.  The earl replies
 favourably, saying that he would take Thorkel's advice.  "I had
 intended to go out from the country with six ships, but now I
 will only take three with me; but thou must not come again,
 Thorkel, with any such request."  The bondes thanked Thorkel for
 his assistance, and the earl set out on a viking cruise, and came
 back in autumn.  The spring after, the earl made the same levy as
 usual, and held a Thing with the bondes.  Then Thorkel again made
 a speech, in which he entreated the earl to spare the people. 
 The earl now was angry, and said the lot of the bondes should be
 made worse in consequence of his intercession; and worked himself
 up into such a rage, that he vowed they should not both come next
 spring to the Thing in a whole skin.  Then the Thing was closed.
 When Amunde heard what the earl and Thorkel had said at the
 Thing, he told Thorkel to leave the country, and he went over to
 Caithness to Earl Thorfin.  Thorkel was afterwards a long time
 there, and brought up the earl in his youth, and was on that
 account called Thorkel the Fosterer; and he became a very
 celebrated man.
 There were many powerful men who fled from their udal properties
 in Orkney on account of Earl Einar's violence, and the most fled
 over to Caithness to Earl Thorfin: but some fled from the Orkney
 Islands to Norway, and some to other countries.  When Earl
 Thorfin was grown up he sent a message to his brother Einar, and
 demanded the part of the dominion which he thought belonged to
 him in Orkney; namely, a third of the islands.  Einar was nowise
 inclined to diminish his possessions.  When Thorfin found this he
 collected a warforce in Caithness, and proceeded to the islands.
 As soon as Earl Einar heard of this he collected people, and
 resolved to defend his country.  Earl Bruse also collected men,
 and went out to meet them, and bring about some agreement between
 them.  An agreement was at last concluded, that Thorfin should
 have a third part of the islands, as of right belonging to him,
 but that Bruse and Einar should lay their two parts together, and
 Einar alone should rule over them; but if the one died before the
 other, the longest liver should inherit the whole.  This
 agreement seemed reasonable, as Bruse had a son called Ragnvald,
 but Einar had no son.  Earl Thorfin set men to rule over his land
 in Orkney, but he himself was generally in Caithness.  Earl Einar
 was generally on viking expeditions to Ireland, Scotland, and
 One summer (A.D. 1018) that Earl Einar marauded in Ireland, he
 fought in Ulfreks-fjord with the Irish king Konofogor, as has
 been related before, and suffered there a great defeat.  The
 summer after this (A.D. 1019) Eyvind Urarhorn was coming from the
 west from Ireland, intending to go to Norway; but the weather was
 boisterous, and the current against him, so he ran into
 Osmundwall, and lay there wind-bound for some time.  When Earl
 Einar heard of this, he hastened thither with many people, took
 Eyvind prisoner, and ordered him to be put to death, but spared
 the lives of most of his people.  In autumn they proceeded to
 Norway to King Olaf, and told him Eyvind was killed.  The king
 said little about it, but one could see that he considered it a
 great and vexatious loss; for he did not usually say much if
 anything turned out contrary to his wishes.  Earl Thorfin sent
 Thorkel Fosterer to the islands to gather in his scat.  Now, as
 Einar gave Thorkel the greatest blame for the dispute in which
 Thorfin had made claim to the islands, Thorkel came suddenly back
 to Caithness from Orkney, and told Earl Thorfin that he had
 learnt that Earl Einar would have murdered him if his friends and
 relations had not given him notice to escape.  "Now," says he,
 "it is come so far between the earl and me, that either some
 thing decisive between us must take place if we meet, or I must
 remove to such a distance that his power will not reach me."  The
 earl encouraged Thorkel much to go east to Norway to King Olaf.
 "Thou wilt be highly respected," says he, "wherever thou comest
 among honourable men; and I know so well thy disposition and the
 earl's, that it will not be long before ye come to extremities."
 Thereupon Thorkel made himself ready, and proceeded in autumn to
 Norway, and then to King Olaf, with whom he stayed the whole
 winter (A.D. 1020), and was in high favour.  The king often
 entered into conversation with him, and he thought, what was
 true, that Thorkel was a high-minded man, of good understanding.
 In his conversations with Thorkel, the king found a great
 difference in his description of the two earls; for Thorkel was a
 great friend of Earl Thorfin, but had much to say against Einar.
 Early in spring (A.D. 1020) the king sent a ship west over the
 sea to Earl Thorfin, with the invitation to come east and visit
 him in Norway.  The earl did not decline the invitation, for it
 was accompanied by assurances of friendship.
 Earl Thorfin went east to Norway, and came to King Olaf, from
 whom he received a kind reception, and stayed till late in the
 summer.  When he was preparing to return westwards again, King
 Olaf made him a present of a large and fully-rigged long-ship.
 Thorkel the Fosterer joined company with the earl, who gave him
 the ship which he brought with him from the west.  The king and
 the earl took leave of each other tenderly.  In autumn Earl
 Thorfin came to Orkney, and when Earl Einar heard of it he went
 on board his ships with a numerous band of men.  Earl Bruse came
 up to his two brothers, and endeavoured to mediate between them,
 and a peace was concluded and confirmed by oath.  Thorkel
 Fosterer was to be in peace and friendship with Earl Einar; and
 it was agreed that each of them should give a feast to the other,
 and that the earl should first be Thorkel's guest at Sandwick.
 When the earl came to the feast he was entertained in the best
 manner; but the earl was not cheerful.  There was a great room,
 in which there were doors at each end.  The day the earl should
 depart Thorkel was to accompany him to the other feast; and
 Thorkel sent men before, who should examine the road they had to
 travel that day.  The spies came back, and said to Thorkel they
 had discovered three ambushes.  "And we think," said they, "there
 is deceit on foot."  When Thorkel heard this he lengthened out
 his preparations for the journey, and gathered people about him.
 The earl told him to get ready, as it was time to be on
 horseback.  Thorkel answered, that he had many things to put in
 order first, and went out and in frequently.  There was a fire
 upon the floor.  At last he went in at one door, followed by an
 Iceland man from Eastfjord, called Halvard, who locked the door
 after him.  Thorkel went in between the fire and the place where
 the earl was sitting.  The earl asked, "Art thou ready at last,
 Thorkel answers, "Now I am ready;" and struck the earl upon the
 head so that he fell upon the floor.
 Then said the Icelander, "I never saw people so foolish as not to
 drag the earl out of the fire;" and took a stick, which he set
 under the earl's neck, and put him upright on the bench.  Thorkel
 and his two comrades then went in all haste out of the other door
 opposite to that by which they went in, and Thorkel's men were
 standing without fully armed.  The earl's men now went in, and
 took hold of the earl.  He was already dead, so nobody thought of
 avenging him: and also the whole was done so quickly; for nobody
 expected such a deed from Thorkel, and all supposed that there
 really was, as before related, a friendship fixed between the
 earl and Thorkel.  The most who were within were unarmed, and
 they were partly Thorkel's good friends; and to this may be
 added, that fate had decreed a longer life to Thorkel.  When
 Thorkel came out he had not fewer men with him than the earl's
 troop.  Thorkel went to his ship, and the earl's men went their
 way.  The same day Thorkel sailed out eastwards into the sea.
 This happened after winter; but he came safely to Norway, went as
 fast as he could to Olaf, and was well received by him.  The king
 expressed his satisfaction at this deed, and Thorkel was with him
 all winter (A.D. 1091).
 After Earl Einar's fall Bruse took the part of the country which
 he had possessed; for it was known to many men on what conditions
 Einar and Bruse had entered into a partnership.  Although Thorfin
 thought it would be more just that each of them had half of the
 islands, Bruse retained the two-thirds of the country that winter
 (A.D. 1021).  In spring, however, Thorfin produced his claim, and
 demanded the half of the country; but Bruse would not consent.
 They held Things and meetings about the business; and although
 their friends endeavoured to settle it, Thorfin would not be
 content with less than the half of the islands, and insisted that
 Bruse, with his disposition, would have enough even with a third
 part.  Bruse replies, "When I took my heritage after my father I
 was well satisfied with a third part of the country, and there
 was nobody to dispute it with me; and now I have succeeded to
 another third in heritage after my brother, according to a lawful
 agreement between us; and although I am not powerful enough to
 maintain a feud against thee, my brother, I will seek some other
 way, rather than willingly renounce my property."  With this
 their meeting ended.  But Bruse saw that he had no strength to
 contend against Thorfin, because Thorfin had both a greater
 dominion and also could have aid from his mother's brother, the
 Scottish king.  He resolved, therefore, to go out of the country;
 and he went eastward to King Olaf, and had with him his son
 Ragnvald, then ten years old.  When the earl came to the king he
 was well received.  The earl now declared his errand, and told
 the king the circumstances of the whole dispute between him and
 his brother, and asked help to defend his kingdom of Orkney;
 promising, in return, the fullest friendship towards King Olaf.
 In his answer, the king began with showing how Harald Harfager
 had appropriated to himself all udal rights in Orkney, and that
 the earls, since that time, have constantly held the country as a
 fief, not as their udal property.  "As a sufficient proof of
 which," said he, "when Eirik Blood-axe and his sons were in
 Orkney the earls were subject to them; and also when my relation
 Olaf Trygvason came there thy father, Earl Sigurd, became his
 man.  Now I have taken heritage after King Olaf, and I will give
 thee the condition to become my man and then I will give thee the
 islands as a fief; and we shall try if I cannot give thee aid
 that will he more to the purpose than Thorfin can get from the
 Scottish king.  If thou wilt not accept of these terms, then will
 I win back my udal property there in the West, as our forefathers
 and relations of old possessed it."
 The earl carefully considered this speech, laid it before his
 friends, and demanded their advice if he should agree to it, and
 enter into such terms with King Olaf and become his vassal.  "But
 I do not see what my lot will be at my departure if I say no; for
 the king has clearly enough declared his claim upon Orkney; and
 from his great power, and our being in his hands, it is easy for
 him to make our destiny what he pleases."
 Although the earl saw that there was much to be considered for
 and against it he chose the condition to deliver himself and his
 dominion into the king's power.  Thereupon the king took the
 earl's power, and the government over all the earl's lands, and
 the earl became his vassal under oath of fealty.
 Thorfin the earl heard that his brother Bruse had gone east to
 King Olaf to seek support from him; but as Thorfin had been on a
 visit to King Olaf before, and had concluded a friendship with
 him, he thought his case would stand well with the king, and that
 many would support it; but he believed that many more would do so
 if he went there himself.  Earl Thorfin resolved, therefore, to
 go east himself without delay; and he thought there would be so
 little difference between the time of his arrival and Bruse's,
 that Bruse's errand could not be accomplished before he came to
 King Olaf.  But it went otherwise than Earl Thorfin had expected;
 for when he came to the king the agreement between the king and
 Bruse was already concluded and settled, and Earl Thorfin did not
 know a word about Bruse's having surrendered his udal domains
 until he came to King Olaf.  As soon as Earl Thorfin and King
 Olaf met, the king made the same demand upon the kingdom of
 Orkney that he had done to Earl Bruse, and required that Thorfin
 should voluntarily deliver over to the king that part of the
 country which he had possessed hitherto.  The earl answered in a
 friendly and respectful way, that the king's friendship lay near
 to his heart: "And if you think, sire, that my help against other
 chiefs can be of use, you have already every claim to it; but I
 cannot be your vessel for service, as I am an earl of the
 Scottish king, and owe fealty to him."
 As the king found that the earl, by his answer, declined
 fulfilling the demand he had made, he said, "Earl, if thou wilt
 not become my vassal, there is another condition; namely, that I
 will place over the Orkney Islands the man I please, and require
 thy oath that thou wilt make no claim upon these lands, but allow
 whoever I place over them to sit in peace.  If thou wilt not
 accept of either of these conditions, he who is to rule over
 these lands may expect hostility from thee, and thou must not
 think it strange if like meet like in this business."
 The earl begged of the king some time to consider the matter. 
 The king did so, and gave the earl time to take the counsel of
 his friends on the choosing one or other of these conditions.
 Then the earl requested a delay until next summer, that he might
 go over the sea to the west, for his proper counsellors were all
 at home, and he himself was but a child in respect of age; but
 the king required that he should now make his election of one or
 other of the conditions.  Thorkel Fosterer was then with the
 king, and he privately sent a person to Earl Thorfin, and told
 him, whatever his intentions might be, not to think of leaving
 Olaf without being reconciled with him, as he stood entirely in
 Olaf's power.  From such hints the earl saw there was no other
 way than to let the king have his own will.  It was no doubt a
 hard condition to have no hope of ever regaining his paternal
 heritage, and moreover to bind himself by oath to allow those to
 enjoy in peace his domain who had no hereditary right to it; but
 seeing it was uncertain how he could get away, he resolved to
 submit to the king and become his vassal, as Bruse had done.  The
 king observed that Thorfin was more high-minded, and less
 disposed to suffer subjection than Bruse, and therefore he
 trusted less to Thorfin than to Bruse; and he considered also
 that Thorfin would trust to the aid of the Scottish king, if he
 broke the agreement.  The king also had discernment enough to
 perceive that Bruse, although slow to enter into an agreement,
 would promise nothing but what he intended to keep; but as to
 Thorfin when he had once made up his mind he went readily into
 every proposal and made no attempt to obtain any alteration of
 the king's first conditions: therefore the king had his
 suspicions that the earl would infringe the agreement.
 When the king had carefully considered the whole matter by
 himself, he ordered the signal to sound for a General Thing, to
 which he called in the earls.  Then said the king, "I will now
 make known to the public our agreement with the Orkney earls.
 They have now acknowledged my right of property to Orkney and
 Shetland, and have both become my vassals, all which they have
 confirmed by oath; and now I will invest them with these lands as
 a fief: namely, Bruse with one third part and Thorfin with one
 third, as they formerly enjoyed them; but the other third which
 Einar Rangmund had, I adjudge as fallen to my domain, because he
 killed Eyvind Urarhorn, my court-man, partner, and dear friend;
 and that part of the land I will manage as I think proper.  I
 have also my earls, to tell you it is my pleasure that ye enter
 into an agreement with Thorkel Amundason for the murder of your
 brother Einar, for I will take that business, if ye agree
 thereto, within my own jurisdiction."  The earls agreed to this,
 as to everything else that the king proposed.  Thorkel came
 forward, and surrendered to the king's judgment of the case, and
 the Thing concluded.  King Olaf awarded as great a penalty for
 Earl Einar's murder as for three lendermen; but as Einar himself
 was the cause of the act, one third of the mulct fell to the
 ground.  Thereafter Earl Thorfin asked the king's leave to
 depart, and as soon as he obtained it made ready for sea with all
 speed.  It happened one day, when all was ready for the voyage,
 the earl sat in his ship drinking; and Thorkel Amundason came
 unexpectedly to him, laid his head upon the earl's knee, and bade
 him do with him what he pleased.  The earl asked why he did so.
 "We are, you know, reconciled men, according to the king's
 decision; so stand up, Thorkel." 
 Thorkel replied, "The agreement which the king made as between me
 and Bruse stands good; but what regards the agreement with thee
 thou alone must determine.  Although the king made conditions for
 my property and safe residence in Orkney, yet I know so well thy
 disposition that there is no going to the islands for me, unless
 I go there in peace with thee, Earl Thorfin; and therefore I am
 willing to promise never to return to Orkney, whatever the king
 may desire."
 The earl remained silent; and first, after a long pause, he said,
 "If thou wilt rather, Thorkel, that I shall judge between us than
 trust to the king's judgment, then let the beginning of our
 reconciliation be, that you go with me to the Orkney Islands,
 live with me, and never leave me but with my will, and be bound
 to defend my land, and execute all that I want done, as long as
 we both are in life."
 Thorkel replies, "This shall be entirely at thy pleasure, earl,
 as well as everything else in my power."  Then Thorkel went on,
 and solemnly ratified this agreement.  The earl said he would
 talk afterwards about the mulct of money, but took Thorkel's oath
 upon the conditions.  Thorkel immediately made ready to accompany
 the earl on his voyage.  The earl set off as soon as all was
 ready, and never again were King Olaf and Thorfin together.
 Earl Bruse remained behind, and took his time to get ready.
 Before his departure the king sent for him, and said, "It appears
 to me, earl, that in thee I have a man on the west side of the
 sea on whose fidelity I can depend; therefore I intend to give
 thee the two parts of the country which thou formerly hadst to
 rule over; for I will not that thou shouldst be a less powerful
 man after entering into my service than before: but I will secure
 thy fidelity by keeping thy son Ragnvald with me.  I see well
 enough that with two parts of the country and my help, thou wilt
 be able to defend what is thy own against thy brother Thorfin."
 Bruse was thankful for getting two thirds instead of one third of
 the country, and soon after he set out, and came about autumn to
 Orkney; but Ragnvald, Bruse's son, remained behind in the East
 with King Olaf.  Ragnvald was one of the handsomest men that
 could be seen, -- his hair long, and yellow as silk; and he soon
 grew up, stout and tall, and he was a very able and superb man,
 both of great understanding and polite manners.  He was long with
 King Olaf.  Otter Svarte speaks of these affairs in the poem he
 composed about King Olaf: --
      "From Shetland, far off in the cold North Sea,
      Come chiefs who desire to be subject to thee:
      No king so well known for his will, and his might,
      To defend his own people from scaith or unright.
      These isles of the West midst the ocean's wild roar,
      Scarcely heard the voice of their sovereign before;
      Our bravest of sovereigns before could scarce bring
      These islesmen so proud to acknowledge their king."
 The brothers Thorfin and Bruse came west to Orkney; and Bruse
 took the two parts of the country under his rule, and Thorfin the
 third part.  Thorfin was usually in Caithness and elsewhere in
 Scotland; but placed men of his own over the islands.  It was
 left to Bruse alone to defend the islands, which at that time
 were severely scourged by vikings; for the Northmen and Danes
 went much on viking cruises in the west sea, and frequently
 touched at Orkney on the way to or from the west, and plundered,
 and took provisions and cattle from the coast.  Bruse often
 complained of his brother Thorfin, that he made no equipment of
 war for the defence of Orkney and Shetland, yet levied his share
 of the scat and duties.  Then Thorfin offered to him to exchange,
 and that Bruse should have one third and Thorfin two thirds of
 the land, but should undertake the defence of the land, for the
 whole.  Although this exchange did not take place immediately, it
 is related in the saga of the earls that it was agreed upon at
 last; and that Thorfin had two parts and Bruse only one, when
 Canute the Great subdued Norway and King Olaf fled the country.
 Earl Thorfin Sigurdson has been the ablest earl of these islands,
 and has had the greatest dominion of all the Orkney earls; for he
 had under him Orkney, Shetland, and the Hebudes, besides very
 great possessions in Scotland and Ireland.  Arnor, the earls'
 skald, tells of his possessions: --
      "From Thurso-skerry to Dublin,
      All people hold with good Thorfin --
      All people love his sway,
      And the generous chief obey."
 Thorfin was a very great warrior.  He came to the earldom at five
 years of age, ruled more than sixty years, and died in his bed
 about the last days of Harald Sigurdson.  But Bruse died in the
 days of Canute the Great, a short time after the fall of Saint
 Having now gone through this second story, we shall return to
 that which we left, -- at King Olaf Haraldson having concluded
 peace with King Olaf the Swedish king, and having the same summer
 gone north to Throndhjem (1019).  He had then been king in Norway
 five years (A.D. 1015-1019).  In harvest time he prepared to take
 his winter residence at Nidaros, and he remained all winter there
 (A.D. 1020).  Thorkel the Fosterer, Amunde's son, as before
 related, was all that winter with him.  King Olaf inquired very
 carefully how it stood with Christianity throughout the land, and
 learnt that it was not observed at all to the north of
 Halogaland, and was far from being observed as it should be in
 Naumudal, and the interior of Throndhjem.  There was a man by
 name Harek, a son of Eyvind Skaldaspiller, who dwelt in an island
 called Thjotta in Halogaland.  Eyvind had not been a rich man,
 but was of high family and high mind.  In Thjotta, at first,
 there dwelt many small bondes; but Harek began with buying a farm
 not very large and lived on it, and in a few years he had got all
 the bondes that were there before out of the way; so that he had
 the whole island, and built a large head-mansion.  He soon became
 very rich; for he was a very prudent man, and very successful. 
 He had long been greatly respected by the chiefs; and being
 related to the kings of Norway, had been raised by them to high
 dignities.  Harek's father's mother Gunhild was a daughter of
 Earl Halfdan, and Ingebjorg, Harald Harfager's daughter.  At the
 time the circumstance happened which we are going to relate he
 was somewhat advanced in years.  Harek was the most respected man
 in Halogaland, and for a long time had the Lapland trade, and did
 the king's business in Lapland; sometimes alone, sometimes with
 others joined to him.  He had not himself been to wait on King
 Olaf, but messages had passed between them, and all was on the
 most friendly footing.  This winter (A.D. 1020) that Olaf was in
 Nidaros, messengers passed between the king and Harek of Thjotta.
 Then the king made it known that he intended going north to
 Halogaland, and as far north as the land's end; but the people of
 Halogaland expected no good from this expedition.
 Olaf rigged out five ships in spring (A.D. 1020), and had with
 him about 300 men.  When he was ready for sea he set northwards
 along the land; and when he came to Naumudal district he summoned
 the bondes to a Thing, and at every Thing was accepted as king. 
 He also made the laws to be read there as elsewhere, by which the
 people are commanded to observe Christianity; and he threatened
 every man with loss of life, and limbs, and property who would
 not subject himself to Christian law.  He inflicted severe
 punishments on many men, great as well as small, and left no
 district until the people had consented to adopt the holy faith.
 The most of the men of power and of the great bondes made feasts
 for the king, and so he proceeded all the way north to
 Halogaland.  Harek of Thjotta also made a feast for the king, at
 which there was a great multitude of guests, and the feast was
 very splendid.  Harek was made lenderman, and got the same
 privileges he had enjoyed under the former chiefs of the country.
 There was a man called Grankel, or Granketil, who was a rich
 bonde, and at this time rather advanced in age.  In his youth he
 had been on viking cruises, and had been a powerful fighter; for
 he possessed great readiness in all sorts of bodily exercises.
 His son Asmund was equal to his father in all these, and in some,
 indeed, he excelled him.  There were many who said that with
 respect to comeliness, strength, and bodily expertness, he might
 be considered the third remarkably distinguished for these that
 Norway had ever produced.  The first was Hakon Athelstan's
 foster-son; the second, Olaf Trygvason.  Grankel invited King
 Olaf to a feast, which was very magnificent; and at parting
 Grankel presented the king with many honourable gifts and tokens
 of friendship.  The king invited Asmund, with many persuasions,
 to follow him; and as Asmund could not decline the honours
 offered him, he got ready to travel with the king, became his
 man, and stood in high favour with him.  The king remained in
 Halogaland the greater part of the summer, went to all the
 Things, and baptized all the people.  Thorer Hund dwelt at that
 time in the island Bjarkey.  He was the most powerful man in the
 North, and also became one of Olaf's lendermen.  Many sons of
 great bondes resolved also to follow King Olaf from Halogaland.
 Towards the end of summer King Olaf left the North, and sailed
 back to Throndhjem, and landed at Nidaros, where he passed the
 winter (A.D. 1021).  It was then that Thorkel the Fosterer came
 from the West from Orkney, after killing Einar Rangmumd, as
 before related.  This autumn corn was dear in Throndhjem, after a
 long course of good seasons, and the farther north the dearer was
 the corn; but there was corn enough in the East country, and in
 the Uplands, and it was of great help to the people of Throndhjem
 that many had old corn remaining beside them.
 In autumn the news was brought to King Olaf that the bondes had
 had a great feast on the first winter-day's eve, at which there
 was a numerous attendance and much drinking; and it was told the
 king that all the remembrance-cups to the Asas, or old gods, were
 blessed according to the old heathen forms; and it was added,
 that cattle and horses had been slain, and the altars sprinkled
 with their blood, and the sacrifices accompanied with the prayer
 that was made to obtain good seasons.  It was also reported that
 all men saw clearly that the gods were offended at the Halogaland
 people turning Christian.  Now when the king heard this news he
 sent men into the Throndhjem country, and ordered several bondes,
 whose names he gave, to appear before him.  There was a man
 called Olver of Eggja, so called after his farm on which he
 lived.  He was powerful, of great family, and the head-man of
 those who on account of the bondes appeared before the king. 
 Now, when they came to the king, he told them these accusations;
 to which Olver, on behalf of the bondes, replied, that they had
 had no other feasts that harvest than their usual entertainments,
 and social meetings, and friendly drinking parties.  "But as to
 what may have been told you of the words which may have fallen
 from us Throndhjem people in our drinking parties, men of
 understanding would take good care not to use such language; but
 I cannot hinder drunken or foolish people's talk."  Olver was a
 man of clever speech, and bold in what he said, and defended the
 bondes against such accusations.  In the end, the king said the
 people of the interior of Thorndhjem must themselves give the
 best testimony to their being in the right faith.  The bondes got
 leave to return home, and set off as soon as they were ready.
 Afterwards, when winter was advanced, it was told the king that
 the people of the interior of Throndhjem had assembled in great
 number at Maerin, and that there was a great sacrifice in the
 middle of winter, at which they sacrificed offerings for peace
 and a good season.  Now when the king knew this on good authority
 to be true, he sent men and messages into the interior, and
 summoned the bondes whom he thought of most understanding into
 the town.  The bondes held a council among themselves about this
 message; and all those who had been upon the same occasion in the
 beginning of winter were now very unwilling to make the journey.
 Olver, however, at the desire of all the bondes, allowed himself
 to be persuaded.  When he came to the town he went immediately
 before the king, and they talked together.  The king made the
 same accusation against the bondes, that they had held a mid-
 winter sacrifice.  Olver replies, that this accusation against
 the bondes was false.  "We had," said he, "Yule feasts and
 drinking feasts wide around in the districts; and the bondes do
 not prepare their feasts so sparingly, sire, that there is not
 much left over, which people consume long afterwards.  At Maerin
 there is a great farm, with a large house on it, and a great
 neighbourhood all around it, and it is the great delight of the
 people to drink many together in company."  The king said little
 in reply, but looked angry, as he thought he knew the truth of
 the matter better than it was now represented.  He ordered the
 bondes to return home.  "I shall some time or other," said he,
 "come to the truth of what you are now concealing, and in such a
 way that ye shall not be able to contradict it.  But, however,
 that may be, do not try such things again."  The bondes returned
 home, and told the result of their journey, and that the king was
 altogether enraged.
 At Easter (A.D. 1021) the king held a feast, to which he had
 invited many of the townspeople as well as bondes.  After Easter
 he ordered his ships to be launched into the water, oars and
 tackle to be put on board, decks to be laid in the ships, and
 tilts (1) and rigging to be set up, and to be laid ready for sea
 at the piers.  Immediately after Easter he sent men into Veradal.
 There was a man called Thoralde, who was the king's bailiff, and
 who managed the king's farm there at Haug; and to him the king
 sent a message to come to him as quickly as possible.  Thoralde
 did not decline the journey, but went immediately to the town
 with the messenger.  The king called him in and in a private
 conversation asked him what truth there was in what had been told
 him of the principles and living of the people of the interior
 of Throndhjem, and if it really was so that they practised
 sacrifices to heathen gods.  "I will," says the king, "that thou
 declare to me the things as they are, and as thou knowest to be
 true; for it is thy duty to tell me the truth, as thou art my
 Thoralde replies, "Sire, I will first tell you that I have
 brought here to the town my two children, my wife, and all my
 loose property that I could take with me, and if thou desirest to
 know the truth it shall be told according to thy command; but
 if I declare it, thou must take care of me and mine."
 The king replies, "Say only what is true on what I ask thee, and
 I will take care that no evil befall thee."
 Then said Thoralde, "If I must say the truth, king, as it is, I
 must declare that in the interior of the Throndhjem land almost
 all the people are heathen in faith, although some of them are
 baptized.  It is their custom to offer sacrifice in autumn for a
 good winter, a second at mid-winter, and a third in summer.  In
 this the people of Eyna, Sparby, Veradal, and Skaun partake.
 There are twelve men who preside over these sacrifice-feasts; and
 in spring it is Olver who has to get the feast in order, and he
 is now busy transporting to Maerin everything needful for it."
 Now when the king had got to the truth with a certainty, he
 ordered the signal to be sounded for his men to assemble, and for
 the men-at-arms to go on board ship.  He appointed men to steer
 the ships, and leaders for the people, and ordered how the people
 should be divided among the vessels.  All was got ready in haste,
 and with five ships and 300 men he steered up the fjord.  The
 wind was favourable, the ships sailed briskly before it, and
 nobody could have thought that the king would be so soon there.
 The king came in the night time to Maerin, and immediately
 surrounded the house with a ring of armed men.  Olver was taken,
 and the king ordered him to be put to death, and many other men
 besides.  Then the king took all the provision for the feast, and
 had it brought to his ships; and also all the goods, both
 furniture, clothes, and valuables, which the people had brought
 there, and divided the booty among his men.  The king also let
 all the bondes he thought had the greatest part in the business
 be plundered by his men-at-arms.  Some were taken prisoners and
 laid in irons, some ran away, and many were robbed of their
 goods.  Thereafter the bondes were summoned to a Thing; but
 because he had taken many powerful men prisoners, and held them
 in his power, their friends and relations resolved to promise
 obedience to the king, so that there was no insurrection against
 the king on this occasion.  He thus brought the whole people back
 to the right faith, gave them teachers, and built and consecrated
 churches.  The king let Olver lie without fine paid for his
 bloodshed, and all that he possessed was adjudged to the king;
 and of the men he judged the most guilty, some he ordered to be
 executed, some he maimed, some he drove out of the country, and
 took fines from others.  The king then returned to Nidaros.
 (1)  The ships appear to have been decked fore and aft only; and
      in the middle, where the rowers sat, to have had tilts or
      tents set up at night to sleep under. -- L.
 There was a man called Arne Arnmodson, who was married to Thora,
 Thorstein Galge's daughter.  Their children were Kalf, Fin,
 Thorberg, Amunde, Kolbjorn, Arnbjorn, and Arne.  Their daughter,
 who was called Ragnhild, was married to Harek of Thjotta.  Arne
 was a lenderman, powerful, and of ability, and a great friend of
 King Olaf.  At that time his sons Kalf and Fin were with the
 king, and in great favour.  The wife whom Olver of Eggja had left
 was young and handsome, of great family, and rich, so that he who
 got her might be considered to have made an excellent marriage;
 and her land was in the gift of the king.  She and Olver had two
 sons, who were still in infancy.  Kalf Arneson begged of the king
 that he would give him to wife the widow of Olver; and out of
 friendship the king agreed to it, and with her he got all the
 property Olver had possessed.  The king at the same time made him
 his lenderman, and gave him an office in the interior of the
 Throndhjem country.  Kalf became a great chief, and was a man of
 very great understanding.
 When King Olaf had been seven years (A.D. 1015-1021) in Norway
 the earls Thorfin and Bruse came to him, as before related, in
 the summer, from Orkney, and he became master of their land.  The
 same summer Olaf went to North and South More, and in autumn to
 Raumsdal.  He left his ships there, and came to the Uplands, and
 to Lesjar.  Here he laid hold of all the best men, and forced
 them, both at Lesjar and Dovre, either to receive Christianity or
 suffer death, if they were not so lucky as to escape.  After they
 received Christianity, the king took their sons in his hands as
 hostages for their fidelity.  The king stayed several nights at a
 farm in Lesjar called Boar, where he placed priests.  Then he
 proceeded over Orkadal and Lorodal, and came down from the
 Uplands at a place called Stafabrekka.  There a river runs along
 the valley, called the Otta, and a beautiful hamlet, by name
 Loar, lies on both sides of the river, and the king could see far
 down over the whole neighbourhood.  "A pity it is," said the
 king, "so beautiful a hamlet should be burnt."  And he proceeded
 down the valley with his people, and was all night on a farm
 called Nes.  The king took his lodging in a loft, where he slept
 himself; and it stands to the present day, without anything in it
 having been altered since.  The king was five days there, and
 summoned by message-token the people to a Thing, both for the
 districts of Vagar, Lear, and Hedal; and gave out the message
 along with the token, that they must either receive Christianity
 and give their sons as hostages, or see their habitations burnt.
 They came before the king, and submitted to his pleasure; but
 some fled south down the valley.
 There was a man called Dale-Gudbrand, who was like a king in the
 valley (Gudbrandsdal), but was only herse in title.  Sigvat the
 skald compared him for wealth and landed property to Erling
 Skjalgson.  Sigvat sang thus concerning Erling: --
      "I know but one who can compare
      With Erling for broad lands and gear --
      Gudbrand is he, whose wide domains
      Are most like where some small king reigns.
      These two great bondes, I would say,
      Equal each other every way.
      He lies who says that he can find
      One by the other left behind."
 Gudbrand had a son, who is here spoken of.  Now when Gudbrand
 received the tidings that King Olaf was come to Lear, and obliged
 people to accept Christianity, he sent out a message-token, and
 summoned all the men in the valley to meet him at a farm called
 Hundthorp.  All came, so that the number could not be told; for
 there is a lake in the neighbourhood called Laugen, so that
 people could come to the place both by land and by water.  There
 Gudbrand held a Thing with them, and said, "A man is come to Loar
 who is called Olaf, and will force upon us another faith than
 what we had before, and will break in pieces all our gods.  He
 says that he has a much greater and more powerful god; and it is
 wonderful that the earth does not burst asunder under him, or
 that our god lets him go about unpunished when he dares to talk
 such things.  I know this for certain, that if we carry Thor, who
 has always stood by us, out of our temple that is standing upon
 this farm, Olaf's god will melt away, and he and his men be made
 nothing so soon as Thor looks upon them."  Then the bondes all
 shouted as one person that Olaf should never get away with life
 if he came to them; and they thought he would never dare to come
 farther south through the valley.  They chose out 700 men to go
 northwards to Breida, to watch his movements.  The leader of this
 band was Gudbrand's son, eighteen years of age, and with him were
 many other men of importance.  When they came to a farm called
 Hof they heard of the king; and they remained three nights there.
 People streamed to them from all parts, from Lesjar, Loar, and
 Vagar, who did not wish to receive Christianity.  The king and
 Bishop Sigurd fixed teachers in Loaf and in Vagar.  From thence
 they went round Vagarost, and came down into the valley at Sil,
 where they stayed all night, and heard the news that a great
 force of men were assembled against them.  The bondes who were in
 Breida heard also of the king's arrival, and prepared for battle.
 As soon as the king arose in the morning he put on his armour,
 and went southwards over the Sil plains, and did not halt until
 he came to Breida, where he saw a great army ready for battle.
 Then the king drew up his troops, rode himself at the head of
 them, and began a speech to the bondes, in which he invited them
 to adopt Christianity.  They replied, "We shall give thee
 something else to do to-day than to be mocking us;" and raised a
 general shout, striking also upon their shields with their
 weapons.  Then the king's men ran forward and threw their spears;
 but the bondes turned round instantly and fled, so that only few
 men remained behind.  Gudbrand's son was taken prisoner; but the
 king gave him his life, and took him with him.  The king was four
 days here.  Then the king said to Gudbrand's son, "Go home now to
 thy father, and tell him I expect to be with him soon."
 He went accordingly, and told his father the news, that they had
 fallen in with the king, and fought with him; but that their
 whole army, in the very beginning, took flight.  "I was taken
 prisoner," said he, "but the king gave me my life and liberty,
 and told me to say to thee that he will soon be here.  And now we
 have not 200 men of the force we raised against him; therefore I
 advise thee, father, not to give battle to that man."
 Says Gudbrand, "It is easy to see that all courage has left thee,
 and it was an unlucky hour ye went out to the field.  Thy
 proceeding will live long in the remembrance of people, and I see
 that thy fastening thy faith on the folly that man is going about
 with has brought upon thee and thy men so great a disgrace."
 But the night after, Gudbrand dreamt that there came to him a man
 surrounded by light, who brought great terror with him, and said
 to him, "Thy son made no glorious expedition against King Olaf;
 but still less honour wilt thou gather for thyself by holding a
 battle with him.  Thou with all thy people wilt fall; wolves will
 drag thee, and all thine, away; ravens wilt tear thee in
 stripes."  At this dreadful vision he was much afraid, and tells
 it to Thord Istermage, who was chief over the valley.  He
 replies, "The very same vision came to me."  In the morning they
 ordered the signal to sound for a Thing, and said that it
 appeared to them advisable to hold a Thing with the man who had
 come from the north with this new teaching, to know if there was
 any truth in it.  Gudbrand then said to his son, "Go thou, and
 twelve men with thee, to the king who gave thee thy life."  He
 went straightway, and found the king, and laid before him their
 errand; namely, that the bondes would hold a Thing with him, and
 make a truce between them and him.  The king was content; and
 they bound themselves by faith and law mutually to hold the peace
 so long as the Thing lasted.  After this was settled the men
 returned to Gudbrand and Thord, and told them there was made a
 firm agreement for a truce.  The king, after the battle with the
 son of Gudbrand, had proceeded to Lidstad, and remained there for
 five days: afterwards he went out to meet the bondes, and hold a
 Thing with them.  On that day there fell a heavy rain.  When the
 Thing was seated, the king stood up and said that the people in
 Lesjar, Loaf, and Vagar had received Christianity, broken down
 their houses of sacrifice, and believed now in the true God who
 had made heaven and earth and knows all things.
 Thereupon the king sat down, and Gudbrand replies, "We know
 nothing of him whom thou speakest about.  Dost thou call him God,
 whom neither thou nor any one else can see?  But we have a god
 who call be seen every day, although he is not out to-day,
 because the weather is wet, and he will appear to thee terrible
 and very grand; and I expect that fear will mix with your very
 blood when he comes into the Thing.  But since thou sayest thy
 God is so great, let him make it so that to-morrow we have a
 cloudy day but without rain, and then let us meet again."
 The king accordingly returned home to his lodging, taking
 Gudbrand's son as a hostage; but he gave them a man as hostage in
 exchange.  In the evening the king asked Gudbrand's son what like
 their god was.  He replied, that he bore the likeness of Thor;
 had a hammer in his hand; was of great size, but hollow within;
 and had a high stand, upon which he stood when he was out.
 "Neither gold nor silver are wanting about him, and every day he
 receives four cakes of bread, besides meat."  They then went to
 bed, but the king watched all night in prayer.  When day dawned
 the king went to mass, then to table, and from thence to the
 Thing.  The weather was such as Gudbrand desired.  Now the bishop
 stood up in his choir-robes, with bishop's coif upon his head,
 and bishop's staff in his hands.  He spoke to the bondes of the
 true faith, told the many wonderful acts of God, and concluded
 his speech well.
 Thord Istermage replies, "Many things we are told of by this
 horned man with the staff in his hand crooked at the top like a
 ram's horn; but since ye say, comrades, that your god is so
 powerful, and can do so many wonders, tell him to make it clear
 sunshine to-morrow forenoon, and then we shall meet here again,
 and do one of two things, -- either agree with you about this
 business, or fight you."  And they separated for the day.
 There was a man with King Olaf called Kolbein Sterke (the
 strong), who came from a family in the Fjord district.  Usually
 he was so equipped that he was girt with a sword, and besides
 carried a great stake, otherwise called a club, in his hands. 
 The king told Kolbein to stand nearest to him in the morning; and
 gave orders to his people to go down in the night to where the
 ships of the bondes lay and bore holes in them, and to set loose
 their horses on the farms where they were; all which was done.
 Now the king was in prayer all the night, beseeching God of His
 goodness and mercy to release him from evil.  When mass was
 ended, and morning was grey, the king went to the Thing.  When he
 came there some bondes had already arrived, and they saw a great
 crowd coming along, and bearing among them a huge man's image
 glancing with gold and silver.  When the bondes who were at the
 Thing saw it they started up, and bowed themselves down before
 the ugly idol.  Thereupon it was set down upon the Thing-field;
 and on the one side of it sat the bondes, and on the other the
 king and his people.
 Then Dale-Gudbrand stood up, and said, "Where now, king, is thy
 god?  I think he will now carry his head lower; and neither thou,
 nor the man with the horn whom ye call bishop, and sits there
 beside thee, are so bold to-day as on the former days; for now
 our god, who rules over all, is come, and looks on you with an
 angry eye; and now I see well enough that ye are terrified, and
 scarcely dare to raise your eyes.  Throw away now all your
 opposition, and believe in the god who has all your fate in his
 The king now whispers to Kolbein Sterke, without the bondes
 perceiving it, "If it come so in the course of my speech that the
 bondes look another way than towards their idol, strike him as
 hard as thou canst with thy club."
 The king then stood up and spoke.  "Much hast thou talked to us
 this morning, and greatly hast thou wondered that thou canst not
 see our God; but we expect that he will soon come to us.  Thou
 wouldst frighten us with thy god, who is both blind and deaf, and
 can neither save himself nor others, and cannot even move about
 without being carried; but now I expect it will be but a short
 time before he meets his fate: for turn your eyes towards the
 east, -- behold our God advancing in great light."
 The sun was rising, and all turned to look.  At that moment
 Kolbein gave their god a stroke, so that the idol burst asunder;
 and there ran out of it mice as big almost as cats, and reptiles,
 and adders.  The bondes were so terrified that some fled to their
 ships; but when they sprang out upon them they filled with water,
 and could not get away.  Others ran to their horses, but could
 not find them.  The king then ordered the bondes to be called
 together, saying he wanted to speak with them; on which the
 bondes came back, and the Thing was again seated.
 The king rose up and said, "I do not understand what your noise
 and running mean.  Ye see yourselves what your god can do, -- the
 idol ye adorned with gold and silver, and brought meat and
 provisions to. Ye see now that the protecting powers who used it
 were the mice and adders, reptiles and paddocks; and they do ill
 who trust to such, and will not abandon this folly.  Take now
 your gold and ornaments that are lying strewed about on the
 grass, and give them to your wives and daughters; but never hang
 them hereafter upon stock or stone.  Here are now two conditions
 between us to choose upon, -- either accept Christianity, or
 fight this very day; and the victory be to them to whom the God
 we worship gives it."
 Then Dale-Gudbrand stood up and said, "We have sustained great
 damage upon our god; but since he will not help us, we will
 believe in the God thou believest in."
 Then all received Christianity.  The bishop baptized Gudbrand and
 his son.  King Olaf and Bishop Sigurd left behind them teachers, 
 and they who met as enemies parted as friends; and Gudbrand built
 a church in the valley.
 King Olaf proceeded from thence to Hedemark, and baptized there;
 but as he had formerly carried away their kings as prisoners, he
 did not venture himself, after such a deed, to go far into the
 country with few people at that time, but a small part of
 Hedemark was baptized; but the king did not desist from his
 expedition before he had introduced Christianity over all
 Hedemark, consecrated churches, and placed teachers.  He then
 went to Hadaland and Thoten, improving the customs of the people,
 and persisting until all the country was baptized.  He then went
 to Ringerike, where also all people went over to Christianity.
