The Speech of Grimnir ("The Masked One" i.e. Odin)

1797 Amos S. Cottle
Song of Grimner




King Hraudunger had two Sons, one called Agnarr the other Geirrod. Agnarr was ten years old and Gierrod eight, when they went to sea in a boat for the purpose of fishing. A tempest drove the boat far from their own shore and carried them to a strange country; where they met a certain countryman. There they wintered. The Mistress of the hosue loved Agnarr, but the Master, Geirrod; who taught him to be crafty. The same person in the following spring gave the boys a boat; but when he and his wife had led them to the shore, he spoke something privately to Geirrod. The boys obtaining a favourable wind, returned toward their own coast. Then Geirrod, standing on the prow of the vessel, leaped on shore, and pushing the boat off, said, "now go where the evil Genii may meet with thee." The boat was carried into the ocean; but Geirrod going home, was kindly received. Geirrod therefore was created king and became illustrious. While all this was transacting, Odin and Frigga sitting in Hlidskialfa beheld all the regions of the earth. "See" said Odin "your favourite Agnarr sitting in a cave with his gigantic wife and his children around him; but my favourite Geirrod is become king, and reigns in peace." Frigga answered, "Geirrod is parsimonious and exercises cruelty upon his guests when he thinks too many trouble him." Odin denyed this assertion. They lay a wager concerning it. Frigga sent the nymph Fylla to admonish the king, lest a certain magician who had come into his country should poison him; she informed him that he might be distinguished by this sign, that no dog would bark at his approach. But that was needless, because Geirrod discountenanced the visits of all strangers. He took care however that the man should be seized, whom the dogs refused to hurt. He was dressed in blue apparel and took the name of Grimner. When any one asked questions concerning himself, he refused to answer them. The king examined him by torture between two fires; where he remained eight nights. Geirrod had a son, ten years old, called Agnarr, bearing the name of his Uncle. Agnarr approached Grimner and gave him a cup of water, saying that the king behaved very ill to punish an innocent man. Grimner drank the contents. But by that time the fire burnt his clothes: when he began to speak.

Fire! spare thy fury spare,
Nor thus thy torrents on me bear:
Thy flames fierce flashing from me turn ---
In vain I strive --- my garments burn:
Tho' high in air my cloak I raise,
It wastes before thy scorching blaze.

By the pale fires sullen light,
I've watch'd eight times the round of night.
Mortals on me disdain to think,
Nor offer food, nor offer drink ---
Agnarr except --- who kind of soul,
Gave one cool refreshing bowl:
Thou gentle Youth! so fates have told,
The sceptre of the Goths shalt hold.

The cup was kind, and great's the meed,
That to thy bounty will succeed;
Safe shalt thou reign from ev'ry foe, ---
Smooth shall thy tide of fortune flow.

Dear are the lands to Gods on high,
That neighb'ring to the Alfi lie.
On plains of
Thrudheim[1] Thor[2] shall dwell,
While Gods their golden ages tell.

Uller[3] there hath fix'd his home,
Where the swift Ydali roam.
The Gods when time first sprang to light,
Alfheim[4] gave to Freyer's[5] right;
The honors of his infant state,
Forever to perpetuate.

The third abode, I know it well,
Is where the Gods benignant dwell,
The roofs with silver radiance shine,
'Tis call'd
Valaskialf[6] divine;
Because a God in times unknown,
Chose to make that seat his own.

Saucquabeccer is the name,
The next immortal, portals claim;
There icy waters ev'ry hour,
Around in horrid diss'nance pour;
While Odin,
Saga,[7] orgies hold,
Quaffing libations out of gold.

Gladsheimer[8] next succeeds --- the land,
Where bright
Valhalla's[9] towers stand:
In burnish'd gold they proudly rise,
And lose their radiance in the skies.
Hropter[10] there with potent word,
Dooms myriads daily to the sword.

Where Odin's towers rise to view,
Thus may be known by symbols true;
Broken shafts of many a spear
Emblazoning the roofs appear:
The domes with shields are cover'd o'er,
And coats of mail surround the floor.

