The Chronicle of The Kings of Norway

by Snorri Sturlson | c.1179-1241 | 320,198 words

The "Heimskringla" of Snorri Sturlason is a collection of sagas concerning the various rulers of Norway, from about A.D. 850 to the year A.D. 1177....

Part 31 - Of King Harald Sigurdson

King Harald Sigurdson took the royal power over all Norway after the death of King Magnus Olafson; and when he had reigned over Norway one winter and spring was come (A.D. 1048), he ordered a levy through all the land of one-half of all men and ships and went south to Jutland.

He herried and burned all summer wide around in the land and came into Godnarfjord, where King Harald made these verses: —

"While wives of husbands fondly dream,
Here let us anchor in the stream,
In Godnarfjord; we'll safely moor
Our sea-homes, and sleep quite secure."

Then he spoke to Thiodolf, the skald, and asked him to add to it what it wanted, and he sang: —

"In the next summer, I foresee,
Our anchorage in the South will be;
To hold our sea-homes on the ground,
More cold-tongued anchors will be found."

To this Bolverk alludes in his song also, that Harald went to Denmark the summer after King Magnus's death.

Bolverk sings thus: —

"Next summer thou the levy raised,
And seawards all the people gazed,
Where thy sea-steeds in sunshine glancing
Over the waves were gaily prancing;
While the deep ships that plunder bore
Seemed black specks from the distant shore.
The Danes, from banks or hillocks green,
Looked with dismay upon the scene."

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