 The people of Raumarike then heard that Olaf intended coming to
 them, and they gathered a great force.  They said among
 themselves that the journey Olaf had made among them the last
 time was not to be forgotten, and he should never proceed so
 again.  The king, notwithstanding, prepared for the journey.  Now
 when the king went up into Raumarike with his forces, the
 multitude of bondes came against him at a river called Nitja; and
 the bondes had a strong army, and began the battle as soon as
 they met; but they soon fell short, and took to flight.  They
 were forced by this battle into a better disposition, and
 immediately received Christianity; and the king scoured the whole
 district, and did not leave it until all the people were made
 Christians.  He then went east to Soleys, and baptized that
 neighbourhood.  The skald Ottar Black came to him there, and
 begged to be received among his men.  Olaf the Swedish king had
 died the winter before (A.D. 1021), and Onund, the son of Olaf,
 was now the sole king over all Sweden.  King Olaf returned, when
 the winter (A.D. 1022) was far advanced, to Raumarike.  There he
 assembled a numerous Thing, at a place where the Eidsvold Things
 have since been held.  He made a law, that the Upland people
 should resort to this Thing, and that Eidsvold laws should be
 good through all the districts of the Uplands, and wide around in
 other quarters, which also has taken place.  As spring was
 advancing, he rigged his ships, and went by sea to Tunsberg.  He
 remained there during the spring, and the time the town was most
 frequented, and goods from other countries were brought to the
 town for sale.  There had been a good year in Viken, and
 tolerable as far north as Stad; but it was a very dear time in
 all the country north of there.
 In spring (A.D. 1022) King Olaf sent a message west to Agder, and
 north all the way to Hordaland and Rogaland, prohibiting the
 exporting or selling of corn, malt, or meal; adding, that he, as
 usual, would come there with his people in guest-quarters.  The
 message went round all the districts; but the king remained in
 Viken all summer, and went east to the boundary of the country.
 Einar Tambaskelfer had been with the Swedish king Olaf since the
 death of his relation Earl Svein, and had, as the khag's man,
 received great fiefs from him.  Now that the king was dead, Einar
 had a great desire to come into friendship agreement with Olaf;
 and the same spring messages passed between them about it.  While
 the king was lying in the Gaut river, Einar Tambaskelfer came
 there with some men; and after treating about an agreement, it
 was settled that Einar should go north to Throndhjem, and there
 take possession of all the lands and property which Bergliot had
 received in dower.  Thereupon Einar took his way north; but the
 king remained behind in Viken, and remained long in Sarpsborg in
 autumn (A.D. 1022), and during the first part of winter.
 Erling Skjalgson held his dominion so, that all north from Sogn
 Lake, and east to the Naze, the bondes stood under him; and
 although he had much smaller royal fiefs than formerly, still so
 great a dread of him prevailed that nobody dared to do anything
 against his will, so that the king thought his power too great.
 There was a man called Aslak Fitiaskalle, who was powerful and of
 high birth.  Erling's father Skjalg, and Aslak's father Askel,
 were brother's sons.  Aslak was a great friend of King Olaf, and
 the king settled him in South Hordaland, where he gave him a
 great fief, and great income, and ordered him in no respect to
 give way to Erling.  But this came to nothing when the king was
 not in the neighbourhood; for then Erling would reign as he used
 to do, and was not more humble because Aslak would thrust himself
 forward as his equal.  At last the strife went so far that Aslak
 could not keep his place, but hastened to King Olaf, and told him
 the circumstances between him and Erling.  The king told Aslak to
 remain with him until he should meet Erling; and sent a message
 to Erling that he should come to him in spring at Tunsberg.  When
 they all arrived there they held a meeting at which the king said
 to him, "It is told me concerning thy government, Erling, that no
 man from Sogn Lake to the Naze can enjoy his freedom for thee;
 although there are many men there who consider themselves born to
 udal rights, and have their privileges like others born as they
 are.  Now, here is your relation Aslak, who appears to have
 suffered great inconvenience from your conduct; and I do not know
 whether he himself is in fault, or whether he suffers because I
 have placed him to defend what is mine; and although I name him,
 there are many others who have brought the same complaint before
 us, both among those who are placed in office in our districts,
 and among the bailiffs who have our farms to manage, and are
 obliged to entertain me and my people."
 Erling replies to this, "I will answer at once.  I deny
 altogether that I have ever injured Aslak, or any one else, for
 being in your service; but this I will not deny, that it is now,
 as it has long been, that each of us relations will willingly be
 greater than the other: and, moreover, I freely acknowledge that
 I am ready to bow my neck to thee, King Olaf; but it is more
 difficult for me to stoop before one who is of slave descent in
 all his generation, although he is now your bailiff, or before
 others who are but equal to him in descent, although you bestow
 honours on them."
 Now the friends of both interfered, and entreated that they would
 be reconciled; saying, that the king never could have such
 powerful aid as from Erling, "if he was your friend entirely." 
 On the other hand, they represent to Erling that he should give
 up to the king; for if he was in friendship with the king, it
 would be easy to do with all the others what he pleased.  The
 meeting accordingly ended so that Erling should retain the fiefs
 he formerly had, and every complaint the king had against Erling
 should be dropped; but Skjalg, Erling's son, should come to the
 king, and remain in his power.  Then Aslak returned to his
 dominions, and the two were in some sort reconciled.  Erling
 returned home also to his domains, and followed his own way of
 ruling them.
 There was a man named Sigurd Thoreson, a brother of Thorer Hund
 of Bjarkey Island.  Sigurd was married to Sigrid Skjalg's
 daughter, a sister of Erling.  Their son, called Asbjorn, became
 as he grew up a very able man.  Sigurd dwelt at Omd in
 Thrandarnes, and was a very rich and respected man.  He had not
 gone into the king's service; and Thorer in so far had attained
 higher dignity than his brother, that he was the king's
 lenderman.  But at home, on his farm, Sigurd stood in no respect
 behind his brother in splendour and magnificence.  As long as
 heathenism prevailed, Sigurd usually had three sacrifices every
 year: one on winter-night's eve, one on mid-winter's eve, and the
 third in summer.  Although he had adopted Christianity, he
 continued the same custom with his feasts: he had, namely, a
 great friendly entertainment at harvest time; a Yule feast in
 winter, to which he invited many; the third feast he had about
 Easter, to which also he invited many guests.  He continued this
 fashion as long as he lived.  Sigurd died on a bed of sickness
 when Asbjorn was eighteen years old.  He was the only heir of his
 father, and he followed his father's custom of holding three
 festivals every year.  Soon after Asbjorn came to his heritage
 the course of seasons began to grow worse, and the corn harvests
 of the people to fail; but Asbjorn held his usual feasts, and
 helped himself by having old corn, and an old provision laid up
 of all that was useful.  But when one year had passed and another
 came, and the crops were no better than the year before, Sigrid
 wished that some if not all of the feasts should be given up.
 That Asbjorn would not consent to, but went round in harvest
 among his friends, buying corn where he could get it, and some he
 received in presents.  He thus kept his feasts this winter also;
 but the spring after people got but little seed into the ground,
 for they had to buy the seed-corn.  Then Sigurd spoke of
 diminishing the number of their house-servants.  That Asbjorn
 would not consent to, but held by the old fashion of the house in
 all things.  In summer (A.D. 1022) it appeared again that there
 would be a bad year for corn; and to this came the report from
 the south that King Olaf prohibited all export of corn, malt, or
 meal from the southern to the northern parts of the country. 
 Then Asbjorn perceived that it would be difficult to procure what
 was necessary for a house-keeping, and resolved to put into the
 water a vessel for carrying goods which he had, and which was
 large enough to go to sea with.  The ship was good, all that
 belonged to her was of the best, and in the sails were stripes of
 cloth of various colours.  Asbjorn made himself ready for a
 voyage, and put to sea with twenty men.  They sailed from the
 north in summer; and nothing is told of their voyage until one
 day, about the time the days begin to shorten, they came to
 Karmtsund, and landed at Augvaldsnes.  Up in the island Karmt
 there is a large farm, not far from the sea, and a large house
 upon it called Augvaldsnes, which was a king's house, with an
 excellent farm, which Thorer Sel, who was the king's bailiff, had
 under his management.  Thorer was a man of low birth, but had
 swung himself up in the world as an active man; and he was polite
 in speech, showy in clothes, and fond of distinction, and not apt
 to give way to others, in which he was supported by the favour of
 the king.  He was besides quick in speech, straightforward, and
 free in conversation.  Asbjorn, with his company, brought up
 there for the night; and in the morning, when it was light,
 Thorer went down to the vessel with some men, and inquired who
 commanded the splendid ship.  Asbjorn named his own and his
 father's name.  Thorer asks where the voyage was intended for,
 and what was the errand.
 Asbjorn replies, that he wanted to buy corn and malt; saying, as
 was true, that it was a very dear time north in the country. 
 "But we are told that here the seasons are good; and wilt thou,
 farmer, sell us corn?  I see that here are great corn stacks, and
 it would be very convenient if we had not to travel farther."
 Thorer replies, "I will give thee the information that thou
 needst not go farther to buy corn, or travel about here in
 Rogaland; for I can tell thee that thou must turn about, and not
 travel farther, for the king forbids carrying corn out of this to
 the north of the country.  Sail back again, Halogalander, for
 that will be thy safest course."
 Asbjorn replies, "If it be so, bonde, as thou sayest, that we can
 get no corn here to buy, I will, notwithstanding, go forward upon
 my errand, and visit my family in Sole, and see my relation
 Erling's habitation."
 Thorer: "How near is thy relationship to Erling?"
 Asbjorn: "My mother is his sister."
 Thorer: "It may be that I have spoken heedlessly, if so be that
 thou art sister's son of Erling."
 Thereupon Asbjorn and his crew struck their tents, and turned the
 ship to sea.  Thorer called after them. "A good voyage, and come
 here again on your way back."  Asbjorn promised to do so, sailed
 away, and came in the evening to Jadar.  Asbjorn went on shore
 with ten men; the other ten men watched the ship.  When Asbjorn
 came to the house he was very well received, and Erling was very
 glad to see him, placed him beside himself, and asked him all the
 news in the north of the country.  Asbjorn concealed nothing of
 his business from him; and Erling said it happened unfortunately
 that the king had just forbid the sale of corn.  "And I know no
 man here." says he, "who has courage to break the king's order,
 and I find it difficult to keep well with the king, so many are
 trying to break our friendship."
 Asbjorn replies, "It is late before we learn the truth.  In my
 childhood I was taught that my mother was freeborn throughout her
 whole descent, and that Erling of Sole was her boldest relation;
 and now I hear thee say that thou hast not the freedom, for the
 king's slaves here in Jadar, to do with thy own corn what thou
 Erling looked at him, smiled through his teeth, and said, "Ye
 Halogalanders know less of the king's power than we do here; but
 a bold man thou mayst be at home in thy conversation.  Let us now
 drink, my friend, and we shall see tomorrow what can be done in
 thy business."
 They did so, and were very merry all the evening.  The following
 day Erling and Asbjorn talked over the matter again, and Erling
 said. "I have found out a way for you to purchase corn, Asbjorn.
 It is the same thing to you whoever is the seller."  He answered
 that he did not care of whom he bought the corn, if he got a good
 right to his purchase.  Erling said. "It appears to me probable
 that my slaves have quite as much corn as you require to buy; and
 they are not subject to law, or land regulation, like other men."
 Asbjorn agreed to the proposal.  The slaves were now spoken to
 about the purchase, and they brought forward corn and malt, which
 they sold to Asbjorn, so that he loaded his vessel with what he
 wanted.  When he was ready for sea Erling followed him on the
 road, made him presents of friendship, and they took a kind
 farewell of each other.  Asbjorn got a good breeze, landed in the
 evening at Karmtsund, near to Augvaldsnes, and remained there for
 the night.  Thorer Sel had heard of Asbjorn's voyage, and also
 that his vessel was deeply laden.  Thorer summoned people to him
 in the night, so that before daylight he had sixty men; and with
 these he went against Asbjorn as soon as it was light, and went
 out to the ship just as Asbjorn and his men were putting on their
 clothes.  Asbjorn saluted Thorer, and Thorer asked what kind of
 goods Asbjorn had in the vessel.
 He replied, "Corn and malt."
 Thorer said, "Then Erling is doing as he usually does, and
 despising the king's orders, and is unwearied in opposing him in
 all things, insomuch that it is wonderful the king suffers it."
 Thorer went on scolding in this way, and when he was silent
 Asbjorn said that Erling's slaves had owned the corn.
 Thorer replied hastily, that he did not regard Erling's tricks.
 "And now, Asbjorn, there is no help for it; ye must either go on
 shore, or we will throw you overboard; for we will not be
 troubled with you while we are discharging the cargo."
 Asbjorn saw that he had not men enough to resist Thorer;
 therefore he and his people landed, and Thorer took the whole
 cargo out of the vessel.  When the vessel was discharged Thorer
 went through the ship, and observed. "Ye Halogalanders have good
 sails: take the old sail of our vessel and give it them; it is
 good enough for those who are sailing in a light vessel."  Thus
 the sails were exchanged.  When this was done Asbjorn and his
 comrades sailed away north along the coast, and did not stop
 until they reached home early in whiter.  This expedition was
 talked of far and wide, and Asbjorn had no trouble that winter in
 making feasts at home.  Thorer Hund invited Asbjorn and his
 mother, and also all whom they pleased to take along with him, to
 a Yule feast; but Asbjorn sat at home, and would not travel, and
 it was to be seen that Thorer thought Asbjorn despised his
 invitation, since he would not come.  Thorer scoffed much at
 Asbjorn's voyage.  "Now," said he, "it is evident that Asbjorn
 makes a great difference in his respect towards his relations;
 for in summer he took the greatest trouble to visit his relation
 Erling in Jadar, and now will not take the trouble to come to me
 in the next house.  I don't know if he thinks there may be a
 Thorer Sel in his way upon every holm."  Such words, and the like
 sarcasms, Asbjorn heard of; and very ill satisfied he was with
 his voyage, which had thus made him a laughing-stock to the
 country, and he remained at home all winter, and went to no
 Asbjorn had a long-ship standing in the noust (shipshed), and it
 was a snekke (cutter) of twenty benches; and after Candlemas
 (February 2, 1023), he had the vessel put in the water, brought
 out all his furniture, and rigged her out.  He then summoned to
 him his friends and people, so that he had nearly ninety men all
 well armed.  When he was ready for sea, and got a wind, he sailed
 south along the coast, but as the wind did not suit, they
 advanced but slowly.  When they came farther south they steered
 outside the rocks, without the usual ships' channel, keeping to
 sea as much as it was possible to do so.  Nothing is related of
 his voyage before the fifth day of Easter (April 18, 1023), when,
 about evening, they came on the outside of Karmt Island.  This
 island is so shaped that it is very long, but not broad at its
 widest part; and without it lies the usual ships' channel.  It is
 thickly inhabited; but where the island is exposed to the ocean
 great tracts of it are uncultivated.  Asbjorn and his men landed
 at a place in the island that was uninhabited.  After they had
 set up their ship-tents Asbjorn said, "Now ye must remain here
 and wait for me.  I will go on land in the isle, and spy what
 news there may be which we know nothing of."  Asbjorn had on mean
 clothes, a broadbrimmed hat, a fork in his hand, but had girt on
 his sword under his clothes.  He went up to the land, and in
 through the island; and when he came upon a hillock, from which
 he could see the house on Augvaldsnes, and on as far as
 Karmtsund, he saw people in all quarters flocking together by
 land and by sea, and all going up to the house of Augvaldsnes.
 This seemed to him extraordinary; and therefore he went up
 quietly to a house close by, in which servants were cooking meat.
 From their conversation he discovered immediately that the king
 Olaf had come there to a feast, and that he had just sat down to
 table.  Asbjorn turned then to the feasting-room, and when he
 came into the ante-room one was going in and another coming out;
 but nobody took notice of him.  The hall-door was open, and he
 saw that Thorer Sel stood before the table of the high-seat.  It
 was getting late in the evening, and Asbjorn heard people ask
 Thorer what had taken place between him and Asbjorn; and Thorer
 had a long story about it, in which he evidently departed from
 the truth.  Among other things he heard a man say, "How did
 Asbjorn behave when you discharged his vessel?"  Thorer replied,
 "When we were taking out the cargo he bore it tolerably, but not
 well; and when we took the sail from him he wept."  When Asbjorn
 heard this he suddenly drew his sword, rushed into the hall, and
 cut at Thorer.  The stroke took him in the neck, so that the head
 fell upon the table before the king, and the body at his feet,
 and the table-cloth was soiled with blood from top to bottom. 
 The king ordered him to be seized and taken out.  This was done.
 They laid hands on Asbjorn, and took him from the hall.  The
 table-furniture and table-cloths were removed, and also Thorer's
 corpse, and all the blood wiped up.  The king was enraged to the
 highest; but remained quiet in speech, as he always was when in
 Skjalg Erlingson stood up, went before the king, and said, "Now
 may it go, as it often does, that every case will admit of
 alleviation.  I will pay thee the mulct for the bloodshed on
 account of this man, so that he may retain life and limbs.  All
 the rest determine and do, king, according to thy pleasure."
 The king replies, "Is it not a matter of death, Skjalg, that a
 man break the Easter peace; and in the next place that he kills a
 man in the king's lodging; and in the third that he makes my feet
 his execution-block, although that may appear a small matter to
 thee and thy father?"
 Skjalg replies, "It is ill done, king, in as far as it displeases
 thee; but the deed is, otherwise, done excellently well.  But if
 the deed appear to thee so important, and be so contrary to thy
 will, yet may I expect something for my services from thee; and
 certainly there are many who will say that thou didst well."
 The king replies, "Although thou hast made me greatly indebted to
 thee, Skjalg, for thy services, yet I will not for thy sake break
 the law, or cast away my own dignity."
 Then Skjalg turned round, and went out of the hall.  Twelve men
 who had come with Skjalg all followed him, and many others went
 out with him.  Skjalg said to Thorarin Nefiulfson, "If thou wilt
 have me for a friend, take care that this man be not killed
 before Sunday."  Thereupon Skjalg and his men set off, took a
 rowing boat which he had, and rowed south as fast as they could,
 and came to Jadar with the first glimpse of morning.  They went
 up instantly to the house, and to the loft in which Erling slept.
 Skjalg rushed so hard against the door that it burst asunder at
 the nails.  Erling and the others who were within started up.  He
 was in one spring upon his legs, grasped his shield and sword,
 and rushed to the door, demanding who was there.  Skjalg named
 himself, and begs him to open the door.  Erling replies, "It was
 most likely to be thee who hast behaved so foolishly; or is there
 any one who is pursuing thee?"  Thereupon the door was unlocked.
 Then said Skjalg, "Although it appears to thee that I am so
 hasty, I suppose our relation Asbjorn will not think my
 proceedings too quick; for he sits in chains there in the north
 at Augvaldsnes, and it would be but manly to hasten back and
 stand by him."  The father and son then had a conversation
 together, and Skjalg related the whole circumstances of Thorer
 Sel's murder.
 King Olaf took his seat again when everything in the hall was put
 in order, and was enraged beyond measure.  He asked how it was
 with the murderer.  He was answered, that he was sitting out upon
 the doorstep under guard.
 The king says, "Why is he not put to death?"
 Thorarin Nefiulfson replies, "Sire, would you not call it murder
 to kill a man in the night-time?"
 The king answers, "Put him in irons then, and kill him in the
 Then Asbjorn was laid in chains, and locked up in a house for the
 night.  The day after the king heard the morning mass, and then
 went to the Thing, where he sat till high mass.  As he was going
 to mass he said to Thorarin, "Is not the sun high enough now in
 the heavens that your friend Asbjorn may be hanged?"
 Thorarin bowed before the king, and said, "Sire, it was said by
 Bishop Sigurd on Friday last, that the King who has all things in
 his power had to endure great temptation of spirit; and blessed
 is he who rather imitates him, than those who condemned the man
 to death, or those who caused his slaughter.  It is not long till
 tomorrow, and that is a working day."
 The king looked at him, and said, "Thou must take care then that
 he is not put to death to-day; but take him under thy charge, and
 know for certain that thy own life shall answer for it if he
 escape in any way."
 Then the king went away.  Thorarin went also to where Asbjorn lay
 in irons, took off his chains, and brought him to a small room,
 where he had meat and drink set before him, and told him what the
 king had determined in case Asbjorn ran away.  Asbjorn replies,
 that Thorarin need not be afraid of him.  Thorarin sat a long
 while with him during the day, and slept there all night.  On
 Saturday the king arose and went to the early mass, and from
 thence he went to the Thing, where a great many bondes were
 assembled, who had many complaints to be determined.  The king
 sat there long in the day, and it was late before the people went
 to high mass.  Thereafter the king went to table.  When he had
 got meat he sat drinking for a while, so that the tables were not
 removed.  Thorarin went out to the priest who had the church
 under his care, and gave him two marks of silver to ring in the
 Sabbath as soon as the king's table was taken away.  When the
 king had drunk as much as he wished the tables were removed. 
 Then said the king, that it was now time for the slaves to go to
 the murderer and put him to death.  In the same moment the bell
 rang in the Sabbath.
 Then Thorarin went before the king, and said, "The Sabbath-peace
 this man must have, although he has done evil."
 The king said, "Do thou take care, Thorarin, that he do not
 The king then went to the church, and attended the vesper
 service, and Thorarin sat the whole day with Asbjorn.  On Sunday
 the bishop visited Asbjorn, confessed him, and gave him orders to
 hear high mass.  Thorarin then went to the king, and asked him to
 appoint men to guard the murderer.  "I will now," he said, "be
 free of this charge."  The king thanked him for his care, and
 ordered men to watch over Asbjorn, who was again laid in chains.
 When the people went to high mass Asbjorn was led to the church,
 and he stood outside of the church with his guard; but the king
 and all the people stood in the church at mass.
 Now we must again take up our story where we left it, -- that
 Erling and his son Skjalg held a council on this affair, and
 according to the resolution of Erling, and of Skjalg and his
 other sons, it was determined to assemble a force and send out
 message-tokens.  A great multitude of people accordingly came
 together.  They got ready with all speed, rigged their ships, and
 when they reckoned upon their force they found they had nearly
 1500 men.  With this war-force they set off, and came on Sunday
 to Augvaldsnes on Karmt Island.  They went straight up to the
 house with all the men, and arrived just as the Scripture lesson
 was read.  They went directly to the church, took Asbjorn, and
 broke off his chains.  At the tumult and clash of arms all who
 were outside of the church ran into it; but they who were in the
 church looked all towards them, except the king, who stood still,
 without looking around him.  Erling and his sons drew up their
 men on each side of the path which led from the church to the
 hall, and Erling with his sons stood next to the hall.  When high
 mass was finished the king went immediately out of the church,
 and first went through the open space between the ranks drawn up,
 and then his retinue, man by man; and as he came to the door
 Erling placed himself before the door, bowed to the king, and
 saluted him.  The king saluted him in return, and prayed God to
 help him.  Erling took up the word first, and said, "My relation,
 Asbjorn, it is reported to me, has been guilty of misdemeanor,
 king; and it is a great one, if he has done anything that incurs
 your displeasure.  Now I am come to entreat for him peace, and
 such penalties as you yourself may determine; but that thereby he
 redeem life and limb, and his remaining here in his native land."
 The king replies, "It appears to me, Erling, that thou thinkest
 the case of Asbjorn is now in thy own power, and I do not
 therefore know why thou speakest now as if thou wouldst offer
 terms for him.  I think thou hast drawn together these forces
 because thou are determined to settle what is between us."
 Erling replies, "Thou only, king, shalt determine, and determine
 so that we shall be reconciled."
 The king: "Thinkest thou, Erling, to make me afraid?  And art
 thou come here in such force with that expectation?  No, that
 shall not be; and if that be thy thought, I must in no way turn
 and fly."
 Erling replies, "Thou hast no occasion to remind me how often I
 have come to meet thee with fewer men than thou hadst.  But now I
 shall not conceal what lies in my mind, namely, that it is my
 will that we now enter into a reconciliation; for otherwise I
 expect we shall never meet again."  Erling was then as red as
 blood in the face.
 Now Bishop Sigurd came forward to the king and said, "Sire, I
 entreat you on God Almighty's account to be reconciled with
 Erling according to his offer, -- that the man shall retain life
 and limb, but that thou shalt determine according to thy pleasure
 all the other conditions."
 The king replies, "You will determine."
 Then said the bishop, "Erling, do thou give security for Asbjorn,
 such as the king thinks sufficient, and then leave the conditions
 to the mercy of the king, and leave all in his power."
 Erling gave a surety to the king on his part, which he accepted.
 Thereupon Asbjorn received his life and safety, and delivered
 himself into the king's power, and kissed his hand.
 Erling then withdrew with his forces, without exchanging
 salutation with the king; and the king went into the hall,
 followed by Asbjorn.  The king thereafter made known the terms of
 reconciliation to be these: -- "In the first place, Asbjorn, thou
 must submit to the law of the land, which commands that the man
 who kills a servant of the king must undertake his service, if
 the king will.  Now I will that thou shalt undertake the office
 of bailiff which Thorer Sel had, and manage my estate here in
 Augvaldsnes."  Asbjorn replies, that it should be according to
 the king's will; "but I must first go home to my farm, and put
 things in order there."  The king was satisfied with this, and
 proceeded to another guest-quarter.  Asbjorn made himself ready
 with his comrades, who all kept themselves concealed in a quiet
 creek during the time Asbjorn was away from them.  They had had
 their spies out to learn how it went with him, and would not
 depart without having some certain news of him.
 Asbjorn then set out on his voyage, and about spring (A.D. 1023)
 got home to his farm.  After this exploit he was always called
 Asbjorn Selsbane.  Asbjorn had not been long at home before he
 and his relation Thorer met and conversed together, and Thorer
 asked Asbjorn particularly all about his journey, and about all
 the circumstances which had happened on the course of it. 
 Asbjorn told everything as it had taken place.
 Then said Thorer, "Thou thinkest that thou hast well rubbed out
 the disgrace of having been plundered in last harvest."
 "I think so," replies Asbjorn; "and what is thy opinion, cousin?"
 "That I will soon tell thee," said Thorer.  "Thy first expedition
 to the south of the country was indeed very disgraceful, and that
 disgrace has been redeemed; but this expedition is both a
 disgrace to thee and to thy family, if it end in thy becoming the
 king's slave, and being put on a footing with that worst of men,
 Thorer Sel.  Show that thou art manly enough to sit here on thy
 own property, and we thy relations shall so support thee that
 thou wilt never more come into such trouble."
 Asbjorn found this advice much to his mind; and before they
 parted it was firmly, determined that Asbjorn should remain on
 his farm, and not go back to the king or enter into his service. 
 And he did so, and sat quietly at home on his farm.
 After King Olaf and Erling Skjalgson had this meeting at
 Augvaldsnes, new differences arose between them, and increased
 so much that they ended in perfect enmity.  In spring (A.D. 1023)
 the king proceeded to guest-quarters in Hordaland, and went up
 also to Vors, because he heard there was but little of the true
 faith among the people there.  He held a Thing with the bondes at
 a place called Vang, and a number of bondes came to it fully
 armed.  The king ordered them to adopt Christianity; but they
 challenged him to battle, and it proceeded so far that the men
 were drawn up on both sides.  But when it came to the point such
 a fear entered into the blood of the bondes that none would
 advance or command, and they chose the part which was most to
 their advantage; namely, to obey the king and receive
 Christianity; and before the king left them they were all
 baptized.  One day it happened that the king was riding on his
 way a singing of psalms, and when he came right opposite some
 hills he halted and said, "Man after man shall relate these my
 words, that I think it not advisable for any king of Norway to
 travel hereafter between these hills."  And it is a saying among
 the people that the most kings since that time have avoided it.
 The king proceeded to Ostrarfjord, and came to his ships, with
 which he went north to Sogn, and had his living in guest-quarters
 there in summer (A.D. 1023); when autumn approached he turned in
 towards the Fjord district, and went from thence to Valders,
 where the people were still heathen.  The king hastened up to the
 lake in Valders, came unexpectedly on the bondes, seized their
 vessels, and went on board of them with all his men.  He then
 sent out message-tokens, and appointed a Thing so near the lake
 that he could use the vessels if he found he required them.  The
 bondes resorted to the Thing in a great and well-armed host; and
 when he commanded them to accept Christianity the bondes shouted
 against him, told him to be silent, and made a great uproar and
 clashing of weapons.  But when the king saw that they would not
 listen to what he would teach them, and also that they had too
 great a force to contend with, he turned his discourse, and asked
 if there were people at the Thing who had disputes with each
 other which they wished him to settle.  It was soon found by the
 conversation of the bondes that they had many quarrels among
 themselves, although they had all joined in speaking against
 Christianity.  When the bondes began to set forth their own
 cases, each endeavored to get some upon his side to support him;
 and this lasted the whole day long until evening, when the Thing
 was concluded.  When the bondes had heard that the king had
 travelled to Valders, and was come into their neighborhood, they
 had sent out message-tokens summoning the free and the unfree to
 meet in arms, and with this force they had advanced against the
 king; so that the neighbourhood all around was left without
 people.  When the Thing was concluded the bondes still remained
 assembled; and when the king observed this he went on board his
 ships, rowed in the night right across the water, landed in the
 country there, and began to plunder and burn.  The day after the
 king's men rowed from one point of land to another, and over all
 the king ordered the habitations to be set on fire.  Now when the
 bondes who were assembled saw what the king was doing, namely,
 plundering and burning, and saw the smoke and flame of their
 houses, they dispersed, and each hastened to his own home to see
 if he could find those he had left.  As soon as there came a
 dispersion among the crowd, the one slipped away after the other,
 until the whole multitude was dissolved.  Then the king rowed
 across the lake again, burning also on that side of the country.
 Now came the bondes to him begging for mercy, and offering to
 submit to him.  He gave every man who came to him peace if he
 desired it, and restored to him his goods; and nobody refused to
 adopt Christianity.  The king then had the people christened, and
 took hostages from the bondes.  He ordered churches to be built
 and consecrated, and placed teachers in them.  He remained a long
 time here in autumn, and had his ships drawn across the neck of
 land between the two lakes.  The king did not go far from the
 sides of the lakes into the country, for he did not much trust
 the bondes.  When the king thought that frost might be expected,
 he went further up the country, and came to Thoten.  Arnor, the
 earl's skald, tells how King Olaf burnt in the Uplands, in the
 poem he composed concerning the king's brother King Harald: --
      "Against the Upland people wroth,
      Olaf, to most so mild, went forth:
           The houses burning,
           All people mourning;
           Who could not fly
           Hung on gallows high.
      It was, I think, in Olaf's race
      The Upland people to oppress."
 Afterwards King Olaf went north through the valleys to
 Dovrefield, and did not halt until he reached the Throndhjem
 district and arrived at Nidaros, where he had ordered winter
 provision to be collected, and remained all winter (A.D. 1024).
 This was the tenth year of his reign.
 The summer before Einar Tambaskelfer left the country, and went
 westward to England (A.D. 1023).  There he met his relative Earl
 Hakon, and stayed some time with him.  He then visited King
 Canute, from whom he received great presents.  Einar then went
 south all the way to Rome, and came back the following summer
 (A.D. 1024), and returned to his house and land.  King Olaf and
 Einar did not meet this time.
 There was a girl whose name was Alfhild, and who was usually
 called the king's slave-woman, although she was of good descent.
 She was a remarkably handsome girl, and lived in King Olaf's
 court.  It was reported this spring that Alfhild was with child,
 and the king's confidential friends knew that he was father of
 the child.  It happened one night that Alfhild was taken ill, and
 only few people were at hand; namely, some women, priests, Sigvat
 the skald, and a few others.  Alfhild was so ill that she was
 nearly dead; and when she was delivered of a man-child, it was
 some time before they could discover whether the child was in
 life.  But when the infant drew breath, although very weak, the
 priest told Sigvat to hasten to the king, and tell him of the
 He replies, "I dare not on any account waken the king; for he has
 forbid that any man should break his sleep until he awakens of
 The priest replies, "It is of necessity that this child be
 immediately baptized, for it appears to me there is but little
 life in it."
 Sigvat said, "I would rather venture to take upon me to let thee
 baptize the child, than to awaken the king; and I will take it
 upon myself if anything be amiss, and will give the child a
 They did so; and the child was baptized, and got the name of
 Magnus.  The next morning, when the king awoke and had dressed
 himself, the circumstance was told him.  He ordered Sigvat to be
 called, and said. "How camest thou to be so bold as to have my
 child baptized before I knew anything about it?"
 Sigvat replies, "Because I would rather give two men to God than
 one to the devil."
 The king -- "What meanest thou?"
 Sigvat -- "The child was near death, and must have been the
 devil's if it had died as a heathen, and now it is God's.  And I
 knew besides that if thou shouldst be so angry on this account
 that it affected my life, I would be God's also."
 The king asked, "But why didst thou call him Magnus, which is not
 a name of our race?"
 Sigvat -- "I called him after King Carl Magnus, who, I knew, had
 been the best man in the world."
 Then said the king, "Thou art a very lucky man, Sigvat; but it is
 not wonderful that luck should accompany understanding.  It is
 only wonderful how it sometimes happens that luck attends
 ignorant men, and that foolish counsel turns out lucky."  The
 king was overjoyed at the circumstance.  The boy grew up, and
 gave good promise as he advanced in age.
 The same spring (A.D. 1024) the king gave into the hands of
 Asmund Grankelson the half of the sheriffdom of the district of
 Halogaland, which Harek of Thjotta had formerly held, partly in
 fief, partly for defraying the king's entertainment in guest-
 quarters.  Asmund had a ship manned with nearly thirty well-armed
 men.  When Asmund came north he met Harek, and told him what the
 king had determined with regard to the district, and produced to
 him the tokens of the king's full powers.  Harek said, "The king
 had the right to give the sheriffdom to whom he pleased; but the
 former sovereigns had not been in use to diminish our rights who
 are entitled by birth to hold powers from the king, and to give
 them into the hands of the peasants who never before held such
 offices."  But although it was evident that it was against
 Harek's inclination, he allowed Asmund to take the sheriffdom
 according to the king's order.  Then Asmund proceeded home to his
 father, stayed there a short time, and then went north to
 Halogaland to his sheriffdom; and he came north to Langey Island,
 where there dwelt two brothers called Gunstein and Karle, both
 very rich and respectable men.  Gunstein, the eldest of the
 brothers, was a good husbandman.  Karle was a handsome man in
 appearance, and splendid in his dress; and both were, in many
 respects, expert in all feats.  Asmund was well received by them,
 remained with them a while, and collected such revenues of his
 sheriffdom as he could get.  Karle spoke with Asmund of his wish
 to go south with him and take service in the court of King Olaf,
 to which Asmund encouraged him much, promising his influence with
 the king for obtaining for Karle such a situation as he desired;
 and Karle accordingly accompanied Asmund.  Asmund heard that
 Asbjorn, who had killed Thorer Sel, had gone to the market-
 meeting of Vagar with a large ship of burden manned with nearly
 twenty men, and that he was now expected from the south.  Asmund
 and his retinue proceeded on their way southwards along the coast
 with a contrary wind, but there was little of it.  They saw some
 of the fleet for Vagar sailing towards them; and they privately
 inquired of them about Asbjorn, and were told he was upon the way
 coming from the south.  Asmund and Karle were bedfellows, and
 excellent friends.  One day, as Asmund and his people were rowing
 through a sound, a ship of burden came sailing towards them.  The
 ship was easily known, having high bulwarks, was painted with
 white and red colours, and coloured cloth was woven in the sail.
 Karle said to Asmund, "Thou hast often said thou wast curious to
 see Asbjorn who killed Thorer Sel; and if I know one ship from
 another, that is his which is coming sailing along."
 Asmund replies, "Be so good, comrade, and tell me which is he
 when thou seest him."
 When the ships came alongside of each other, "That is Asbjorn,"
 said Karle; "the man sitting at the helm in a blue cloak."
 Asmund replies, "I shall make his blue cloak red;" threw a spear
 at Asbjorn, and hit him in the middle of the body, so that it
 flew through and through him, and stuck fast in the upper part of
 the stern-post; and Asbjorn fell down dead from the helm.  Then
 each vessel sailed on its course, and Asbjorn's body was carried
 north to Thrandarnes.  Then Sigrid sent a message to Bjarkey Isle
 to Thorer Hund, who came to her while they were, in the usual
 way, dressing the corpse of Asbjorn.  When he returned Sigrid
 gave presents to all her friends, and followed Thorer to his
 ship; but before they parted she said, "It has so fallen out,
 Thorer, that my son has suffered by thy friendly counsel, but he
 did not retain life to reward thee for it; but although I have
 not his ability yet will I show my good will.  Here is a gift I
 give thee, which I expect thou wilt use.  Here is the spear which
 went through Asbjorn my son, and there is still blood upon it, to
 remind thee that it fits the wound thou hast seen on the corpse
 of thy brother's son Asbjorn.  It would be a manly deed, if thou
 shouldst throw this spear from thy hand so that it stood in
 Olaf's breast; and this I can tell thee, that thou wilt be named
 coward in every man's mouth, if thou dost not avenge Asbjorn." 
 Thereupon she turned about, and went her way.
 Thorer was so enraged at her words that he could not speak.  He
 neither thought of casting the spear from him, nor took notice of
 the gangway; so that he would have fallen into the sea, if his
 men had not laid hold of him as he was going on board his ship.
 It was a feathered spear; not large, but the handle was gold-
 mounted.  Now Thorer rowed away with his people, and went home to
 Bjarkey Isle.  Asmund and his companions also proceeded on their
 way until they came south to Throndhjem, where they waited on
 King Olaf; and Asmund related to the king all that had happened
 on the voyage.  Karle became one of the king's court-men, and the
 friendship continued between him and Asmund.  They did not keep
 secret the words that had passed between Asmund and Karle before
 Asbjorn was killed; for they even told them to the king.  But
 then it happened, according to the proverb, that every one has a
 friend in the midst of his enemies.  There were some present who
 took notice of the words, and they reached Thorer Hund's ears.
 When spring (A.D. 1024) was advanced King Olaf rigged out his
 ships, and sailed southwards in summer along the land.  He held
 Things with the bondes on the way, settled the law business of
 the people, put to rights the faith of the country, and collected
 the king's taxes wherever he came.  In autumn he proceeded south
 to the frontier of the country; and King Olaf had now made the
 people Christians in all the great districts, and everywhere, by
 laws, had introduced order into the country.  He had also, as
 before related, brought the Orkney Islands under his power, and
 by messages had made many friends in Iceland, Greenland, and the
 Farey Islands.  King Olaf had sent timber for building a church
 to Iceland, of which a church was built upon the Thing-field
 where the General Thing is held, and had sent a bell for it,
 which is still there.  This was after the Iceland people had
 altered their laws, and introduced Christianity, according to the
 word King Olaf had sent them.  After that time, many considerable
 persons came from Iceland, and entered into King Olaf's service;
 as Thorkel Eyjolfson, and Thorleif Bollason, Thord Kolbeinson,
 Thord Barkarson, Thorgeir Havarson, Thormod Kalbrunar-skald. 
 King Olaf had sent many friendly presents to chief people in
 Iceland; and they in return sent him such things as they had
 which they thought most acceptable.  Under this show of
 friendship which the king gave Iceland were concealed many things
 which afterwards appeared.
 King Olaf this summer (A.D. 1024) sent Thorarin Nefiulfson to
 Iceland on his errands; and Thorarin went out of Throndhjem fjord
 along with the king, and followed him south to More.  From thence
 Thorarin went out to sea, and got such a favourable breeze that
 after four days sail he landed at the Westman Isles, in Iceland.
 He proceeded immediately to the Althing, and came just as the
 people were upon the Lawhillock, to which he repaired.  When the
 cases of the people before the Thing had been determined
 according to law, Thorarin Nefiulfson took up the word as
 follows: -- "We parted four days ago from King Olaf Haraldson,
 who sends God Almighty's and his own salutation to all the chiefs
 and principal men of the land; as also to all the people in
 general, men and women, young and old, rich and poor.  He also
 lets you know that he will be your sovereign if ye will become
 his subjects, so that he and you will be friends, assisting each
 other in all that is good."
 The people replied in a friendly way, that they would gladly be
 the king's friends, if he would be a friend of the people of
 their country.
 Then Thorarin again took up the word: -- "This follows in
 addition to the king's message, that he will in friendship desire
 of the people of the north district that they give him the
 island, or out-rock, which lies at the mouth of Eyfjord, and is
 called Grimsey, for which he will give you from his country
 whatever good the people of the district may desire.  He sends
 this message particularly to Gudmund of Modruvellir to support
 this matter, because he understands that Gudmund has most
 influence in that quarter."
 Gudmund replies, "My inclination is greatly for King Olaf's
 friendship, and that I consider much more useful than the out-
 rock he desires.  But the king has not heard rightly if he think
 I have more power in this matter than any other, for the island
 is a common.  We, however, who have the most use of the isle,
 will hold a meeting among ourselves about it."
 Then the people went to their tent-houses; and the Northland
 people had a meeting among themselves, and talked over the
 business, and every one spoke according to his judgment.  Gudmund
 supported the matter, and many others formed their opinions by
 his.  Then some asked why his brother Einar did not speak on the
 subject.  "We think he has the clearest insight into most
 Einar answers, "I have said so little about the matter because
 nobody has asked me about it; but if I may give my opinion, our
 countrymen might just as well make themselves at once liable to
 land-scat to King Olaf, and submit to all his exactions as he has
 them among his people in Norway; and this heavy burden we will
 lay not only upon ourselves, but on our sons, and their sons, and
 all our race, and on all the community dwelling and living in
 this land, which never after will be free from this slavery.  Now
 although this king is a good man, as I well believe him to be,
 yet it must be hereafter, when kings succeed each other, that
 some will be good. and some bad.  Therefore if the people of this
 country will preserve the freedom they have enjoyed since the
 land was first inhabited, it is not advisable to give the king
 the smallest spot to fasten himself upon the country by, and not
 to give him any kind of scat or service that can have the
 appearance of a duty.  On the other hand, I think it very proper
 that the people send the king such friendly presents of hawks or
 horses, tents or sails, or such things which are suitable gifts;
 and these are well applied if they are repaid with friendship.
 But as to Grimsey Isle, I have to say, that although nothing is
 drawn from it that can serve for food, yet it could support a
 great war-force cruising from thence in long-ships; and then, I
 doubt not, there would be distress enough at every poor peasant's
 When Einar had thus explained the proper connection of the
 matter, the whole community were of one mind that such a thing
 should not be permitted; and Thorarin saw sufficiently well what
 the result of his errand was to be.
 The day following, Thorarin went again to the Lawhill, and
 brought forward his errand in the following words: -- "King Olaf
 sends his message to his friends here in the country, among whom
 he reckons Gudmund Eyjolfson, Snorre Gode, Thorkel Eyjolfson,
 Skapte the lagman, and Thorstein Halson, and desires them by me
 to come to him on a friendly visit; and adds, that ye must not
 excuse yourselves, if you regard his friendship as worth
 anything."  In their answer they thanked the king for his message
 and added, that they would afterwards give a reply to it by
 Thorarin when they had more closely considered the matter with
 their friends.  The chiefs now weighed the matter among
 themselves, and each gave his own opinion about the journey. 