Where Odin's towers rise to view,
Thus may be known by symbols true;
A gaunt
Wolf[11] sits in pend'lous state
Ever o'er the western gate;
 Eagles* the wide portals grace.

Thrymheimer stands the next in place;
Thiaz there has fix'd his throne ---
A giant long to glory known.
Skada,[12] chaste nymph of the sky,
The honors of her ancestry,
Shall soon possess.

 Seventh in fame,
Breidabliker[13] mortals name:
Within whose consecrated walls
Balder's[14] hospitable halls.
There smiling peace has ever shone,
And virtue calls the place her own.

Himinbiörga eighth I sing,
Where o'er the lands, propitious king,
Heimdaller[15] reigns. There mindful he,
Of every holy mystery.
On downy couches spends his hours,
And copiously metheglin pours.

Falcvanger's towers claim my song,
These to
Freya's[16] right belong;
Who chief presiding at each feast,
Appoints his place to ev'ry guest:
Half of the slain by her's possest,
But Odin daily claims the rest.

Tenth house of fame, lo! Glitner shines,
Blest with the wealth of golden mines;
Bright molten silver crowns the dome,
Forester[17] proudly calls his own:
There on soft rose-leaf beds he lies,
While suns successive set and rise.

Noathuna[18] the eleventh place,
The mansions of Niorder grace:
He, blameleless king of men, presides
O'er domes whose summits touch the skies.

The lands of
Vidar[19] far are seen,
Beset with thorny brakes obscene;
Rank herbage shoots aloft in air,
And marshy sallows flourish there.
Vidar, descending from his steed,
Swift in pursuit scarce bends the reed;
A parent's wrongs provoke his ire,
And vengeance from his arm require.

Andhrimner[20] speedily returns:
The fire beneath
Eldhrimner[21] burns:
[22] smokes in floods below ---
The best reflection heroes know.
Few think how many warriors dine,
From off his wide extended chine.

The chief[23] inur'd to toils in war,
Removing from the feast afar,
Gerr and Freker[24] daily eat,
The smoking honors of the treat:
But Odin, great in martial deeds,
With mead, immortal vigor feeds.

Hugo[25], in azure fields of air,
And Mumin* too each day appear:
I fear lest Hugo safe return,
But more for Mumin inly mourn.

Lo! Thunda's waters rend my ear,
While tranquil stands Thiodvitner:
Smooth in the lake the fish are seen,
Gliding thro' the liquid green.
Thunda's waters hast'ning fleet,
Touch not
Valgom![26] with thy feet.


Far o'er yon hills old Valgrind[27] stands,

Erected by no mortal hands:

Few know the dome's mysterious ways,

Or how the massy bars to raise.



Behold! Valhalla proudly shrouds,

Her towers in the ambient clouds:

Five hundred portals grace the side,

With forty more unfolding wide.

Thro' ev'ry gate in war array,

With banners streaming to the day,

Eight hundred warriors passage find,

When for matial deeds inclin'd.



Five hundred domes aspiring high,

With forty others pierce the sky:

There, Gods in mazy lab'rynths roam ---

One portal leads to ev'ry dome:

But that which loftiest pillars grace,

Belongs to my illustrious race.



Heidruna,[28] wildest of the train,

That sport on hill, or russet plain,

Near Odin's hall falacious breeds,

And on the leaves of Lærad feeds.

His spacious horn shall fill the bowl,

That lifts to rapture Odin's soul;

And ever drinking --- ever dry---

Still the copious stream supply.



There too, forever wand'ring near,

Is seen swift-footed Eikthyrner;[29]

He on Lærad's foliage feeds,

And annually prolific breeds.

Fast in Hrvergelmer's[30] tide,

Dew-drops down his antlers glide;

Whence, winding thro' the porous earth,

Augmented rivers take their birth.



Sider,[31] Vider, Fimbulthuler,

Sækiner, and Geirumuler, ---

These thro' lands immortal, flow,

And plenty on the Gods bestow.



Viner,[32] Noter, Vegsuonner,

Niter, Stronder, and Heronner, ---

The lands of mortals these divide,

And downward thence to Hela glide.



O'er four fam'd rivers spreading far,[33]

Thor drives on his thundering car;

When to the ash of Yggdrasil,

He goes to tell his wond'rous will.

Then ev'ry bridge th' Asori raise,

Shall smoke in undulating blaze,

Each mortal stream its banks forsake,

And sacred fonts combustion take.



Those steeds[34] with unrein'd fury glide,

On which the sons of Asi ride;

When studious of the Thund'rer's will,

They crowd the ash of Yggdrasil.[35]



O'er three fam'd nations wide it shoots,

Three majestic antique roots:

One spreads o'er Hela's confines far;

Another shades the Hrimthursar;[36]

Long will the third a race[37] protect,

That laws nor sacred rites neglect.



The Squirrel who with nimble skill,

Sports thro' the ash of Yggdrasil,

The mandates of the Eagle brings,

That plumes aloft his spreading wings,

To where Nidhogger[38] far beneath,

Coils in many a shining wreath.



Four Stags[39] protected by its boughs,

With lifted foreheads daily browze.



Beneath the autumnal leaves that spread

The ground below the forest's head,

More hissing serpents daily glide,

Than e'er unwary Apa [40]spied.

Grafvitner's sons are long decreed,

Daily on the Ash to feed.



The Ash of Yggdrasil sustains

The beasts that range a thousand plains:

Boughs, to the Stag; its bark affords

Protection to the insect hoards;

While at its root with ceaseless bite,

Nidhogger hides his theft in night.



Hrista and Mista,[41] daily bear

Bowls taht sooth the brow of care;

Ever Odin's cheifs regale,

With soul invigorating ale.



Yok'd to the chariot of the Sun,

Each day thro' heav'n two coursers[42] run:

Then Gods beneath their helmets love

In iron canopy to rove.



Presented to the blazing skies,

The argent shield, Sualiner[43] lies:

Nature would its doom receive,

Were it once the heavens to leave.



Skoller, the direful wolf whose rage

Devours the monuments of age,

Pursues the God whose eye sublime

Daily surveys each terrene clime.

Before the gentle Queen of heaven,

To Hater[44] 'tis forever given

Still to advance --- the same we're told,

From Herodvitner sprung of old.



At first the variegated earth,

From flesh of Ymer had his birth;

His blood supplied the ocean bed;

His bones the rocky mountains bred;

Transform'd to herbs his hair was seen;

His skull o'er-arch'd the blue serene;

For man, propitious Deities

Pluck'd the shadowings of his eyes,

And Midgar form'd that happy zone,

Which heat and cold alike have flown;

Dun vapors from his brain exhaled,

And clouds in scatter'd squadrons sail'd ---

Black clouds that in their bosoms bore

The germs of elemental war.



Behold![45] 'midst circling flames I stand:

The youth who stretch'd his daring hand ---

Him mighty Uller shall applaud,

And crown with favor, ev'ry God.

The great Asori progeny,

Geirrod! shall thy baseness see;

And urg'd at last by Godlike love,

These boiling cauldrons shall remove.



Th' Ivaldi[46] sons, in ancient days,

A glorious fabric strove to raise:

Skidbladner[47] was the name they gave ---

The noblest bark that plough'd the wave.

Soon as the wond'rous toil was done,

They gave it to Niorder's Son.[48]



Yggdrasil is chief of trees,

That dallies with the wanton breeze;

Let fam'd Skidbladner ever ride,

The fairest Ship that skims the tide:

Odin among th' Asori claims,

Highest honors --- greatest names:

Sliepner[49] with his thund'ring mane,

Is chief of steeds that scud the plain:

Bifrost[50] stands in swelling pride,

Chief of piles that bridge the tide:

Who like Brag,[51] since earliest time,

Can weave the magic web of rhyme?