 Snorre and Skapte dissuaded from such a dangerous proceeding with
 the people of Norway; namely, that all the men who had the most
 to say in the country should at once leave Iceland.  They added,
 that from this message, and from what Einar had said, they had
 the suspicion that the king intended to use force and strong
 measures against the Icelanders if he ruled in the country.
 Gudmund and Thorkel Eyjolfson insisted much that they should
 follow King Olaf's invitation, and called it a journey of honour.
 But when they had considered the matter on all sides, it was at
 last resolved that they should not travel themselves, but that
 each of them should send in his place a man whom they thought
 best suited for it.  After this determination the Thing was
 closed, and there was no journey that summer.  Thorarin made two
 voyages that summer, and about harvest was back again at King
 Olaf's, and reported the result of his mission, and that some of
 the chiefs, or their sons, would come from Iceland according to
 his message.
 The same summer (A.D. 1024) there came from the Farey Islands to
 Norway, on the king's invitation, Gille the lagman, Leif
 Ossurson, Thoralf of Dimun, and many other bondes' sons.  Thord
 of Gata made himself ready for the voyage; but just as he was
 setting out he got a stroke of palsy, and could not come, so he
 remained behind.  Now when the people from the Farey Isles
 arrived at King Olaf's, he called them to him to a conference,
 and explained the purpose of the journey he had made them take,
 namely, that he would have scat from the Farey Islands, and also
 that the people there should be subject to the laws which the
 king should give them.  In that meeting it appeared from the
 king's words that he would make the Farey people who had come
 answerable, and would bind them by oath to conclude this union.
 He also offered to the men whom he thought the ablest to take
 them into his service, and bestow honour and friendship on them.
 These Farey men understood the king's words so, that they must
 dread the turn the matter might take if they did not submit to
 all that the king desired.  Although they held several meetings
 about the business before it ended, the king's desire at last
 prevailed.  Leif, Gille, and Thoralf went into the king's
 service, and became his courtmen; and they, with all their
 travelling companions, swore the oath to King Olaf, that the law
 and land privilege which he set them should be observed in the
 Farey Islands, and also the scat be levied that he laid upon
 them.  Thereafter the Farey people prepared for their return
 home, and at their departure the king gave those who had entered
 into his service presents in testimony of his friendship, and
 they went their way.  Now the king ordered a ship to be rigged,
 manned it, and sent men to the Farey Islands to receive the scat
 from the inhabitants which they should pay him.  It was late
 before they were ready; but they set off at last: and of their
 journey all that is to be told is, that they did not come back,
 and no scat either, the following summer; for nobody had come to
 the Farey Isles, and no man had demanded scat there.
 King Olaf proceeded about harvest time to Viken, and sent a
 message before him to the Uplands that they should prepare guest-
 quarters for him, as he intended to be there in winter. 
 Afterwards he made ready for his journey, and went to the
 Uplands, and remained the winter there; going about in guest-
 quarters, and putting things to rights where he saw it needful,
 advancing also the cause of Christianity wheresoever it was
 requisite.  It happened while King Olaf was in Hedemark that
 Ketil Kalf of Ringanes courted Gunhild, a daughter of Sigurd Syr
 and of King Olaf's mother Asta.  Gunhild was a sister of King
 Olaf, and therefore it belonged to the king to give consent and
 determination to the business.  He took it in a friendly way; for
 he know Ketil, that he was of high birth, wealthy, and of good
 understanding, and a great chief; and also he had long been a
 great friend of King Olaf, as before related.  All these
 circumstances induced the king to approve of the match, and so it
 was that Ketil got Gunhild.  King Olaf was present at the
 wedding.  From thence the king went north to Gudbrandsdal, where
 he was entertained in guest-quarters.  There dwelt a man, by name
 Thord Guthormson, on a farm called Steig; and he was the most
 powerful man in the north end of the valley.  When Thord and the
 king met, Thord made proposals for Isrid, the daughter of
 Gudbrand, and the sister of King Olaf's mother, as it belonged to
 the king to give consent.  After the matter was considered, it
 was determined that the marriage should proceed, and Thord got
 Isrid.  Afterwards Thord was the king's faithful friend, and also
 many of Thord's relations and friends, who followed his
 footsteps.  From thence King Olaf returned south through Thoten
 and Hadaland, from thence to Ringerike, and so to Viken.  In
 spring (A.D. 1025) he went to Tunsberg, and stayed there while
 there was the market-meeting, and a great resort of people.  He
 then had his vessels rigged out, and had many people about him.
 The same summer (A.D. 1025) came Stein, a son of the lagman
 Skapte, from Iceland, in compliance with King Olaf's message; and
 with him Thorod, a son of Snorre the gode, and Geller, a son of
 Thorkel Eyjolfson, and Egil, a son of Hal of Sida, brother of
 Thorstein Hal.  Gudmund Eyjolfson had died the winter before.
 These Iceland men repaired to King Olaf as soon as they had
 opportunity; and when they met the king they were well received,
 and all were in his house.  The same summer King Olaf heard that
 the ship was missing which he had sent the summer before to the
 Farey Islands after the scat, and nobody knew what had become of
 it.  The king fitted out another ship, manned it, and sent it to
 the Farey Islands for the scat.  They got under weigh, and
 proceeded to sea; but as little was ever heard of this vessel as
 of the former one, and many conjectures were made about what had
 become of them.
 During this time Canute the Great, called by some Canute the Old,
 was king of England and Denmark.  Canute the Great was a son of
 Svein Haraldson Forkedbeard, whose forefathers, for a long course
 of generations, had ruled over Denmark.  Harald Gormson, Canute's
 grandfather, had conquered Norway after the fall of Harald
 Grafeld, Gunhild's son, had taken scat from it, and had placed
 Earl Hakon the Great to defend the country.  The Danish King,
 Svein Haraldson, ruled also over Norway, and placed his son-in-
 law Earl Eirik, the son of Earl Hakon, to defend the country. 
 The brothers Eirik and Svein, Earl Hakon's sons, ruled the land
 until Earl Eirik went west to England, on the invitation of his
 brother-in-law Canute the Great, when he left behind his son Earl
 Hakon, sister's son of Canute the Great, to govern Norway.  But
 when Olaf the Thick came first to Norway, as before related, he
 took prisoner Earl Hakon the son of Eirik, and deposed him from
 the kingdom.  Then Hakon proceeded to his mother's brother,
 Canute the Great, and had been with him constantly until the time
 to which here in our saga we have now come.  Canute the Great had
 conquered England by blows and weapons, and had a long struggle
 before the people of the land were subdued.  But when he had set
 himself perfectly firm in the government of the country, he
 remembered that he also had right to a kingdom which he had not
 brought under his authority; and that was Norway.  He thought he
 had hereditary right to all Norway; and his sister's son Hakon,
 who had held a part of it, appeared to him to have lost it with
 disgrace.  The reason why Canute and Hakon had remained quiet
 with respect to their claims upon Norway was, that when King Olaf
 Haraldson landed in Norway the people and commonalty ran together
 in crowds, and would hear of nothing but that Olaf should be king
 over all the country, although some afterwards, who thought that
 the people upon account of his power had no self-government left
 to them, went out of the country.  Many powerful men, or rich
 bondes sons, had therefore gone to Canute the Great, and
 pretended various errands; and every one who came to Canute and
 desired his friendship was loaded with presents.  With Canute,
 too, could be seen greater splendour and pomp than elsewhere,
 both with regard to the multitude of people who were daily in
 attendance, and also to the other magnificent things about the
 houses he owned and dwelt in himself.  Canute the Great drew scat
 and revenue from the people who were the richest of all in
 northern lands; and in the same proportion as he had greater
 revenues than other kings, he also made greater presents than
 other kings.  In his whole kingdom peace was so well established,
 that no man dared break it.  The people of the country kept the
 peace towards each other, and had their old country law: and for
 this he was greatly celebrated in all countries.  And many of
 those who came from Norway represented their hardships to Earl
 Hakon, and some even to King Canute himself; and that the Norway
 people were ready to turn back to the government of King Canute,
 or Earl Hakon, and receive deliverance from them.  This
 conversation suited well the earl's inclination, and he carried
 it to the king, and begged of him to try if King Olaf would not
 surrender the kingdom, or at least come to an agreement to divide
 it; and many supported the earl's views.
 Canute the Great sent men from the West, from England, to Norway,
 and equipped them magnificently for the journey.  They were
 bearers of the English king Canute's letter and seal.  They came
 about spring (A.D. 1025) to the king of Norway, Olaf Haraldson,
 in Tunsberg.  Now when it was told the king that ambassadors had
 arrived from Canute the Great he was ill at ease, and said that
 Canute had not sent messengers hither with any messages that
 could be of advantage to him or his people; and it was some days
 before the ambassadors could come before the king.  But when they
 got permission to speak to him they appeared before the king, and
 made known King Canute's letter, and their errand which
 accompanied it; namely, "that King Canute considers all Norway as
 his property, and insists that his forefathers before him have
 possessed that kingdom; but as King Canute offers peace to all
 countries, he will also offer peace to all here, if it can be so
 settled, and will not invade Norway with his army if it can be
 avoided.  Now if King Olaf Haraldson wishes to remain king of
 Norway, he will come to King Canute, and receive his kingdom as a
 fief from him, become his vassal, and pay the scat which the
 earls before him formerly paid."  Thereupon they presented their
 letters, which contained precisely the same conditions.
 Then King Olaf replies, "I have heard say, by old stories, that
 the Danish king Gorm was considered but a small king of a few
 people, for he ruled over Denmark alone; but the kings who
 succeeded him thought that was too little.  It has since come so
 far that King Canute rules over Denmark and England, and has
 conquered for himself a great part of Scotland.  Now he claims
 also my paternal heritage, and will then show some moderation in
 his covetousness.  Does he wish to rule over all the countries of
 the North?  Will he eat up all the kail in England?  He shall do
 so, and reduce that country to a desert, before I lay my head in
 his hands, or show him any other kind of vassalage.  Now ye shall
 tell him these my words, -- I will defend Norway with battle-axe
 and sword as long as life is given me, and will pay scat to no
 man for my kingdom."
 After this answer King Canute's ambassadors made themselves ready
 for their journey home, and were by no means rejoiced at the
 success of their errand.
 Sigvat the skald had been with King Canute, who had given him a
 gold ring that weighed half a mark.  The skald Berse
 Skaldtorfason was also there, and to him King Canute gave two
 gold rings, each weighing two marks, and besides a sword inlaid
 with gold.  Sigvat made this song about it: --
      "When we came o'er the wave, you cub,
           When we came o'er the wave,
      To me one ring, to thee two rings,
           The mighty Canute gave:
      One mark to me,
      Four marks to thee, --
           A sword too, fine and brave.
      Now God knows well,
      And skalds can tell,
           What justice here would crave."
 Sigvat the skald was very intimate with King Canute's messengers,
 and asked them many questions.  They answered all his inquiries
 about their conversation with King Olaf, and the result of their
 message.  They said the king listened unwillingly to their
 proposals.  "And we do not know," say they, "to what he is
 trusting when he refuses becoming King Canute's vassal, and going
 to him, which would be the best thing he could do; for King
 Canute is so mild that however much a chief may have done against
 him, he is pardoned if he only show himself obedient.  It is but
 lately that two kings came to him from the North, from Fife in
 Scotland, and he gave up his wrath against them, and allowed them
 to retain all the lands they had possessed before, and gave them
 besides very valuable gifts."  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "From the North land, the midst of Fife,
      Two kings came begging peace and life;
      Craving from Canute life and peace, --
      May Olaf's good luck never cease!
      May he, our gallant Norse king, never
      Be brought, like these, his head to offer
      As ransom to a living man
      For the broad lands his sword has won."
 King Canute's ambassadors proceeded on their way back, and had a
 favourable breeze across the sea.  They came to King Canute, and
 told him the result of their errand, and King Olaf's last words.
 King Canute replies, "King Olaf guesses wrong, if he thinks I
 shall eat up all the kail in England; for I will let him see that
 there is something else than kail under my ribs, and cold kail it
 shall be for him."  The same summer (A.D. 1025) Aslak and Skjalg,
 the sons of Erling of Jadar, came from Norway to King Canute, and
 were well received; for Aslak was married to Sigrid, a daughter
 of Earl Svein Hakonson, and she and Earl Hakon Eirikson were
 brothers' children.  King Canute gave these brothers great fiefs
 over there, and they stood in great favour.
 King Olaf summoned to him all the lendermen, and had a great many
 people about him this summer (A.D. 1025), for a report was abroad
 that King Canute would come from England.  People had heard from
 merchant vessels that Canute was assembling a great army in
 England.  When summer was advanced, some affirmed and others
 denied that the army would come.  King Olaf was all summer in
 Viken, and had spies out to learn if Canute was come to Denmark.
 In autumn (A.D. 1025) he sent messengers eastward to Svithjod to
 his brother-in-law King Onund, and let him know King Canute's
 demand upon Norway; adding, that, in his opinion, if Canute
 subdued Norway, King Onund would not long enjoy the Swedish
 dominions in peace.  He thought it advisable, therefore, that
 they should unite for their defence.  "And then," said he, "we
 will have strength enough to hold out against Canute."  King
 Onund received King Olaf's message favourably, and replied to it,
 that he for his part would make common cause with King Olaf, so
 that each of them should stand by the one who first required help
 with all the strength of his kingdom.  In these messages between
 them it was also determined that they should have a meeting, and
 consult with each other.  The following winter (A.D. 1026) King
 Onund intended to travel across West Gautland, and King Olaf made
 preparations for taking his winter abode at Sarpsborg.
 In autumn King Canute the Great came to Denmark, and remained
 there all winter (A.D. 1026) with a numerous army.  It was told
 him that ambassadors with messages had been passing between the
 Swedish and Norwegian kings, and that some great plans must be
 concerting between them.  In winter King Canute sent messengers
 to Svithjod, to King Onund, with great gifts and messages of
 friendship.  He also told Onund that he might sit altogether
 quiet in this strife between him and Olaf the Thick; "for thou,
 Onund," says he, "and thy kingdom, shall be in peace as far as I
 am concerned."  When the ambassadors came to King Onund they
 presented the gifts which King Canute sent him, together with the
 friendly message.  King Onund did not hear their speech very
 willingly, and the ambassadors could observe that King Onund was
 most inclined to a friendship with King Olaf.  They returned
 accordingly, and told King Canute the result of their errand, and
 told him not to depend much upon the friendship of King Onund.
 This winter (A.D. 1026) King Olaf sat in Sarpsborg, and was
 surrounded by a very great army of people.  He sent the
 Halogalander Karle to the north country upon his business.  Karle
 went first to the Uplands, then across the Dovrefield, and came
 down to Nidaros, where he received as much money as he had the
 king's order for, together with a good ship, such as he thought
 suitable for the voyage which the king had ordered him upon; and
 that was to proceed north to Bjarmaland.  It was settled that the
 king should be in partnership with Karle, and each of them have
 the half of the profit.  Early in spring Karle directed his
 course to Halogaland, where his brother Gunstein prepared to
 accompany him, having his own merchant goods with him.  There
 were about twenty-five men in the ship; and in spring they sailed
 north to Finmark.  When Thorer Hund heard this, he sent a man to
 the brothers with the verbal message that he intended in summer
 to go to Bjarmaland, and that he would sail with them, and that
 they should divide what booty they made equally between them.
 Karle sent him back the message that Thorer must have twenty-five
 men as they had, and they were willing to divide the booty that
 might be taken equally, but not the merchant goods which each had
 for himself.  When Thorer's messenger came back he had put a
 stout long-ship he owned into the water, and rigged it, and he
 had put eighty men on board of his house-servants.  Thorer alone
 had the command over this crew, and he alone had all the goods
 they might acquire on the cruise.  When Thorer was ready for sea
 he set out northwards along the coast, and found Karle a little
 north of Sandver.  They then proceeded with good wind.  Gunstein
 said to his brother, as soon as they met Thorer, that in his
 opinion Thorer was strongly manned.  "I think," said he, "we had
 better turn back than sail so entirely in Thorer's power, for I
 do not trust him."  Karle replies, "I will not turn back,
 although if I had known when we were at home on Langey Isle that
 Thorer Hund would join us on this voyage with so large a crew as
 he has, I would have taken more hands with us."  The brothers
 spoke about it to Thorer, and asked what was the meaning of his
 taking more people with him than was agreed upon between them. 
 He replies, "We have a large ship which requires many hands, and
 methinks there cannot be too many brave lads for so dangerous a
 cruise."  They went in summer as fast in general as the vessels
 could go.  When the wind was light the ship of the brothers
 sailed fastest, and they separated; but when the wind freshened
 Thorer overtook them.  They were seldom together, but always in
 sight of each other.  When they came to Bjarmaland they went
 straight to the merchant town, and the market began.  All who had
 money to pay with got filled up with goods.  Thorer also got a
 number of furs, and of beaver and sable skins.  Karle had a
 considerable sum of money with him, with which he purchased skins
 and furs.  When the fair was at an end they went out of the Vina
 river, and then the truce of the country people was also at an
 end.  When they came out of the river they held a seaman's
 council, and Thorer asked the crews if they would like to go on
 the land and get booty.
 They replied, that they would like it well enough, if they saw
 the booty before their eyes.
 Thorer replies, that there was booty to be got, if the voyage
 proved fortunate; but that in all probability there would be
 danger in the attempt.
 All said they would try, if there was any chance of booty. 
 Thorer explained, that it was so established in this land, that
 when a rich man died all his movable goods were divided between
 the dead man and his heirs.  He got the half part, or the third
 part, or sometimes less, and that part was carried out into the
 forest and buried, -- sometimes under a mound, sometimes in the
 earth, and sometimes even a house was built over it.  He tells
 them at the same time to get ready for this expedition at the
 fall of day.  It was resolved that one should not desert the
 other, and none should hold back when the commander ordered them
 to come on board again.  They now left people behind to take care
 of the ships, and went on land, where they found flat fields at
 first, and then great forests.  Thorer went first, and the
 brothers Karle and Gunstein in rear.  Thorer commanded the people
 to observe the utmost silence.  "And let us peel the bark off the
 trees," says he, "so that one tree-mark can be seen from the
 other."  They came to a large cleared opening, where there was a
 high fence upon which there was a gate that was locked.  Six men
 of the country people held watch every night at this fence, two
 at a time keeping guard, each two for a third part of the night,
 when Thorer and his men came to the fence the guard had gone
 home, and those who should relieve them had not yet come upon
 guard.  Thorer went to the fence, stuck his axe up in it above
 his head, hauled himself up by it, and so came over the fence,
 and inside the gate.  Karle had also come over the fence, and to
 the inside of the gate; so that both came at once to the port,
 took the bar away, and opened the port; and then the people got
 in within the fence.  Then said Thorer, "Within this fence there
 is a mound in which gold, and silver, and earth are all mixed
 together: seize that.  But within here stands the Bjarmaland
 people's god Jomala: let no one be so presumptuous as to rob
 him."  Thereupon they went to the mound and took as much of the
 money as they could carry away in their clothes, with which, as
 might be expected, much earth was mixed.  Thereafter Thorer said
 that the people now should retreat.  "And ye brothers, Karle and
 Gunstein," says he, "do ye lead the way, and I will go last."
 They all went accordingly out of the gate: but Thorer went back
 to Jomala, and took a silver bowl that stood upon his knee full
 of silver money.  He put the silver in his purse, and put his arm
 within the handle of the bowl, and so went out of the gate.  The
 whole troop had come without the fence; but when they perceived
 that Thorer had stayed behind, Karle returned to trace him, and
 when they met upon the path Thorer had the silver bowl with him.
 Thereupon Karle immediately ran to Jomala; and observing he had a
 thick gold ornament hanging around his neck, he lifted his axe,
 cut the string with which the ornament was tied behind his neck,
 and the stroke was so strong that the head of Jomala rang with
 such a great sound that they were all astonished.  Karle seized
 the ornament, and they all hastened away.  But the moment the
 sound was made the watchmen came forward upon the cleared space,
 and blew their horns.  Immediately the sound of the loor (1) was
 heard all around from every quarter, calling the people together.
 They hastened to the forest, and rushed into it; and heard the
 shouts and cries on the other side of the Bjarmaland people in
 pursuit.  Thorer Hund went the last of the whole troop; and
 before him went two men carrying a great sack between them, in
 which was something that was like ashes.  Thorer took this in his
 hand, and strewed it upon the footpath, and sometimes over the
 people.  They came thus out of the woods, and upon the fields,
 but heard incessantly the Bjarmaland people pursuing with shouts
 and dreadful yells.  The army of the Bjarmaland people rushed out
 after them upon the field, and on both sides of them; but neither
 the people nor their weapons came so near as to do them any harm:
 from which they perceived that the Bjarmaland people did not see
 them.  Now when they reached their ships Karle and his brother
 went on board; for they were the foremost, and Thorer was far
 behind on the land.  As soon as Karle and his men were on board
 they struck their tents, cast loose their land ropes, hoisted
 their sails, and their ship in all haste went to sea.  Thorer and
 his people, on the other hand, did not get on so quickly, as
 their vessel was heavier to manage; so that when they got under
 sail, Karle and his people were far off from land.  Both vessels
 sailed across the White sea (Gandvik) . The nights were clear, so
 that both ships sailed night and day; until one day, towards the
 time the day turns to shorten, Karle and his people took up the
 land near an island, let down the sail, cast anchor, and waited
 until the slack-tide set in, for there was a strong rost before
 them.  Now Thorer came up, and lay at anchor there also.  Thorer
 and his people then put out a boat, went into it, and rowed to
 Karle's ship.  Thorer came on board, and the brothers saluted
 him.  Thorer told Karle to give him the ornament.  "I think,"
 said he, "that I have best earned the ornaments that have been
 taken, for methinks ye have to thank me for getting away without
 any loss of men; and also I think thou, Karle, set us in the
 greatest fright."
 Karle replies, "King Olaf has the half part of all the goods I
 gather on this voyage, and I intend the ornament for him.  Go to
 him, if you like, and it is possible he will give thee the
 ornament, although I took it from Jomala."
 Then Thorer insisted that they should go upon the island, and
 divide the booty.
 Gunstein says, "It is now the turn of the tide, and it is time to
 sail."  Whereupon they began to raise their anchor.
 When Thorer saw that, he returned to his boat and rowed to his
 own ship.  Karle and his men had hoisted sail, and were come a
 long way before Thorer got under way.  They now sailed so that
 the brothers were always in advance, and both vessels made all
 the haste they could.  They sailed thus until they came to
 Geirsver, which is the first roadstead of the traders to the
 North.  They both came there towards evening, and lay in the
 harbour near the landing-place.  Thorer's ship lay inside, and
 the brothers' the outside vessel in the port.  When Thorer had
 set up his tents he went on shore, and many of his men with him.
 They went to Karle's ship, which was well provided.  Thorer
 hailed the ship, and told the commanders to come on shore; on
 which the brothers, and some men with them, went on the land. 
 Now Thorer began the same discourse, and told them to bring the
 goods they got in booty to the land to have them divided.  The
 brothers thought that was not necessary, until they had arrived
 at their own neighbourhood.  Thorer said it was unusual not to
 divide booty but at their own home, and thus to be left to the
 honour of other people.  They spoke some words about it, but
 could not agree.  Then Thorer turned away; but had not gone far
 before he came back, and tells his comrades to wait there. 
 Thereupon he calls to Karle, and says he wants to speak with him
 alone.  Karle went to meet him; and when he came near, Thorer
 struck at him with a spear, so that it went through him. 
 "There," said Thorer, "now thou hast learnt to know a Bjarkey
 Island man.  I thought thou shouldst feel Asbjorn's spear." 
 Karle died instantly, and Thorer with his people went immediately
 on board their ship.  When Gunstein and his men saw Karle fall
 they ran instantly to him, took his body and carried it on board
 their ship, struck their tents, and cast off from the pier, and
 left the land.  When Thorer and his men saw this, they took down
 their tents and made preparations to follow.  But as they were
 hoisting the sail the fastenings to the mast broke in two, and
 the sail fell down across the ship, which caused a great delay
 before they could hoist the sail again.  Gunstein had already got
 a long way ahead before Thorer's ship fetched way, and now they
 used both sails and oars.  Gunstein did the same.  On both sides
 they made great way day and night; but so that they did not gain
 much on each other, although when they came to the small sounds
 among the islands Gunstein's vessel was lighter in turning.  But
 Thorer's ship made way upon them, so that when they came up to
 Lengjuvik, Gunstein turned towards the land, and with all his men
 ran up into the country, and left his ship.  A little after
 Thorer came there with his ship, sprang upon the land after them,
 and pursued them.  There was a woman who helped Gunstein to
 conceal himself, and it is told that she was much acquainted with
 witchcraft.  Thorer and his men returned to the vessels, and took
 all the goods out of Gunstein's vessel, and put on board stones
 in place of the cargo, and then hauled the ship out into the
 fjord, cut a hole in its bottom, and sank it to the bottom.
 Thereafter Thorer, with his people, returned home to Bjarkey
 Isle.  Gunstein and his people proceeded in small boats at first,
 and lay concealed by day, until they had passed Bjarkey, and had
 got beyond Thorer's district.  Gunstein went home first to Langey
 Isle for a short time, and then proceeded south without any halt,
 until he came south to Throndhjem, and there found King Olaf, to
 whom he told all that had happened on this Bjarmaland expedition.
 The king was ill-pleased with the voyage, but told Gunstein to
 remain with him, promising to assist him when opportunity
 offered.  Gunstein took the invitation with thanks, and stayed
 with King Olaf.
 (1)  Ludr -- the loor -- is a long tube or roll of birch-bark
      used as a horn by the herdboys in the mountains in Norway.
      -- L.
 King Olaf was, as before related, in Sarpsborg the winter (A.D.
 1026) that King Canute was in Denmark.  The Swedish king Onund
 rode across West Gautland the same winter, and had thirty hundred
 (3600) men with him.  Men and messages passed between them; and
 they agreed to meet in spring at Konungahella.  The meeting had
 been postponed, because they wished to know before they met what
 King Canute intended doing.  As it was now approaching towards
 winter, King Canute made ready to go over to England with his
 forces, and left his son Hardaknut to rule in Denmark, and with
 him Earl Ulf, a son of Thorgils Sprakaleg.  Ulf was married to
 Astrid, King Svein's daughter, and sister of Canute the Great.
 Their son Svein was afterwards king of Denmark.  Earl Ulf was a
 very distinguished man.  When the kings Olaf and Onund heard that
 Canute the Great had gone west to England, they hastened to hold
 their conference, and met at Konungahella, on the Gaut river.
 They had a joyful meeting, and had many friendly conversations,
 of which something might become known to the public; but they
 also spake often a great deal between themselves, with none but
 themselves two present, of which only some things afterwards were
 carried into effect, and thus became known to every one.  At
 parting the kings presented each other with gifts, and parted the
 best of friends.  King Onund went up into Gautland, and Olaf
 northwards to Viken, and afterwards to Agder, and thence
 northwards along the coast, but lay a long time at Egersund
 waiting a wind.  Here he heard that Erling Skjalgson, and the
 inhabitants of Jadar with him, had assembled a large force.  One
 day the king's people were talking among themselves whether the
 wind was south or south-west, and whether with that wind they
 could sail past Jadar or not.  The most said it was impossible to
 fetch round.  Then answers Haldor Brynjolfson, "I am of opinion
 that we would go round Jadar with this wind fast enough if Erling
 Skjalgson had prepared a feast for us at Sole."  Then King Olaf
 ordered the tents to be struck, and the vessels to be hauled out,
 which was done.  They sailed the same day past Jadar with the
 best wind, and in the evening reached Hirtingsey, from whence the
 king proceeded to Hordaland, and was entertained there in guest-
 The same summer (A.D. 1026) a ship sailed from Norway to the
 Farey Islands, with messengers carrying a verbal message from
 King Olaf, that one of his court-men, Leif Ossurson, or Lagman
 Gille, or Thoralf of Dimun, should come over to him from the
 Farey Islands.  Now when this message came to the Farey Islands,
 and was delivered to those whom it concerned, they held a meeting
 among themselves, to consider what might lie under this message,
 and they were all of opinion that the king wanted to inquire into
 the real state of the event which some said had taken place upon
 the islands; namely, the failure and disappearance of the former
 messengers of the king, and the loss of the two ships, of which
 not a man had been saved.  It was resolved that Thoralf should
 undertake the journey.  He got himself ready, and rigged out a
 merchant-vessel belonging to himself, manned with ten or twelve
 men.  When it was ready, waiting a wind, it happened, at Austrey,
 in the house of Thrand of Gata, that he went one fine day into
 the room where his brother's two sons, Sigurd and Thord, sons of
 Thorlak, were lying upon the benches in the room.  Gaut the Red
 was also there, who was one of their relations and a man of
 distinction.  Sigurd was the oldest, and their leader in all
 things.  Thord had a distinguished name, and was called Thord the
 Low, although in reality he was uncommonly tall, and yet in
 proportion more strong than large.  Then Thrand said, "How many
 things are changed in the course of a man's life!  When we were
 young, it was rare for young people who were able to do anything
 to sit or lie still upon a fine day, and our forefathers would
 scarcely have believed that Thoralf of Dimun would be bolder and
 more active than ye are.  I believe the vessel I have standing
 here in the boat-house will be so old that it will rot under its
 coat of tar.  Here are all the houses full of wool, which is
 neither used nor sold.  It should not be so if I were a few
 winters younger."  Sigurd sprang up, called upon Gaut and Thord,
 and said he would not endure Thrand's scoffs.  They went out to
 the houseservants, and launched the vessel upon the water,
 brought down a cargo, and loaded the ship.  They had no want of a
 cargo at home, and the vessel's rigging was in good order, so
 that in a few days they were ready for sea.  There were ten or
 twelve men in the vessel.  Thoralf's ship and theirs had the same
 wind, and they were generally in sight of each other.  They came
 to the land at Herna in the evening, and Sigurd with his vessel
 lay outside on the strand, but so that there was not much
 distance between the two ships.  It happened towards evening,
 when it was dark, that just as Thoralf and his people were
 preparing to go to bed, Thoralf and another went on shore for a
 certain purpose.  When they were ready, they prepared to return
 on board.  The man who had accompanied Thoralf related afterwards
 this story, -- that a cloth was thrown over his head, and that he
 was lifted up from the ground, and he heard a great bustle.  He
 was taken away, and thrown head foremost down; but there was sea
 under him, and he sank under the water.  When he got to land, he
 went to the place where he and Thoralf had been parted, and there
 he found Thoralf with his head cloven down to his shoulders, and
 dead.  When the ship's people heard of it they carried the body
 out to the ship, and let it remain there all night.  King Olaf
 was at that time in guest-quarters at Lygra, and thither they
 sent a message.  Now a Thing was called by message-token, and the
 king came to the Thing.  He had also ordered the Farey people of
 both vessels to be summoned, and they appeared at the Thing.  Now
 when the Thing was seated, the king stood up and said, "Here an
 event has happened which (and it is well that it is so) is very
 seldom heard of.  Here has a good man been put to death, without
 any cause.  Is there any man upon the Thing who can say who has
 done it?"
 Nobody could answer.
 "Then," said the king, "I cannot conceal my suspicion that this
 deed has been done by the Farey people themselves.  It appears to
 me that it has been done in this way, -- that Sigurd Thorlakson
 has killed the man, and Thord the Low has cast his comrade into
 the sea.  I think, too, that the motives to this must have been
 to hinder Thoralf from telling about the misdeed of which he had
 information; namely, the murder which I suspect was committed
 upon my messengers."
 When he had ended his speech, Sigurd Thorlakson stood up, and
 desired to be heard.  "I have never before," said he, "spoken at
 a Thing, and I do not expect to be looked upon as a man of ready
 words.  But I think there is sufficient necessity before me to
 reply something to this.  I will venture to make a guess that the
 speech the king has made comes from some man's tongue who is of
 far less understanding and goodness than he is, and has evidently
 proceeded from those who are our enemies.  It is speaking
 improbabilities to say that I could be Thoralf's murderer; for
 he was my foster-brother and good friend.  Had the case been
 otherwise, and had there been anything outstanding between me and
 Thoralf, yet I am surely born with sufficient understanding to
 have done this deed in the Farey Islands, rather than here
 between your hands, sire.  But I am ready to clear myself, and my
 whole ship's crew, of this act, and to make oath according to
 what stands in your laws.  Or, if ye find it more satisfactory, I
 offer to clear myself by the ordeal of hot iron; and I wish,
 sire, that you may be present yourself at the proof."
 When Sigurd had ceased to speak there were many who supported his
 case, and begged the king that Sigurd might be allowed to clear
 himself of this accusation.  They thought that Sigurd had spoken
 well, and that the accusation against him might be untrue.
 The king replies, "It may be with regard to this man very
 differently, and if he is belied in any respect he must be a good
 man; and if not, he is the boldest I have ever met with: and I
 believe this is the case, and that he will bear witness to it
 At the desire of the people, the king took Sigurd's obligation to
 take the iron ordeal; he should come the following day to Lygra,
 where the bishop should preside at the ordeal; and so the Thing
 closed.  The king went back to Lygra, and Sigurd and his comrades
 to their ship.
 As soon as it began to be dark at night Sigurd said to his ship's
 people.  "To say the truth, we have come into a great misfortune;
 for a great lie is got up against us, and this king is a
 deceitful, crafty man.  Our fate is easy to be foreseen where he
 rules; for first he made Thoralf be slain, and then made us the
 misdoers, without benefit of redemption by fine.  For him it is
 an easy matter to manage the iron ordeal, so that I fear he will
 come ill off who tries it against him.  Now there is coming a
 brisk mountain breeze, blowing right out of the sound and off the
 land; and it is my advice that we hoist our sail, and set out to
 sea.  Let Thrand himself come with his wool to market another
 summer; but if I get away, it is my opinion I shall never think
 of coming to Norway again."
 His comrades thought the advice good, hoisted their sail, and in
 the night-time took to the open sea with all speed.  They did not
 stop until they came to Farey, and home to Gata.  Thrand was ill-
 pleased with their voyage, and they did not answer him in a very
 friendly way; but they remained at home, however, with Thrand.
 The morning after, King Olaf heard of Sigurd's departure, and
 heavy reports went round about this case; and there were many who
 believed that the accusation against Sigurd was true, although
 they had denied and opposed it before the king.  King Olaf spoke
 but little about the matter, but seemed to know of a certainty
 that the suspicion he had taken up was founded in truth.  The
 king afterwards proceeded in his progress, taking up his abode
 where it was provided for him.
 King Olaf called before him the men who had come from Iceland,
 Thorod Snorrason, Geller Thorkelson, Stein Skaptason, and Egil
 Halson, and spoke to them thus: -- "Ye have spoken to me much in
 summer about making yourselves ready to return to Iceland, and I
 have never given you a distinct answer.  Now I will tell you what
 my intention is.  Thee, Geller, I propose to allow to return, if
 thou wilt carry my message there; but none of the other
 Icelanders who are now here may go to Iceland before I have heard
 how the message which thou, Geller, shalt bring thither has been
 When the king had made this resolution known, it appeared to
 those who had a great desire to return, and were thus forbidden,
 that they were unreasonably and hardly dealt with, and that they
 were placed in the condition of unfree men.  In the meantime
 Geller got ready for his journey, and sailed in summer (A.D.
 1026) to Iceland, taking with him the message he was to bring
 before the Thing the following summer (A.D. 1027).  The king's
 message was, that he required the Icelanders to adopt the laws
 which he had set in Norway, also to pay him thane-tax and nose-
 tax (1); namely, a penny for every nose, and the penny at the
 rate of ten pennies to the yard of wadmal (2).  At the same time
 he promised them his friendship if they accepted, and threatened
 them with all his vengeance if they refused his proposals.
 The people sat long in deliberation on this business; but at last
 they were unanimous in refusing all the taxes and burdens which
 were demanded of them.  That summer Geller returned back from
 Iceland to Norway to King Olaf, and found him in autumn in the
 east in Viken, just as he had come from Gautland; of which I
 shall speak hereafter in this story of King Olaf.  Towards the
 end of autumn King Olaf repaired north to Throndhjem, and went
 with his people to Nidaros, where he ordered a winter residence
 to be prepared for him.  The winter (A.D. 1027) that he passed
 here in the merchant-town of Nidaros was the thirteenth year of
 his reign.
 (1)  Nefgildi (nef=nose), a nose-tax or poll-tax payable to the
      king.  This ancient "nose-tax" was also imposed by the
      Norsemen on conquered countries, the penalty for defaulters
      being the loss of their nose.
 (2)  Wadmal was the coarse woollen cloth made in Iceland, and so
      generally used for clothing that it was a measure of value
      in the North, like money, for other commodities. -- L.
 There was once a man called Ketil Jamte, a son of Earl Onund of
 Sparby, in the Throndhjem district.  He fled over the ridge of
 mountains from Eystein Illrade, cleared the forest, and settled
 the country now called the province of Jamtaland.  A great many
 people joined him from the Throndhjem land, on account of the
 disturbances there; for this King Eystein had laid taxes on the
 Throndhjem people, and set his dog, called Saur, to be king over
 them.  Thorer Helsing was Ketil's grandson, and he colonised the
 province called Helsingjaland, which is named after him.  When
 Harald Harfager subdued the kingdom by force, many people fled
 out of the country from him, both Throndhjem people and Naumudal
 people, and thus new settlements were added to Jamtaland; and
 some settlers went even eastwards to Helsingjaland and down to
 the Baltic coast, and all became subjects of the Swedish king.
 While Hakon Athelstan's foster-son was over Norway there was
 peace, and merchant traffic from Throndhjem to Jamtaland; and, as
 he was an excellent king, the Jamtalanders came from the east to
 him, paid him scat, and he gave them laws and administered
 justice.  They would rather submit to his government than to the
 Swedish king's, because they were of Norwegian race; and all the
 Helsingjaland people, who had their descent from the north side
 of the mountain ridge, did the same.  This continued long after
 those times, until Olaf the Thick and the Swedish king Olaf
 quarrelled about the boundaries.  Then the Jamtaland and
 Helsingjaland people went back to the Swedish king; and then the
 forest of Eid was the eastern boundary of the land, and the
 mountain ridge, or keel of the country, the northern: and the
 Swedish king took scat of Helsingjaland, and also of Jamtaland.
 Now, thought the king of Norway, Olaf, in consequence of the
 agreement between him and the Swedish king, the scat of Jamtaland
 should be paid differently than before; although it had long been
 established that the Jamtaland people paid their scat to the
 Swedish king, and that he appointed officers over the country.
 The Swedes would listen to nothing, but that all the land to the
 east of the keel of the country belonged to the Swedish king. 
 Now this went so, as it often happens, that although the kings
 were brothers-in-law and relations, each would hold fast the
 dominions which he thought he had a right to.  King Olaf had sent
 a message round in Jamtaland, declaring it to be his will that
 the Jamtaland people should be subject to him, threatening them
 with violence if they refused; but the Jamtaland people preferred
 being subjects of the Swedish king.
 The Icelanders, Thorod Snorrason and Stein Skaptason, were ill-
 pleased at not being allowed to do as they liked.  Stein was a
 remarkably handsome man, dexterous at all feats, a great poet,
 splendid in his apparel, and very ambitious of distinction.  His
 father, Skapte, had composed a poem on King Olaf, which he had
 taught Stein, with the intention that he should bring it to King
 Olaf.  Stein could not now restrain himself from making the king
 reproaches in word and speech, both in verse and prose.  Both he
 and Thorod were imprudent in their conversation, and said the
 king would be looked upon as a worse man than those who, under
 faith and law, had sent their sons to him, as he now treated them
 as men without liberty.  The king was angry at this.  One day
 Stein stood before the king, and asked if he would listen to the
 poem which his father Skapte had composed about him.  The king
 replies, "Thou must first repeat that, Stein, which thou hast
 composed about me."  Stein replies, that it was not the case that
 he had composed any.  "I am no skald, sire," said he; "and if I
 even could compose anything, it, and all that concerns me, would
 appear to thee of little value."  Stein then went out, but
 thought he perceived what the king alluded to.  Thorgeir, one of
 the king's land-bailiffs, who managed one of his farms in
 Orkadal, happened to be present, and heard the conversation of
 the king and Stein, and soon afterwards Thorgeir returned home.
 One night Stein left the city, and his footboy with him.  They
 went up Gaularas and into Orkadal.  One evening they came to one
 of the king's farms which Thorgeir had the management of, and
 Thorgeir invited Stein to pass the night there, and asked where
 he was travelling to.  Stein begged the loan of a horse and
 sledge, for he saw they were just driving home corn.
 Thorgeir replies, "I do not exactly see how it stands with thy
 journey, and if thou art travelling with the king's leave.  The
 other day, methinks, the words were not very sweet that passed
 between the king and thee."
 Stein said, "If it be so that I am not my own master for the
 king, yet I will not submit to such treatment from his slaves;"
 and, drawing his sword, he killed the landbailiff. Then he took
 the horse, put the boy upon him, and sat himself in the sledge,
 and so drove the whole night.  They travelled until they came to
 Surnadal in More.  There they had themselves ferried across the
 fjord, and proceeded onwards as fast as they could.  They told
 nobody about the murder, but wherever they came called themselves
 king's men, and met good entertainment everywhere.  One day at
 last they came towards evening to Giske Isle, to Thorberg
 Arnason's house.  He was not at home himself, but his wife
 Ragnhild, a daughter of Erling Skjalgson, was.  There Stein was
 well received, because formerly there had been great friendship
 between them.  It had once happened, namely, that Stein, on his
 voyage from Iceland with his own vessel, had come to Giske from
 sea, and had anchored at the island.  At that time Ragnhild was
 in the pains of childbirth, and very ill, and there was no priest
 on the island, or in the neighbourhood of it.  There came a
 message to the merchant-vessel to inquire if, by chance, there
 was a priest on board.  There happened to be a priest in the
 vessel, who was called Bard; but he was a young man from
 Westfjord, who had little learning.  The messengers begged the
 priest to go with them, but he thought it was a difficult matter:
 for he knew his own ignorance, and would not go.  Stein added his
 word to persuade the priest.  The priest replies, "I will go if
 thou wilt go with me; for then I will have confidence, if I
 should require advice."  Stein said he was willing; and they went
 forthwith to the house, and to where Ragnhild was in labour. 
 Soon after she brought forth a female child, which appeared to be
 rather weak.  Then the priest baptized the infant, and Stein held
 it at the baptism, at which it got the name of Thora; and Stein
 gave it a gold ring.  Ragnhild promised Stein her perfect
 friendship, and bade him come to her whenever he thought he
 required her help.  Stein replied that he would hold no other
 female child at baptism, and then they parted.  Now it was come
 to the time when Stein required this kind promise of Ragnhild to
 be fulfilled, and he told her what had happened, and that the
 king's wrath had fallen upon him.  She answered, that all the aid
 she could give should stand at his service; but bade him wait for
 Thorberg's arrival.  She then showed him to a seat beside her son
 Eystein Orre, who was then twelve years old.  Stein presented
 gifts to Ragnhild and Eystein.  Thorberg had already heard how
 Stein had conducted himself before he got home, and was rather
 vexed at it.  Ragnhild went to him, and told him how matters
 stood with Stein, and begged Thorberg to receive him, and take
 care of him.