What bird like Habroc swift in flight?

Or bold in the aerial fight?

What dog with Garmer scents afar

The victims of the sylvan war?



My various hardships I describe,[52]

Now to the Sigtivori tribe:

Protecting hands approach me near!

Steps of Asori now I hear:

The giants seat shall they ascend,

And inmost halls with clamours rend.



When in the nations I am seen,

Mortals who to my fanes convene

Shall hail me with a thousand names,[53]

Great as celestial virtue claims.

Geirrod trembles![54] does thy soul

Yield the mast'ry to the bowl?

(The bowl can Gods and men deceive):

Or dost thou at thy honours grieve?

What heroes croud thy palace gate,

And Gods thy vengeful malice sate?



Much have I said; but said in vain:

Mem'ry flies thy troubled brain.

Thy friends deceitful press around:

I see thy faulchion on the ground.

The faulchion of my host is dy'd!

The blood runs purpling from his side!



Ygger soon shall point the blade,

For deed of rightful veng'ance made.

Thy days are past, I now predict:

Now the Destinies afflict.

With flames encircled, Odin see!

Geirrod! Geirrod! rescue me.


        King Geirrod was sitting with his sword upon his knees, half unsheathed; but when he understood who it was he had been tormenting, he arose to lead him from the fires. The sword fell with the point upwards; and the king, stumbling at the same time, fell upon it, and was pierced through the body. Thus he died: —Odin then disappeared and Agnarr succeeded to the throne.




[1] THRUDHEIM, lay between the confines of the Asi and Alfi.

[2] THOR, the eldest son of Odin; strength and valor are attendants of this God, therefore he triumphs over every thing that has life. When the Northern nations adopted the Roman calender, that day which was consecrated to Jupiter or master of thunder, was assigned to Thor and was called Thorsdag or Thursday

The Laplanders to this day have a God answering to Thor, whom they worship under the name of Horagalles. They depict him with a double-headed mallet, and invoke him chiefly not to injure with his thunder their Raindeer as they wander exposed upon the wide and defolate mountains. Lem: de Lappon:

[3] ULLER, a God the offspring of Sifia and son-in-law of Thor. He is quick in shooting his arrows, and so nimble in the use of his skates that nothing can stand before him. He is also very handsome in his person, and possesses every quality of a Hero; wherefore he is invoked in duels or single combats.

[4] ALFHEIM, signifies in Gothic, the abode of the Genii or the fairies of the male sex. Of these some are good and some bad. With regard to the bad they were particularly dreaded about the hour of noon. This superstition has prevailed no less in France than elsewhere; though it came from the east. St. Bazil recommends us to pray to God some time before noon, to avert this danger. The Celts with the same view offered sacrifices. One says pleasantly, "The true Demon of noon is hunger when one has nothing to satisfy it."

[5] Freyer, son of Niorder.

[6] VALASKIALF, a palace of Odin.

[7] Saga, a goddess.

[8] GLADSHEIMER, (the abode of joy.)

[9] VALHALLA, The palace of Odin, where that God receives all such as die in a violent manner from the beginning to the end of the world.

[10] HROPTER, one of the names of Odin.

[11] WOLF and EAGLES, these were statues.

[12] SKADA, daughter of Thiaz and wife of Niorder. She prefers dwelling on the spot where her father inhabits, which is in the land of mountains; but Niorder loves to reside near the sea; yet they came at length to this agreement between themselves, that they should pass together nine nights among the mountains, and three on the shore of the sea. One day, Niorder, returning from the mountains, composed this song: "How do I hate the abode of the mountains! I have only pass'd nine nights there; but how long and tedious did they seem! There one hears nothing but the howling of wolves, instead of the sweet singing of the swans, who dwell on the sea shores." In answer to this, Skada composed the following verses: "How is it possible for me to enjoy my rest on the couch of the God of the Ocean; whilst birds in flocks, returning each morning, awake me with their screamings?" Then Skada returned to the mountains where her father dwelt; there snatching up her bow, and fastening on her snow-skates, she employed herself in chase of savage beasts.

[13] BREIDABLIKER, the palace of Balder. This place is in heaven and nothing impure can have admittance there; within are columns, upon which are engraved verses, capable of recalling the dead to life.

[14] BALDER, the second son of Odin. He is of an excellent natural temper; and has the universal praise of mankind; so handsome in his person, and of so dazzling a look, that he seems to dart forth rays of light. To comprehend the beauty of his hair it is necessary to know that the whitest of all vegetables is called the "eye-brow of Balder." It seems probable that Balder is the same God whom the Noricians and Gauls worshipped under the name of Belenus. He was the Apollo of the Greeks and Romans.]

[15] HEIMDALLER, a sacred and powerful deity. He is the son of nine virgins who are sisters. He is likewise called the "God with the golden teeth," because his teeth are of that metal. He dwells at the end of the bridge Bifrost or the Rain-bow, in a castle called the "Celestial Fort." He is the sentinel or watchman of the Gods. The post assigned to him is to abide at the entry into heaven, to prevent the giants from forcing their way over the bridge. He sleeps less than a bird; and sees by night as well as by day, more than an hundred leagues around him. So acute is his ear that he hears the grass growing on the earth, and the wool on the sheeps back; nor does the smallest sound escape him. Besides this, he has a trumpet which is heard through all worlds. This God is celebrated in the following verses. "The Celestial Fort is the castle where Heimdaller resides, that sacred guardian of heaven, who drinks divine hydromel in the secure and tranquil palaces of the Gods!"

[16] FREYA, the daughter of Niorder; she is the most propitious of the goddesses. The place which she inhabits in heaven, is called falcvanger, or Union of the People. She goes on horseback to every place where battles are fought, and asserts her right to one half of the slain; the other half belongs to Odin. Her palace is large and magnificent; thence the sallies forth in a chariot drawn by two cats. She lends a favourable ear to those who sue to her for assistance. From her were the Scandinavian ladies named. She is very much delighted with the songs of lovers; and such as would be happy in their amours worship this Goddess.

[17] FORESTER, a God, the Son of Balder. He possesses the palace in heaven called Glitnir. All who refer to him the decision of their controversies, return from his tribunal mutually satisfied. It is the most excellent tribunal found amongst Gods or men, according to these verses: "Glitnir is the name of a palace which is upheld by pillars of gold, and covered with a roof of silver. There it is that Forester resides the greatest part of his time, who reconciles and appeases all sorts of quarrels."

[18] NOATHUNA, the palace of Niorder the God of the sea. The Chinese, as well as the Grecians and Northern nations, have their Neptune, whose name is Toong-hai-vaung, or king of the eastern sea. The temple where he is worshipped is called Ta-coo; he is there represented as sitting on the waves with firmness, ease, and dignity, holding a dolphin in one hand and a magnet in the other. Staunton's Account of China.

[19] VIDAR, mentioned before as the God of Silence, is represented as living in such a situation that by its inaccessibility he might avoid the converse of men. He was despised by the other Gods, and for that reason supposed to be more assiduous in revenging his father Odin's death.

[20] ANDHRIMNER, the Cook of the Asori.

[21] ELEDHRIMNER, the Cauldron.

[22] SÆHRIMNER, the Boar.

[23] The chief, Odin.

[24] GERR and FREKER, two wolves kept by Odin, to whom he consigns all the food brought to his table

[25] HUGO and MUMIN, the ravens of Odin. He lets them loose every day; and they, after having made their excursions over the whole world, return again at night about the hour of repast. Hence it is that this God knows so many things, and is called the king of the ravens. Hugo, signifies spirit or thought, and Mumin, memory. Thor made Thialfe contend with Hugo in swiftness: but Hugo so far outstript him, that in returning to the barrier whence they set out, they met face to face. It was the opinion of the Northern writers, that if reason and memory were once lost, they would never be thoroughly recovered again.

[26] VALGOM, one of Odin's horses.