 Thorberg replies, "I have heard that the king, after sending out
 a message-token, held a Thing concerning the murder of Thorgeir,
 and has condemned Stein as having fled the country, and likewise
 that the king is highly incensed: and I have too much sense to
 take the cause of a foreigner in hand, and draw upon myself the
 king's wrath.  Let Stein, therefore, withdraw from hence as
 quickly as thou canst."
 Ragnhild replied, that they should either both go or both stay.
 Thorberg told her to go where she pleased. "For I expect," said
 he, "that wherever thou goest thou wilt soon come back, for here
 is thy importance greatest."
 Her son Eystein Orre then stood forward, and said he would not
 stay behind if Ragnhild goes.
 Thorberg said that they showed themselves very stiff and
 obstinate in this matter.  "And it appears that ye must have your
 way in it, since ye take it so near to heart; but thou art
 reckoning too much, Ragnhild, upon thy descent, in paying so
 little regard to King Olaf's word."
 Ragnhild replied, "If thou art so much afraid to keep Stein with
 thee here, go with him to my father Erling, or give him
 attendants, so that he may get there in safety."  Thorberg said
 he would not send Stein there; "for there are enough of things
 besides to enrage the king against Erling."  Stein thus remained
 there all winter (A.D. 1027).
 After Yule a king's messenger came to Thorberg, with the order
 that Thorberg should come to him before midsummer; and the order
 was serious and severe.  Thorberg laid it before his friends, and
 asked their advice if he should venture to go to the king after
 what had taken place.  The greater number dissuaded him, and
 thought it more advisable to let Stein slip out of his hands than
 to venture within the king's power: but Thorberg himself had
 rather more inclination not to decline the journey.  Soon after
 Thorberg went to his brother Fin, told him the circumstances, and
 asked him to accompany him.  Fin replied, that he thought it
 foolish to be so completely under woman's influence that he dared
 not, on account of his wife, keep the fealty and law of his
 "Thou art free," replied Thorberg, "to go with me or not; but I
 believe it is more fear of the king than love to him that keeps
 thee back."  And so they parted in anger.
 Then Thorberg went to his brother Arne Arnason, and asked him to
 go with him to the king.  Arne says, "It appears to me wonderful
 that such a sensible, prudent man, should fall into such a
 misfortune, without necessity, as to incur the king's
 indignation.  It might be excused if it were thy relation or
 foster-brother whom thou hadst thus sheltered; but not at all
 that thou shouldst take up an Iceland man, and harbour the king's
 outlaw, to the injury of thyself and all thy relations."
 Thorberg replies, "It stands good, according to the proverb, -- a
 rotten branch will be found in every tree.  My father's greatest
 misfortune evidently was that he had such ill luck in producing
 sons that at last he produced one incapable of acting, and
 without any resemblance to our race, and whom in truth I never
 would have called brother, if it were not that it would have been
 to my mother's shame to have refused."
 Thorberg turned away in a gloomy temper, and went home.
 Thereafter he sent a message to his brother Kalf in the
 Throndhjem district, and begged him to meet him at Agdanes; and
 when the messengers found Kalf he promised, without more ado, to
 make the journey.  Ragnhild sent men east to Jadar to her father
 Erling, and begged him to send people.  Erling's sons, Sigurd and
 Thord, came out, each with a ship of twenty benches of rowers and
 ninety men.  When they came north Thorberg received them
 joyfully, entertained them well, and prepared for the voyage with
 them.  Thorberg had also a vessel with twenty benches, and they
 steered their course northwards.  When they came to the mouth of
 the Throndhjem fjord Thorberg's two brothers, Fin and Arne, were
 there already, with two ships each of twenty benches.  Thorberg
 met his brothers with joy, and observed that his whetstone had
 taken effect; and Fin replied he seldom needed sharpening for
 such work.  Then they proceeded north with all their forces to
 Throndhjem, and Stein was along with them.  When they came to
 Agdanes, Kaff Arnason was there before them; and he also had a
 wellmanned ship of twenty benches.  With this war-force they
 sailed up to Nidaros, where they lay all night.  The morning
 after they had a consultation with each other.  Kalf and Erling's
 sons were for attacking the town with all their forces, and
 leaving the event to fate; but Thorberg wished that they should
 first proceed with moderation, and make an offer; in which
 opinion Fin and Arne also concurred.  It was accordingly resolved
 that Fin and Arne, with a few men, should first wait upon the
 king.  The king had previously heard that they had come so strong
 in men, and was therefore very sharp in his speech.  Fin offered
 to pay mulct for Thorberg, and also for Stein, and bade the king
 to fix what the penalties should be, however large; stipulating
 only for Thorberg safety and his fiefs, and for Stein life and
 The king replies, "It appears to me that ye come from home so
 equipped that ye can determine half as much as I can myself, or
 more; but this I expected least of all from you brothers, that ye
 should come against me with an army; and this counsel, I can
 observe, has its origin from the people of Jadar; but ye have no
 occasion to offer me money in mulct."
 Fin replies, "We brothers have collected men, not to offer
 hostility to you, sire, but to offer rather our services; but if
 you will bear down Thorberg altogether, we must all go to King
 Canute the Great with such forces as we have."
 Then the king looked at him, and said, "If ye brothers will give
 your oaths that ye will follow me in the country and out of the
 country, and not part from me without my leave and permission,
 and shall not conceal from me any treasonable design that may
 come to your knowledge against me, then will I agree to a peace
 with you brothers."
 Then Fin returned to his forces, and told the conditions which
 the king had proposed to them.  Now they held a council upon it,
 and Thorberg, for his part, said he would accept the terms
 offered.  "I have no wish," says he, "to fly from my property,
 and seek foreign masters; but, on the contrary, will always
 consider it an honour to follow King Olaf, and be where he is."
 Then says Kalf, "I will make no oath to King Olaf, but will be
 with him always, so long as I retain my fiefs and dignities, and
 so long as the king will be my friend; and my opinion is that we
 should all do the same."  Fin says, "we will venture to let King
 Olaf himself determine in this matter."  Arne Arnason says, "I
 was resolved to follow thee, brother Thorberg, even if thou hadst
 given battle to King Olaf, and I shall certainly not leave thee
 for listening to better counsel; so I intend to follow thee and
 Fin, and accept the conditions ye have taken."
 Thereupon the brothers Thorberg, Fin, and Arne, went on board a
 vessel, rowed into the fjord, and waited upon the king.  The
 agreement went accordingly into fulfillment, so that the brothers
 gave their oaths to the king.  Then Thorberg endeavored to make
 peace for Stein with the king; but the king replied that Stein
 might for him depart in safety, and go where he pleased, but "in
 my house he can never be again."  Then Thorberg and his brothers
 went back to their men.  Kalf went to Eggja, and Fin to the king;
 and Thorberg, with the other men, went south to their homes.
 Stein went with Erling's sons; but early in the spring (A.D.
 1027) he went west to England into the service of Canute the
 Great, and was long with him, and was treated with great
 Now when Fin Arnason had been a short time with King Olaf, the
 king called him to a conference, along with some other persons he
 usually held consultation with; and in this conference the king
 spoke to this effect: -- "The decision remains fixed in my mind
 that in spring I should raise the whole country to a levy both of
 men and ships, and then proceed, with all the force I can muster,
 against King Canute the Great: for I know for certain that he
 does not intend to treat as a jest the claim he has awakened upon
 my kingdom.  Now I let thee know my will, Fin Arnason, that thou
 proceed on my errand to Halogaland, and raise the people there to
 an expedition, men and ships, and summon that force to meet me at
 Agdanes."  Then the king named other men whom he sent to
 Throndhjem, and some southwards in the country, and he commanded
 that this order should be circulated through the whole land.  Of
 Fin's voyage we have to relate that he had with him a ship with
 about thirty men, and when he was ready for sea he prosecuted his
 journey until he came to Halogaland.  There he summoned the
 bondes to a Thing, laid before them his errand, and craved a
 levy.  The bondes in that district had large vessels, suited to a
 levy expedition, and they obeyed the king's message, and rigged
 their ships.  Now when Fin came farther north in Halogaland he
 held a Thing again, and sent some of his men from him to crave a
 levy where he thought it necessary.  He sent also men to Bjarkey
 Island to Thorer Hund, and there, as elsewhere, craved the quota
 to the levy.  When the message came to Thorer he made himself
 ready, and manned with his house-servants the same vessel he had
 sailed with on his cruise to Bjarmaland, and which he equipped at
 his own expense.  Fin summoned all the people of Halogaland who
 were to the north to meet at Vagar.  There came a great fleet
 together in spring, and they waited there until Fin returned from
 the North.  Thorer Hund had also come there.  When Fin arrived he
 ordered the signal to sound for all the people of the levy to
 attend a House-Thing; and at it all the men produced their
 weapons, and also the fighting men from each ship-district were
 mustered.  When that was all finished Fin said, "I have also to
 bring thee a salutation, Thorer Hund, from King Olaf, and to ask
 thee what thou wilt offer him for the murder of his court-man
 Karle, or for the robbery in taking the king's goods north in
 Lengjuvik.  I have the king's orders to settle that business, and
 I wait thy answer to it."
 Thorer looked about him, and saw standing on both sides many
 fully armed men, among whom were Gunstein and others of Karle's
 kindred.  Then said Thorer, "My proposal is soon made.  I will
 refer altogether to the king's pleasure the matter he thinks he
 has against me."
 Fin replies, "Thou must put up with a less honour; for thou must
 refer the matter altogether to my decision, if any agreement is
 to take place."
 Thorer replies, "And even then I think it will stand well with my
 case, and therefore I will not decline referring it to thee." 
 Thereupon Thorer came forward, and confirmed what he said by
 giving his hand upon it; and Fin repeated first all the words he
 should say.
 Fin now pronounced his decision upon the agreement, -- that
 Thorer should pay to the king ten marks of gold, and to Gunstein
 and the other kindred ten marks, and for the robbery and loss of
 goods ten marks more; and all which should be paid immediately.
 Thorer says, "This is a heavy money mulct."
 "Without it," replies Fin, "there will be no agreement."
 Thorer says, there must time be allowed to gather so much in loan
 from his followers; but Fin told him to pay immediately on the
 spot; and besides, Thorer should lay down the great ornament
 which he took from Karle when he was dead.  Thorer asserted that
 he had not got the ornament.  Then Gunstein pressed forward, and
 said that Karle had the ornament around his neck when they
 parted, but it was gone when they took up his corpse.  Thorer
 said he had not observed any ornament; but if there was any such
 thing, it must be lying at home in Bjarkey.  Then Fin put the
 point of his spear to Thorer's breast, and said that he must
 instantly produce the ornament; on which Thorer took the ornament
 from his neck and gave it to Fin.  Thereafter Thorer turned away,
 and went on board his ship.  Fin, with many other men, followed
 him, went through the whole vessel, and took up the hatches.  At
 the mast they saw two very large casks; and Fin asked, "What are
 these puncheons?"
 Thorer replies, "It is my liquor."
 Fin says, "Why don't you give us something to drink then,
 comrade, since you have so much liquor?"
 Thorer ordered his men to run off a bowlfull from the puncheons,
 from which Fin and his people got liquor of the best quality. 
 Now Fin ordered Thorer to pay the mulcts.  Thorer went backwards
 and forwards through the ship, speaking now to the one, now to
 the other, and Fin calling out to produce the pence.  Thorer
 begged him to go to the shore, and said he would bring the money
 there, and Fin with his men went on shore.  Then Thorer came and
 paid silver; of which, from one purse, there were weighed ten
 marks.  Thereafter Thorer brought many knotted nightcaps; and in
 some was one mark, in others half a mark, and in others some
 small money.  "This is money my friends and other good people
 have lent me," said he; "for I think all my travelling money is
 gone."  Then Thorer went back again to his ship, and returned,
 and paid the silver by little and little; and this lasted so long
 that the day was drawing towards evening.  When the Thing had
 closed the people had gone to their vessels, and made ready to
 depart; and as fast as they were ready they hoisted sail and set
 out, so that most of them were under sail.  When Fin saw that
 they were most of them under sail, he ordered his men to get
 ready too; but as yet little more than a third part of the mulct
 had been paid.  Then Fin said, "This goes on very slowly, Thorer,
 with the payment.  I see it costs thee a great deal to pay money.
 I shall now let it stand for the present, and what remains thou
 shalt pay to the king himself."  Fin then got up and went away.
 Thorer replies, "I am well enough pleased, Fin, to part now; but
 the good will is not wanting to pay this debt, so that both thou
 and the king shall say it is not unpaid."
 Then Fin went on board his ship, and followed the rest of his
 fleet.  Thorer was late before he was ready to come out of the
 harbour.  When the sails were hoisted he steered out over
 Westfjord, and went to sea, keeping south along the land so far
 off that the hill-tops were half sunk, and soon the land
 altogether was sunk from view by the sea.  Thorer held this
 course until he got into the English sea, and landed in England.
 He betook himself to King Canute forthwith, and was well received
 by him.  It then came out that Thorer had with him a great deal
 of property; and, with other things, all the money he and Karle
 had taken in Bjarmaland.  In the great liquor-casks there were
 sides within the outer sides, and the liquor was between them.
 The rest of the casks were filled with furs, and beaver and sable
 skins.  Thorer was then with King Canute.  Fin came with his
 forces to King Olaf, and related to him how all had gone upon his
 voyage, and told at the same time his suspicion that Thorer had
 left the country, and gone west to England to King Canute.  "And
 there I fear he will cause as much trouble."
 The king replies, "I believe that Thorer must be our enemy, and
 it appears to me always better to have him at a distance than
 Asmund Grankelson had been this winter (A.D. 1027) in Halogaland
 in his sheriffdom, and was at home with his father Grankel. 
 There lies a rock out in the sea, on which there is both seal and
 bird catching, and a fishing ground, and egg-gathering; and from
 old times it had been an appendage to the farm which Grankel
 owned, but now Harek of Thjotta laid claim to it.  It had gone so
 far, that some years he had taken by force all the gain of this
 rock; but Asmund and his father thought that they might expect
 the king's help in all cases in which the right was upon their
 side.  Both father and son went therefore in spring to Harek, and
 brought him a message and tokens from King Olaf that he should
 drop his claim.  Harek answered Asmund crossly, because he had
 gone to the king with such insinuations -- "for the just right is
 upon my side.  Thou shouldst learn moderation, Asmund, although
 thou hast so much confidence in the king's favour.  It has
 succeeded with thee to kill some chiefs, and leave their
 slaughter unpaid for by any mulct; and also to plunder us,
 although we thought ourselves at least equal to all of equal
 birth, and thou art far from being my equal in family."
 Asmund replies, "Many have experienced from thee, Harek, that
 thou art of great connections, and too great power; and many in
 consequence have suffered loss in their property through thee.
 But it is likely that now thou must turn thyself elsewhere, and
 not against us with thy violence, and not go altogether against
 law, as thou art now doing."  Then they separated.
 Harek sent ten or twelve of his house-servants with a large
 rowing boat, with which they rowed to the rock, took all that was
 to be got upon it, and loaded their boat.  But when they were
 ready to return home, Asmund Grankelson came with thirty men, and
 ordered them to give up all they had taken.  Harek's house-
 servants were not quick in complying, so that Asmund attacked
 them.  Some of Harek's men were cudgelled, some wounded, some
 thrown into the sea, and all they had caught was taken from on
 board of their boat, and Asmund and his people took it along with
 them.  Then Harek's servants came home, and told him the event.
 Harek replies, "That is called news indeed that seldom happens;
 never before has it happened that my people have been beaten."
 The matter dropped.  Harek never spoke about it, but was very
 cheerful.  In spring, however, Harek rigged out a cutter of
 twenty seats of rowers, and manned it with his house-servants,
 and the ship was remarkably well fitted out both with people and
 all necessary equipment; and Harek went to the levy; but when he
 came to King Olaf, Asmund was there before him.  The king
 summoned Harek and Asmund to him, and reconciled them so that
 they left the matter entirely to him.  Asmund then produced
 witnesses to prove that Grankel had owned the rock, and the king
 gave judgment accordingly.  The case had a one-sided result.  No
 mulct was paid for Harek's house-servants, and the rock was
 declared to be Grankel's.  Harek observed it was no disgrace to
 obey the king's decision, whatever way the case itself was
 Thorod Snorrason had remained in Norway, according to King Olaf's
 commands, when Geller Thorkelson got leave to go to Iceland, as
 before related.  He remained there (A.D. 1027) with King Olaf,
 but was ill pleased that he was not free to travel where he
 pleased.  Early in winter, King Olaf, when he was in Nidaros,
 made it known that he would send people to Jamtaland to collect
 the scat; but nobody had any great desire to go on this business,
 after the fate of those whom King Olaf had sent before, namely,
 Thrand White and others, twelve in number, who lost their lives,
 as before related; and the Jamtalanders had ever since been
 subject to the Swedish king.  Thorod Snorrason now offered to
 undertake this journey, for he cared little what became of him if
 he could but become his own master again.  The king consented,
 and Thorod set out with eleven men in company.  They came east to
 Jamtaland, and went to a man called Thorar, who was lagman, and a
 person in high estimation.  They met with a hospitable reception;
 and when they had been there a while, they explained their
 business to Thorar.  He replied, that other men and chiefs of the
 country had in all respects as much power and right to give an
 answer as he had, and for that purpose he would call together a
 Thing.  It was so done; the message-token was sent out, and a
 numerous Thing assembled.  Thorar went to the Thing, but the
 messengers in the meantime remained at home.  At the Thing,
 Thorar laid the business before the people, but all were
 unanimous that no scat should be paid to the king of Norway; and
 some were for hanging the messengers, others for sacrificing them
 to the gods.  At last it was resolved to hold them fast until the
 king of Sweden's sheriffs arrived, and they could treat them as
 they pleased with consent of the people; and that, in the
 meantime, this decision should be concealed, and the messengers
 treated well, and detained under pretext that they must wait
 until the scat is collected; and that they should be separated,
 and placed two and two, as if for the convenience of boarding
 them.  Thorod and another remained in Thorar's house.  There was
 a great Yule feast and ale-drinking, to which each brought his
 own liquor; for there were many peasants in the village, who all
 drank in company together at Yule.  There was another village not
 far distant, where Thorar's brother-in-law dwelt, who was a rich
 and powerful man, and had a grown-up son.  The brothers-in-law
 intended to pass the Yule in drinking feasts, half of it at the
 house of the one and half with the other; and the feast began at
 Thorar's house.  The brothers-in-law drank together, and Thorod
 and the sons of the peasants by themselves; and it was a drinking
 match.  In the evening words arose, and comparisons between the
 men of Sweden and of Norway, and then between their kings both of
 former times and at the present, and of the manslaughters and
 robberies that had taken place between the countries.  Then said
 the peasants sons, "If our king has lost most people, his
 sheriffs will make it even with the lives of twelve men when they
 come from the south after Yule; and ye little know, ye silly
 fools, why ye are kept here."  Thorod took notice of these words,
 and many made jest about it, and scoffed at them and their king.
 When the ale began to talk out of the hearts of the Jamtalanders,
 what Thorod had before long suspected became evident.  The day
 after Thorod and his comrade took all their clothes and weapons,
 and laid them ready; and at night, when the people were all
 asleep, they fled to the forest.  The next morning, when the
 Jamtalanders were aware of their flight, men set out after them
 with dogs to trace them, and found them in a wood in which they
 had concealed themselves.  They brought them home to a room in
 which there was a deep cellar, into which they were thrown, and
 the door locked upon them.  They had little meat, and only the
 clothes they had on them.  In the middle of Yule, Thorar, with
 all his freeborn men, went to his brother's-in-law, where he was
 to be a guest until the last of Yule.  Thorar's slaves were to
 keep guard upon the cellar, and they were provided with plenty of
 liquor; but as they observed no moderation in drinking, they
 became towards evening confused in the head with the ale.  As
 they were quite drunk, those who had to bring meat to the
 prisoners in the cellar said among themselves that they should
 want for nothing.  Thorod amused the slaves by singing to them.
 They said he was a clever man, and gave him a large candle that
 was lighted; and the slaves who were in went to call the others
 to come in; but they were all so confused with the ale, that in
 going out they neither locked the cellar nor the room after them.
 Now Thorod and his comrades tore up their skin clothes in strips,
 knotted them together, made a noose at one end, and threw up the
 rope on the floor of the room.  It fastened itself around a
 chest, by which they tried to haul themselves up.  Thorod lifted
 up his comrade until he stood on his shoulders, and from thence
 scrambled up through the hatchhole.  There was no want of ropes
 in the chamber, and he threw a rope down to Thorod; but when he
 tried to draw him up, he could not move him from the spot.  Then
 Thorod told him to cast the rope over a cross-beam that was in
 the house, make a loop in it, and place as much wood and stones
 in the loop as would outweigh him; and the heavy weight went down
 into the cellar, and Thorod was drawn up by it.  Now they took as
 much clothes as they required in the room; and among other things
 they took some reindeer hides, out of which they cut sandals, and
 bound them under their feet, with the hoofs of the reindeer feet
 trailing behind.  But before they set off they set fire to a
 large corn barn which was close by, and then ran out into the
 pitch-dark night.  The barn blazed, and set fire to many other
 houses in the village.  Thorod and his comrade travelled the
 whole night until they came to a lonely wood, where they
 concealed themselves when it was daylight.  In the morning they
 were missed.  There was chase made with dogs to trace the
 footsteps all round the house; but the hounds always came back to
 the house, for they had the smell of the reindeer hoofs, and
 followed the scent back on the road that the hoofs had left, and
 therefore could not find the right direction.  Thorod and his
 comrade wandered long about in the desert forest, and came one
 evening to a small house, and went in.  A man and a woman were
 sitting by the fire.  The man called himself Thorer, and said it
 was his wife who was sitting there, and the hut belonged to them.
 The peasant asked them to stop there, at which they were well
 pleased.  He told them that he had come to this place, because he
 had fled from the inhabited district on account of a murder.
 Thorod and his comrade were well received, and they all got their
 supper at the fireside; and then the benches were cleared for
 them, and they lay down to sleep, but the fire was still burning
 with a clear light.  Thorod saw a man come in from another house,
 and never had he seen so stout a man.  He was dressed in a
 scarlet cloak beset with gold clasps, and was of very handsome
 appearance.  Thorod heard him scold them for taking guests, when
 they had scarcely food for themselves.  The housewife said, "Be
 not angry, brother; seldom such a thing happens; and rather do
 them some good too, for thou hast better opportunity to do so
 than we."  Thorod heard also the stout man named by the name of
 Arnliot Gelline, and observed that the woman of the house was his
 sister.  Thorod had heard speak of Arnliot as the greatest-of
 robbers and malefactors.  Thorod and his companion slept the
 first part of the night, for they were wearied with walking; but
 when a third of the night was still to come, Arnliot awoke them,
 told them to get up, and make ready to depart.  They arose
 immediately, put on their clothes, and some breakfast was given
 them; and Arnliot gave each of them also a pair of skees. 
 Arnliot made himself ready to accompany them, and got upon his
 skees, which were both broad and long; but scarcely had he swung
 his skee-staff before he was a long way past them.  He waited for
 them, and said they would make no progress in this way, and told
 them to stand upon the edge of his skees beside him.  They did
 so.  Thorod stood nearest to him, and held by Arnliot's belt, and
 his comrade held by him.  Arnliot strode on as quickly with them
 both, as if he was alone and without any weight.  The following
 day they came, towards night, to a lodge for travellers, struck
 fire, and prepared some food; but Arnliot told them to throw away
 nothing of their food, neither bones nor crumbs.  Arnliot took a
 silver plate out of the pocket of his cloak, and ate from it.
 When they were done eating, Arnliot gathered up the remains of
 their meal, and they prepared to go to sleep.  In the other end
 of the house there was a loft upon cross-beams, and Arnliot and
 the others went up, and laid themselves down to sleep.  Arnliot
 had a large halberd, of which the upper part was mounted with
 gold, and the shaft was so long that with his arm stretched out
 he could scarcely touch the top of it; and he was girt with a
 sword.  They had both their weapons and their clothes up in the
 loft beside them.  Arnliot, who lay outermost in the loft, told
 them to be perfectly quiet.  Soon after twelve men came to the
 house, who were merchants going with their wares to Jamtaland;
 and when they came into the house they made a great disturbance,
 were merry, and made a great fire before them; and when they took
 their supper they cast away all the bones around them.  They then
 prepared to go to sleep, and laid themselves down upon the
 benches around the fire.  When they, had been asleep a short
 time, a huge witch came into the house; and when she came in, she
 carefully swept together all the bones and whatever was of food
 kind into a heap, and threw it into her mouth.  Then she gripped
 the man who was nearest to her, riving and tearing him asunder,
 and threw him upon the fire.  The others awoke in dreadful
 fright, and sprang up, but she took them, and put them one by one
 to death, so that only one remained in life.  He ran under the
 loft calling for help, and if there was any one on the loft to
 help him.  Arnliot reached down his hand, seized him by the
 shoulder, and drew him up into the loft.  The witch-wife had
 turned towards the fire, and began to eat the men who were
 roasting.  Now Arnliot stood up, took his halberd, and struck her
 between the shoulders, so that the point came out at her breast.
 She writhed with it, gave a dreadful shriek, and sprang up.  The
 halberd slipped from Arnliot's hands, and she ran out with it.
 Arnliot then went in; cleared away the dead corpses out of the
 house; set the door and the door-posts up, for she had torn them
 down in going out; and they slept the rest of the night.  When
 the day broke they got up; and first they took their breakfast.
 When they had got food, Arnliot said, "Now we must part here.  Ye
 can proceed upon the new-traced path the merchants have made in
 coming here yesterday.  In the meantime I will seek after my
 halberd, and in reward for my labour I will take so much of the
 goods these men had with them as I find useful to me.  Thou,
 Thorod, must take my salutation to King Olaf; and say to him that
 he is the man I am most desirous to see, although my salutation
 may appear to him of little worth."  Then he took his silver
 plate, wiped it dry with a cloth, and said, "Give King Olaf this
 plate; salute him, and say it is from me."  Then they made
 themselves ready for their journey, and parted.  Thorod went on
 with his comrade and the man of the merchants company who had
 escaped.  He proceeded until he came to King Olaf in the town
 (Nidaros); told the king all that had happened, and presented to
 him the silver plate.  The king said it was wrong that Arnliot
 himself had not come to him; "for it is a pity so brave a hero,
 and so distinguished a man, should have given himself up to
 Thorod remained the rest of the winter with the king, and in
 summer got leave to return to Iceland; and he and King Olaf
 parted the best of friends.
 King Olaf made ready in spring (A.D. 1027) to leave Nidaros, and
 many people were assembled about him, both from Throndhjem and
 the Northern country; and when he was ready he proceeded first
 with his men to More, where he gathered the men of the levy, and
 did the same at Raumsdal.  He went from thence to South More.  He
 lay a long time at the Herey Isles waiting for his forces; and he
 often held House-things, as many reports came to his ears about
 which he thought it necessary to hold councils.  In one of these
 Things he made a speech, in which he spoke of the loss he
 suffered from the Farey islanders.  "The scat which they promised
 me," he said, "is not forthcoming; and I now intend to send men
 thither after it."  Then he proposed to different men to
 undertake this expedition; but the answer was, that all declined
 the adventure.
 Then there stood up a stout and very remarkable looking man in
 the Thing.  He was clad in a red kirtle, had a helmet on his
 head, a sword in his belt, and a large halberd in his hands.  He
 took up the word and said, "In truth here is a great want of men.
 Ye have a good king; but ye are bad servants who say no to this
 expedition he offers you, although ye have received many gifts of
 friendship and tokens of honour from him.  I have hitherto been
 no friend of the king, and he has been my enemy, and says,
 besides, that he has good grounds for being so.  Now, I offer,
 sire, to go upon this expedition, if no better will undertake
 The king answers, "Who is this brave man who replies to my offer?
 Thou showest thyself different from the other men here present,
 in offering thyself for this expedition from which they excuse
 themselves, although I expected they would willingly have
 undertaken it; but I do not know thee in the least, and do not
 know thy name."
 He replies, "My name, sire, is not difficult to know, and I think
 thou hast heard my name before.  I am Karl Morske."
 The king -- "So this is Karl!  I have indeed heard thy name
 before; and, to say the truth, there was a time when our meeting
 must have been such, if I had had my will; that thou shouldst not
 have had to tell it now.  But I will not show myself worse than
 thou, but will join my thanks and my favour to the side of the
 help thou hast offered me.  Now thou shalt come to me, Karl, and
 be my guest to-day; and then we shall consult together about this
 business."  Karl said it should be so.
 Karl Morske had been a viking, and a celebrated robber.  Often
 had the king sent out men against him, and wished to make an end
 of him; but Karl, who was a man of high connection, was quick in
 all his doing's, and besides a man of great dexterity, and expert
 in all feats.  Now when Karl had undertaken this business the
 king was reconciled to him, gave him his friendship, and let him
 be fitted out in the best manner for this expedition.  There were
 about twenty men in the ship; and the king sent messages to his
 friends in the Farey Islands, and recommended him also to Leif
 Ossurson and Lagman Gille, for aid and defence; and for this
 purpose furnished Karl with tokens of the full powers given him.
 Karl set out as soon as he was ready; and as he got a favourable
 breeze soon came to the Farey Islands, and landed at Thorshavn,
 in the island Straumey.  A Thing was called, to which there came
 a great number of people.  Thrand of Gata came with a great
 retinue, and Leif and Gille came there also, with many in their
 following.  After they had set up their tents, and put themselves
 in order, they went to Karl Morske, and saluted each other on
 both sides in a friendly way.  Then Karl produced King Olaf's
 words, tokens, and friendly message to Leif and Gille, who
 received them in a friendly manner, invited Karl to come to them,
 and promised him to support his errand, and give him all the aid
 in their power, for which he thanked them.  Soon after came
 Thrand of Gata, who also received Karl in the most friendly
 manner, and said he was glad to see so able a man coming to their
 country on the king's business, which they were all bound to
 promote.  "I will insist, Karl," says he, "on thy taking-up thy
 winter abode with me, together with all those of thy people who
 may appear to thee necessary for thy dignity."
 Karl replies, that he had already settled to lodge with Leif;
 "otherwise I would with great pleasure have accepted thy
 "Then fate has given great honour to Leif," says Thrand; "but is
 there any other way in which I can be of service?"
 Karl replies, that he would do him a great service by collecting
 the scat of the eastern island, and of all the northern islands.
 Thrand said it was both his duty and interest to assist in the
 king's business, and thereupon Thrand returned to his tent; and
 at that Thing nothing else worth speaking of occurred.  Karl took
 up his abode with Leif Ossurson, and was there all winter (A.D.
 1028).  Leif collected the scat of Straumey Island, and all the
 islands south of it.  The spring after Thrand of Gata fell ill,
 and had sore eyes and other complaints; but he prepared to attend
 the Thing, as was his custom.  When he came to the Thing he had
 his tent put up, and within it another black tent, that the light
 might not penetrate.  After some days of the Thing had passed,
 Leif and Karl came to Thrand's tent, with a great many people,
 and found some persons standing outside.  They asked if Thrand
 was in the tent, and were told he was.  Leif told them to bid
 Thrand come out, as he and Karl had some business with him.  They
 came back, and said that Thrand had sore eyes, and could not come
 out; "but he begs thee, Leif, to come to him within."  Leif told
 his comrades to come carefully into the tent, and not to press
 forward, and that he who came last in should go out first.  Leif
 went in first, followed by Karl, and then his comrades; and all
 fully armed as if they were going into battle.  Leif went into
 the black tent and asked if Thrand was there.  Thrand answered
 and saluted Leif.  Leif returned his salutation, and asked if he
 had brought the scat from the northern islands, and if he would
 pay the scat that had been collected.  Thrand replies, that he
 had not forgotten what had been spoken of between him and Karl,
 and that he would now pay over the scat. "Here is a purse, Leif,
 full of silver, which thou canst receive."  Leif looked around,
 and saw but few people in the tent, of whom some were lying upon
 the benches, and a few were sitting up.  Then Leif went to
 Thrand, and took the purse, and carried it into the outer tent,
 where it was light, turned out the money on his shield, groped
 about in it with his hand, and told Karl to look at the silver.
 When they had looked at it a while, Karl asked Leif what he
 thought of the silver.  He replied, "I am thinking where the bad
 money that is in the north isles can have come from."  Thrand
 heard this, and said, "Do you not think, Leif, the silver is
 good?"  "No," says he.  Thrand replies, "Our relations, then, are
 rascals not to be trusted.  I sent them in spring to collect the
 scat in the north isles, as I could not myself go anywhere, and
 they have allowed themselves to be bribed by the bondes to take
 false money, which nobody looks upon as current and good; it is
 better, therefore, Leif, to look at this silver which has been
 paid me as land-rent."  Leif thereupon carried back this silver,
 and received another bag, which he carried to Karl, and they
 looked over the money together.  Karl asked Leif what he thought
 of this money.  He answered, that it appeared to him so bad that
 it would not be taken in payment, however little hope there might
 be of getting a debt paid in any other way: "therefore I will not
 take this money upon the king's account."  A man who had been
 lying on the bench now cast the skin coverlet off which he had
 drawn over his head, and said, "True is the old word, -- he grows
 worse who grows older: so it is with thee, Thrand, who allowest
 Karl Morske to handle thy money all the day."  This was Gaut the
 Red.  Thrand sprang up at Gaut's words, and reprimanded his
 relation with many angry words.  At last he said that Leif should
 leave this silver, and take a bag which his own peasants had
 brought him in spring.  "And although I am weak-sighted, yet my
 own hand is the truest test."  Another man who was lying on the
 bench raised himself now upon his elbow; and this was Thord the
 Low.  He said, "These are no ordinary reproaches we suffer from
 Karl Morske, and therefore he well deserves a reward for them."
 Leif in the meantime took the bag, and carried it to Karl; and
 when they cast their eyes on the money, Leif said, "We need not
 look long at this silver, for here the one piece of money is
 better than the other; and this is the money we will have.  Let a
 man come to be present at the counting it out."  Thrand says that
 he thought Leif was the fittest man to do it upon his account.
 Leif and Karl thereupon went a short way from the tent, sat down.
 and counted and weighed the silver.  Karl took the helmet off his
 head, and received in it the weighed silver.  They saw a man
 coming to them who had a stick with an axe-head on it in his
 hand, a hat low upon his head, and a short green cloak.  He was
 bare-legged, and had linen breeches on tied at the knee.  He laid
 his stick down in the field, and went to Karl and said, "Take
 care, Karl Morske, that thou does not hurt thyself against my
 axe-stick."  Immediately a man came running and calls with great
 haste to Leif Ossurson, telling him to come as quickly as
 possible to Lagman Gille's tent; "for," says he, "Sirurd
 Thorlakson ran in just now into the mouth of the tent, and gave
 one of Gille's men a desperate wound."  Leif rose up instantly,
 and went off to Gille's tent along with his men.  Karl remained
 sitting, and the Norway people stood around in all corners.  Gaut
 immediately sprang up, and struck with a hand-axe over the heads
 of the people, and the stroke came on Karl's head; but the wound
 was slight.  Thord the Low seized the stick-axe, which lay in the
 field at his side, and struck the axe-blade right into Karl's
 skull.  Many people now streamed out of Thrand's tent.  Karl was
 carried away dead.  Thrand was much grieved at this event, and
 offered money-mulcts for his relations; but Leif and Gille, who
 had to prosecute the business, would accept no mulct.  Sigurd was
 banished the country for having wounded Gille's tent comrade, and
 Gaut and Thord for the murder of Karl.  The Norway people rigged
 out the vessel which Karl had with him, and sailed eastward to
 Olaf, and gave him these tidings.  He was in no pleasant humour
 at it, and threatened a speedy vengeance; but it was not allotted
 by fate to King Olaf to revenge himself on Thrand and his
 relations, because of the hostilities which had begun in Norway,
 and which are now to be related.  And there is nothing more to be
 told of what happened after King Olaf sent men to the Farey
 Islands to take scat of them.  But great strife arose after
 Karl's death in the Farey Islands between the family of Thrand of
 Gata and Leif Ossurson, and of which there are great sagas.
 Now we must proceed with the relation we began before, -- that
 King Olaf set out with his men, and raised a levy over the whole
 country (A.D. 1027).  All lendermen in the North followed him
 excepting Einar Tambaskelfer, who sat quietly at home upon his
 farm since his return to the country, and did not serve the king.
 Einar had great estates and wealth, although he held no fiefs
 from the king, and he lived splendidly.  King Olaf sailed with
 his fleet south around Stad, and many people from the districts
 around joined him.  King Olaf himself had a ship which he had got
 built the winter before (A.D. 1027), and which was called the
 Visund (1).  It was a very large ship, with a bison's head gilded
 all over upon the bow.  Sigvat the skald speaks thus of it: --
      "Trygvason's Long Serpent bore,
      Grim gaping o'er the waves before,
      A dragon's head with open throat,
      When last the hero was afloat:
           His cruise was closed,
           As God disposed.
      Olaf has raised a bison's head,
      Which proudly seems the waves to tread.
      While o'er its golden forehead dashing
      The waves its glittering horns are washing:
           May God dispose
           A luckier close."
 The king went on to Hordaland; there he heard the news that
 Erling Skjalgson had left the country with a great force, and
 four or five ships.  He himself had a large war-ship, and his
 sons had three of twenty rowing-banks each; and they had sailed
 westward to England to Canute the Great.  Then King Olaf sailed
 eastward along the land with a mighty war-force, and he inquired
 everywhere if anything was known of Canute's proceedings; and all
 agreed in saying he was in England but added that he was fitting
 out a levy, and intended coming to Norway.  As Olaf had a large
 fleet, and could not discover with certainty where he should go
 to meet King Canute, and as his people were dissatisfied with
 lying quiet in one place with so large an armament, he resolved
 to sail with his fleet south to Denmark, and took with him all
 the men who were best appointed and most warlike; and he gave
 leave to the others to return home.  Now the people whom he
 thought of little use having gone home, King Olaf had many
 excellent and stout men-at-arms besides those who, as before
 related, had fled the country, or sat quietly at home; and most
 of the chief men and lendermen of Norway were along with him.
 (1)  Visundr is the buffalo; although the modern bison, or
      American animal of that name, might have been known through
      the Greenland colonists, who in this reign had visited some
      parts of America. -- L.
 When King Olaf sailed to Denmark, he set his course for Seeland;
 and when he came there he made incursions on the land, and began
 to plunder.  The country people were severely treated; some were
 killed, some bound and dragged to the ships.  All who could do so
 took to flight, and made no opposition.  King Olaf committed
 there the greatest ravages.  While Olaf was in Seeland, the news
 came that King Onund Olafson of Sweden had raised a levy, and
 fallen upon Scania, and was ravaging there; and then it became
 known what the resolution had been that the two kings had taken
 at the Gaut river, where they had concluded a union and
 friendship, and had bound themselves to oppose King Canute.  King
 Onund continued his march until he met his brother-in-law King
 Olaf.  When they met they made proclamation both to their own
 people and to the people of the country, that they intended to
 conquer Denmark; and asked the support of the people of the
 country for this purpose.  And it happened, as we find examples
 of everywhere, that if hostilities are brought upon the people of
 a country not strong enough to withstand, the greatest number
 will submit to the conditions by which peace can be purchased at
 any rate.  So it happened here that many men went into the
 service of the kings, and agreed to submit to them.  Wheresoever
 they went they laid the country all round subjection to them, and
 otherwise laid waste all with fire and sword.
 Of this foray Sigvat the skald speaks, in a ballad he composed
 concerning King Canute the Great: --
           "`Canute is on the sea!'
           The news is told,
           And the Norsemen bold
      Repeat it with great glee.
      And it runs from mouth to mouth --
           `On a lucky day
           We came away
      From Throndhjem to the south.'
      Across the cold East sea,
           The Swedish king
           His host did bring,
      To gain great victory.
      King Onund came to fight,
           In Seeland's plains,
           Against the Danes,
      With his steel-clad men so bright.
      Canute is on the land;
           Side to side
           His long-ships ride
      Along the yellow strand.
      Where waves wash the green banks,
           Mast to mast,
           All bound fast,
      His great fleet lies in ranks."
 King Canute had heard in England that King Olaf of Norway had
 called out a levy, and had gone with his forces to Denmark, and
 was making great ravages in his dominions there.  Canute began to
 gather people, and he had speedily collected a great army and a
 numerous fleet.  Earl Hakon was second in command over the whole.
 Sigvat the skald came this summer (A.D. 1027) from the West, from
 Ruda (Rouen) in Valland, and with him was a man called Berg. 
 They had made a merchant voyage there the summer before.  Sigvat
 had made a little poem about this journey, called "The Western
 Traveller's Song," which begins thus: --
      "Berg! many a merry morn was pass'd,
      When our vessel was made fast,
      And we lay on the glittering tide
      or Rouen river's western side."
 When Sigvat came to England he went directly to King Canute, and
 asked his leave to proceed to Norway; for King Canute had
 forbidden all merchant vessels to sail until he himself was ready
 with his fleet.  When Sigvat arrived he went to the house in
 which the king was lodged; but the doors were locked, and he had
 to stand a long time outside, but when he got admittance he
 obtained the permission he desired.  He then sang: --
      "The way to Jutland's king I sought;
      A little patience I was taught.
      The doors were shut -- all full within;
      The udaller could not get in.
      But Gorm's great son did condescend
      To his own chamber me to send,
      And grant my prayer -- although I'm one
      Whose arms the fetters' weight have known."
 When Sigvat became aware that King Canute was equipping an
 armament against King Olaf, and knew what a mighty force King
 Canute had, he made these lines: --
      "The mighty Canute, and Earl Hakon,
      Have leagued themselves, and counsel taken
      Against King Olaf's life,
      And are ready for the strife.
      In spite of king and earl, I say,
      `I love him well -- may he get away:'
      On the Fields, wild and dreary,
      With him I'd live, and ne'er be weary."
 Sigvat made many other songs concerning this expedition of Canute
 and Hakon.  He made this among others: --
      "`Twas not the earl's intention then
      'Twixt Olaf and the udalmen
      Peace to establish, and the land
      Upright to hold with Northman's hand;
      But ever with deceit and lies
      Eirik's descendant, Hakon, tries
      To make ill-will and discontent,
      Till all the udalmen are bent
      Against King Olaf's rule to rise."
 Canute the Great was at last ready with his fleet, and left the
 land; and a vast number of men he had, and ships frightfully
 large.  He himself had a dragon-ship, so large that it had sixty
 banks of rowers, and the head was gilt all over.  Earl Hakon had
 another dragon of forty banks, and it also had a gilt figure-
 head.  The sails of both were in stripes of blue, red, and green,
 and the vessels were painted all above the water-stroke; and all
 that belonged to their equipment was most splendid.  They had
 also many other huge ships remarkably well fitted out, and grand.
 Sigvat the skald talks of this in his song on Canute: --
      "Canute is out beneath the sky --
      Canute of the clear blue eye!
      The king is out on the ocean's breast,
      Leading his grand fleet from the West.
      On to the East the ship-masts glide,
      Glancing and bright each long-ship's side.
      The conqueror of great Ethelred,
      Canute, is there, his foemen's dread:
      His dragon with her sails of blue,
      All bright and brilliant to the view,
      High hoisted on the yard arms wide,
      Carries great Canute o'er the tide.
      Brave is the royal progress -- fast
      The proud ship's keel obeys the mast,
      Dashes through foam, and gains the land,
      Raising a surge on Limfjord's strand."
 It is related that King Canute sailed with this vast force from
 England, and came with all his force safely to Denmark, where he
 went into Limfjord, and there he found gathered besides a large
 army of the men of the country.
 Earl Ulf Sprakalegson had been set as protector over Denmark when
 King Canute went to England, and the king had intrusted his son
 Hardaknut in the earl's hands.  This took place the summer before
 (A.D. 1026), as we related.  But the earl immediately gave it out
 that King Canute had, at parting, made known to him his will and
 desire that the Danes should take his son Hardaknut as king over
 the Danish dominions.  "On that account," says the earl, "he gave
 the matter into our hands; as I, and many other chiefs and
 leading men here in the country, have often complained to King
 Canute of the evil consequences to the country of being without a
 king, and that former kings thought it honour and power enough to
 rule over the Danish kingdom alone; and in the times that are
 past many kings have ruled over this kingdom.  But now there are
 greater difficulties than have ever been before; for we have been
 so fortunate hitherto as to live without disturbance from foreign
 kings, but now we hear the king of Norway is going to attack us,
 to which is added the fear of the people that the Swedish king
 will join him; and now King Canute is in England."  The earl then
 produced King Canute's letter and seal, confirming all that the
 earl asserted.  Many other chiefs supported this business; and in
 consequence of all these persuasions the people resolved to take
 Hardaknut as king, which was done at the same Thing.  The Queen
 Emma had been principal promoter of this determination; for she
 had got the letter to be written, and provided with the seal,
 having cunningly got hold of the king's signet; but from him it
 was all concealed.  Now when Hardaknut and Earl Ulf heard for
 certain that King Olaf was come from Norway with a large army,
 they went to Jutland, where the greatest strength of the Danish
 kingdom lies, sent out message-tokens, and summoned to them a
 great force; but when they heard the Swedish king was also come
 with his army, they thought they would not have strength enough
 to give battle to both, and therefore kept their army together in
 Jutland, and resolved to defend that country against the kings.
 The whole of their ships they assembled in Limfjord, and waited
 thus for King Canute.  Now when they heard that King Canute had
 come from the West to Limfjord they sent men to him, and to Queen
 Emma, and begged her to find out if the king was angry at them or
 not, and to let them know.  The queen talked over the matter with
 him, and said, "Your son Hardaknut will pay the full mulct the
 king may demand, if he has done anything which is thought to be
 against the king."  He replies, that Hardaknut has not done this
 of his own judgement.  "And therefore," says he, "it has turned
 out as might have been expected, that when he, a child, and
 without understanding, wanted to be called king, the country,
 when any evil came and an enemy appeared, must be conquered by
 foreign princes, if our might had not come to his aid.  If he
 will have any reconciliation with me let him come to me, and lay
 down the mock title of king he has given himself."  The queen
 sent these very words to Hardaknut, and at the same time she
 begged him not to decline coming; for, as she truly observed, he
 had no force to stand against his father.  When this message came
 to Hardaknut he asked the advice of the earl and other chief
 people who were with him; but it was soon found that when the
 people heard King Canute the Old was arrived they all streamed to
 him, and seemed to have no confidence but in him alone.  Then
 Earl Ulf and his fellows saw they had but two roads to take;
 either to go to the king and leave all to his mercy, or to fly
 the country.  All pressed Hardaknut to go to his father, which
 advice he followed.  When they met he fell at his father's feet,
 and laid his seal, which accompanied the kingly title, on his
 knee.  King Canute took Hardaknut by the hand, and placed him in
 as high a seat as he used to sit in before.  Earl UIf sent his
 son Svein, who was a sister's son of King Canute, and the same
 age as Hardaknut, to the king.  He prayed for grace and
 reconciliation for his father, and offered himself as hostage for
 the earl.  King Canute ordered him to tell the earl to assemble
 his men and ships, and come to him, and then they would talk of
 reconciliation.  The earl did so.
 When King Olaf and King Onund heard that King Canute was come
 from the West, and also that he had a vast force, they sailed
 east to Scania, and allowed themselves to ravage and burn in the
 districts there, and then proceeded eastward along the land to
 the frontier of Sweden.  As soon as the country people heard that
 King Canute was come from the West, no one thought of going into
 the service of the two kings.
 Now the kings sailed eastward along the coast, and brought up in
 a river called Helga, and remained there some time.  When they
 heard that King Canute was coming eastward with his forces
 against them, they held a council; and the result was, that King
 Olaf with his people went up the country to the forest, and to
 the lake out of which the river Helga flows.  There at the
 riverhead they made a dam of timber and turf, and dammed in the
 lake.  They also dug a deep ditch, through which they led several
 waters, so that the lake waxed very high.  In the river-bed they
 laid large logs of timber.  They were many days about this work,
 and King Olaf had the management of this piece of artifice; but
 King Onund had only to command the fleet and army. When King
 Canute heard of the proceedings of the two kings, and of the
 damage they had done to his dominions, he sailed right against
 them to where they lay in Helga river.  He had a War-force which
 was one half greater than that of both the kings together. 
 Sigvat speaks of these things: --
      "The king, who shields
      His Jutland fields
      From scaith or harm
      By foeman's arm,
      Will not allow
      Wild plundering now:
      `The greatest he,
      On land or sea.'"
 One day, towards evening, King Onund's spies saw King Canute
 coming sailing along, and he was not far off.  Then King Onund
 ordered the war-horns to sound; on which his people struck their
 tents, put on their weapons, rowed out of the harbour and east
 round the land, bound their ships together, and prepared for
 battle.  King Onund made his spies run up the country to look for
 King Olaf, and tell him the news.  Then King Olaf broke up the
 dam, and let the river take its course.  King Olaf travelled down
 in the night to his ships.  When King Canute came outside the
 harbour, he saw the forces of the kings ready for battle.  He
 thought that it would be too late in the day to begin the fight
 by the time his forces could be ready; for his fleet required a
 great deal of room at sea, and there was a long distance between
 the foremost of his ships and the hindmost, and between those
 outside and those nearest the land, and there was but little
 wind.  Now, as Canute saw that the Swedes and Norwegians had
 quitted the harbour, he went into it with as many ships as it
 could hold; but the main strength of the fleet lay without the
 harbour.  In the morning, when it was light, a great part of the
 men went on shore; some for amusement, some to converse with the
 people of other ships.  They observed nothing until the water
 came rushing over them like a waterfall, carrying huge trees,
 which drove in among their ships, damaging all they struck; and
 the water covered all the fields.  The men on shore perished, and
 many who were in the ships.  All who could do it cut their
 cables; so that the ships were loose, and drove before the
 stream, and were scattered here and there.  The great dragon,
 which King Canute himself was in, drove before the stream; and as
 it could not so easily be turned with oars, drove out among
 Olaf's and Onund's ships.  As they knew the ship, they laid her
 on board on all quarters.  But the ship was so high in the hull,
 as if it were a castle, and had besides such a numerous and
 chosen crew on board, well armed and exercised, that it was not
 easy to attack her.  After a short time also Earl Ulf came up
 with his fleet; and then the battle began, and King Canute's
 fleet gathered together from all quarters.  But the kings Olaf
 and Onund, seeing they had for this time got all the victory that
 fate permitted them to gain, let their ships retreat, cast
 themselves loose from King Canute's ship, and the fleets
 separated.  But as the attack had not been made as King Canute
 had determined, he made no further attempt; and the kings on each
 side arranged their fleets and put their ships in order.  When
 the fleets were parted, and each sailing its course, Olaf and
 Onund looked over their forces, and found they had suffered no
 loss of men.  In the meantime they saw that if they waited until
 King Canute got his large fleet in order to attack them, the
 difference of force was so great that for them there was little
 chance of victory.  It was also evident that if the battle was
 renewed, they must suffer a great loss of men.  They took the
 resolution, therefore, to row with the whole fleet eastward along
 the coast.  Observing that King Canute did not pursue them, they
 raised up their masts and set sail.  Ottar Svarte tells thus of
 it in the poem he composed upon King Canute the Great: --
      "The king, in battle fray,
      Drove the Swedish host away:
      The wolf did not miss prey,
      Nor the raven on that day.
      Great Canute might deride
      Two kings if he had pride,
      For at Helga river's side
      They would not his sword abide."
 Thord Sjarekson also sang these lines in his death song of King
 Olaf: --
      "King Olaf, Agder's lord,
           Ne'er shunned the Jutland king,
      But with his blue-edged sword
           Broke many a panzer ring.
      King Canute was not slow:
           King Onund filled the plain
      With dead, killed by his bow:
           The wolf howled o'er the slain."
 King Olaf and King Onund sailed eastward to the Swedish king's
 dominions; and one day, towards evening, landed at a place called
 Barvik, where they lay all night.  But then it was observed of
 the Swedes that they were home-sick; for the greater part of
 their forces sailed eastward along the land in the night, and did
 not stop their course until they came home to their houses.  Now
 when King Onund observed this he ordered, as soon as the day
 dawned, to sound the signal for a House-thing; and the whole
 people went on shore, and the Thing sat down.  Then King Onund
 took up the word, and spake thus: "So it is, King Olaf, that, as
 you know, we have been assembled in summer, and have forayed wide
 around in Denmark, and have gained much booty, but no land.  I
 had 350 vessels, and now have not above 100 remaining with me. 
 Now it appears to me we can make no greater progress than we have
 made, although you have still the 60 vessels which have followed
 you the whole summer.  It therefore appears to me best that we
 come back to my kingdom; for it is always good to drive home with
 the wagon safe.  In this expedition we have won something, and
 lost nothing.  Now I will offer you, King Olaf, to come with me,
 and we shall remain assembled during the winter.  Take as much of
 my kingdom as you will, so that you and the men who follow you
 may support yourselves well; and when spring comes let us take
 such measures as we find serviceable.  If you, however, will
 prefer to travel across our country, and go overland to Norway,
 it shall be free for you to do so."
 King Olaf thanked King Onund for his friendly offer.  "But if I
 may advise," says he, "then we should take another resolution,
 and keep together the forces we have still remaining.  I had in
 the first of summer, before I left Norway, 350 ships; but when I
 left the country I chose from among the whole war-levy those I
 thought to be the best, and with them I manned 60 ships; and
 these I still have.  Now it appears to me that the part of your
 war-force which has now run away is the most worthless, and of
 least resistance; but now I see here all your chiefs and leaders,
 and I know well that the people who belong to the court-troops
 (1) are by far the best suited to carry arms.  We have here
 chosen men and superb ships, and we can very well lie all winter
 in our ships, as viking's custom is.  But Canute cannot lie long
 in Helga river; for the harbour will not hold so many vessels as
 he has.  If he steers eastward after us, we can escape from him,
 and then people will soon gather to us; but if he return to the
 harbours where his fleet can lie, I know for certain that the
 desire to return home will not be less in his army than in ours.
 I think, also, we have ravaged so widely in summer, that the
 villagers, both in Scania and in Halland, know well whose favour
 they have to seek.  Canute's army will thus be dispersed so
 widely, that it is uncertain to whom fate may at the last give
 the victory; but let us first find out what resolution he takes."
 Thus King Olaf ended his speech, and it found much applause, and
 his advice was followed.  Spies were sent into King Canute's
 army, and both the kings Olaf and Onund remained lying where they
 (1)  The thingmen, or hired body-guard attending the court. -- L.
 When King Canute saw that the kings of Norway and Sweden steered
 eastward with their forces along the coast, he sent men to ride
 night and day on the land to follow their movements.  Some spies
 went forward, others returned; so that King Canute had news every
 day of their progress.  He had also spies always in their army.
 Now when he heard that a great part of the fleet had sailed away
 from the kings, he turned back with his forces to Seeland, and
 lay with his whole fleet in the Sound; so that a part lay on the
 Scania side, and a part on the Seeland side.  King Canute
 himself, the day before Michaelmas, rode with a great retinue to
 Roeskilde.  There his brother-in-law, Earl Ulf, had prepared a
 great feast for him.  The earl was the most agreeable host, but
 the king was silent and sullen.  The earl talked to him in every
 way to make him cheerful, and brought forward everything which he
 thought would amuse him; but the king remained stern, and
 speaking little.  At last the earl proposed to him a game at
 chess, which he agreed to; and a chess-board was produced, and
 they played together.  Earl Ulf was hasty in temper, stiff, and
 in nothing yielding; but everything he managed went on well in
 his hands; and he was a great warrior, about whom there are many
 stories.  He was the most powerful man in Denmark next to the
 king.  Earl Ulf's sister Gyda was married to Earl Gudin (Godwin)
 Ulfnadson; and their sons were Harald king of England, and Earl
 Toste, Earl Valthiof, Earl Morukare, and Earl Svein.  Gyda was
 the name of their daughter, who was married to the English king
 Edward the Good.
 When they had played a while the king made a false move, at which
 the earl took a knight from the king; but the king set the piece
 again upon the board, and told the earl to make another move; but
 the earl grew angry, threw over the chess-board, stood up, and
 went away.  The king said, "Runnest thou away, Ulf the coward?"
 The earl turned round at the door and said, "Thou wouldst have
 run farther at Helga river, if thou hadst come to battle there.
 Thou didst not call me Ulf the coward, when I hastened to thy
 help while the Swedes were beating thee like a dog."  The earl
 then went out, and went to bed.  A little later the king also
 went to bed.  The following morning while the king was putting on
 his clothes he said to his footboy, "Go thou to Earl Ulf, and
 kill him."
 The lad went, was away a while, and then came back.
 The king said, "Hast thou killed the earl?"
 "I did not kill him, for he was gone to Saint Lucius' church."
 There was a man called Ivar White, a Norwegian by birth, who was
 the king's courtman and chamberlain.  The king said to him, "Go
 thou and kill the earl."
 Ivar went to the church, and in at the choir, and thrust his
 sword through the earl, who died on the spot.  Then Ivar went to
 the king, with the bloody sword in his hand.
 The king said, "Hast thou killed the earl?"
 "I have killed him," says he.
 "Thou didst well."
 After the earl was killed the monks closed the church, and locked
 the doors.  When that was told the king he sent a message to the
 monks, ordering them to open the church and sing high mass.  They
 did as the king ordered; and when the king came to the church he
 bestowed on it great property, so that it had a large domain, by
 which that place was raised very high; and these lands have since
 always belonged to it.  King Canute rode down to his ships, and
 lay there till late in harvest with a very large army.
 When King Olaf and King Onund heard that King Canute had sailed
 to the Sound, and lay there with a great force, the kings held a
 House-thing, and spoke much about what resolution they should
 adopt.  King Olaf wished they should remain there with all the
 fleet, and see what King Canute would at last resolve to do.  But
 the Swedes held it to be unadvisable to remain until the frost
 set in, and so it was determined; and King Onund went home with
 all his army, and King Olaf remained lying after them.
 While King Olaf lay there, he had frequently conferences and
 consultations with his people.  One night Egil Halson and Tofe
 Valgautson had the watch upon the king's ship.  Tofe came from
 West Gautland, and was a man of high birth.  While they sat on
 watch they heard much lamentation and crying among the people who
 had been taken in the war, and who lay bound on the shore at
 night.  Tofe said it made him ill to hear such distress, and
 asked Egil to go with him, and let loose these people.  This work
 they set about, cut the cords, and let the people escape, and
 they looked upon it as a piece of great friendship; but the king
 was so enraged at it, that they themselves were in the greatest
 danger.  When Egil afterwards fell sick the king for a long time
 would not visit him, until many people entreated it of him.  It
 vexed Egil much to have done anything the king was angry at, and
 he begged his forgiveness.  The king now dismissed his wrath
 against Egil, laid his hands upon the side on which Egil's pain
 was, and sang a prayer; upon which the pain ceased instantly, and
 Egil grew better.  Tofe came, after entreaty, into reconciliation
 with the king, on condition that he should exhort his father
 Valgaut to come to the king.  He was a heathen; but after
 conversation with the king he went over to Christianity, and died
 instantly when he was baptized.
 King Olaf had now frequent conferences with his people, and asked
 advice from them, and from his chiefs, as to what he should
 determine upon.  But there was no unanimity among them -- some
 considering that unadvisable which others considered highly
 serviceable; and there was much indecision in their councils.
 King Canute had always spies in King Olaf's army, who entered
 into conversation with many of his men, offering them presents
 and favour on account of King Canute.  Many allowed themselves to
 be seduced, and gave promises of fidelity, and to be King
 Canute's men, and bring the country into his hands if he came to
 Norway.  This was apparent, afterwards, of many who at first kept
 it concealed.  Some took at once money bribes, and others were
 promised money afterwards; and a great many there were who had
 got great presents of money from him before: for it may be said
 with truth of King Canute, that every man who came to him, and
 who he thought had the spirit of a man and would like his favour,
 got his hands full of gifts and money.  On this account he was
 very popular, although his generosity was principally shown to
 foreigners, and was greatest the greater distance they came from.
 King Olaf had often conferences and meetings with his people, and
 asked their counsel; but as he observed they gave different
 opinions, he had a suspicion that there must be some who spoke
 differently from what they really thought advisable for him, and
 he was thus uncertain if all gave him due fidelity in council.
 Some pressed that with the first fair wind they should sail to
 the Sound, and so to Norway.  They said the Danes would not dare
 to attack them, although they lay with so great a force right in
 the way.  But the king was a man of too much understanding not to
 see that this was impracticable.  He knew also that Olaf
 Trygvason had found it quite otherwise, as to the Danes not
 daring to fight, when he with a few people went into battle
 against a great body of them.  The king also knew that in King
 Canute's army there were a great many Norwegians; therefore he
 entertained the suspicion that those who gave this advice were
 more favourable to King Canute than to him.  King Olaf came at
 last to the determination, from all these considerations, that
 the people who would follow him should make themselves ready to
 proceed by land across Gautland, and so to Norway.  "But our
 ships," said he, "and all things that we cannot take with us, I
 will send eastward to the Swedish king's dominions, and let them
 be taken care of for us there."
 Harek of Thjotta replied thus to the king's speech: "It is
 evident that I cannot travel on foot to Norway.  I am old and
 heavy, and little accustomed to walking.  Besides, I am unwilling
 to part with my ship; for on that ship and its apparel I have
 bestowed so much labour, that it would go much against my
 inclination to put her into the hands of my enemies."  The king
 said, "Come along with us, Harek, and we shall carry thee when
 thou art tired of walking."  Then Harek sang these lines :--
      "I'11 mount my ocean steed,
      And o'er the sea I'll speed;
      Forests and hills are not for me, --
      I love the moving sea,
      Though Canute block the Sound,
      Rather than walk the ground,
      And leave my ship, I'll see
      What my ship will do for me."
 Then King Olaf let everything be put in order for the journey.
 The people had their walking clothing and weapons, but their
 other clothes and effects they packed upon such horses as they
 could get.  Then he sent off people to take his ships east to
 Calmar.  There he had the vessels laid up, and the ships' apparel
 and other goods taken care of.  Harek did as he had said, and
 waited for a wind, and then sailed west to Scania, until, about
 the decline of the day, he came with a fresh and fair wind to the
 eastward of Holar.  There he let the sail and the vane, and flag
 and mast be taken down, and let the upper works of the ship be
 covered over with some grey tilt-canvas, and let a few men sit at
 the oars in the fore part and aft, but the most were sitting low
 down in the vessel.
 When Canute's watchmen saw the ship, they talked with each other
 about what ship it might be, and made the guess that it must be
 one loaded with herrings or salt, as they only saw a few men at
 the oars; and the ship, besides, appeared to them grey, and
 wanting tar, as if burnt up by the sun, and they saw also that it
 was deeply loaded.  Now when Harek came farther through the
 Sound, and past the fleet, he raised the mast, hoisted sail, and
 set up his gilded vane.  The sail was white as snow, and in it
 were red and blue stripes of cloth interwoven.  When the king's
 men saw the ship sailing in this state, they told the king that
 probably King Olaf had sailed through them.  But King Canute
 replies, that King Olaf was too prudent a man to sail with a
 single ship through King Canute's fleet, and thought it more
 likely to be Harek of Thjotta, or the like of him.  Many believed
 the truth to be that King Canute knew of this expedition of
 Harek, and that it would not have succeeded so if they had not
 concluded a friendship beforehand with each other; which seemed
 likely, after King Canute's and Harek's friendly understanding
 became generally known.
 Harek made this song as he sailed northward round the isle of
 Vedrey: --
      "The widows of Lund may smile through their tears,
      The Danish girls may have their jeers;
           They may laugh or smile,
           But outside their isle
      Old Harek still on to his North land steers."
 Harek went on his way, and never stopped till he came north to
 Halogaland, to his own house in Thjotta.
 When King Olaf began his journey, he came first into Smaland, and
 then into West Gautland.  He marched quietly and peaceably, and
 the country people gave him all assistance on his journey.  Thus
 he proceeded until he came into Viken, and north through Viken to
 Sarpsborg, where he remained, and ordered a winter abode to be
 prepared (A.D. 1028).  Then he gave most of the chiefs leave to
 return home, but kept the lendermen by him whom he thought the
 most serviceable.  There were with him also all the sons of Arne
 Arnmodson, and they stood in great favour with the king.  Geller
 Thorkelson, who the summer before had come from Iceland, also
 came there to the king, as before related.
 Sigvat the skald had long been in King Olaf's household, as
 before related, and the king made him his marshal.  Sigvat had no
 talent for speaking in prose; but in skaldcraft he was so
 practised, that the verses came as readily from his tongue as if
 he were speaking in usual language.  He had made a mercantile
 journey to Normandy, and in the course of it had come to England,
 where he met King Canute, and obtained permission from him to
 sail to Norway, as before related.  When he came to Norway he
 proceeded straight to King Olaf, and found him at Sarpsborg.  He
 presented himself before the king just as he was sitting down to
 table.  Sigvat saluted him.  The king looked at Sigvat and was
 silent.  Then Sigvat sang: --
      "Great king!  thy marshal is come home,
      No more by land or sea to roam,
           But by thy side
           Still to abide.
      Great king!  what seat here shall be take
      For the king's honour -- not his sake?
           For all seats here
           To me are dear."
 Then was verified the old saying, that "many are the ears of a
 king;" for King Olaf had heard all about Sigvat's journey, and
 that he had spoken with Canute.  He says to Sigvat, "I do not
 know if thou art my marshal, or hast become one of Canute's men."
 Sigvat said: --
      "Canute, whose golden gifts display
      A generous heart, would have me stay,
      Service in his great court to take,
      And my own Norway king forsake.
      Two masters at a time, I said,
      Were one too many for men bred
      Where truth and virtue, shown to all,
      Make all men true in Olaf's hall."
 Then King Olaf told Sigvat to take his seat where he before used
 to sit; and in a short time Sigvat was in as high favour with the
 king as ever.
 Erling Skjalgson and all his sons had been all summer in King
 Canute's army, in the retinue of Earl Hakon.  Thorer Hund was
 also there, and was in high esteem.  Now when King Canute heard
 that King Olaf had gone overland to Norway, he discharged his
 army, and gave all men leave to go to their winter abodes.  There
 was then in Denmark a great army of foreigners, both English,
 Norwegians, and men of other countries, who had joined the
 expedition in summer.  In autumn (A.D. 1027) Erling Skjalgson
 went to Norway with his men, and received great presents from
 King Canute at parting; but Thorer Hund remained behind in King
 Canute's court.  With Erling went messengers from King Canute
 well provided with money; and in winter they travelled through
 all the country, paying the money which King Canute had promised
 to many in autumn for their assistance.  They gave presents in
 money, besides, to many whose friendship could be purchased for
 King Canute.  They received much assistance in their travels from
 Erling.  In this way it came to pass that many turned their
 support to King Canute, promised him their services, and agreed
 to oppose King Olaf.  Some did this openly, but many more
 concealed it from the public.  King Olaf heard this news, for
 many had something to tell him about it; and the conversation in
 the court often turned upon it.  Sigvat the skald made a song
 upon it: --
      "The base traitors ply
           With purses of gold,
      Wanting to buy
           What is not to be sold, --
      The king's life and throne
           Wanting to buy:
      But our souls are our own,
           And to hell we'll not hie.
      No pleasure in heaven,
           As we know full well,
      To the traitor is given, --
           His soul is his hell."
 Often also the conversation turned upon how ill it beseemed Earl
 Hakon to raise his hand in arms against King Olaf, who had given
 him his life when he fell into the king's power; but Sigvat was a
 particular friend of Earl Hakon, and when he heard the earl
 spoken against he sang: --
      "Our own court people we may blame,
      If they take gold to their own shame,
      Their king and country to betray.
      With those who give it's not the same,
      From them we have no faith to claim:
      'Tis we are wrong, if we give way."
 King Olaf gave a great feast at Yule, and many great people had
 come to him.  It was the seventh day of Yule, that the king, with
 a few persons, among whom was Sigvat, who attended him day and
 night, went to a house in which the king's most precious
 valuables were kept.  He had, according to his custom, collected
 there with great care the valuable presents he was to make on New
 Year's eve.  There was in the house no small number of gold-
 mounted swords; and Sigvat sang: --
      "The swords stand there,
      All bright and fair, --
      Those oars that dip in blood:
      If I in favour stood,
      I too might have a share.
      A sword the skald would gladly take,
      And use it for his master's sake:
      In favour once he stood,
      And a sword has stained in blood."
 The king took a sword of which the handle was twisted round with
 gold, and the guard was gold-mounted, and gave it to him.  It was
 a valuable article; but the gift was not seen without envy, as
 will appear hereafter.
 Immediately after Yule (1028) the king began his journey to the
 Uplands; for he had a great many people about him, but had
 received no income that autumn from the North country, for there
 had been an armament in summer, and the king had laid out all the
 revenues he could command; and also he had no vessels with which
 he and his people could go to the North.  At the same time he had
 news from the North, from which he could see that there would be
 no safety for him in that quarter, unless he went with a great
 force.  For these reasons he determined to proceed through the
 Uplands, although it was not so long a time since he had been
 there in guest-quarters as the law prescribes, and as the kings
 usually had the custom of observing in their visits.  When he
 came to the Uplands the lendermen and the richest bondes invited
 him to be their guest, and thus lightened his expenses.
 There was a man called Bjorn who was of Gautland family, and a
 friend and acquaintance of Queen Astrid, and in some way related
 to her.  She had given him farm-management and other offices in
 the upper part of Hedemark.  He had also the management of
 Osterdal district.  Bjorn was not in esteem with the king, nor
 liked by the bondes.  It happened in a hamlet which Bjorn ruled
 over, that many swine and cattle were missing: therefore Bjorn
 ordered a Thing to be called to examine the matter.  Such pillage
 he attributed chiefly to the people settled in forest-farms far
 from other men; by which he referred particularly to those who
 dwelt in Osterdal, for that district was very thinly inhabited,
 and full of lakes and forest-cleanings, and but in few places was
 any great neighbourhood together.
 There was a man called Raud who dwelt in Osterdal.  His wife was
 called Ragnhild; and his sons, Dag and Sigurd, were men of great
 talent.  They were present at the Thing, made a reply in defence
 of the Osterdal people, and removed the accusation from them.
 Bjorn thought they were too pert in their answer, and too fine in
 their clothes and weapons; and therefore turned his speech
 against these brothers, and said it was not unlikely they may
 have committed these thefts.  They denied it, and the Thing
 closed.  Soon after King Olaf, with his retinue, came to guest-
 quarters in the house of bailiff Bjorn.  The matter which had
 been before the Thing was then complained of to the king; and
 Bjorn said that Raud's sons appeared to him to have committed
 these thefts.  A messenger was sent for Raud's sons; and when
 they appeared before the king he said they had not at all the
 appearance of thieves, and acquitted them.  Thereupon they
 invited the king, with all his retinue, to a three days'
 entertainment at their father's; and although Bjorn dissuaded him
 from it, the king went.  At Raud's there was a very excellent
 feast.  The king asked Raud what people he and his wife were.
 Raud answered that he was originally a Swedish man, rich and of
 high birth; "but I ran away with the wife I have ever since had,
 and she is a sister of King Hring Dagson."  The king then
 remembered both their families.  He found that father and sons
 were men of understanding, and asked them what they could do.
 Sigurd said he could interpret dreams, and determine the time of
 the day although no heavenly bodies could be seen.  The king made
 trial of his art, and found it was as Sigurd had said.  Dag
 stated, as his accomplishment, that he could see the misdeeds and
 vices of every man who came under his eye, when he chose to
 observe him closely.  The king told him to declare what faults of
 disposition he saw in the king himself.  Dag mentioned a fault
 which the king was sensible he really had.  Then the king asked
 what fault the bailiff Bjorn had.  Dag said Bjorn was a thief;
 and told also where Bjorn had concealed on his farm the bones,
 horns, and hides of the cattle he had stolen in autumn; "for he
 committed," said Dag, "all the thefts in autumn which he accuses
 other people of."  Dag also told the king the places where the
 king should go after leaving them.  When the king departed from
 Raud's house he was accompanied on the way, and presented with
 friendly gifts; and Raud's sons remained with the king.  The king
 went first to Bjorn's, and found there that all Dag had told him
 was true.  Upon which he drove Bjorn out of the country; and he
 had to thank the queen that he preserved life and limbs.
 Thorer, a son of Olver of Eggja, a stepson of Kalf Arnason, and a
 sister's son of Thorer Hund, was a remarkably handsome man, stout
 and strong.  He was at this time eighteen years old; had made a
 good marriage in Hedemark, by which he got great wealth; and was
 besides one of the most popular of men, and formed to be a chief.
 He invited the king and his retinue home to him to a feast.  The
 king accepted the invitation, went to Thorer's, and was well
 received.  The entertainment was very splendid; they were
 excellently treated, and all that was set before the guests was
 of the best that could be got.  The king and his people talked
 among themselves of the excellence of everything, and knew not
 what they should admire the most, -- whether Thorer's house
 outside, or the inside furniture, the table service, or the
 liquors, or the host who gave them such a feast.  But Dag said
 little about it.  The king used often to speak to Dag, and ask
 him about various things; and he had proved the truth of all that
 Dag had said, both of things that had happened or were to happen,
 and therefore the king had much confidence in what he said.  The
 king called Dag to him to have a private conversation together,
 and spoke to him about many things.  Afterwards the king turned
 the conversation on Thorer, -- what an excellent man Thorer was,
 and what a superb feast he had made for them.  Dag answered but
 little to this, but agreed it was true what the king said.  The
 king then asked Dag what disposition or faith he found in Thorer.
 Dag replied that he must certainly consider Thorer of a good
 disposition, if he be really what most people believe him to be.
 The king told him to answer direct what he was asked, and said
 that it was his duty to do so.  Dag replies, "Then thou must
 allow me to determine the punishment if I disclose his faith."
 The king replied that he would not submit his decision to another
 man, but again ordered Dag to reply to what he asked.
 Dag replies, "The sovereign's order goes before all.  I find this
 disposition in Thorer, as in so many others, that he is too
 greedy of money."
 The king: "Is he then a thief, or a robber?"
 "He is neither."
 "What is he then?"
 "To win money he is a traitor to his sovereign.  He has taken
 money from King Canute the Great for thy head."
 The king asks, "What proof hast thou of the truth of this?"
 Dag: "He has upon his right arm, above the elbow, a thick gold
 ring, which King Canute gave him, and which he lets no man see."
 This ended their conference, and the king was very wroth.  Now as
 the king sat at table, and the guests had drunk a while with
 great mirth, and Thorer went round to see the guests well served,
 the king ordered Thorer to be called to him.  He went up before
 the table, and laid his hands upon it.
 The king asked, "How old a man art thou, Thorer?"
 He answered, "I am eighteen years old."
 "A stout man thou art for those years, and thou hast been
 fortunate also."
 Then the king took his right hand, and felt it towards the elbow.
 Thorer said, "Take care, for I have a boil upon my arm."
 The king held his hand there, and felt there was something hard
 under it.  "Hast thou not heard," said he, "that I am a
 physician?  Let me see the boil."
 As Thorer saw it was of no use to conceal it longer, he took off
 the ring and laid it on the table.
 The king asked if that was the gift of King Canute.
 Thorer replied that he could not deny it was.
 The king ordered him to be seized and laid in irons.  Kalf came
 up and entreated for mercy, and offered money for him, which also
 was seconded by many; but the king was so wroth that nobody could
 get in a word.  He said Thorer should suffer the doom he had
 prepared for himself.  Thereupon he ordered Thorer to be killed.
 This deed was much detested in the Uplands, and not less in the
 Throndhjem country, where many of Thorer's connections were. 
 Kalf took the death of this man much to heart, for he had been
 his foster-son in childhood.
 Grjotgard Olverson, Thorer's brother, and the eldest of the 
 brothers, was a very wealthy man, and had a great troop of people
 about him.  He lived also at this time in Hedemark.  When he
 heard that Thorer had been killed, he made an attack upon the
 places where the king's goods and men were; but, between whiles,
 he kept himself in the forest and other secret places.  When the
 king heard of this disturbance, he had inquiry made about
 Grjotgard's haunts, and found out that he had taken up night-
 quarters not far from where the king was.  King Olaf set out in
 the night-time, came there about day-dawn, and placed a circle of
 men round the house in which Grjotgard was sleeping.  Grjotgard
 and his men, roused by the stir of people and clash of arms, ran
 to their weapons, and Grjotgard himself sprang to the front room.
 He asked who commanded the troop; and it was answered him, "King
 Olaf was come there."  Grjotgard asked if the king would hear his
 words.  The king, who stood at the door, said that Grjotgard
 might speak what he pleased, and he would hear his words. 
 Grjotgard said, "I do not beg for mercy;" and at the same moment
 he rushed out, having his shield over his head, and his drawn
 sword in his hand.  It was not so much light that he could see
 clearly.  He struck his sword at the king; but Arnbjorn ran in,
 and the thrust pierced him under his armour into his stomach, and
 Arnbjorn got his deathwound.  Grjotgard was killed immediately,
 and most of his people with him.  After this event the king
 turned back to the south to Viken.
 Now when the king came to Tunsberg he sent men out to all the
 districts, and ordered the people out upon a levy.  He had but a
 small provision of shipping, and there were only bondes' vessels
 to be got.  From the districts in the near neighbourhood many
 people came to him, but few from any distance; and it was soon
 found that the people had turned away from the king.  King Olaf
 sent people to Gautland for his ships, and other goods and wares
 which had been left there in autumn; but the progress of these
 men was very slow, for it was no better now than in autumn to
 sail through the Sound, as King Canute had in spring fitted out
 an army throughout the whole of the Danish dominions, and had no
 fewer than 1200 vessels.
 The news came to Norway that King Canute had assembled an immense
 armament through all Denmark, with which he intended to conquer
 Norway.  When this became known the people were less willing to
 join King Olaf, and he got but little aid from the bondes.  The
 king's men often spoke about this among themselves. Sigvat tells
 of it thus: --
      "Our men are few, our ships are small,
      While England's king is strong in all;
      But yet our king is not afraid --
      O!  never be such king betrayed!
      'Tis evil counsel to deprive
      Our king of countrymen to strive
      To save their country, sword in hand:
      Tis money that betrays our land."
 The king held meetings with the men of the court, and sometimes
 House-things with all his people, and consulted with them what
 they should, in their opinion, undertake.  "We must not conceal
 from ourselves," said he, "that Canute will come here this
 summer; and that he has, as ye all know, a large force, and we
 have at present but few men to oppose to him; and, as matters now
 stand, we cannot depend much on the fidelity of the country
 people."  The king's men replied to his speech in various ways;
 but it is said that Sigvat the skald replied thus, advising
 flight, as treachery, not cowardice, was the cause of it: --
      "We may well fly, when even our foe
      Offers us money if we go.
      I may be blamed, accused of fear;
      But treachery, not faith, rules here.
      Men may retire who long have shown
      Their faith and love, and now alone
      Retire because they cannot save --
      This is no treachery in the brave."
 The same spring (A.D. 1028) it happened in Halogaland that Harek
 of Thjotta remembered how Asmund Grankelson had plundered and
 beaten his house-servants.  A cutter with twenty rowing-benches,
 which belonged to Harek, was afloat in front of the house, with
 tent and deck, and he spread the report that he intended to go
 south to Throndhjem.  One evening Harek went on board with his
 house-servants, about eighty men, who rowed the whole night; and
 he came towards morning to Grankel's house, and surrounded it
 with his men.  They then made an attack on the house, and set
 fire to it; and Grankel with his people were burnt, and some were
 killed outside; and in all about thirty men lost their lives.
 After this deed Harek returned home, and sat quietly in his farm.
 Asmund was with King Olaf when he heard of it; therefore there
 was nobody in Halogaland to sue Harek for mulct for this deed,
 nor did he offer any satisfaction.
 Canute the Great collected his forces, and went to Limfjord. 
 When he was ready with his equipment he sailed from thence with
 his whole fleet to Norway; made all possible speed, and did not
 land to the eastward of the Fjords, but crossed Folden, and
 landed in Agder, where he summoned a Thing.  The bondes came down
 from the upper country to hold a Thing with Canute, who was
 everywhere in that country accepted as king.  Then he placed men
 over the districts, and took hostages from the bondes, and no man
 opposed him.  King Olaf was in Tunsberg when Canute's fleet
 sailed across the mouth of the fjord.  Canute sailed northwards
 along the coast, and people came to him from all the districts,
 and promised him fealty.  He lay a while in Egersund, where
 Erling Skjalgson came to him with many people, and King Canute
 and Erling renewed their league of friendship.  Among other
 things, Canute promised Erling the whole country between Stad and
 Rygiarbit to rule over.  Then King Canute proceeded; and, to be
 short in our tale, did not stop until he came to Throndhjem, and
 landed at Nidaros.  In Throndhjem he called together a Thing for
 the eight districts, at which King Canute was chosen king of all
 Norway.  Thorer Hund, who had come with King Canute from Denmark,
 was there, and also Harek of Thjotta; and both were made sheriffs
 of the king, and took the oath of fealty to him.  King Canute
 gave them great fiefs, and also right to the Lapland trade, and
 presented them besides with great gifts.  He enriched all men who
 were inclined to enter into friendly accord with him both with
 fiefs and money, and gave them greater power than they had
 When King Canute had laid the whole of Norway trader his
 authority, he called together a numerous Thing, both of his own
 people and of the people of the country; and at it he made
 proclamation, that he made his relation Earl Hakon the governor-
 in-chief of all the land in Norway that he had conquered in this
 expedition.  In like manner he led his son Hardaknut to the high-
 seat at his side, gave him the title of king, and therewith the
 whole Danish dominion.  King Canute took as hostages from all
 lendermen and great bondes in Norway either their sons, brothers,
 or other near connections, or the men who were dearest to them
 and appeared to him most suitable; by which he, as before
 observed, secured their fidelity to him.  As soon as Earl Hakon
 had attained this power in Norway his brother-in-law, Einar
 Tambaskelfer, made an agreement with him, and received back all
 the fiefs he formerly had possessed while the earls ruled the
 country.  King Canute gave Einar great gifts, and bound him by
 great kindness to his interests; and promised that Einar should
 be the greatest and most important man in Norway, among those who
 did not hold the highest dignity, as long as he had power over
 the country.  He added to this, that Einar appeared to him the
 most suitable man to hold the highest title of honour in Norway
 if no earls remained, and his son Eindride also, on account of
 his high birth.  Einar placed a great value on these promises,
 and, in return, promised the greatest fidelity.  Einar's
 chiefship began anew with this.
 There was a man by name Thorarin Loftunga, an Icelander by birth,
 and a great skald, who had been much with the kings and other
 great chiefs.  He was now with King Canute the Great, and had
 composed a flock, or short poem, in his praise.  When the king
 heard of this he was very angry, and ordered him to bring the
 next day a drapa, or long poem, by the time he went to table; and
 if he failed to do so, said the king, "he shall be hanged for his
 impudence in composing such a small poem about King Canute." 
 Thorarin then composed a stave as a refrain, which he inserted in
 the poem, and also augmented it with several other strophes or
 verses.  This was the refrain: --
      "Canute protects his realm, as Jove,
      Guardian of Greece, his realm above."
 King Canute rewarded him for the poem with fifty marks of silver.
 The poem was called the "Headransom" ("Hofudlausn").  Thorarin
 composed another poem about King Canute, which was called the
 "Campaign Poem" ("Togdrapa"); and therein he tells King Canute's
 expedition when he sailed from Denmark to Norway; and the
 following are strophes from one of the parts of this poem: --
      "Canute with all his men is out,
      Under the heavens in war-ships stout, --
      'Out on the sea, from Limfjord's green,
      My good, my brave friend's fleet is seen.
      The men of Adger on the coast
      Tremble to see this mighty host:
      The guilty tremble as they spy
      The victor's fleet beneath the sky.
      "The sight surpasses far the tale,
      As glacing in the sun they sail;
      The king's ship glittering all with gold,
      And splendour there not to be told.
      Round Lister many a coal-black mast
      Of Canute's fleet is gliding past.
      And now through Eger sound they ride,
      Upon the gently heaving tide.
      "And all the sound is covered o'er
      With ships and sails, from shore to shore,
      A mighty king, a mighty host,
      Hiding the sea on Eger coast.
      And peaceful men in haste now hie
      Up Hiornagla-hill the fleet to spy,
      As round the ness where Stad now lies
      Each high-stemmed ship in splendour flies.
      "Nor seemed the voyage long, I trow,
      To warrior on the high-built bow,
      As o'er the ocean-mountains riding
      The land and hill seem past him gliding.
      With whistling breeze and flashing spray
      Past Stein the gay ships dashed away;
      In open sea, the southern gale
      Filled every wide out-bellying sail.
      "Still on they fly, still northward go,
      Till he who conquers every foe,
      The mighty Canute, came to land,
      Far in the north on Throndhjem's strand.
      There this great king of Jutland race,
      Whose deeds and gifts surpass in grace
      All other kings, bestowed the throne
      Of Norway on his sister's son.
      "To his own son he gave the crown
      (This I must add to his renown)
      Of Denmark -- land of shadowy vales,
      In which the white swan trims her sails."
 Here it is told that King Canute's expedition was grander than
 saga can tell; but Thorarin sang thus because he would pride
 himself upon being one of King Canute's retinue when he came to
 The men whom King Olaf had sent eastwards to Gautland after his
 ships took with them the vessels they thought the best, and burnt
 the rest.  The ship-apparel and other goods belonging to the king
 and his men they also took with them; and when they heard that
 King Canute had gone to Norway they sailed west through the
 Sound, and then north to Viken to King Olaf, to whom they
 delivered his ships.  He was then at Tunsberg.  When King Olaf
 learnt that King Canute was sailing north along the coast, King
 Olaf steered with his fleet into Oslo fjord, and into a branch of
 it called Drafn, where he lay quiet until King Canute's fleet had
 sailed southwards again.  On this expedition which King Canute
 made from the North along the coast, he held a Thing in each
 district, and in every Thing the country was bound by oath in
 fealty to him, and hostages were given him.  He went eastward
 across the mouths of the fjords to Sarpsborg, and held a Thing
 there, and, as elsewhere, the country was surrendered to him
 under oath of fidelity.  King Canute then returned south to
 Denmark, after having conquered Norway without stroke of sword,
 and he ruled now over three kingdoms.  So says Halvard
 Hareksblese when he sang of King Canute: --
      "The warrior-king, whose blood-stain'd shield
      Has shone on many a hard-fought field,
      England and Denmark now has won,
      And o'er three kingdoms rules alone.