[27] VALGRIND, the fortress of select heroes.

[28] HEIDRUNA, the Goat. From her paps flows Hydromel and Mead in such great abundance, that it fills every day a pitcher large enough to inebriate all the heroes.

[29] EIKTHYRNER, the Stag.

[30] HRVERGELMER, the father of rivers.

[31] SIDER, &c. Names of celestial rivers. There are fifteen beside these, but they are not enumerated in the translation, on account of their harsh and unusual sounds. For the curious therefore, they are put in the notes; viz: Eikin, Suöl, Gimnthro, Fiorm, Rin, Rennandi, Gipul, Gaupul, Gaumul, Din, Vin, Davll, Havll, Grap, Gunndorin.

[32] VINER. The names of many terrestrial rivers are here omitted; viz: Naunn, Hraun, Slid, Hrid, Sylgr, Ylgr, Vid, Van, Vaund, Straund, Giaull, and Serptr.

[33] . "O'er four fam'd rivers," --- Their names are Kaurmt, Aurmt, and the two Herlaugars.

[34] "Those steeds," --- Their names are Gladr, Gyllr, Gler, Sceidbrimur, Silferintoppr, Sinir, Gisl, Falhofner, Gulltoper, Lettfeti.

[35] YGGDRASIL. It is the greatest of all trees, its branches cover the surface of the earth, its top reaches to heaven, it is supported by three vast roots, one of which extends to the ninth world, or Hell. An Eagle, whose piercing eye discovers all things, perches on his branches. A Squirrel is continually running up and down to bring news; while a parcel of serpents, fastened to the trunk, endeavour to destroy him. From under one of the roots runs a fountain wherein wisdom is concealed. From a neighbouring spring (the fountain of past things) three virgins are continually drawing a precious water, with which they refresh the Ash-tree; this water keeps up the beauty of its foliage, and, after having refreshed its leaves, falls back again to the earth, where it forms the dew of which the bees make their honey. These three virgins always keep under the ash; and it is they who dispense the days and ages of men. Every man hath a destiny appropriated to himself, who determines the duration and events of his life. But the three destinies of more especial note are Urd (the past,) Werandi (the present,) and Sculde (the future.)

         The Mohammedans have also in their mythology a Tree very similar to this, called Tuba or the tree of happiness. It is said to stand in the palace of Mohammed, though a branch of it will reach to the house of every true believer; that it is loaden with pomegranates, grapes, dates, and other fruit, of surprising bigness and of tastes unknown to mortals. So that if a man desire to eat of any particular kind of fruit, it will immediately be presented to him; or if he chuse flesh, birds ready dressed will be set before him according to his wish. They add, that the boughs of this tree will spontaneously bend down to the hand of the person who would gather of its fruits, and that it will supply the blest not only with food, but also with silken garments, and beasts to ride on ready saddled and bridled, and adorned with rich trappings, which will burst forth from its fruits; and that this tree is so large, that a person mounted on the fleetest horse, would not be able to gallop from one end of its shade to the other in an hundred years.

[36] HRIMTHURSAR, a nation of one-eyed inhabitants; this is said of them because they are great marksmen and shut one eye when they take aim; they dwelt in the East.

[37] "Long will the third a race," --- This means the inhabitants of Southern regions.

[38] NIDHOGGER, the name of a serpent.

[39] “Four Stags," --- Their names are, Dainn, Dualinn, Duneyrr, and Duradror.

[40] APA, Apes.

[41] HRISTA and MISTA, these Goddesses are called Valkyries, Odin sends them into the field of battle to make choice of those who are to be slain, and to bestow the victory.

[42]  "Two Coursers," --- Arvacer and Alsuither, the horses of the Sun.

[43] SUALINER, the solar shield or fabulous refrigerator of the world.

[44]  HATER, another wolf who is the precursor of the Moon.