      Peace now he gives us fast and sure,
      Since Norway too is made secure
      By him who oft, in days of yore,
      Glutted the hawk and wolf with gore."
 King Olaf sailed with his ships out to Tunsberg, as soon as he
 heard that King Canute had turned back, and was gone south to
 Denmark.  He then made himself ready with the men who liked to
 follow him, and had then thirteen ships.  Afterwards he sailed
 out along Viken; but got little money, and few men, as those only
 followed him who dwelt in islands, or on outlying points of land.
 The king landed in such places, but got only the money and men
 that fell in his way; and he soon perceived that the country had
 abandoned him.  He proceeded on according to the winds.  This was
 in the beginning of winter (A.D. 1029).  The wind turned very
 late in the season in their favour, so that they lay long in the
 Seley islands, where they heard the news from the North, through
 merchants, who told the king that Erling Skjalgson had collected
 a great force in Jadar, and that his ship lay fully rigged
 outside of the land, together with many other vessels belonging
 the bondes; namely, skiffs, fisher-yachts, and great row-boats.
 Then the king sailed with his fleet from the East, and lay a
 while in Egersund.  Both parties heard of each other now, and
 Erling assembled all the men he could.
 On Thomasmas, before Yule (Dec. 21), the king left the harbour as
 soon as day appeared.  With a good but rather strong gale he
 sailed northwards past Jadar.  The weather was rainy, with dark
 flying clouds in the sky.  The spies went immediately in through
 the Jadar country when the king sailed past it; and as soon as
 Erling heard that the king was sailing past from the East, he let
 the war-horn call all the people on board, and the whole force
 hastened to the ships, and prepared for battle.  The king's ship
 passed by Jadar at a great rate; but thereafter turned in towards
 the land, intending to run up the fjords to gather men and money.
 Erling Skjalgson perceived this, and sailed after him with a
 great force and many ships.  Swiftly their vessels flew, for they
 had nothing on board but men and arms: but Erling's ship went
 much faster than the others; therefore he took in a reef in the
 sails, and waited for the other vessels.  Then the king saw that
 Erling with his fleet gained upon him fast; for the king's ships
 were heavily laden, and were besides water-soaked, having been in
 the sea the whole summer, autumn, and winter, up to this time. 
 He saw also that there would be a great want of men, if he should
 go against the whole of Erling's fleet when it was assembled.  He
 hailed from ship to ship the orders to let the sails gently sink,
 and to unship the booms and outriggers, which was done.  When
 Erling saw this he calls out to his people, and orders them to
 get on more sail.  "Ye see," says he, "that their sails are
 diminishing, and they are getting fast away from our sight."  He
 took the reef out of the sails of his ship, and outsailed all the
 others immediately; for Erling was very eager in his pursuit of
 King Olaf.
 King Olaf then steered in towards the Bokn fjord, by which the
 ships came out of sight of each other.  Thereafter the king
 ordered his men to strike the sails, and row forwards through a
 narrow sound that was there, and all the ships lay collected
 within a rocky point.  Then all the king's men put on their
 weapons.  Erling sailed in through the sound, and observed
 nothing until the whole fleet was before him, and he saw the
 king's men rowing towards him with all their ships at once.
 Erling and his crew let fall the sails, and seized their weapons;
 but the king's fleet surrounded his ship on all sides.  Then the
 fight began, and it was of the sharpest; but soon the greatest
 loss was among Erling's men.  Erling stood on the quarter-deck of
 his ship.  He had a helmet on his head, a shield before him, and
 a sword in his hand.  Sigvat the skald had remained behind in
 Viken, and heard the tidings.  He was a great friend of Erling,
 had received presents from him, and had been at his house. 
 Sigvat composed a poem upon Erling's fall, in which there is the
 following verse: --
      "Erling has set his ship on sea --
      Against the king away is he:
      He who oft lets the eagle stain
      Her yellow feet in blood of slain.
      His little war-ship side by side
      With the king's fleet, the fray will bide.
      Now sword to sword the fight is raging,
      Which Erling with the king is waging."
 Then Erling's men began to fall, and at the same moment his ship
 was carried by boarding, and every man of his died in his place.
 The king himself was amongst the foremost in the fray.  So says
 Sigvat: --
      "The king's men hewed with hasty sword, --
      The king urged on the ship to board, --
      All o'er the decks the wounded lay:
      Right fierce and bloody was that fray.
      In Tungur sound, on Jadar shore,
      The decks were slippery with red gore;
      Warm blood was dropping in the sound,
      Where the king's sword was gleaming round."
 So entirely had Erling's men fallen, that not a man remained
 standing in his ship but himself alone; for there was none who
 asked for quarter, or none who got it if he did ask.  There was
 no opening for flight, for there lay ships all around Erling's
 ship on every side, and it is told for certain that no man
 attempted to fly; and Sigvat says: --
      "All Erling's men fell in the fray,
      Off Bokn fjord, this hard-fought day.
      The brave king boarded, onward cheered,
      And north of Tungur the deck was cleared.
      Erling alone, the brave, the stout,
      Cut off from all, yet still held out;
      High on the stern -- a sight to see --
      In his lone ship alone stood he."
 Then Erling was attacked both from the forecastle and from the
 other ships.  There was a large space upon the poop which stood
 high above the other ships, and which nobody could reach but by
 arrow-shot, or partly with the thrust of spear, but which he
 always struck from him by parrying.  Erling defended himself so
 manfully, that no example is known of one man having sustained
 the attack of so many men so long.  Yet he never tried to get
 away, nor asked for quarter.  So says Sigvat: --
      "Skjalg's brave son no mercy craves, --
      The battle's fury still he braves;
      The spear-storm, through the air sharp singing,
      Against his shield was ever ringing.
      So Erling stood; but fate had willed
      His life off Bokn should be spilled.
      No braver man has, since his day,
      Past Bokn fjord ta'en his way."
 When Olaf went back a little upon the fore-deck he saw Erling's
 behaviour; and the king accosted him thus: -- "Thou hast turned
 against me to-day, Erling." 
 He replies, "The eagle turns his claws in defence when torn
 asunder."  Sigvat the skald tells thus of these words of Erling:
      "Erling. our best defence of old, --
      Erling the brave, the brisk, the bold, --
      Stood to his arms, gaily crying,
      `Eagles should show their claws, though dying:'
      The very words which once before
      To Olaf he had said on shore,
      At Utstein when they both prepared
      To meet the foe, and danger shared."
 Then said the king, "Wilt thou enter into my service, Erling?"
 "That I will," said he; took the helmet off his head, laid down
 his sword and shield, and went forward to the forecastle deck.
 The king struck him in the chin with the sharp point of his
 battle-axe, and said, "I shall mark thee as a traitor to thy
 Then Aslak Fitiaskalle rose up, and struck Erling in the head
 with an axe, so that it stood fast in his brain, and was
 instantly his death-wound.  Thus Erling lost his life.
 The king said to Aslak, "May all ill luck attend thee for that
 stroke; for thou hast struck Norway out of my hands."
 Aslak replied, "It is bad enough if that stroke displease thee,
 for I thought it was striking Norway into thy hands; and if I
 have given thee offence, sire, by this stroke, and have thy ill-
 will for it, it will go badly with me, for I will get so many
 men's ill-will and enmity for this deed that I would need all
 your protection and favour."
 The king replied that he should have it.
 Thereafter the king ordered every man to return to his ship, and
 to get ready to depart as fast as he could.  "We will not plunder
 the slain," says he, "and each man may keep what he has taken."
 The men returned to the ships and prepared themselves for the
 departure as quickly as possible; and scarcely was this done
 before the vessels of the bondes ran in from the south into the
 sound.  It went with the bonde-army as is often seen, that the
 men, although many in numbers, know not what to do when they have
 experienced a check, have lost their chief, and are without
 leaders.  None of Erling's sons were there, and the bondes
 therefore made no attack, and the king sailed on his way
 northwards.  But the bondes took Erling's corpse, adorned it, and
 carried it with them home to Sole, and also the bodies of all who
 had fallen.  There was great lamentation over Erling; and it has
 been a common observation among people, that Erling Skjalgson was
 the greatest and worthiest man in Norway of those who had no high
 title.  Sigvat made these verses upon the occasion: --
      "Thus Erling fell -- and such a gain
      To buy with such a loss was vain;
      For better man than he ne'er died,
      And the king's gain was small beside.
      In truth no man I ever knew
      Was, in all ways, so firm and true;
      Free from servility and pride,
      Honoured by all, yet thus he died."
 Sigvat also says that Aslak had very unthinkingly committed this
 murder of his own kinsman: --
      "Norway's brave defender's dead!
      Aslak has heaped on his own head
      The guilt of murdering his own kin:
      May few be guilty of such sin!
      His kinsman's murder on him lies --
      Our forefathers, in sayings wise,
      Have said, what is unknown to few,
      `Kinsmen to kinsmen should be true.'"
 Of Erling's sons some at that time were north in Throndhjem, some
 in Hordaland, and some in the Fjord district, for the purpose of
 collecting men.  When Erling's death was reported, the news came
 also that there was a levy raising in Agder, Hordaland, and
 Rogaland.  Forces were raised and a great army assembled, under
 Erling's sons, to pursue King Olaf.
 When King Olaf retired from the battle with Erling he went
 northward through the sounds, and it was late in the day.  It is
 related that the king then made the following verses: --
      "This night, with battle sounds wild ringing,
      Small joy to the fair youth is bringing
      Who sits in Jadar, little dreaming
      O'er what this night the raven's screaming.
      The far-descended Erling's life
      Too soon has fallen; but, in the strife
      He met the luck they well deserve
      Who from their faith and fealty swerve."
 Afterwards the king sailed with his fleet along the land
 northwards, and got certain tidings of the bondes assembling an
 army.  There were many chiefs and lendermen at this time with
 King Olaf, and all the sons of Arne.  Of this Bjarne
 Gullbrarskald speaks in the poem he composed about Kalf Arnason:
      "Kalf!  thou hast fought at Bokn well;
      Of thy brave doings all men tell:
      When Harald's son his men urged on
      To the hard strife, thy courage shone.
      Thou soon hadst made a good Yule feast
      For greedy wolf there in the East:
      Where stone and spear were flying round,
      There thou wast still the foremost found.
      The people suffered in the strife
      When noble Erling lost his life,
      And north of Utstein many a speck
      Of blood lay black upon the deck.
      The king, 'tis clear, has been deceived,
      By treason of his land bereaved;
      And Agder now, whose force is great.
      Will rule o'er all parts of the state."
 King O1af continued his voyage until he came north of Stad, and
 brought up at the Herey Isles.  Here he heard the news that Earl
 Hakon had a great war-force in Throndhjem, and thereupon the king
 held a council with his people.  Kalf Arnason urged much to
 advance to Throndhjem, and fight Earl Hakon, notwithstanding the
 difference of numbers.  Many others supported this advice, but
 others dissuaded from it, and the matter was left to the king's
 Afterwards the king went into Steinavag, and remained there all
 night; but Aslak Fitiaskalle ran into Borgund, where he remained
 the night, and where Vigleik Arnason was before him.  In the
 morning, when Aslak was about returning on board, Vigleik
 assaulted him, and sought to avenge Erling's murder.  Aslak fell
 there.  Some of the king's court-men, who had been home all
 summer, joined the king here.  They came from Frekeysund, and
 brought the king tidings that Earl Hakon, and many lendermen with
 him, had come in the morning to Frekeysund with a large force;
 "and they will end thy days, sire, if they have strength enough."
 Now the king sent his men up to a hill that was near; and when
 they came to the top, and looked northwards to Bjarney Island,
 they perceived that a great armament of many ships was coming
 from the north, and they hastened back to the king with this
 intelligence.  The king, who was lying there with only twelve
 ships, ordered the war-horn to sound, the tents to be taken down
 on his ships, and they took to their oars.  When they were quite
 ready, and were leaving the harbour, the bonde army sailed north
 around Thiotande with twenty-five ships.  The king then steered
 inside of Nyrfe Island, and inside of Hundsver.  Now when King
 Olaf came right abreast of Borgund, the ship which Aslak had
 steered came out to meet him, and when they found the king they
 told him the tidings, -- that Vigleik Arnason had killed Aslak
 Fitiaskalle, because he had killed Erling Skjalgson.  The king
 took this news very angrily, but could not delay his voyage on
 account of the enemy and he sailed in by Vegsund and Skor.  There
 some of his people left him; among others, Kalf Arnason, with
 many other lendermen and ship commanders, who all went to meet
 Earl Hakon.  King Olaf, however, proceeded on his way without
 stopping until he came to Todar fjord, where he brought up at
 Valdal, and landed from his ship.  He had then five ships with
 him, which he drew up upon the shore, and took care of their
 sails and materials.  Then he set up his land-tent upon a point
 of land called Sult, where there are pretty flat fields, and set
 up a cross near to the point of land.  A bonde, by name Bruse,
 who dwelt there in More, and was chief over the valley, came down
 to King Olaf, together with many other bondes, and received him
 well, and according to his dignity; and he was friendly, and
 pleased with their reception of him.  Then the king asked if
 there was a passable road up in the country from the valley to
 Lesjar; and Bruse replied, that there was an urd in the valley
 called Skerfsurd not passable for man or beast.  King Olaf
 answers, "That we must try, bonde, and it will go as God pleases.
 Come here in the morning with your yoke, and come yourself with
 it, and let us then see.  When we come to the sloping precipice,
 what chance there may be, and if we cannot devise some means of
 coming over it with horses and people."
 Now when day broke the bondes drove down with their yokes, as the
 king had told them.  The clothes and weapons were packed upon
 horses, but the king and all the people went on foot.  He went
 thus until he came to a place called Krosbrekka, and when he came
 up upon the hill he rested himself, sat down there a while,
 looked down over the fjord, and said, "A difficult expedition ye
 have thrown upon my hands, ye lendermen, who have now changed
 your fealty, although but a little while ago ye were my friends
 and faithful to me."  There are now two crosses erected upon the
 bank on which the king sat.  Then the king mounted a horse, and
 rode without stopping up the valley, until he came to the
 precipice.  Then the king asked Bruse if there was no summer hut
 of cattle-herds in the neighbourhood, where they could remain. 
 He said there was.  The king ordered his land-tent to be set up,
 and remained there all night.  In the morning the king ordered
 them to drive to the urd, and try if they could get across it
 with the waggons.  They drove there, and the king remained in the
 meantime in his tent.  Towards evening the king's court-men and
 the bondes came back, and told how they had had a very fatiguing
 labour, without making any progress, and that there never could
 be a road made that they could get across: so they continued
 there the second night, during which, for the whole night, the
 king was occupied in prayer.  As soon as he observed day dawning
 he ordered his men to drive again to the urd, and try once more
 if they could get across it with the waggons; but they went very
 unwillingly, saying nothing could be gained by it.  When they
 were gone the man who had charge of the king's kitchen came, and
 said there were only two carcasses of young cattle remaining of
 provision: "Although you, sire, have 400 men, and there are 100
 bondes besides."  Then the king ordered that he should set all
 the kettles on the fire, and put a little bit of meat in each
 kettle, which was done.  Then the king went there, and made the
 sign of the cross over each kettle, and told them to make ready
 the meat.  The king then went to the urd called Skerfsurd, where
 a road should be cleared.  When the king came all his people were
 sitting down, quite worn out with the hard labour.  Bruse said,
 "I told you, sire, but you would not believe me, that we could
 make nothing of this urd."  The king laid aside his cloak, and
 told them to go to work once more at the urd.  They did so, and
 now twenty men could handle stones which before 100 men could not
 move from the place; and thus before midday the road was cleared
 so well that it was as passable for men, and for horses with
 packs, as a road in the plain fields.  The king, after this, went
 down again to where the meat was, which place is called Olaf's
 Rock.  Near the rock is a spring, at which Olaf washed himself;
 and therefore at the present day, when the cattle in the valley
 are sick, their illness is made better by their drinking at this
 well.  Thereafter the king sat down to table with all the others;
 and when he was satisfied he asked if there was any other
 sheeling on the other side of the urd, and near the mountains,
 where they could pass the night.  Bruse said there was such a
 sheeling, called Groningar; but that nobody could pass the night
 there on account of witchcraft, and evil beings who were in the
 sheeling.  Then the king said they must get ready for their
 journey, as he wanted to be at the sheeling for the night.  Then
 came the kitchen-master to the king, and tells that there was
 come an extraordinary supply of provisions, and he did not know
 where it had come from, or how.  The king thanked God for this
 blessing, and gave the bondes who drove down again to their
 valley some rations of food, but remained himself all night in
 the sheeling.  In the middle of the night, while the people were
 asleep, there was heard in the cattle-fold a dreadful cry, and
 these words: "Now Olaf's prayers are burning me," says the
 spirit, "so that I can no longer be in my habitation; now must I
 fly, and never more come to this fold."  When the king's people
 awoke in the morning the king proceeded to the mountains, and
 said to Bruse, "Here shall now a farm be settled, and the bonde
 who dwells here shall never want what is needful for the support
 of life; and never shall his crop be destroyed by frost, although
 the crops be frozen on the farms both above it and below it."
 Then the king proceeded over the mountains, and came to a farm
 called Einby, where he remained for the night.  King Olaf had
 then been fifteen years king of Norway (A.D. 1015-1029),
 including the year both he and Svein were in the country, and
 this year we have now been telling about.  It was, namely, a
 little past Yule when the king left his ships and took to the
 land, as before related.  Of this portion of his reign the priest
 Are Thorgilson the Wise was the first who wrote; and he was both
 faithful in his story, of a good memory, and so old a man that he
 could remember the men, and had heard their accounts, who were so
 old that through their age they could remember these
 circumstances as he himself wrote them in his books, and he named
 the men from whom he received his information.  Otherwise it is
 generally said that King Olaf had been fifteen years king of
 Norway when he fell; but they who say so reckon to Earl Svein's
 government, the last year he was in the country, for King Olaf
 lived fifteen years afterwards as king.
 When the king had been one night at Lesjar he proceeded on his
 journey with his men, day by day; first into Gudbrandsdal, and
 from thence out to Redemark.  Now it was seen who had been his
 friends, for they followed him; but those who had served him with
 less fidelity separated from him, and some showed him even
 indifference, or even full hostility, which afterwards was
 apparent; and also it could be seen clearly in many Upland people
 that they took very ill his putting Thorer to death, as before
 related.  King Olaf gave leave to return home to many of his men
 who had farms and children to take care of; for it seemed to them
 uncertain what safety there might be for the families and
 property of those who left the country with him.  Then the king
 explained to his friends his intention of leaving the country,
 and going first east into Svithjod, and there taking his
 determination as to where he should go; but he let his friends
 know his intention to return to the country, and regain his
 kingdoms, if God should grant him longer life; and he did not
 conceal his expectation that the people of Norway would again
 return to their fealty to him.  "I think," says he, "that Earl
 Hakon will have Norway but a short time under his power, which
 many will not think an extraordinary expectation, as Earl Hakon
 has had but little luck against me; but probably few people will
 trust to my prophecy, that Canute the Great will in the course of
 a few years die, and his kingdoms vanish; and there will he no
 risings in favour of his race."  When the king had ended his
 speech, his men prepared themselves for their departure.  The
 king, with the troop that followed him, turned east to Eid
 forest.  And there were along with him the Queen Astrid; their
 daughter Ulfhild; Magnus, King Olaf's son; Ragnvald Brusason; the
 three sons of Arne, Thorberg, Fin, and Arne, with many lendermen;
 and the king's attendants consisted of many chosen men.  Bjorn
 the marshal got leave to go home, and he went to his farm, and
 many others of the king's friends returned home with his
 permission to their farms.  The king begged them to let him know
 the events which might happen in the country, and which it might
 be important for him to know; and now the king proceeded on his
 It is to be related of King Olaf's journey, that he went first
 from Norway eastward through Eid forest to Vermaland, then to
 Vatnsby, and through the forests in which there are roads, until
 he came out in Nerike district.  There dwelt a rich and powerful
 man in that part called Sigtryg, who had a son, Ivar, who
 afterwards became a distinguished person.  Olaf stayed with
 Sigtryg all spring (A.D. 1029); and when summer came he made
 ready for a journey, procured a ship for himself, and without
 stopping went on to Russia to King Jarisleif and his queen
 Ingegerd; but his own queen Astrid, and their daughter Ulfhild,
 remained behind in Svithjod, and the king took his son Magnus
 eastward with him.  King Jarisleif received King Olaf in the
 kindest manner, and made him the offer to remain with him, and to
 have so much land as was necessary for defraying the expense of
 the entertainment of his followers.  King Olaf accepted this
 offer thankfully, and remained there.  It is related that King
 Olaf was distinguished all his life for pious habits, and zeal in
 his prayers to God.  But afterwards, when he saw his own power
 diminished, and that of his adversaries augmented, he turned all
 his mind to God's service; for he was not distracted by other
 thoughts, or by the labour he formerly had upon his hands, for
 during all the time he sat upon the throne he was endeavouring to
 promote what was most useful: and first to free and protect the
 country from foreign chiefs' oppressions, then to convert the
 people to the right faith; and also to establish law and the
 rights of the country, which he did by letting justice have its
 way, and punishing evil-doers.
 It had been an old custom in Norway that the sons of lendermen,
 or other great men, went out in war-ships to gather property, and
 they marauded both in the country and out of the country.  But
 after King Olaf came to the sovereignty he protected the country,
 so that he abolished all plundering there; and even if they were
 the sons of powerful men who committed any depredation, or did
 what the king considered against law, he did not spare them at
 all, but they must suffer in life or limbs; and no man's
 entreaties, and no offer of money-penalties, could help them.  So
 says Sigvat: --
      "They who on viking cruises drove
      With gifts of red gold often strove
      To buy their safety -- but our chief
      Had no compassion for the thief.
      He made the bravest lose his head
      Who robbed at sea, and pirates led;
      And his just sword gave peace to all,
      Sparing no robber, great or small."
 And he also says: --
      "Great king!  whose sword on many a field
      Food to the wandering wolf did yield,
      And then the thief and pirate band
      Swept wholly off by sea and land --
      Good king!  who for the people's sake
      Set hands and feet upon a stake,
      When plunderers of great name and bold
      Harried the country as of old.
      The country's guardian showed his might
      When oft he made his just sword bite
      Through many a viking's neck and hair,
      And never would the guilty spare.
      King Magnus' father, I must say,
      Did many a good deed in his day.
      Olaf the Thick was stern and stout,
      Much good his victories brought out."
 He punished great and small with equal severity, which appeared
 to the chief people of the country too severe; and animosity rose
 to the highest when they lost relatives by the king's just
 sentence, although they were in reality guilty.  This was the
 origin of the hostility of the great men of the country to King
 Olaf, that they could not bear his just judgments.  He again
 would rather renounce his dignity than omit righteous judgment.
 The accusation against him, of being stingy with his money, was
 not just, for he was a most generous man towards his friends; but
 that alone was the cause of the discontent raised against him,
 that he appeared hard and severe in his retributions.  Besides,
 King Canute offered great sums of money, and the great chiefs
 were corrupted by this, and by his offering them greater
 dignities than they had possessed before.  The inclinations of
 the people, also, were all in favour of Earl Hakon, who was much
 beloved by the country folks when he ruled the country before.
 Earl Hakon had sailed with his fleet from Throndhjem, and gone
 south to More against King Olaf, as before related.  Now when the
 king bore away, and ran into the fjord, the earl followed him
 thither; and then Kalf Arnason came to meet him, with many of the
 men who had deserted King Olaf.  Kalf was well received.  The
 earl steered in through Todar fjord to Valdal, where the king had
 laid up his ships on the strand.  He took the ships which
 belonged to the king, had them put upon the water and rigged, and
 cast lots, and put commanders in charge of them according to the
 lots.  There was a man called Jokul, who was an Icelander, a son
 of Bard Jokulson of Vatnsdal; the lot fell upon Jokul to command
 the Bison, which King Olaf himself had commanded.  Jokul made
 these verses upon it: --
      "Mine is the lot to take the helm
      Which Olaf owned, who owned the realm;
      From Sult King Olaf's ship to steer
      (Ill luck I dread on his reindeer).
      My girl will never hear the tidings,
      Till o'er the wild wave I come riding
      In Olaf's ship, who loved his gold,
      And lost his ships with wealth untold."
 We may here shortly tell what happened a long time after. -- that
 this Jokul fell in with King Olaf's men in the island of Gotland,
 and the king ordered him to be taken out to be beheaded.  A
 willow twig accordingly was plaited in with his hair, and a man
 held him fast by it.  Jokul sat down upon a bank, and a man swung
 the axe to execute him; but Jokul hearing the sound, raised his
 head, and the blow struck him in the head, and made a dreadful
 wound.  As the king saw it would be his death-wound, he ordered
 them to let him lie with it.  Jokul raised himself up, and he
 sang: --
      "My hard fate I mourn, --
      Alas! my wounds burn,
      My red wounds are gaping,
      My life-blood escaping.
      My wounds burn sore;
      But I suffer still more
      From the king's angry word,
      Than his sharp-biting sword."
 Kalf Arnason went with Earl Hakon north to Throndhjem, and the
 earl invited him to enter into his service.  Kalf said he would
 first go home to his farm at Eggja, and afterwards make his
 determination; and Kalf did so.  When he came home he found his
 wife Sigrid much irritated; and she reckoned up all the sorrow
 inflicted on her, as she insisted, by King Olaf.  First, he had
 ordered her first husband Olver to be killed.  "And now since,"
 says she, "my two sons; and thou thyself, Kalf, wert present when
 they were cut off, and which I little expected from thee."  Kalf
 says, it was much against his will that Thorer was killed.  "I
 offered money-penalty for him," says he; "and when Grjotgard was
 killed I lost my brother Arnbjorn at the same time."  She
 replies, "It is well thou hast suffered this from the king; for
 thou mayest perhaps avenge him, although thou wilt not avenge my
 injuries.  Thou sawest how thy foster-son Thorer was killed, with
 all the regard of the king for thee."  She frequently brought out
 such vexatious speeches to Kalf, to which he often answered
 angrily; but yet he allowed himself to be persuaded by her to
 enter into the earl's service, on condition of renewing his fiefs
 to him.  Sigrid sent word to the earl how far she had brought the
 matter with Kalf.  As soon as the earl heard of it, he sent a
 message to Kalf that he should come to the town to him.  Kalf did
 not decline the invitation, but came directly to Nidaros, and
 waited on the earl, who received him kindly.  In their
 conversation it was fully agreed upon that Kalf should go into
 the earl's service, and should receive great fiefs.  After this
 Kalf returned home, and had the greater part of the interior of
 the Throndhjem country under him.  As soon as it was spring Kalf
 rigged out a ship that belonged to him, and when she was ready he
 put to sea, and sailed west to England; for he had heard that in
 spring King Canute was to sail from Denmark to England, and that
 King Canute had given Harald, a son of Thorkel the High, an
 earldom in Denmark.  Kalf Arnason went to King Canute as soon as
 he arrived in England.  Bjarne Gullbrarskald tells of this: --
      "King Olaf eastward o'er the sea
      To Russia's monarch had to flee;
      Our Harald's brother ploughed the main,
      And furrowed white its dark-blue plain.
      Whilst thou -- the truth I still will say,
      Nor fear nor favour can me sway --
      Thou to King Canute hastened fast,
      As soon as Olaf's luck was past."
 Now when Kalf came to King Canute the king received him
 particularly well, and had many conversations with him.  Among
 other things, King Canute, in a conference, asked Kalf to bind
 himself to raise a warfare against King Olaf, if ever he should
 return to the country.  "And for which," says the king, "I will
 give thee the earldom, and place thee to rule over Norway; and my
 relation Hakon shall come to me, which will suit him better, for
 he is so honourable and trustworthy that I believe he would not
 even throw a spear against the person of King Olaf if he came
 back to the country."  Kalf lent his ear to what the king
 proposed, for he had a great desire to attain this high dignity;
 and this conclusion was settled upon between King Canute and
 Kalf.  Kalf then prepared to return home, and on his departure he
 received splendid presents from King Canute.  Bjarne the skald
 tells of these circumstances: --
      "Sprung from old earls! -- to England's lord
      Thou owest many a thankful word
      For many a gift: if all be true,
      Thy interest has been kept in view;
      For when thy course was bent for home,
      (Although that luck is not yet come,)
      `That Norway should be thine,' 'tis said,
      The London king a promise made."
 Kalf thereafter returned to Norway, and came to his farm.
 Earl Hakon left the country this summer (A.D. 1029), and went to
 England, and when he came there was well received by the king. 
 The earl had a bride in England, and he travelled to conclude
 this marriage, and as he intended holding his wedding in Norway,
 he came to procure those things for it in England which it was
 difficult to get in Norway.  In autumn he made ready for his
 return, but it was somewhat late before he was clear for sea; but
 at last he set out.  Of his voyage all that can be told is, that
 the vessel was lost, and not a man escaped.  Some relate that the
 vessel was seen north of Caithness in the evening in a heavy
 storm, and the wind blowing out of Pentland Firth.  They who
 believe this report say the vessel drove out among the breakers
 of the ocean; but with certainty people knew only that Earl Hakon
 was missing in the ocean, and nothing belonging to the ship ever
 came to land.  The same autumn some merchants came to Norway, who
 told the tidings that were going through the country of Earl
 Hakon being missing; and all men knew that he neither came to
 Norway nor to England that autumn, so that Norway that winter was
 without a head.
 Bjorn the marshal sat at home on his farm after his parting from
 King Olaf.  Bjorn was a celebrated man; therefore it was soon
 reported far and wide that he had set himself down in quietness.
 Earl Hakon and the other chiefs of the country heard this also,
 and sent persons with a verbal message to Bjorn.  When the
 messengers arrived Bjorn received them well; and afterwards Bjorn
 called them to him to a conference, and asked their business.  He
 who was their foreman presented to Bjorn the salutations of King
 Canute, Earl Hakon, and of several chiefs.  "King Canute," says
 he, "has heard much of thee, and that thou hast been long a
 follower of King Olaf the Thick, and hast been a great enemy of
 King Canute; and this he thinks not right, for he will be thy
 friend, and the friend of all worthy men, if thou wilt turn from
 thy friendship to King Olaf and become his enemy.  And the only
 thing now thou canst do is to seek friendship and protection
 there where it is most readily to be found, and which all men in
 this northern world think it most honourable to be favoured with.
 Ye who have followed Olaf the Thick should consider how he is now
 separated from you; and that now ye have no aid against King
 Canute and his men, whose lands ye plundered last summer, and
 whose friends ye murdered.  Therefore ye ought to accept, with
 thanks, the friendship which the king offers you; and it would
 become you better if you offered money even in mulct to obtain
 When he had ended his speech Bjorn replies, "I wish now to sit
 quietly at home, and not to enter into the service of any chief."
 The messenger answers, "Such men as thou art are just the right
 men to serve the king; and now I can tell thee there are just two
 things for thee to choose, -- either to depart in peace from thy
 property, and wander about as thy comrade Olaf is doing; or,
 which is evidently better, to accept King Canute's and Earl
 Hakon's friendship, become their man, and take the oaths of
 fealty to them.  Receive now thy reward."  And he displayed to
 him a large bag full of English money.
 Bjorn was a man fond of money, and self-interested; and when he
 saw the silver he was silent, and reflected with himself what
 resolution he should take.  It seemed to him much to abandon his
 property, as he did not think it probable that King Olaf would
 ever have a rising in his favour in Norway.  Now when the
 messenger saw that Bjorn's inclinations were turned towards the
 money, he threw down two thick gold rings, and said, "Take the
 money at once, Bjorn, and swear the oaths to King Canute; for I
 can promise thee that this money is but a trifle, compared to
 what thou wilt receive if thou followest King Canute."
 By the heap of money, the fine promises, and the great presents,
 he was led by covetousness, took the money, went into King
 Canute's service, and gave the oaths of fealty to King Canute and
 Earl Hakon, and then the messengers departed.
 When Bjorn heard the tidings that Earl Hakon was missing he soon
 altered his mind, and was much vexed with himself for having been
 a traitor in his fidelity to King Olaf.  He thought, now, that
 he was freed from the oath by which he had bound himself to Earl
 Hakon.  It seemed to Bjorn that now there was some hope that King
 Olaf might again come to the throne of Norway if he came back, as
 the country was without a head.  Bjorn therefore immediately made
 himself ready to travel, and took some men with him.  He then set
 out on his journey, travelling night and day, on horseback when
 he could, and by ship when he found occasion; and never halted
 until he came, after Yule, east to Russia to King Olaf, who was
 very glad to see Bjorn.  Then the king inquired much about the
 news from Norway.  Bjorn tells him that Earl Hakon was missing,
 and the kingdom left without a head.  At this news the men who
 had followed King Olaf were very glad, -- all who had left
 property, connections, and friends in Norway; and the longing for
 home was awakened in them.  Bjorn told King Olaf much news from
 Norway, and very anxious the king was to know, and asked much how
 his friends had kept their fidelity towards him.  Bjorn answered,
 it had gone differently with different people.
 Then Bjorn stood up, fell at the king's feet, held his foot, and
 said, "All is in your power, sire, and in God's!  I have taken
 money from King Canute's men, and sworn them the oaths of fealty;
 but now will I follow thee, and not part from thee so long as we
 both live."
 The king replies, "Stand up, Bjorn' thou shalt be reconciled with
 me; but reconcile thy perjury with God.  I can see that but few
 men in Norway have held fast by their fealty, when such men as
 thou art could be false to me.  But true it is also that people
 sit in great danger when I am distant, and they are exposed to
 the wrath of my enemies."
 Bjorn then reckoned up those who had principally bound themselves
 to rise in hostility against the king and his men; and named,
 among others, Erling's son in Jadar and their connections, Einar
 Tambaskelfer, Kalf Arnason, Thorer Hund, and Harek of Thjotta.
 After King Olaf came to Russia he was very thoughtful, and
 weighed what counsel he now should follow.  King Jarisleif and
 Queen Ingegerd offered him to remain with them, and receive a
 kingdom called Vulgaria, which is a part of Russia, and in which
 land the people were still heathen.  King Olaf thought over this
 offer; but when he proposed it to his men they dissuaded him from
 settling himself there, and urged the king to betake himself to
 Norway to his own kingdom: but the king himself had resolved
 almost in his own mind to lay down his royal dignity, to go out
 into the world to Jerusalem, or other holy places, and to enter
 into some order of monks.  But yet the thought lay deep in his
 soul to recover again, if there should be any opportunity for
 him, his kingdom in Norway.  When he thought over this, it
 recurred to his mind how all things had gone prosperously with
 him during the first ten years of his reign, and how afterwards
 every thing he undertook became heavy, difficult, and hard; and
 that he had been unlucky, on all occasions in which he had tried
 his luck.  On this account he doubted if it would be prudent to
 depend so much upon his luck, as to go with so little strength
 into the hands of his enemies, seeing that all the people of the
 country had taken part with them to oppose King Olaf.  Such cares
 he had often on his mind, and he left his cause to God, praying
 that He would do what to Him seemed best.  These thoughts he
 turned over in his mind, and knew not what to resolve upon; for
 he saw how evidently dangerous that was which his inclination was
 most bent upon.
 One night the king lay awake in his bed, thinking with great
 anxiety about his determination, and at last, being tired of
 thinking, sleep came over him towards morning; but his sleep was
 so light that he thought he was awake, and could see all that was
 doing in the house.  Then he saw a great and superb man, in
 splendid clothes, standing by his bed; and it came into the
 king's mind that this was King Olaf Trygvason who had come to
 him.  This man said to him, "Thou are very sick of thinking about
 thy future resolutions; and it appears to me wonderful that these
 thoughts should be so tumultuous in thy soul that thou shouldst
 even think of laying down the kingly dignity which God hath given
 thee, and of remaining here and accepting of a kingdom from
 foreign and unknown kings.  Go back rather to that kingdom which
 thou hast received in heritage, and rule over it with the
 strength which God hath given thee, and let not thy inferiors
 take it from thee.  It is the glory of a king to be victorious
 over his enemies, and it is a glorious death to die in battle. 
 Or art thou doubtful if thou hast right on thy side in the strife
 with thine enemies?  Thou must have no doubts, and must not
 conceal the truth from thyself.  Thou must go back to thy
 country, and God will give open testimony that the kingdom is
 thine by property."  When the king awoke he thought he saw the
 man's shoulders going out.  From this time the king's courage
 rose, and he fixed firmly his resolution to return to Norway; to
 which his inclination also tended most, and which he also found
 was the desire of all his men.  He bethought himself also that
 the country being without a chief could be easily attacked, from
 what he had heard, and that after he came himself many would turn
 back towards him.  When the king told his determination to his
 people they all gave it their approbation joyfully.
 It is related that once upon a time, while King Olaf was in
 Russia, it happened that the son of an honest widow had a sore
 boil upon his neck, of which the lad lay very ill; and as he
 could not swallow any food, there was little hope of his life.
 The boy's mother went to Queen Ingegerd, with whom she was
 acquainted, and showed her the lad.  The queen said she knew no
 remedy for it.  "Go," said she, "to King Olaf, he is the best
 physician here; and beg him to lay his hands on thy lad, and
 bring him my words if he will not otherwise do it."  She did as
 the queen told her; and when she found the king she says to him
 that her son is dangerously ill of a boil in his neck, and begs
 him to lay his hand on the boil.  The king tells her he is not a
 physician, and bids her go to where there were physicians.  She
 replies, that the queen had told her to come to him; "and told me
 to add the request from her, that you would would use the remedy
 you understood, and she said that thou art the best physician
 here in the town."  Then the king took the lad, laid his hands
 upon his neck, and felt the boil for a long time, until the boy
 made a very wry face.  Then the king took a piece of bread, laid
 it in the figure of the cross upon the palm of his hand, and put
 it into the boy's mouth.  He swallowed it down, and from that
 time all the soreness left his neck, and in a few days he was
 quite well, to the great joy of his mother and all his relations.
 Then first came Olaf into the repute of having as much healing
 power in his hands as is ascribed to men who have been gifted by
 nature with healing by the touch; and afterwards when his
 miracles were universally acknowledged, this also was considered
 one of his miracles.
 It happened one Sunday that the king sat in his highseat at the
 dinner table, and had fallen into such deep thought that he did
 not observe how time went.  In one hand he had a knife, and in
 the other a piece of fir-wood from which he cut splinters from
 time to time.  The table-servant stood before him with a bowl in
 his hands; and seeing what the king was about, and that he was
 involved in thought, he said, "It is Monday, sire, to-morrow."
 The king looked at him when he heard this, and then it came into
 his mind what he was doing on the Sunday.  Then the king ordered
 a lighted candle to be brought him, swept together all the
 shavings he had made, set them on fire, and let them burn upon
 his naked hand; showing thereby that he would hold fast by God's
 law and commandment, and not trespass without punishment on what
 he knew to be right.
 When King Olaf had resolved on his return home, he made known his
 intention to King Jarisleif and Queen Ingegerd.  They dissuaded
 him from this expedition, and said he should receive as much
 power in their dominions as he thought desirable; but begged him
 not to put himself within the reach of his enemies with so few
 men as he had.  Then King Olaf told them of his dream; adding,
 that he believed it to be God's will and providence that it
 should be so.  Now when they found he was determined on
 travelling to Norway, they offered him all the assistance to his
 journey that he would accept from them.  The king thanked them in
 many fine words for their good will; and said that he accepted
 from them, with no ordinary pleasure, what might be necessary for
 his undertaking.
 Immediately after Yule (A.D. 1080), King Olaf made himself ready;
 and had about 200 of his men with him.  King Jarisleif gave him
 all the horses, and whatever else he required; and when he was
 ready he set off.  King Jarisleif and Queen Ingegerd parted from
 him with all honour; and he left his son Magnus behind with the
 king.  The first part of his journey, down to the sea-coast, King
 Olaf and his men made on the ice; but as spring approached, and
 the ice broke up, they rigged their vessels, and when they were
 ready and got a wind they set out to sea, and had a good voyage.
 When Olaf came to the island of Gotland with his ships he heard
 the news -- which was told as truth, both in Svithjod, Denmark,
 and over all Norway -- that Earl Hakon was missing, and Norway
 without a head.  This gave the king and his men good hope of the
 issue of their journey.  From thence they sailed, when the wind
 suited, to Svithjod, and went into the Maelar lake, to Aros, and
 sent men to the Swedish King Onund appointing a meeting.  King
 Onund received his brother-in-law's message in the kindest
 manner, and went to him according to his invitation.  Astrid also
 came to King Olaf, with the men who had attended her; and great
 was the joy on all sides at this meeting.  The Swedish king also
 received his brother-in-law King Olaf with great joy when they
 Now we must relate what, in the meantime, was going on in Norway.
 Thorer Hund, in these two winters (A.D. 1029-1030), had made a
 Lapland journey, and each winter had been a long time on the
 mountains, and had gathered to himself great wealth by trading in
 various wares with the Laplanders.  He had twelve large coats of
 reindeer-skin made for him, with so much Lapland witchcraft that
 no weapon could cut or pierce them any more than if they were
 armour of ring-mail, nor so much.  The spring thereafter Thorer
 rigged a long-ship which belonged to him, and manned it with his
 house-servants.  He summoned the bondes, demanded a levy from the
 most northern Thing district, collected in this way a great many
 people, and proceeded with this force southwards.  Harek of
 Thjotta had also collected a great number of people; and in this
 expedition many people of consequence took a part, although these
 two were the most distinguished.  They made it known publicly
 that with this war-force they were going against King Olaf, to
 defend the country against him, in case he should come from the
 Einar Tambaskelfer had most influence in the outer part of the
 Throndhjem country after Earl Hakon's death was no longer
 doubtful; for he and his son Eindride appeared to be the nearest
 heirs to the movable property the earl had possessed.  Then Einar
 remembered the promises and offers of friendship which King
 Canute had made him at parting; and he ordered a good vessel
 which belonged to him to be got ready, and embarked with a great
 retinue, and when he was ready sailed southwards along the coast,
 then set out to sea westwards, and sailed without stopping until
 he came to England.  He immediately waited on King Canute, who
 received him well and joyfully.  Then Einar opened his business
 to the king, and said he was come there to see the fulfillment of
 the promises the king had made him; namely, that he, Einar,
 should have the highest title of honour in Norway if Earl Hakon
 were no more.  King Canute replies, that now the circumstances
 were altered.  "I have now," said he, "sent men and tokens to my
 son Svein in Denmark, and promised him the kingdom of Norway; but
 thou shalt retain my friendship, and get the dignity and title
 which thou art entitled by birth to hold.  Thou shalt be
 lenderman with great fiefs, and be so much more raised above
 other lendermen as thou art more able than they."  Einar saw
 sufficiently how matters stood with regard to his business, and
 got ready to return home; but as he now knew the king's
 intentions, and thought it probable if King Olaf came from the
 East the country would not be very peaceable, it came into his
 mind that it would be better to proceed slowly, and not to be
 hastening his voyage, in order to fight against King Olaf,
 without his being advanced by it to any higher dignity than he
 had before.  Einar accordingly went to sea when he was ready; but
 only came to Norway after the events were ended which took place
 there during that summer.
 The chiefs in Norway had their spies east in Svithjod, and south
 in Denmark, to find out if King Olaf had come from Russia.  As
 soon as these men could get across the country, they heard the
 news that King Olaf was arrived in Svithjod; and as soon as full
 certainty of this was obtained, the war message-token went round
 the land.  The whole people were called out to a levy, and a
 great army was collected.  The lendermen who were from Agder,
 Rogaland, and Hordaland, divided themselves, so that some went
 towards the north, and some towards the east; for they thought
 they required people on both sides.  Erling's sons from Jadar
 went eastward, with all the men who lived east of them, and over
 whom they were chiefs; Aslak of Finey, and Erlend of Gerde, with
 the lendermen north of them, went towards the north.  All those
 now named had sworn an oath to King Canute to deprive Olaf of
 life, if opportunity should offer.
 Now when it was reported in Norway that King Olaf was come from
 the East to Svithjod, his friends gathered together to give him
 aid.  The most distinguished man in this flock was Harald
 Sigurdson, a brother of King Olaf, who then was fifteen years of
 age, very stout, and manly of growth as if he were full-grown.
 Many other brave men were there also; and there were in all 600
 men when they proceeded from the uplands, and went eastward with
 their force through Eid forest to Vermaland.  From thence they
 went eastward through the forests to Svithjod and made inquiry
 about King Olaf's proceedings.
 King Olaf was in Svithjod in spring (A.D. 1030), and had sent
 spies from thence to Norway.  All accounts from that quarter
 agreed that there was no safety for him if he went there, and the
 people who came from the north dissuaded him much from
 penetrating into the country.  But he had firmly resolved within
 himself, as before stated, to go into Norway; and he asked King
 Onund what strength King Onund would give him to conquer his
 kingdom.  King Onund replied, that the Swedes were little
 inclined to make an expedition against Norway.  "We know," says
 he, "that the Northmen are rough and warlike, and it is dangerous
 to carry hostility to their doors, but I will not be slow in
 telling thee what aid I can give.  I will give thee 400 chosen
 men from my court-men, active and warlike, and well equipt for
 battle; and moreover will give thee leave to go through my
 country, and gather to thyself as many men as thou canst get to
 follow thee."  King Olaf accepted this offer, and got ready for
 his march.  Queen Astrid, and Ulfhild the king's daughter,
 remained behind in Svithjod.
 Just as King Olaf began his journey the men came to him whom the
 Swedish king had given, in all 400 men, and the king took the
 road the Swedes showed him.  He advanced upwards in the country
 to the forests, and came to a district called Jarnberaland.  Here
 the people joined him who had come out of Norway to meet him, as
 before related; and he met here his brother Harald, and many
 other of his relations, and it was a joyful meeting.  They made
 out together 1200 men.
 There was a man called Dag, who is said to have been a son of
 King Hring, who fled the country from King Olaf.  This Hring, it
 is said further, had been a son of Dag, and grandson of Hring,
 Harald Harfager's son.  Thus was Dag King Olaf's relative.  Both
 Hring the father, and Dag the son, had settled themselves in
 Svithjod, and got land to rule over.  In spring, when Olaf came
 from the East to Svithjod, he sent a message to his relation Dag,
 that he should join him in this expedition with all the force he
 could collect; and if they gained the country of Norway again,
 Dag should have no smaller part of the kingdom under him than his
 forefathers had enjoyed.  When this message came to Dag it suited
 his inclination well, for he had a great desire to go to Norway
 and get the dominion his family had ruled over.  He was not slow,
 therefore, to reply, and promised to come.  Dag was a quick-
 speaking, quick-resolving man, mixing himself up in everything;
 eager, but of little understanding.  He collected a force of
 almost 1200 men, with which he joined King Olaf.
 King Olaf sent a message before him to all the inhabited places
 he passed through, that the men who wished to get goods and
 money, and share of booty, and the lands besides which now were
 in the hands of his enemies, should come to him, and follow him.
 Thereafter King Olaf led his army through forests, often over
 desert moors, and often over large lakes; and they dragged, or
 carried the boats, from lake to lake.  On the way a great many
 followers joined the king, partly forest settlers, partly
 vagabonds.  The places at which he halted for the night are since
 called Olaf's Booths.  He proceeded without any break upon his
 journey until he came to Jamtaland, from which he marched north
 over the keel or ridge of the land.  The men spread themselves
 over the hamlets, and proceeded, much scattered, so long as no
 enemy was expected; but always, when so dispersed, the Northmen
 accompanied the king.  Dag proceeded with his men on another line
 of march, and the Swedes on a third with their troop.
 There were two men, the one called Gauka-Thorer, the other
 Afrafaste, who were vagabonds and great robbers, and had a
 company of thirty men such as themselves.  These two men were
 larger and stronger than other men, and they wanted neither
 courage nor impudence.  These men heard speak of the army that
 was crossing the country, and said among themselves it would be a
 clever counsel to go to the king, follow him to his country, and
 go with him into a regular battle, and try themselves in this
 work; for they had never been in any battle in which people were
 regularly drawn up in line, and they were curious to see the
 king's order of battle.  This counsel was approved of by their
 comrades, and accordingly they went to the road on which King
 Olaf was to pass.  When they came there they presented themselves
 to the king, with their followers, fully armed.  They saluted
 him, and he asked what people they were.  They told their names,
 and said they were natives of the place; and told their errand,
 and that they wished to go with the king.  The king said, it
 appeared to him there was good help in such folks.  "And I have a
 great inclination," said he, "to take such; but are ye Christian
 Gauka-Thorer replies, that he is neither Christian nor heathen.
 "I and my comrades have no faith but on ourselves, our strength,
 and the luck of victory; and with this faith we slip through
 sufficiently well."
 The king replies, "A great pity it is that such brave
 slaughtering fellows did not believe in Christ their Creator."
 Thorer replies, "Is there any Christian man, king, in thy
 following, who stands so high in the air as we two brothers?"
 The king told them to let themselves be baptized, and to accept
 the true faith.  "Follow me then, and I will advance you to great
 dignities; but if ye will not do so, return to your former
 Afrafaste said he would not take on Christianity, and he turned
 Then said Gauka-Thorer, "It is a great shame that the king drives
 us thus away from his army, and I never before came where I was
 not received into the company of other people, and I shall never
 return back on this account."  They joined accordingly the rear
 with other forest-men, and followed the troops.  Thereafter the
 king proceeded west up to the keel-ridge of the country.
 Now when King Olaf, coming from the east, went over the keel-
 ridge and descended on the west side of the mountain, where it
 declines towards the sea, he could see from thence far over the
 country.  Many people rode before the king and many after, and he
 himself rode so that there was a free space around him.  He was
 silent, and nobody spoke to him, and thus he rode a great part of
 the day without looking much about him.  Then the bishop rode up
 to him, asked him why he was so silent, and what he was thinking
 of; for, in general, he was very cheerful, and very talkative on
 a journey to his men, so that all who were near him were merry.
 The king replied, full of thought, "Wonderful things have come
 into my mind a while ago.  As I just now looked over Norway, out
 to the west from the mountains, it came into my mind how many
 happy days I have had in that land.  It appeared to me at first
 as if I saw over all the Throndhjem country, and then over all
 Norway; and the longer this vision was before my eyes the
 farther, methought, I saw, until I looked over the whole wide
 world, both land and sea.  Well I know the places at which I have
 been in former days; some even which I have only heard speak of,
 and some I saw of which I had never heard, both inhabited and
 uninhabited, in this wide world."  The bishop replied that this
 was a holy vision, and very remarkable.
 When the king had come lower down on the mountain, there lay a
 farm before him called Sula, on the highest part of Veradal
 district; and as they came nearer to the house the corn-land
 appeared on both sides of the path.  The king told his people to
 proceed carefully, and not destroy the corn to the bondes.  The
 people observed this when the king was near; but the crowd behind
 paid no attention to it, and the people ran over the corn, so
 that it was trodden flat to the earth.  There dwelt a bonde there
 called Thorgeir Flek, who had two sons nearly grown up.  Thorgeir
 received the king and his people well, and offered all the
 assistance in his power.  The king was pleased with his offer,
 and asked Thorgeir what was the news of the country, and if any
 forces were assembled against him.  Thorgeir says that a great
 army was drawn together in the Throndhjem country, and that there
 were some lendermen both from the south of the country, and from
 Halogaland in the north; "but I do not know," says he. "if they
 are intended against you, or going elsewhere."  Then he
 complained to the king of the damage and waste done him by the
 people breaking and treading down all his corn fields.  The king
 said it was ill done to bring upon him any loss.  Then the king
 rode to where the corn had stood, and saw it was laid flat on the
 earth; and he rode round the field, and said, "I expect, bonde,
 that God will repair thy loss, so that the field, within a week,
 will be better;" and it proved the best of the corn, as the king
 had said.  The king remained all night there, and in the morning
 he made himself ready, and told Thorgeir the bonde to accompany
 him and Thorgear offered his two sons also for the journey; and
 although the king said that he did not want them with him, the
 lads would go.  As they would not stay behind, the king's court-
 men were about binding them; but the king seeing it said, "Let
 them come with us; the lads will come safe back again."  And it
 was with the lads as the king foretold.
 Thereafter the army advanced to Staf, and when the king reached
 Staf's moor he halted.  There he got the certain information that
 the bondes were advancing with an army against him, and that he
 might soon expect to have a battle with them.  He mustered his
 force here, and, after reckoning them up, found there were in
 the army 900 heathen men, and when he came to know it he ordered
 them to allow themselves to be baptized, saying that he would
 have no heathens with him in battle.  "We must not," says he,
 "put our confidence in numbers, but in God alone must we trust;
 for through his power and favour we must be victorious, and I
 will not mix heathen people with my own."  When the heathens
 heard this, they held a council among themselves, and at last 400
 men agreed to be baptized; but 500 men refused to adopt
 Christianity, and that body returned home to their land.  Then
 the brothers Gauka-Thorer and Afrafaste presented themselves to
 the king, and offered again to follow him.  The king asked if
 they had now taken baptism.  Gauka-Thorer replied that they had
 not.  Then the king ordered them to accept baptism and the true
 faith, or otherwise to go away.  They stepped aside to talk with
 each other on what resolution they should take.  Afrafaste said,
 "To give my opinion, I will not turn back, but go into the
 battle, and take a part on the one side or the other; and I don't
 care much in which army I am."  Gauka-Thorer replies, "If I go
 into battle I will give my help to the king, for he has most need
 of help.  And if I must believe in a God, why not in the white
 Christ as well as in any other?  Now it is my advice, therefore,
 that we let ourselves be baptized, since the king insists so much
 upon it, and then go into the battle with him."  They all agreed
 to this, and went to the king, and said they would receive
 baptism.  Then they were baptized by a priest, and the baptism
 was confirmed by the bishop.  The king then took them into the
 troop of his court-men, and said they should fight under his
 banner in the battle.
 King Olaf got certain intelligence now that it would be but a
 short time until he had a battle with the bondes; and after he
 had mustered his men, and reckoned up the force, he had more than
 3000 men, which appears to be a great army in one field.  Then
 the king made the following speech to the people: "We have a
 great army, and excellent troops; and now I will tell you, my
 men, how I will have our force drawn up.  I will let my banner go
 forward in the middle of the army, and my-court-men, and
 pursuivants shall follow it, together with the war forces that
 joined us from the Uplands, and also those who may come to us
 here in the Throndhjem land.  On the right hand of my banner
 shall be Dag Hringson, with all the men he brought to our aid;
 and he shall have the second banner.  And on the left hand of our
 line shall the men be whom the Swedish king gave us, together
 with all the people who came to us in Sweden; and they shall have
 the third banner.  I will also have the people divide themselves
 into distinct flocks or parcels, so that relations and
 acquaintances should be together; for thus they defend each other
 best, and know each other.  We will have all our men
 distinguished by a mark, so as to be a field-token upon their
 helmets and shields, by painting the holy cross thereupon with
 white colour.  When we come into battle we shall all have one
 countersign and field-cry, -- `Forward, forward, Christian men!
 cross men!  king's men!'  We must draw up our meal in thinner
 ranks, because we have fewer people, and I do not wish to let
 them surround us with their men.  Now let the men divide
 themselves into separate flocks, and then each flock into ranks;
 then let each man observe well his proper place, and take notice
 what banner he is drawn up under.  And now we shall remain drawn
 up in array; and our men shall be fully armed, night and day,
 until we know where the meeting shall be between us and the
 bondes."  When the king had finished speaking, the army arrayed,
 and arranged itself according to the king's orders.
 Thereafter the king had a meeting with the chiefs of the
 different divisions, and then the men had returned whom the king
 had sent out into the neighbouring districts to demand men from
 the bondes.  They brought the tidings from the inhabited places
 they had gone through, that all around the country was stripped
 of all men able to carry arms, as all the people had joined the
 bondes' army; and where they did find any they got but few to
 follow them, for the most of them answered that they stayed at
 home because they would not follow either party: they would not
 go out against the king, nor yet against their own relations.
 Thus they had got but few people.  Now the king asked his men
 their counsel, and what they now should do.  Fin Arnason answered
 thus to the king's question: "I will say what should be done, if
 I may advise.  We should go with armed hand over all the
 inhabited places, plunder all the goods, and burn all the
 habitations, and leave not a hut standing, and thus punish the
 bondes for their treason against their sovereign.  I think many a
 man will then cast himself loose from the bondes' army, when he
 sees smoke and flame at home on his farm, and does not know how
 it is going with children, wives. or old men, fathers, mothers,
 and other connections.  I expect also," he added, "that if we
 succeed in breaking the assembled host, their ranks will soon be
 thinned; for so it is with the bondes, that the counsel which is
 the newest is always the dearest to them all, and most followed."
 When Fin had ended his speech it met with general applause; for
 many thought well of such a good occasion to make booty, and all
 thought the bondes well deserved to suffer damage; and they also
 thought it probable, what Fin said, that many would in this way
 be brought to forsake the assembled army of the bondes.
 Now when the king heard the warm expressions of his people he
 told them to listen to him, and said, "The bondes have well
 deserved that it should be done to them as ye desire.  They also
 know that I have formerly done so, burning their habitations, and
 punishing them severely in many ways; but then I proceeded
 against them with fire and sword because they rejected the true
 faith, betook themselves to sacrifices, and would not obey my
 commands.  We had then God's honour to defend.  But this treason
 against their sovereign is a much less grievous crime, although
 it does not become men who have any manhood in them to break the
 faith and vows they have sworn to me.  Now, however, it is more
 in my power to spare those who have dealt ill with me, than those
 whom God hated.  I will, therefore, that my people proceed
 gently, and commit no ravage.  First, I will proceed to meet the
 bondes; if we can then come to a reconciliation, it is well; but
 if they will fight with us, then there are two things before us;
 either we fail in the battle, and then it will be well advised
 not to have to retire encumbered with spoil and cattle; or we
 gain the victory, and then ye will be the heirs of all who fight
 now against us; for some will fall, and others will fly, but both
 will have forfeited their goods and properties, and then it will
 be good to enter into full houses and well-stocked farms; but
 what is burnt is of use to no man, and with pillage and force
 more is wasted than what turns to use.  Now we will spread out
 far through the inhabited places, and take with us all the men we
 can find able to carry arms.  Then men will also capture cattle
 for slaughter, or whatever else of provision that can serve for
 food; but not do any other ravage.  But I will see willingly that
 ye kill any spies of the bonde army ye may fall in with.  Dag and
 his people shall go by the north side down along the valley, and
 I will go on along the country road, and so we shall meet in the
 evening, and all have one night quarter."
 It is related that when King Olaf drew up his men in battle
 order, he made a shield rampart with his troop that should defend
 him in battle, for which he selected the strongest and boldest.
 Thereafter he called his skalds, and ordered them to go in within
 the shield defence.  "Ye shall." says the king, "remain here, and
 see the circumstances which may take place, and then ye will not
 have to follow the reports of others in what ye afterwards tell
 or sing concerning it."  There were Thormod Kolbrunarskald,
 Gissur Gulbraskald, a foster-son of Hofgardaref, and Thorfin Mun.
 Then said Thormod to Gissur, "Let us not stand so close together,
 brother, that Sigvat the skald should not find room when he
 comes.  He must stand before the king, and the king will not have
 it otherwise."  The king heard this, and said, "Ye need not sneer
 at Sigvat, because he is not here.  Often has he followed me
 well, and now he is praying for us, and that we greatly need."
 Thormod replies, "It may be, sire, that ye now require prayers
 most; but it would be thin around the banner-staff if all thy
 court-men were now on the way to Rome.  True it was what we spoke
 about, that no man who would speak with you could find room for
 Thereafter the skalds talked among themselves that it would be
 well to compose a few songs of remembrance about the events which
 would soon be taking place.
 Then Gissur sang: --
      "From me shall bende girl never hear
      A thought of sorrow, care, or fear:
      I wish my girl knew how gay
      We arm us for our viking fray.
      Many and brave they are, we know,
      Who come against us there below;
      But, life or death, we, one and all,
      By Norway's king will stand or fall."
 And Thorfin Mun made another song, viz.: --
      "Dark is the cloud of men and shields,
      Slow moving up through Verdal's fields:
      These Verdal folks presume to bring
      Their armed force against their king.
      On!  let us feed the carrion crow, --
      Give her a feast in every blow;
      And, above all, let Throndhjem's hordes
      Feel the sharp edge of true men's swords."
 And Thorrood sang: --
      "The whistling arrows pipe to battle,
      Sword and shield their war-call rattle.
      Up!  brave men, up!  the faint heart here
      Finds courage when the danger's near.
      Up!  brave men, up!  with Olaf on!
      With heart and hand a field is won.
      One viking cheer! -- then, stead of words,
      We'll speak with our death-dealing swords."
 These songs were immediately got by heart by the army.
 Thereafter the king made himself ready, and marched down through
 the valley.  His whole forces took up their night-quarter in one
 place, and lay down all night under their shields; but as soon as
 day broke the king again put his army in order, and that being
 done they proceeded down through the valley.  Many bondes then
 came to the king, of whom the most joined his army; and all, as
 one man, told the same tale, -- that the lendermen had collected
 an enormous army, with which they intended to give battle to the
 The king took many marks of silver, and delivered them into the
 hands of a bonde, and said, "This money thou shalt conceal, and
 afterwards lay out, some to churches, some to priests, some to
 alms-men, -- as gifts for the life and souls of those who fight
 against us, and may fall in battle."
 The bonde replies, "Should you not rather give this money for the
 soul-mulct of your own men?"
 The king says, "This money shall be given for the souls of those
 who stand against us in the ranks of the bondes' army, and fall
 by the weapons of our own men.  The men who follow us to battle,
 and fall therein, will all be saved together with ourself."
 This night the king lay with his army around him on the field, as
 before related, and lay long awake in prayer to God, and slept
 but little.  Towards morning a slumber fell on him, and when he
 awoke daylight was shooting up.  The king thought it too early to
 awaken the army, and asked where Thormod the skald was.  Thormod
 was at hand, and asked what was the king's pleasure. "Sing us a
 song," said the king.  Thormod raised himself up, and sang so
 loud that the whole army could hear him.  He began to sing the
 old "Bjarkamal", of which these are the first verses: --
      "The day is breaking, --
      The house cock, shaking
      His rustling wings,
      While priest-bell rings,
      Crows up the morn,
      And touting horn
      Wakes thralls to work and weep;
      Ye sons of Adil, cast off sleep,
      Wake up!  wake up!
      Nor wassail cup,
      Nor maiden's jeer,
      Awaits you here.
      Hrolf of the bow!
      Har of the blow!
      Up in your might!  the day is breaking;
      'Tis Hild's game (1) that bides your waking."
 Then the troops awoke, and when the song was ended the people
 thanked him for it; and it pleased many, as it was suitable to
 the time and occasion, and they called it the house-carle's whet.
 The king thanked him for the pleasure, and took a gold ring that
 weighed half a mark and gave it him.  Thormod thanked the king
 for the gift, and said, "We have a good king; but it is not easy
 to say how long the king's life may be.  It is my prayer, sire,
 that thou shouldst never part from me either in life or death."
 The king replies, "We shall all go together so long as I rule,
 and as ye will follow me."
 Thormod says, "I hope, sire, that whether in safety or danger I
 may stand near you as long as I can stand, whatever we may hear
 of Sigvat travelling with his gold-hilted sword."  Then Thormod
 made these lines: --
      "To thee, my king, I'll still be true,
      Until another skald I view,
      Here in the field with golden sword,
      As in thy hall, with flattering word.
      Thy skald shall never be a craven,
      Though he may feast the croaking raven,
      The warrior's fate unmoved I view, --
      To thee, my king, I'll still be true."
 (1)  Hild's game is the battle, from the name of the war-goddess
      Hild. -- L.
 King O1af led his army farther down through the valley, and Dag
 and his men went another way, and the king did not halt until he
 came to Stiklestad.  There he saw the bonde army spread out all
 around; and there were so great numbers that people were going on
 every footpath, and great crowds were collected far and near. 
 They also saw there a troop which came down from Veradal, and had
 been out to spy.  They came so close to the king's people that
 they knew each other.  It was Hrut of Viggia, with thirty men.
 The king ordered his pursuivants to go out against Hrut, and make
 an end of him, to which his men were instantly ready.  The king
 said to the Icelanders, "It is told me that in Iceland it is the
 custom that the bondes give their house-servants a sheep to
 slaughter; now I give you a ram to slaughter (1).  The Icelanders
 were easily invited to this, and went out immediately with a few
 men against Hrut, and killed him and the troop that followed him.
 When the king came to Stiklestad he made a halt, and made the
 army stop, and told his people to alight from their horses and
 get ready for battle; and the people did as the king ordered. 
 Then he placed his army in battle array, and raised his banner.
 Dag was not yet arrived with his men, so that his wing of the
 battle array was wanting.  Then the king said the Upland men
 should go forward in their place, and raise their banner there.
 "It appears to me advisable," says the king, "that Harald my
 brother should not be in the battle, for he is still in the years
 of childhood only."  Harald replies, "Certainly I shall be in the
 battle, for I am not so weak that I cannot handle the sword; and
 as to that, I have a notion of tying the sword-handle to my hand.
 None is more willing than I am to give the bondes a blow; so I
 shall go with my comrades."  It is said that Harald made these
 lines: --
      "Our army's wing, where I shall stand,
      I will hold good with heart and hand;
      My mother's eye shall joy to see
      A battered, blood-stained shield from me.
      The brisk young skald should gaily go
      Into the fray, give blow for blow,
      Cheer on his men, gain inch by inch,
      And from the spear-point never flinch."
 Harald got his will, and was allowed to be in the battle.
 (1)  Hrut means a young ram. -- L.
 A bonde, by name Thorgils Halmason, father to Grim the Good,
 dwelt in Stiklestad farm.  Thorgils offered the king his
 assistance, and was ready to go into battle with him.  The king
 thanked him for the offer.  "I would rather," says the king,
 "thou shouldst not be in the fight.  Do us rather the service to
 take care of the people who are wounded, and to bury those who
 may fall, when the battle is over.  Should it happen, bonde, that
 I fall in this battle, bestow the care on my body that may be
 necessary, if that be not forbidden thee."  Thorgils promised the
 king what he desired.
 Now when King Olaf had drawn up his army in battle array he made
 a speech, in which he told the people to raise their spirit, and
 go boldly forward, if it came to a battle.  "We have," says he,
 "many men, and good; and although the bondes may have a somewhat
 larger force than we, it is fate that rules over victory.  This I
 will make known to you solemnly, that I shall not fly from this
 battle, but shall either be victorious over the bondes, or fall
 in the fight.  I will pray to God that the lot of the two may
 befall me which will be most to my advantage.  With this we may
 encourage ourselves, that we have a more just cause than the
 bondes; and likewise that God must either protect us and our
 cause in this battle, or give us a far higher recompense for what
 we may lose here in the world than what we ourselves could ask.
 Should it be my lot to have anything to say after the battle,
 then shall I reward each of you according to his service, and to
 the bravery he displays in the battle; and if we gain the
 victory, there must be land and movables enough to divide among
 you, and which are now in the hands of your enemies.  Let us at
 the first make the hardest onset, for then the consequences are
 soon seen.  There being a great difference in the numbers, we
 have to expect victory from a sharp assault only; and, on the
 other hand, it will be heavy work for us to fight until we are
 tired, and unable to fight longer; for we have fewer people to
 relieve with than they, who can come forward at one time and
 retreat and rest at another.  But if we advance so hard at the
 first attack that those who are foremost in their ranks must turn
 round, then the one will fall over the other, and their
 destruction will be the greater the greater numbers there are
 together."  When the king had ended his speech it was received
 with loud applause, and the one encouraged the other.
 Thord Folason carried King Olaf's banner.  So says Sigvat the
 skald, in the death-song which he composed about King Olaf, and
 put together according to resurrection saga: --
      "Thord. I have heard, by Olaf's side,
      Where raged the battle's wildest tide,
      Moved on, and, as by one accord
      Moved with them every heart and sword.
      The banner of the king on high,
      Floating all splendid in the sky
      From golden shaft, aloft he bore, --
      The Norsemen's rallying-point of yore."
 King Olaf was armed thus: -- He had a gold-mounted helmet on his
 head; and had in one hand a white shield, on which the holy cross
 was inlaid in gold.  In his other hand he had a lance, which to
 the present day stands beside the altar in Christ Church.  In his
 belt he had a sword, which was called Hneiter, which was
 remarkably sharp, and of which the handle was worked with gold.
 He had also a strong coat of ring-mail.  Sigvat the skald, speaks
 of this: --
      "A greater victory to gain,
      Olaf the Stout strode o'er the plain
      In strong chain armour, aid to bring
      To his brave men on either wing.
      High rose the fight and battle-heat, --
      the clear blood ran beneath the feet
      Of Swedes, who from the East came there,
      In Olaf's gain or loss to share."
 Now when King Olaf had drawn up his men the army of the bondes
 had not yet come near upon any quarter, so the king said the
 people should sit down and rest themselves.  He sat down himself,
 and the people sat around him in a widespread crowd.  He leaned
 down, and laid his head upon Fin Arnason's knee.  There a slumber
 came upon him, and he slept a little while; but at the same time
 the bondes' army was seen advancing with raised banners, and the
 multitude of these was very great.
 Then Fin awakened the king, and said that the bonde-army advanced
 against them.
 The king awoke, and said, "Why did you waken me, Fin, and did not
 allow me to enjoy my dream?"
 Fin: "Thou must not be dreaming; but rather thou shouldst be
 awake, and preparing thyself against the host which is coming
 down upon us; or, dost thou not see that the whole bonde-crowd is
 The king replies, "They are not yet so near to us, and it would
 have been better to have let me sleep."
 Then said Fin, "What was the dream, sire, of which the loss
 appears to thee so great that thou wouldst rather have been left
 to waken of thyself?"
 Now the king told his dream, -- that he seemed to see a high
 ladder, upon which he went so high in the air that heaven was
 open: for so high reached the ladder.  "And when you awoke me, I
 was come to the highest step towards heaven."
 Fin replies, "This dream does not appear to me so good as it does
 to thee.  I think it means that thou art fey (1); unless it be
 the mere want of sleep that has worked upon thee."
 (1)  Fey means doomed to die.
 When King Olaf was arrived at Stiklestad, it happened, among
 other circumstances, that a man came to him; and although it was
 nowise wonderful that there came many men from the districts, yet
 this must be regarded as unusual, that this man did not appear
 like the other men who came to him.  He was so tall that none
 stood higher than up to his shoulders: very handsome he was in
 countenance, and had beautiful fair hair.  He was well armed; had
 a fine helmet, and ring armour; a red shield; a superb sword in
 his belt; and in his hand a gold-mounted spear, the shaft of it
 so thick that it was a handful to grasp.  The man went before the
 king, saluted him, and asked if the king would accept his
 The king asked his name and family, also what countryman he was.
 He replies, "My family is in Jamtaland and Helsingjaland, and my
 name is Arnljot Gelline; but this I must not forget to tell you,
 that I came to the assistance of those men you sent to Jamtaland
 to collect scat, and I gave into their hands a silver dish, which
 I sent you as a token that I would be your friend."
 Then the king asked Arnljot if he was a Christian or not.  He
 replied, "My faith has been this, to rely upon my power and
 strength, and which faith hath hitherto given me satisfaction;
 but now I intend rather to put my faith, sire, in thee."
 The king replies, "If thou wilt put faith in me thou must also
 put faith in what I will teach thee.  Thou must believe that
 Jesus Christ has made heaven and earth, and all mankind, and to
 him shall all those who are good and rightly believing go after
 Arnljot answers, "I have indeed heard of the white Christ, but
 neither know what he proposes, nor what he rules over; but now I
 will believe all that thou sayest to me, and lay down my lot in
 your hands."
 Thereupon Arnljot was baptized.  The king taught him so much of
 the holy faith as appeared to him needful, and placed him in the
 front rank of the order of battle, in advance of his banner,
 where also Gauka-Thorer and Afrafaste, with their men, were.
 Now shall we relate what we have left behind in our tale, -- that
 the lendermen and bondes had collected a vast host as soon as it
 was reported that King Olaf was come from Russia, and had arrived
 in Svithjod; but when they heard that he had come to Jamtaland,
 and intended to proceed westwards over the keel-ridge to Veradal,
 they brought their forces into the Throndhjem country, where they
 gathered together the whole people, free and unfree, and
 proceeded towards Veradal with so great a body of men that there
 was nobody in Norway at that time who had seen so large a force
 assembled.  But the force, as it usually happens in so great a
 multitude, consisted of many different sorts of people.  There
 were many lendermen, and a great many powerful bondes; but the
 great mass consisted of labourers and cottars.  The chief
 strength of this army lay in the Throndhjem land, and it was the
 most warm in enmity and opposition to the king.
 When King Canute had, as before related, laid all Norway under
 his power, he set Earl Hakon to manage it, and gave the earl a
 court-bishop, by name Sigurd, who was of Danish descent, and had
 been long with King Canute.  This bishop was of a very hot
 temper, and particularly obstinate, and haughty in his speech;
 but supported King Canute all he could in conversation, and was a
 great enemy of King Olaf.  He was now also in the bondes' army,
 spoke often before the people, and urged them much to
 insurrection against King Olaf.
 At a House-thing, at which a great many people were assembled,
 the bishop desired to be heard, and made the following speech:
 "Here are now assembled a great many men, so that probably there
 will never be opportunity in this poor country of seeing so great
 a native army; but it would be desirable if this strength and
 multitude could be a protection; for it will all be needed, if
 this Olaf does not give over bringing war and strife upon you.
 From his very earliest youth he has been accustomed to plunder
 and kill: for which purposes he drove widely around through all
 countries, until he turned at last against this, where he began
 to show hostilities against the men who were the best and most
 powerful; and even against King Canute, whom all are bound to
 serve according to their ability, and in whose scat-lands he set
 himself down.  He did the same to Olaf the Swedish king.  He
 drove the earls Svein and Hakon away from their heritages; and
 was even most tyrannical towards his own connections, as he drove
 all the kings out of the Uplands: although, indeed, it was but
 just reward for having been false to their oaths of fealty to
 King Canute, and having followed this King Olaf in all the folly
 he could invent; so their friendship ended according to their
 deserts, by this king mutilating some of them, taking their
 kingdoms himself, and ruining every man in the country who had an
 honourable name.  Ye know yourselves how he has treated the
 lendermen, of whom many of the worthlest have been murdered, and
 many obliged to fly from their country; and how he has roamed far
 and wide through the land with robber-bands, burning and
 plundering houses, and killing people.  Who is the man among us
 here of any consideration who has not some great injury from him
 to avenge?  Now he has come hither with a foreign troop,
 consisting mostly of forest-men, vagabonds, and such marauders.
 Do ye think he will now be more merciful to you, when he is
 roaming about with such a bad crew, after committing devastations
 which all who followed him dissuaded him from?  Therefore it is
 now my advice, that ye remember King Canute's words when he told
 you, if King Olaf attempted to return to the country ye should
 defend the liberty King Canute had promised you, and should
 oppose and drive away such a vile pack.  Now the only thing to be
 done is to advance against them, and cast forth these malefactors
 to the wolves and eagles, leaving their corpses on the spot they
 cover, unless ye drag them aside to out-of-the-way corners in the
 woods or rocks.  No man would be so imprudent as to remove them
 to churches, for they are all robbers and evil-doers."  When he
 had ended his speech it was hailed with the loudest applause, and
 all unanimously agreed to act according to his recommendation.
 The lendermen who had come together appointed meetings with each
 other, and consulted together how they should draw up their
 troops, and who should be their leader.  Kalf Arnason said that
 Harek of Thjotta was best fitted to be the chief of this army,
 for he was descended from Harald Harfager's race.  "The king also
 is particularly enraged against him on account of the murder of
 Grankel, and therefore he would be exposed to the severest fate
 if Olaf recovered the kingdom; and Harek withal is a man
 experienced in battles, and a man who does much for honour
 Harek replies, that the men are best suited for this who are in
 the flower of their age.  "I am now," says he, "an old and
 decaying man, not able to do much in battle: besides, there is
 near relationship between me and King Olaf; and although he seems
 not to put great value upon that tie, it would not beseem me to
 go as leader of the hostilities against him, before any other in
 this meeting.  On the other hand, thou, Thorer, art well suited
 to be our chief in this battle against King Olaf; and thou hast
 distinct grounds for being so, both because thou hast to avenge
 the death of thy relation, and also hast been driven by him as an
 outlaw from thy property.  Thou hast also promised King Canute,
 as well as thy connections, to avenge the murder of thy relative
 Asbjorn; and dost thou suppose there ever will be a better
 opportunity than this of taking vengeance on Olaf for all these
 insults and injuries?"
 Thorer replies thus to his speech: "I do not confide in myself so
 much as to raise the banner against King Olaf, or, as chief, to
 lead on this army; for the people of Throndhjem have the greatest
 part in this armament, and I know well their haughty spirit, and
 that they would not obey me, or any other Halogaland man,
 although I need not be reminded of my injuries to be roused to
 vengeance on King Olaf.  I remember well my heavy loss when King
 Olaf slew four men, all distinguished both by birth and personal
 qualities; namely, my brother's son Asbjorn, my sister's sons
 Thorer and Grjotgard, and their father Olver; and it is my duty
 to take vengeance for each man of them.  I will not conceal that
 I have selected eleven of my house-servants for that purpose, and
 of those who are the most daring; and I do not think we shall be
 behind others in exchanging blows with King Olaf, should
 opportunity be given."
 Then Kalf Arnason desired to speak.  "It is highly necessary,"
 says he, "that this business we have on hand do not turn out a
 mockery and child-work, now that an army is collected.  Something
 else is needful, if we are to stand battle with King Olaf, than
 that each should shove the danger from himself; for we must
 recollect that although King Olaf has not many people compared to
 this army of ours, the leader of them is intrepid, and the whole
 body of them will be true to him, and obedient in the battle. 
 But if we who should be the leaders of this army show any fear,
 and will not encourage the army and go at the head of it, it must
 happen that with the great body of our people the spirit will
 leave their hearts, and the next thing will be that each will
 seek his own safety.  Although we have now a great force
 assembled, we shall find our destruction certain, when we meet
 King Olaf and his troops, if we, the chiefs of the people, are
 not confident in our cause, and have not the whole army
 confidently and bravely going along with us.  If it cannot be so,
 we had better not risk a battle; and then it is easy to see that
 nothing would be left us but to shelter ourselves under King
 Olaf's mercy, however hard it might be, as then we would be less
 guilty than we now may appear to him to be.  Yet I know there are
 men in his ranks who would secure my life and peace if I would
 seek it.  Will ye now adopt my proposal -- then shalt thou,
 friend Thorer, and thou, Harek, go under the banner which we will
 all of us raise up, and then follow.  Let us all be speedy and
 determined in the resolution we have taken, and put ourselves so
 at the head of the bondes' army that they see no distrust in us;
 for then will the common man advance with spirit when we go
 merrily to work in placing the army in battle-order, and in
 encouraging the people to the strife."
 When Kalf had ended they all concurred in what he proposed, and
 all would do what Kalf thought of advantage.  All desired Kalf to
 be the leader of the army, and to give each what place in it he
 Kalf Arnason then raised his banner, and drew up his house-
 servants along with Harek of Thjotta and his men.  Thorer Hund,
 with his troop, was at the head of the order of battle in front
 of the banner; and on both sides of Thorer was a chosen body of
 bondes, all of them the most active and best armed in the forces.
 This part of the array was long and thick, and in it were drawn
 up the Throndhjem people and the Halogalanders.  On the right
 wing was another array; and on the left of the main array were
 drawn up the men from Rogaland, Hordaland, the Fjord districts,
 and Scgn, and they had the third banner.
 There was a man called Thorstein Knarrarsmid, who was a merchant
 and master ship-carpenter, stout and strong, very passionate, and
 a great manslayer.  He had been in enmity against King Olaf, who
 had taken from him a new and large merchant-vessel he had built,
 on account of some manslaughter-mulct, incurred in the course of
 his misdeeds, which he owed to the king.  Thorstein, who was with
 the bondes' army, went forward in front of the line in which
 Thorer Hund stood, and said, "Here I will be, Thorer, in your
 ranks; for I think, if I and King Olaf meet, to be the first to
 strive a weapon at him, if I can get so near, to repay him for
 the robbery of the ship he took from me, which was the best that
 ever went on merchant voyage."  Thorer and his men received
 Thorstein, and he went into their ranks.
 When the bondes' men and array were drawn up the lendermen
 addressed the men, and ordered them to take notice of the place
 to which each man belonged, under which banner each should be,
 who there were in front of the banner, who were his side-men, and
 that they should be brisk and quick in taking up their places in
 the array; for the army had still to go a long way, and the array
 might be broken in the course of march.  Then they encouraged the
 people; and Kalf invited all the men who had any injury to avenge
 on King Olaf to place themselves under the banner which was
 advancing against King Olaf's own banner.  They should remember
 the distress he had brought upon them; and, he said, never was
 there a better opportunity to avenge their grievances, and to
 free themselves from the yoke and slavery he had imposed on them.
 "Let him," says he, "be held a useless coward who does not fight
 this day boldly; and they are not innocents who are opposed to
 you, but people who will not spare you if ye spare them."
 Kalf's speech was received with loud applause, and shouts of
 encouragement were heard through the whole army.
 Thereafter the bondes' army advanced to Stiklestad, where King
 Olaf was already with his people.  Kalf and Harek went in front,
 at the head of the army under their banners.  But the battle did
 not begin immediately on their meeting; for the bondes delayed
 the assault, because all their men were not come upon the plain,
 and they waited for those who came after them.  Thorer Hund had
 come up with his troop the last, for he had to take care that the
 men did not go off behind when the battlecry was raised, or the
 armies were closing with each other; and therefore Kalf and Harek
 waited for Thorer.  For the encouragement of their men in the
 battle the bondes had the field-cry -- "Forward, forward,
 bondemen!"  King Olaf also made no attack, for he waited for Dag
 and the people who followed him.  At last the king saw Dag and
 his men approaching.  It is said that the army of the bondes was
 not less on this day than a hundred times a hundred men.  Sigvat
 the skald speaks thus of the numbers: --
      "I grieve to think the king had brought
      Too small a force for what he sought:
      He held his gold too fast to bring
      The numbers that could make him king.
      The foemen, more than two to one,
      The victory by numbers won;
      And this alone, as I've heard say,
      Against King Olaf turned the day."
 As the armies on both sides stood so near that people knew each
 other, the king said, "Why art thou here, Kalf, for we parted
 good friends south in More?  It beseems thee ill to fight against
 us, or to throw a spear into our army; for here are four of thy
 Kalf replied, "Many things come to pass differently from what may
 appear seemly.  You parted from us so that it was necessary to
 seek peace with those who were behind in the country.  Now each
 must remain where he stands; but if I might advise, we should be
 Then Fin, his brother, answered, "This is to be observed of Kalf,
 that when he speaks fairly he has it in his mind to do ill."
 The king answered, "It may be, Kalf, that thou art inclined to
 reconciliation; but, methinks, the bondes do not appear so
 Then Thorgeir of Kviststad said, "You shall now have such peace
 as many formerly have received at your hands, and which you shall
 now pay for."
 The king replies, "Thou hast no occasion to hasten so much to
 meet us; for fate has not decreed to thee to-day a victory over
 me, who raised thee to power and dignity from a mean station."
 Now came Thorer Hund, went forward in front of the banner with
 his troop, and called out, "Forward, forward, bondemen!" 
 Thereupon the bondemen raised the war-cry, and shot their arrows
 and spears.  The king's men raised also a war-shout; and that
 done, encouraged each other to advance, crying out, "Forward,
 forward, Christ-men!  cross-men!  king's men!"  When the bondes
 who stood outermost on the wings heard it, they repeated the same
 cry; but when the other bondes heard them they thought these were
 king's men, turned their arms against them, and they fought
 together, and many were slain before they knew each other.  The
 weather was beautiful, and the sun shone clear; but when the
 battle began the heaven and the sun became red, and before the
 battle ended it became as dark as at night.  King Olaf had drawn
 up his army upon a rising ground, and it rushed down from thence
 upon the bonde-army with such a fierce assault, that the bondes'
 array went before it; so that the breast of the king's array came
 to stand upon the ground on which the rear of the bondes' array
 had stood, and many of the bondes' army were on the way to fly,
 but the lendermen and their house-men stood fast, and the battle
 became very severe.  So says Sigvat: --
      "Thundered the ground beneath their tread,
      As, iron-clad, thick-tramping, sped
      The men-at-arms, in row and rank,
      Past Stiklestad's sweet grassy bank.
      The clank of steel, the bowstrings' twang,
      The sounds of battle, loudly rang;
      And bowman hurried on advancing,
      Their bright helms in the sunshine glancing."
 The lendermen urged their men, and forced them to advance. 
 Sigvat speaks of this: --
      "Midst in their line their banner flies,
      Thither the stoutest bonde hies:
      But many a bonde thinks of home,
      And many wish they ne'er had come."
 Then the bonde-army pushed on from all quarters.  They who stood
 in front hewed down with their swords; they who stood next thrust
 with their spears; and they who stood hindmost shot arrows, cast
 spears, or threw stones, hand-axes, or sharp stakes.  Soon there
 was a great fall of men in the battle.  Many were down on both
 sides.  In the first onset fell Arnljot Gelline, Gauka-Thorer,
 and Afrafaste, with all their men, after each had killed a man or
 two, and some indeed more.  Now the ranks in front of the king's
 banner began to be thinned, and the king ordered Thord to carry
 the banner forward, and the king himself followed it with the
 troop he had chosen to stand nearest to him in battle; and these
 were the best armed men in the field, and the most expert in the
 use of their weapons.  Sigvat the skald tells of this: --
      "Loud was the battle-storm there,
      Where the king's banner flamed in air.
      The king beneath his banner stands,
      And there the battle he commands."
 Olaf came forth from behind the shield-bulwark, and put himself
 at the head of the army; and when the bondes looked him in the
 face they were frightened, and let their hands drop.  So says
 Sigvat: --
      "I think I saw them shrink with fear
      Who would not shrink from foeman's spear,
      When Olaf's lion-eye was cast
      On them, and called up all the past.
      Clear as the serpent's eye -- his look
      No Throndhjem man could stand, but shook
      Beneath its glance, and skulked away,
      Knowing his king, and cursed the day."
 The combat became fierce, and the king went forward in the fray.
 So says Sigvat: --
      "When on they came in fierce array,
      And round the king arose the fray,
      With shield on arm brave Olaf stood,
      Dyeing his sword in their best blood.
      For vengeance on his Throndhjem foes,
      On their best men he dealt his blows;
      He who knew well death's iron play,
      To his deep vengeance gave full sway."
 King Olaf fought most desperately.  He struck the lenderman
 before mentioned (Thorgeir of Kviststad) across the face, cut off
 the nose-piece of his helmet, and clove his head down below the
 eyes so that they almost fell out.  When he fell the king said,
 "Was it not true, Thorgeir, what I told thee, that thou shouldst
 not be victor in our meeting?"  At the same instant Thord stuck
 the banner-pole so fast in the earth that it remained standing.
 Thord had got his death-wound, and fell beneath the banner. 
 There also fell Thorfin Mun, and also Gissur Gullbrarskald, who
 was attacked by two men, of whom he killed one, but only wounded
 the other before he fell.  So says Hofgardaref: --
      "Bold in the Iron-storm was he,
      Firm and stout as forest tree,
      The hero who, 'gainst two at once,
      Made Odin's fire from sword-edge glance;
      Dealing a death-blow to the one,
      Known as a brave and generous man,
      Wounding the other, ere he fell, --
      His bloody sword his deeds showed well."
 It happened then, as before related, that the sun, although the
 air was clear, withdrew from the sight, and it became dark.  Of
 this Sigvat the skald speaks: --
      "No common wonder in the sky
      Fell out that day -- the sun on high,
      And not a cloud to see around,
      Shone not, nor warmed Norway's ground.
      The day on which fell out this fight
      Was marked by dismal dusky light,
      This from the East I heard -- the end
      Of our great king it did portend."
 At the same time Dag Hringson came up with his people, and began
 to put his men in array, and to set up his banner; but on account
 of the darkness the onset could not go on so briskly, for they
 could not see exactly whom they had before them.  They turned,
 however, to that quarter where the men of Hordaland and Rogaland
 stood.  Many of these circumstances took place at the same time,
 and some happened a little earlier, and some a little later.
 On the one side of Kalf Arnason stood his two relations, Olaf and
 Kalf, with many other brave and stout men.  Kalf was a son of
 Arnfin Arnmodson, and a brother's son of Arne Arnmodson.  On the
 other side of Kalf Arnason stood Thorer Hund.  King Olaf hewed at
 Thorer Hund, and struck him across the shoulders; but the sword
 would not cut, and it was as if dust flew from his reindeer-skin
 coat.  So says Sigvat: --
      "The king himself now proved the power
      Of Fin-folk's craft in magic hour,
      With magic song; for stroke of steel
      Thor's reindeer coat would never feel,
      Bewitched by them it turned the stroke
      Of the king's sword, -- a dust-like smoke
      Rose from Thor's shoulders from the blow
      Which the king though would end his foe."
 Thorer struck at the king, and they exchanged some blows; but the
 king's sword would not cut where it met the reindeer skin,
 although Thorer was wounded in the hands.  Sigvat sang thus of
 it: --
      "Some say that Thorer's not right bold;
      Why never yet have I been told
      Of one who did a bolder thing
      Than to change blows with his true king.
      Against his king his sword to wield,
      Leaping across the shield on shield
      Which fenced the king round in the fight,
      Shows the dog's (1) courage -- brave, not bright."
 The king said to Bjorn the marshal, "Do thou kill the dog on whom
 steel will not bite."  Bjorn turned round the axe in his hands,
 and gave Thorer a blow with the hammer of it on the shoulder so
 hard that he tottered.  The king at the same moment turned
 against Kalf and his relations, and gave Olaf his death-wound.
 Thorer Hund struck his spear right through the body of Marshal
 Bjorn, and killed him outright; and Thorer said, "It is thus we
 hunt the bear." (2)  Thorstein Knarrarsmid struck at King Olaf
 with his axe, and the blow hit his left leg above the knee.  Fin
 Arnason instantly killed Thorstein.  The king after the wound
 staggered towards a stone, threw down his sword, and prayed God
 to help him.  Then Thorer Hund struck at him with his spear, and
 the stroke went in under his mail-coat and into his belly.  Then
 Kalf struck at him on the left side of the neck.  But all are not
 agreed upon Kalf having been the man who gave him the wound in
 the neck.  These three wounds were King Olaf's death; and after
 the king's death the greater part of the forces which had
 advanced with him fell with the king.  Bjarne Gullbrarskald sang
 these verses about Kalf Arnason: --
      "Warrior!  who Olaf dared withstand,
      Who against Olaf held the land,
      Thou hast withstood the bravest, best,
      Who e'er has gone to his long rest.
      At Stiklestad thou wast the head;
      With flying banners onwards led
      Thy bonde troops, and still fought on,
      Until he fell -- the much-mourned one."
 Sigvat also made these verses on Bjorn: --
      "The marshal Bjorn, too, I find,
      A great example leaves behind,
      How steady courage should stand proof,
      Though other servants stand aloof.
      To Russia first his steps he bent,
      To serve his master still intent;
      And now besides his king he fell, --
      A noble death for skalds to tell."
 (1)  Thorer's name was Hund -- the dog; and a play upon Thorer
      Hund's name was intended by the skald. -- L.
 (2)  Bjorn, the marshal's name, signifies a bear. -- L.
 Dag Hringson still kept up the battle, and made in the beginning
 so fierce an assault that the bondes gave way, and some betook
 themselves to flight.  There a great number of the bondes fell,
 and these lendermen, Erlend of Gerde and Aslak of Finey; and the
 banner also which they had stood under was cut down.  This onset
 was particularly hot, and was called Dag's storm.  But now Kalf
 Arnason, Harek of Thjotta, and Thorer Hund turned against Dag,
 with the array which had followed them, and then Dag was
 overwhelmed with numbers; so he betook himself to flight with the
 men still left him.  There was a valley through which the main
 body of the fugitives fled, and men lay scattered in heaps on
 both sides; and many were severely wounded, and many so fatigued
 that they were fit for nothing.  The bondes pursued only a short
 way; for their leaders soon returned back to the field of battle,
 where they had their friends and relations to look after.
 Thorer Hund went to where King Olaf's body lay, took care of it,
 laid it straight out on the ground, and spread a cloak over it. 
 He told since that when he wiped the blood from the face it was
 very beautiful; and there was red in the cheeks, as if he only
 slept, and even much clearer than when he was in life.  The
 king's blood came on Thorer's hand, and ran up between his
 fingers to where he had been wounded, and the wound grew up so
 speedily that it did not require to be bound up.  This
 circumstance was testified by Thorer himself when King Olaf's
 holiness came to be generally known among the people; and Thorer
 Hund was among the first of the king's powerful opponents who
 endeavoured to spread abroad the king's sanctity.
 Kalf Arnason searched for his brothers who had fallen, and found
 Thorberg and Fin.  It is related that Fin threw his dagger at
 him, and wanted to kill him, giving him hard words, and calling
 him a faithless villain, and a traitor to his king.  Kalf did not
 regard it, but ordered Fin and Thorberg to be carried away from
 the field.  When their wounds were examined they were found not
 to be deadly, and they had fallen from fatigue, and under the
 weight of their weapons.  Thereafter Kalf tried to bring his
 brothers down to a ship, and went himself with them.  As soon as
 he was gone the whole bonde-army, having their homes in the
 neighbourhood, went off also, excepting those who had friends or
 relations to look after, or the bodies of the slain to take care
 of.  The wounded were taken home to the farms, so that every
 house was full of them; and tents were erected over some.  But
 wonderful as was the number collected in the bonde-army, no less
 wonderful was the haste with which this vast body was dispersed
 when it was once free; and the cause of this was, that the most
 of the people gathered together from the country places were
 longing for their homes.
 The bondes who had their homes in Veradal went to the chiefs
 Harek and Thorer, and complained of their distress, saying, "The
 fugitives who have escaped from the battle have proceeded up over
 the valley of Veradal, and are destroying our habitations, and
 there is no safety for us to travel home so long as they are in
 the valley.  Go after them with war-force, and let no mother's
 son of them escape with life; for that is what they intended for
 us if they had got the upper hand in the battle, and the same
 they would do now if they met us hereafter, and had better luck
 than we.  It may also be that they will linger in the valley if
 they have nothing to be frightened for, and then they would not
 proceed very gently in the inhabited country."  The bondes made
 many words about this, urging the chiefs to advance directly, and
 kill those who had escaped.  Now when the chiefs talked over this
 matter among themselves, they thought there was much truth in
 what the bondes said.  They resolved, therefore, that Thorer Hund
 should undertake this expedition through Veradal, with 600 men of
 his own troops.  Then, towards evening, he set out with his men;
 and Thorer continued his march without halt until he came in the
 night to Sula, where he heard the news that Dag Hringson had come
 there in the evening, with many other flocks of the king's men,
 and had halted there until they took supper, but were afterwards
 gone up to the mountains.  Then Thorer said he did not care to
 pursue them up through the mountains, and he returned down the
 valley again, and they did not kill many of them this time.  The
 bondes then returned to their homes, and the following day
 Thorer, with his people, went to their ships.  The part of the
 king's men who were still on their legs concealed themselves in
 the forests, and some got help from the people.
 Harald Sigurdson was severely wounded; but Ragnvald Brusason
 brought him to a bonde's the night after the battle, and the
 bonde took in Harald, and healed his wound in secret, and
 afterwards gave him his son to attend him.  They went secretly
 over the mountains, and through the waste forests, and came out
 in Jamtaland.  Harald Sigurdson was fifteen years old when King
 Olaf fell.  In Jamtaland Harald found Ragnvald Brusason; and they
 went both east to King Jarisleif in Russia, as is related in the
 Saga of Harald Sigurdson.
 Thormod Kolbrunarskald was under King Olaf's banner in the
 battle; but when the king had fallen, the battle was raging so
 that of the king's men the one fell by the side of the other, and
 the most of those who stood on their legs were wounded.  Thormod
 was also severely wounded, and retired, as all the others did,
 back from where there was most danger of life, and some even
 fled.  Now when the onset began which is called Dag's storm, all
 of the king's men who were able to combat went there; but Thormod
 did not come into that combat, being unable to fight, both from
 his wound and from weariness, but he stood by the side of his
 comrade in the ranks, although he could do nothing.  There he was
 struck by an arrow in the left side; but he broke off the shaft
 of the arrow, went out of the battle, and up towards the houses,
 where he came to a barn which was a large building.  Thormod had
 his drawn sword in his hand; and as he went in a man met him,
 coming out, and said, "It is very bad there with howling and
 screaming; and a great shame it is that brisk young fellows
 cannot bear their wounds: it may be that the king's men have done
 bravely to-day, but they certainly bear their wounds very ill." 
 Thormod asks. "What is thy name?"
 He called himself Kimbe.
 Thormod: "Wast thou in the battle, too?"
 "I was with the bondes, which was the best side," says he.
 "And art thou wounded any way?" says Thormod.
 "A little," said Kimbe.  "And hast thou been in the battle too?"
 Thormod replied, "I was with them who had the best."
 "Art thou wounded?" says Kimbe.
 "Not much to signify," replies Thormod.
 As Kimbe saw that Thormod had a gold ring on his arm, he said,
 "Thou art certainly a king's man.  Give me thy gold ring, and I
 will hide thee.  The bondes will kill thee if thou fallest in
 their way."
 Thormod says, "Take the ring if thou canst get it: I have lost
 that which is more worth."
 Kimbe stretched out his hand, and wanted to take the ring; but
 Thormod, swinging his sword, cut off his hand; and it is related
 that Kimbe behaved himself no better under his wound than those
 he had been blaming just before.  Kimbe went off, and Thormod sat
 down in the barn, and listened to what people were saying.  The
 conversation was mostly about what each had seen in the battle,
 and about the valour of the combatants.  Some praised most King
 Olaf's courage, and some named others who stood nowise behind him
 in bravery.  Then Thormod sang these verses: --
      "Olaf was brave beyond all doubt, --
      At Stiklestad was none so stout;
      Spattered with blood, the king, unsparing,
      Cheered on his men with deed and daring.
      But I have heard that some were there
      Who in the fight themselves would spare;
      Though, in the arrow-storm, the most
      Had perils quite enough to boast."
 Thormod went out, and entered into a chamber apart, in which
 there were many wounded men, and with them a woman binding their
 wounds.  There was fire upon the floor, at which she warmed water
 to wash and clean their wounds.  Thormod sat himself down beside
 the door, and one came in, and another went out, of those who
 were busy about the wounded men.  One of them turned to Thormod,
 looked at him, and said, "Why art thou so dead-pale?  Art thou
 wounded?  Why dost thou not call for the help of the wound-
 healers?"  Thormod then sang these verses: --
      "I am not blooming, and the fair
      And slender girl loves to care
      For blooming youths -- few care for me;
      With Fenja's meal I cannot fee.
      This is the reason why I feel
      The slash and thrust of Danish steel;
      And pale and faint, and bent with pain,
      Return from yonder battle-plain."
 Then Thormod stood up and went in towards the fire, and stood
 there awhile.  The young woman said to him, "Go out, man, and
 bring in some of the split firewood which lies close beside the
 door."  He went out and brought in an armful of wood, which he
 threw down upon the floor.  Then the nurse-girl looked him in the
 face, and said, "Dreadfully pale is this man -- why art thou so?"
 Then Thormod sang: --
      "Thou wonderest, sweet sprig, at me,
      A man so hideous to see:
      Deep wounds but rarely mend the face,
      The crippling blow gives little grace.
      The arrow-drift o'ertook me, girl, --
      A fine-ground arrow in the whirl
      Went through me, and I feel the dart
      Sits, lovely girl, too near my heart."
 The girl said, "Let me see thy wound, and I will bind it." 
 Thereupon Thormod sat down, cast off his clothes, and the girl
 saw his wounds, and examined that which was in his side, and felt
 that a piece of iron was in it, but could not find where the iron
 had gone in.  In a stone pot she had stirred together leeks and
 other herbs, and boiled them, and gave the wounded men of it to
 eat, by which she discovered if the wounds had penetrated into
 the belly; for if the wound had gone so deep, it would smell of
 leek.  She brought some of this now to Thormod, and told him to
 eat of it.  He replied, "Take it away, I have no appetite for my
 broth."  Then she took a large pair of tongs, and tried to pull
 out the iron; but it sat too fast, and would in no way come, and
 as the wound was swelled, little of it stood out to lay hold of.
 Now said Thormod, "Cut so deep in that thou canst get at the iron
 with the tongs, and give me the tongs and let me pull."  She did
 as he said.  Then Thormod took a gold ring from his hand, gave it
 to the nurse-woman, and told her to do with it what she liked. 
 "It is a good man's gift," said he: "King Olaf gave me the ring
 this morning."  Then Thormod took the tongs, and pulled the iron
 out; but on the iron there was a hook, at which there hung some
 morsels of flesh from the heart, -- some white, some red.  When
 he saw that, he said, "The king has fed us well.  I am fat, even
 at the heart-roots;" and so saying he leant back, and was dead.
 And with this ends what we have to say about Thormod.
 King Olaf fell on Wednesday, the 29th of July (A.D. 1030).  It
 was near mid-day when the two armies met, and the battle began
 before half-past one, and before three the king fell.  The
 darkness continued from about half-past one to three also. 
 Sigvat the skald speaks thus of the result of the battle: --
      "The loss was great to England's foes,
      When their chief fell beneath the blows
      By his own thoughtless people given, --
      When the king's shield in two was riven.
      The people's sovereign took the field,
      The people clove the sovereign's shield.
      Of all the chiefs that bloody day,
      Dag only came out of the fray."
 And he composed these: --
      "Such mighty bonde-power, I ween,
      With chiefs or rulers ne'er was seen.
      It was the people's mighty power
      That struck the king that fatal hour.
      When such a king, in such a strife,
      By his own people lost his life,
      Full many a gallant man must feel
      The death-wound from the people's steel."
 The bondes did not spoil the slain upon the field of battle, for
 immediately after the battle there came upon many of them who had
 been against the king a kind of dread as it were; yet they held
 by their evil inclination, for they resolved among themselves
 that all who had fallen with the king should not receive the
 interment which belongs to good men, but reckoned them all
 robbers and outlaws.  But the men who had power, and had
 relations on the field, cared little for this, but removed their
 remains to the churches, and took care of their burial.
 Thorgils Halmason and his son Grim went to the field of battle
 towards evening when it was dusk, took King Olaf's corpse up, and
 bore it to a little empty houseman's hut which stood on the other
 side of their farm.  They had light and water with them.  Then
 they took the clothes off the body, swathed it in a linen cloth,
 laid it down in the house, and concealed it under some firewood
 so that nobody could see it, even if people came into the hut.
 Thereafter they went home again to the farmhouse.  A great many
 beggars and poor people had followed both armies, who begged for
 meat; and the evening after the battle many remained there, and
 sought lodging round about in all the houses, great or small.  It
 is told of a blind man who was poor, that a boy attended him and
 led him.  They went out around the farm to seek a lodging, and
 came to the same empty house, of which the door was so low that
 they had almost to creep in.  Now when the blind man had come in,
 he fumbled about the floor seeking a place where he could lay
 himself down.  He had a hat on his head, which fell down over his
 face when he stooped down.  He felt with his hands that there was
 moisture on the floor, and he put up his wet hand to raise his
 hat, and in doing so put his fingers on his eyes.  There came
 immediately such an itching in his eyelids, that he wiped the
 water with his fingers from his eyes, and went out of the hut,
 saying nobody could lie there, it was so wet.  When he came out
 of the hut he could distinguish his hands, and all that was near
 him, as far as things can be distinguished by sight in the
 darkness of light; and he went immediately to the farm-house into
 the room, and told all the people he had got his sight again, and
 could see everything, although many knew he had been blind for a
 long time, for he had been there, before, going about among the
 houses of the neighbourhood.  He said he first got his sight when
 he was coming out of a little ruinous hut which was all wet
 inside.  "I groped in the water," said he, "and rubbed my eyes
 with my wet hands."  He told where the hut stood.  The people who
 heard him wondered much at this event, and spoke among themselves
 of what it could be that produced it: but Thorgils the peasant
 and his son Grim thought they knew how this came to pass; and as
 they were much afraid the king's enemies might go there and
 search the hut, they went and took the body out of it, and
 removed it to a garden, where they concealed it, and then
 returned to the farm, and slept there all night.
 The fifth day (Thursday), Thorer Hund came down the valley of
 Veradal to Stiklestad; and many people, both chiefs and bondes,
 accompanied him.  The field of battle was still being cleared,
 and people were carrying away the bodies of their friends and
 relations, and were giving the necessary help to such of the
 wounded as they wished to save; but many had died since the
 battle.  Thorer Hund went to where the king had fallen, and
 searched for his body; but not finding it, he inquired if any one
 could tell him what had become of the corpse, but nobody could
 tell him where it was.  Then he asked the bonde Thorgils, who
 said, "I was not in the battle, and knew little of what took
 place there; but many reports are abroad, and among others that
 King Olaf has been seen in the night up at Staf, and a troop of
 people with him: but if he fell in the battle, your men must
 have concealed him in some hole, or under some stone-heap."  Now
 although Thorer Hund knew for certain that the king had fallen,
 many allowed themselves to believe, and to spread abroad the
 report, that the king had escaped from the battle, and would in a
 short time come again upon them with an army.  Then Thorer went
 to his ships, and sailed down the fjord, and the bonde-army
 dispersed, carrying with them all the wounded men who could bear
 to be removed.
 Thorgils Halmason and his son Grim had King Olaf's body, and were
 anxious about preserving it from falling into the hands of the
 king's enemies, and being ill-treated; for they heard the bondes
 speaking about burning it, or sinking it in the sea.  The father
 and son had seen a clear light burning at night over the spot on
 the battlefield where King Olaf's body lay, and since, while they
 concealed it, they had always seen at night a light burning over
 the corpse; therefore they were afraid the king's enemies might
 seek the body where this signal was visible.  They hastened,
 therefore, to take the body to a place where it would be safe.
 Thorgils and his son accordingly made a coffin, which they
 adorned as well as they could, and laid the king's body in it;
 and afterwards made another coffin in which they laid stones and
 straw, about as much as the weight of a man, and carefully closed
 the coffins.  As soon as the whole bonde-army had left
 Stiklestad, Thorgils and his son made themselves ready, got a
 large rowing-boat, and took with them seven or eight men, who
 were all Thorgil's relations or friends, and privately took the
 coffin with the king's body down to the boat, and set it under
 the foot-boards.  They had also with them the coffin containing
 the stones, and placed it in the boat where all could see it; and
 then went down the fjord with a good opportunity of wind and
 weather, and arrived in the dusk of the evening at Nidaros, where
 they brought up at the king's pier.  Then Thorgils sent some of
 his men up to the town to Bishop Sigurd, to say that they were
 come with the king's body.  As soon as the bishop heard this
 news, he sent his men down to the pier, and they took a small
 rowing-boat, came alongside of Thorgil's ship, and demanded the
 king's body.  Thorgils and his people then took the coffin which
 stood in view, and bore it into the boat; and the bishop's men
 rowed out into the fjord, and sank the coffin in the sea.  It was
 now quite dark.  Thorgils and his people now rowed up into the
 river past the town, and landed at a place called Saurhlid, above
 the town.  Then they carried the king's body to an empty house
 standing at a distance from other houses, and watched over it for
 the night, while Thorgils went down to the town, where he spoke
 with some of the best friends of King Olaf, and asked them if
 they would take charge of the king's body; but none of them dared
 to do so.  Then Thorgils and his men went with the body higher up
 the river, buried it in a sand-hill on the banks, and levelled
 all around it so that no one could observe that people had been
 at work there.  They were ready with all this before break of
 day, when they returned to their vessel, went immediately out of
 the river, and proceeded on their way home to Stiklestad.
 Svein, a son of King Canute, and of Alfifa, a daughter of Earl
 Alfrin, had been appointed to govern Jomsborg in Vindland.  There
 came a message to him from his father King Canute, that he should
 come to Denmark; and likewise that afterwards he should proceed
 to Norway, and take that kingdom under his charge, and assume, at
 the same time, the title of king of Norway.  Svein repaired to
 Denmark, and took many people with him from thence, and also Earl
 Harald and many other people of consequence attended him.
 Thorarin Loftunga speaks of this in the song he composed about
 King Svein, called the "Glelogn Song": --
      "'Tis told by fame,
      How grandly came
      The Danes to tend
      Their young king Svein.
      Grandest was he,
      That all could see;
      Then, one by one,
      Each following man
      More splendour wore
      Than him before."
 Then Svein proceeded to Norway, and his mother Alfifa was with
 him; and he was taken to be king at every Law-thing in the
 country.  He had already come as far as Viken at the time the
 battle was fought at Stiklestad, and King Olaf fell.  Svein
 continued his journey until he came north, in autumn, to the
 Throndhjem country; and there, as elsewhere, he was received as
 King Svein introduced new laws in many respects into the country,
 partly after those which were in Denmark, and in part much more
 severe.  No man must leave the country without the king's
 permission; or if he did, his property fell to the king.  Whoever
 killed a man outright, should forfeit all his land and movables.
 If any one was banished the country, and all heritage fell to
 him, the king took his inheritance.  At Yule every man should pay
 the king a meal of malt from every harvest steading, and a leg of
 a three-year old ox, which was called a friendly gift, together
 with a spand of butter; and every house-wife a rock full of
 unspun lint, as thick as one could span with the longest fingers
 of the hand.  The bondes were bound to build all the houses the
 king required upon his farms.  Of every seven males one should be
 taken for the service of war, and reckoning from the fifth year
 of age; and the outfit of ships should be reckoned in the same
 proportion.  Every man who rowed upon the sea to fish should pay
 the king five fish as a tax, for the land defence, wherever he
 might come from.  Every ship that went out of the country should
 have stowage reserved open for the king in the middle of the
 ship.  Every man, foreigner or native, who went to Iceland,
 should pay a tax to the king.  And to all this was added, that
 Danes should enjoy so much consideration in Norway, that one
 witness of them should invalidate ten of Northmen (1).
 When these laws were promulgated the minds of the people were
 instantly raised against them, and murmurs were heard among them.
 They who had not taken part against King Olaf said, "Now take
 your reward and friendship from the Canute race, ye men of the
 interior Throndhjem who fought against King Olaf, and deprived
 him of his kingdom.  Ye were promised peace and justice, and now
 ye have got oppression and slavery for your great treachery and
 crime."  Nor was it very easy to contradict them, as all men saw
 how miserable the change had been.  But people had not the
 boldness to make an insurrection against King Svein, principally
 because many had given King Canute their sons or other near
 relations as hostages; and also because no one appeared as leader
 of an insurrection.  They very soon, however, complained of King
 Svein; and his mother Alfifa got much of the blame of all that
 was against their desire.  Then the truth, with regard to Olaf,
 became evident to many.
 (1)  This may probably have referred not to witnesses of an act,
      but to the class of witnesses in the jurisprudence of the
      Middle Ages called compurgators, who testified not the fact,
      but their confidence in the statements of the accused; and
      from which, possibly, our English bail for offenders arose.
      -- L.
 This winter (A.D. 1031) many in the Throndhjem land began to
 declare that Olaf was in reality a holy man, and his sanctity was
 confirmed by many miracles.  Many began to make promises and
 prayers to King Olaf in the matters in which they thought they
 required help, and many found great benefit from these
 invocations.  Some in respect of health, others of a journey, or
 other circumstances in which such help seemed needful.
 Einar Tambaskelfer was come home from England to his farm, and
 had the fiefs which King Canute had given him when they met in
 Throndhjem, and which were almost an earldom.  Einar had not been
 in the strife against King Olaf, and congratulated himself upon
 it.  He remembered that King Canute had promised him the earldom
 over Norway, and at the same time remembered that King Canute had
 not kept his promise.  He was accordingly the first great person
 who looked upon King Olaf as a saint.
 Fin Arnason remained but a short time at Eggja with his brother
 Kalf; for he was in the highest degree ill-pleased that Kalf had
 been in the battle against King Olaf, and always made his brother
 the bitterest reproaches on this account.  Thorberg Arnason was
 much more temperate in his discourse than Fin; but yet he
 hastened away, and went home to his farm.  Kalf gave the two
 brothers a good long-ship, with full rigging and other
 necessaries, and a good retinue.  Therefore they went home to
 their farms, and sat quietly at home.  Arne Arnason lay long ill
 of his wounds, but got well at last without injury of any limb,
 and in winter he proceeded south to his farm.  All the brothers
 made their peace with King Svein, and sat themselves quietly down
 in their homes.
 The summer after (A.D. 1031) there was much talk about King
 Olaf's sanctity, and there was a great alteration in the
 expressions of all people concerning him.  There were many who
 now believed that King Olaf must be a saint, even among those who
 had persecuted him with the greatest animosity, and would never
 in their conversation allow truth or justice in his favour.
 People began then to turn their reproaches against the men who
 had principally excited opposition to the king; and on this
 account Bishop Sigurd in particular was accused.  He got so many
 enemies, that he found it most advisable to go over to England to
 King Canute.  Then the Throndhjem people sent men with a verbal
 message to the Uplands, to Bishop Grimkel, desiring him to come
 north to Throndhjem.  King Olaf had sent Bishop Grimkel back to
 Norway when he went east into Russia, and since that time Grimkel
 had been in the Uplands.  When the message came to the bishop he
 made ready to go, and it contributed much to this journey that
 the bishop considered it as true what was told of King Olaf's
 miracles and sanctity.
 Bishop Grimkel went to Einar Tambaskelfer, who received him
 joyfully.  They talked over many things, and, among others, of
 the important events which had taken place in the country; and
 concerning these they were perfectly agreed.  Then the bishop
 proceeded to the town (Nidaros), and was well received by all the
 community.  He inquired particularly concerning the miracles of
 King Olaf that were reported, and received satisfactory accounts
 of them.  Thereupon the bishop sent a verbal message to
 Stiklestad to Thorgils and his son Grim, inviting them to come to
 the town to him.  They did not decline the invitation, but set
 out on the road immediately, and came to the town and to the
 bishop.  They related to him all the signs that had presented
 themselves to them, and also where they had deposited the king"s
 body.  The bishop sent a message to Einar Tambaskelfer, who came
 to the town.  Then the bishop and Einar had an audience of the
 king and Alfifa, in which they asked the king's leave to have
 King Olaf's body taken up out of the earth.  The king gave his
 permission, and told the bishop to do as he pleased in the
 matter.  At that time there were a great many people in the town.
 The bishop, Einar, and some men with them, went to the place
 where the king's body was buried, and had the place dug; but the
 coffin had already raised itself almost to the surface of the
 earth.  It was then the opinion of many that the bishop should
 proceed to have the king buried in the earth at Clement's church;
 and it was so done.  Twelve months and five days (Aug. 3, A.D.
 1031), after King Olaf's death his holy remains were dug up, and
 the coffin had raised itself almost entirely to the surface of
 the earth; and the coffin appeared quite new, as if it had but
 lately been made.  When Bishop Grimkel came to King Olaf's opened
 coffin, there was a delightful and fresh smell.  Thereupon the
 bishop uncovered the king's face, and his appearance was in no
 respect altered, and his cheeks were as red as if he had but just
 fallen asleep.  The men who had seen King Olaf when he fell
 remarked, also, that his hair and nails had grown as much as if
 he had lived on the earth all the time that had passed since his
 fall.  Thereupon King Svein, and all the chiefs who were at the
 place, went out to see King Olaf's body.  Then said Alfifa,
 "People buried in sand rot very slowly, and it would not have
 been so if he had been buried in earth."  Afterwards the bishop
 took scissors, clipped the king's hair, and arranged his beard;
 for he had had a long beard, according to the fashion of that
 time.  Then said the bishop to the king and Alfifa, "Now the
 king's hair and beard are such as when he gave up the ghost, and
 it has grown as much as ye see has been cut off."  Alfifa
 answers, "I will believe in the sanctity of his hair, if it will
 not burn in the fire; but I have often seen men's hair whole and
 undamaged after lying longer in the earth than this man's."  Then
 the bishop had live coals put into a pan, blessed it, cast
 incense upon it, and then laid King Olaf's hair on the fire. 
 When all the incense was burnt the bishop took the hair out of
 the fire, and showed the king and the other chiefs that it was
 not consumed.  Now Alfifa asked that the hair should be laid upon
 unconsecrated fire; but Einar Tambaskelfer told her to be silent,
 and gave her many severe reproaches for her unbelief.  After the
 bishop's recognition, with the king's approbation and the
 decision of the Thing, it was determined that King Olaf should be
 considered a man truly holy; whereupon his body was transported
 into Clement's church, and a place was prepared for it near the
 high altar.  The coffin was covered with costly cloth, and stood
 under a gold embroidered tent.  Many kinds of miracles were soon
 wrought by King Olaf's holy remains.
 In the sand-hill where King Olaf's body had lain on the ground a
 beautiful spring of water came up and many human ailments and
 infirmities were cured by its waters.  Things were put in order
 around it, and the water ever since has been carefully preserved.
 There was first a chapel built, and an altar consecrated, where
 the king's body had lain; but now Christ's church stands upon the
 spot.  Archbishop Eystein had a high altar raised upon the spot
 where the king's grave had been, when he erected the great temple
 which now stands there; and it is the same spot on which the
 altar of the old Christ church had stood.  It is said that Olaf's
 church stands on the spot on which the empty house had stood in
 which King Olaf's body had been laid for the night.  The place
 over which the holy remains of King Olaf were carried up from the
 vessel is now called Olaf's Road, and is now in the middle of the
 town.  The bishop adorned King Olaf's holy remains, and cut his
 nails and hair; for both grew as if he had still been alive.  So
 says Sigvat the skald: --
      "I lie not, when I say the king
      Seemed as alive in every thing:
      His nails, his yellow hair still growing,
      And round his ruddy cheek still flowing,
      As when, to please the Russian queen,
      His yellow locks adorned were seen;
      Or to the blind he cured he gave
      A tress, their precious sight to save."
 Thorarin Loftunga also composed a song upon Svein Alfifason,
 called the "Glelogn Song", in which are these verses: --
      "Svein, king of all,
      In Olaf's hall
      Now sits on high;
      And Olaf's eye
      Looks down from heaven,
      Where it is given
      To him to dwell:
      Or here in cell,
      As heavenly saint,
      To heal men's plaint,
      May our gold-giver
      Live here for ever!
      "King Olaf there
      To hold a share
      On earth prepared,
      Nor labour spared
      A seat to win
      From heaven's great King;
      Which he has won
      Next God's own Son.
      "His holy form,
      Untouched by worm,
      Lies at this day
      Where good men pray,
      And nails and hair
      Grow fresh and fair;
      His cheek is red,
      His flesh not dead.
      "Around his bier,
      Good people hear
      The small bells ring
      Over the king,
      Or great bell toll;
      And living soul
      Not one can tell
      Who tolls the bell.
      "Tapers up there,
      (Which Christ holds dear,)
      By day and night
      The altar light:
      Olaf did so,
      And all men know
      In heaven he
      From sin sits free.
      "And crowds do come,
      The deaf and dumb,
      Cripple and blind,
      Sick of all kind,
      Cured to be
      On bended knee;
      And off the ground
      Rise whole and sound.
      "To Olaf pray
      To eke thy day,
      To save thy land
      From spoiler's hand.
      God's man is he
      To deal to thee
      Good crops and peace;
      Let not prayer cease.
      "Book-prayers prevail,
      If, nail for nail (1),
      Thou tellest on,
      Forgetting none."
 Thorarin Loftunga was himself with King Svein, and heard these
 great testimonials of King Olaf's holiness, that people, by the
 heavenly power, could hear a sound over his holy remains as if
 bells were ringing, and that candles were lighted of themselves
 upon the altar as by a heavenly fire.  But when Thorarin says
 that a multitude of lame, and blind, and other sick, who came to
 the holy Olaf, went back cured, he means nothing more than that
 there were a vast number of persons who at the beginning of King
 Olaf's miraculous working regained their health.  King Olaf's
 greatest miracles are clearly written down, although they
 occurred somewhat later.
 (1)  Before the entrance of the temples or churches were posts
      called Ondveigis-sulor, with nails called Rigin-naglar --
      the gods' nails -- either for ornament, or, as Schoning
      suggests, to assist the people in reckoning weeks, months,
      festivals, and in reckoning or keeping tale of prayers
      repeated, and to recall them to memory, in the same way as
      beads are used still by the common people in Catholic
      countries for the same purpose. -- L.
 It is reckoned by those who have kept an exact account, that Olaf
 the Saint was king of Norway for fifteen years from the time Earl
 Svein left the country; but he had received the title of king
 from the people of the Uplands the winter before.  Sigvat the
 skald tells this: --
      "For fifteen winters o'er the land
      King Olaf held the chief command,
      Before he fell up in the North:
      His fall made known to us his worth.
      No worthier prince before his day
      In our North land e'er held the sway,
      Too short he held it for our good;
      All men wish now that he had stood."
 Saint Olaf was thirty-five years old when he fell, according to
 what Are Frode the priest says, and he had been in twenty pitched
 battles.  So says Sigvat the skald: --
      "Some leaders trust in God -- some not;
      Even so their men; but well I wot
      God-fearing Olaf fought and won
      Twenty pitched battles, one by one,
      And always placed upon his right
      His Christian men in a hard fight.
      May God be merciful, I pray,
      To him -- for he ne'er shunned his fray."
 We have now related a part of King Olaf's story, namely, the
 events which took place while he ruled over Norway; also his
 death, and how his holiness was manifested.  Now shall we not
 neglect to mention what it was that most advanced his honour.
 This was his miracles; but these will come to be treated of
 afterwards in this book.
 King Svein, the son of Canute the Great, ruled over Norway for
 some years; but was a child both in age and understanding.  His
 mother Alfifa had most sway in the country; and the people of the
 country were her great enemies, both then and ever since.  Danish
 people had a great superiority given them within the country, to
 the great dissatisfaction of the people; and when conversation
 turned that way, the people of the rest of Norway accused the
 Throndhjem people of having principally occasioned King Olaf the
 Holy's fall, and also that the men of Norway were subject,
 through them, to the ill government by which oppression and
 slavery had come upon all the people, both great and small;
 indeed upon the whole community.  They insisted that it was the
 duty of the Throndhjem people to attempt opposition and
 insurrection, and thus relieve the country from such tyranny;
 and, in the opinion of the common people, Throndhjem was also
 the chief seat of the strength of Norway at that time, both on
 account of the chiefs and of the population of that quarter. 
 When the Throndhjem people heard these remarks of their
 countrymen, they could not deny that there was much truth in
 them, and that in depriving King Olaf of life and land they had
 committed a great crime, and at the same time the misdeed had
 been ill paid.  The chiefs began to hold consultations and
 conferences with each other, and the leader of these was Einar
 Tambaskelfer.  It was likewise the case with Kalf Arnason, who
 began to find into what errors he had been drawn by King Canute's
 persuasion.  All the promises which King Canute had made to Kalf
 had been broken; for he had promised him the earldom and the
 highest authority in Norway: and although Kalf had been the
 leader in the battle against King Olaf, and had deprived him of
 his life and kingdom, Kalf had not got any higher dignity than he
 had before.  He felt that he had been deceived, and therefore
 messages passed between the brothers Kalf, Fin, Thorberg, and
 Arne, and they renewed their family friendship.
 When King Svein had been three years in Norway (A.D. 1031-33),
 the news was received that a force was assembled in the western
 countries, under a chief who called himself Trygve, and gave out
 that he was a son of Olaf Trygvason and Queen Gyda of England. 
 Now when King Svein heard that foreign troops had come to the
 country, he ordered out the people on a levy in the north, and
 the most of the lendermen hastened to him; but Einar Tambaskelfer
 remained at home, and would not go out with King Svein.  When
 King Svein's order came to Kalf Arnason at Eggja, that he should
 go out on a levy with King Svein, he took a twenty-benched ship
 which he owned, went on board with his house-servants, and in all
 haste proceeded out of the fjord, without waiting for King Svein,
 sailed southwards to More, and continued his voyage south until
 he came to Giske to his brother Thorberg.  Then all the brothers,
 the sons of Arne, held a meeting, and consulted with each other.
 After this Kalf returned to the north again; but when he came to
 Frekeysund, King Svein was lying in the sound before him.  When
 Kalf came rowing from the south into the sound they hailed each
 other, and the king's men ordered Kalf to bring up with his
 vessel, and follow the king for the defence of the country.  Kalf
 replies, "I have done enough, if not too much, when I fought
 against my own countrymen to increase the power of the Canute
 family."  Thereupon Kalf rowed away to the north until he came
 home to Eggja.  None of these Arnasons appeared at this levy to
 accompany the king.  He steered with his fleet southwards along
 the land; but as he could not hear the least news of any fleet
 having come from the west, he steered south to Rogaland, and all
 the way to Agder; for many guessed that Trygve would first make
 his attempt on Viken, because his forefathers had been there, and
 had most of their strength from that quarter, and he had himself
 great strength by family connection there.
 When Trygve came from the west he landed first on the coast of
 Hordaland, and when he heard King Svein had gone south he went
 the same way to Rogaland.  As soon as Svein got the intelligence
 that Trygve had come from the west he returned, and steered north
 with his fleet; and both fleets met within Bokn in Soknarsund,
 not far from the place where Erling Skjalgson fell.  The battle,
 which took place on a Sunday, was great and severe.  People tell
 that Trygve threw spears with both hands at once.  "So my
 father," said he, "taught me to celebrate mass."  His enemies had
 said that he was the son of a priest; but the praise must be
 allowed him that he showed himself more like a son of King Olaf
 Trygvason, for this Trygve was a slaughtering man.  In this
 battle King Trygve fell, and many of his men with him; but some
 fled, and some received quarter and their lives.  It is thus
 related in the ballad of Trygve: --
      "Trygve comes from the northern coast,
      King Svein turns round with all his host;
      To meet and fight, they both prepare,
      And where they met grim death was there.
      From the sharp strife I was not far, --
      I heard the din and the clang of war;
      And the Hordaland men at last gave way,
      And their leader fell, and they lost the day."
 This battle is also told of in the ballad about King Svein, thus:
      "My girl!  it was a Sunday morn,
      And many a man ne'er saw its eve,
      Though ale and leeks by old wives borne
      The bruised and wounded did relieve.
      'Twas Sunday morn, when Svein calls out,
      `Stem to stem your vessels bind;'
      The raven a mid-day feast smells out,
      And he comes croaking up the wind."
 After this battle King Svein ruled the country for some time, and
 there was peace in the land.  The winter after it (A.D. 1034) he
 passed in the south parts of the country.
 Einar Tambaskelfer and Kalf Arnason had this winter meetings and
 consultations between themselves in the merchant town (1).  Then
 there came a messenger from King Canute to Kalf Arnason, with a
 message to send him three dozen axes, which must be chosen and
 good.  Kalf replies, "I will send no axes to King Canute.  Tell
 him I will bring his son Svein so many, that he shall not think
 he is in want of any."
 (1)  Nidaros, or Throndhjem, is usually called merely the
      merchant town. -- L.
 Early in spring (A.D. 1034) Einar Tambaskelfer and Kalf Arnason
 made themselves ready for a journey, with a great retinue of the
 best and most select men that could be found in the Throndhjem
 country.  They went in spring eastward over the ridge of the
 country to Jamtaland, from thence to Helsingjaland, and came to
 Svithjod, where they procured ships, with which in summer they
 proceeded east to Russia, and came in autumn to Ladoga.  They
 sent men up to Novgorod to King Jarisleif, with the errand that
 they offered Magnus, the son of King Olaf the Saint, to take him
 with them, follow him to Norway, and give him assistance to
 attain his father's heritage and be made king over the country.
 When this message came to King Jarisleif he held a consultation
 with the queen and some chiefs, and they all resolved unanimously
 to send a message to the Northmen, and ask them to come to King
 Jarisleif and Magnus; for which journey safe conduct was given
 them.  When they came to Novgorod it was settled among them that
 the Northmen who had come there should become Magnus's men, and
 be his subjects; and to this Kalf and the other men who had been
 against King Olaf at Stiklestad were solemnly bound by oath.  On
 the other hand, King Magnus promised them, under oath, secure
 peace and full reconciliation; and that he would be true and
 faithful to them all when he got the dominions and kingdom of
 Norway.  He was to become Kalf Arnason's foster-son; and Kalf
 should be bound to do all that Magnus might think necessary for
 extending his dominion, and making it more independent than