[45]  "Behold!" --- Over the fires which surrounded Odin, the Cooks had put cauldrons to boil: Odin wished Geirrod or his servants to remove them that the Asori when they drew near, might at once see and rescue him: or perhaps the coming of the Asori was all a pretence, meant only to intimidate Geirrod.

[46]  IVALDI, a Nation of Dwarfs.

[47] SKIDBLANER, A Ship so large, that all the Gods completely armed might find room to fit in it at their ease. As soon as ever it sails are unfurled, a favourable gale arises and carries it of itself to whatsoever place it is destined. And when the Gods have no mind to sail, they can take it into pieces so small, that being folded one upon another, the whole will go into a pocket.

[48] NIORDER's Son, Freyer.

[49] SLIEPNER, a Horse with eight feet. His origin is thus related in the Edda of Snorro. One day a certain Architect offered his services to the Gods to build them in the space of two years a City, so well fortified, that they should be perfectly safe from the incursions of the Giants, even although they should have already penetrated within the enclosure of Midgard; but he demanded for his reward the Goddess Freya, together with the Sun and Moon: After long deliberation, the Gods agreed to his terms, provided he would finish the whole himself without any one's assistance, and all within the space of one single Winter: But if any thing should remain to be finished on the first day of Summer, he should entirely forfeit the recompence agreed on. On being acquainted with this, the Architect stipulated that he should be allowed the use of his horse. And to this, by the advice of Lok, the Gods assented. This agreement was confirmed by many oaths, and concluded in the presence of many witnesses; for without this precaution, a Giant would not have thought himself safe among the Gods, especially if Thor had been returned from the journey he had then taken into the East, to conquer the Giants. From the very first night, this Giant caused his horse to draw stones of an immense bulk; and the Gods saw with surprise, that this creature did more work than the master himself. The Winter however, was far advanced, and towards the latter end of it, this impregnable City had almost attained the summit of perfection. In short, when the full time was now expired, all but three days, nothing was wanting to complete the work, except the gates. Then the Gods entered into consultation, and enquired of one another who among them it was, that could have advised to marry Freya into the Country of the Giants; and to plunge the sky and heavens into darkness, by permitting the Sun and Moon to be carried away. They all agreed that Lok was the author of that bad council, and that he should be put to a most cruel death, if he did not contrive some way to prevent the workman from accomplishing his undertaking. Immediately they laid hands on Lok; who in his fright promised on oath to do whatever they desired, let it cost him what it would. That very night while the workman was employing his horse as usual in conveying stones, there suddenly leaped forth a mare from the neighbouring forest, which allured the horse with her neighings. The animal no sooner saw her, but giving way to his ardor, broke his bridle, and began to run after the mare. This obliged the workman also to run after his horse, and thus between one and the other, the whole night was lost, so that the progress of the work was delayed till next morning. The Architect perceiving that he had no other means to finish his undertaking, resumed his own proper shape; and the Gods perceiving that it was really a Giant with whom they had made the contract, paid no longer any regard to their oath; but calling the God Thor, he came and shattered the head of the workman to pieces with his mallet. Shortly after, Lok came and reported that the Mare had a foal, which after proved to be the famous Sliepner.


[50] BIFROST, the Rain-bow.

[51] BRAG, a God celebrated for his wisdom, eloquence, and majestic air. He is not only eminently skilled in poetry, but the Art itself is called from his name Brager, and the most distinguished poets receive their names from him.

[52] "My various", --- Odin now begins to assume his true character, and asserts that he is instilling into the minds of his distant friends an idea of his sufferings.

[53] "Shall hail &c." --- The names of Odin are the following: Grimer, Gangler, Herian, Hialmber, Theccer, Thrid, Thud, Uder, Helblind, Harr, Sader, Snipal, Sann-getal, Herteiter, Hnicarr, Bileyger, Bal-eyger, Baulvercer, Fiolner, Grimar, Grimner, Glapsuid, Fiolsuid, Sithaviter, Sidsceggar, Sigfander, Henikuder, Alfander, Valfander, Atrid, Farmat, Jale, Rialer, Vider, Osci, Omi, Jafnhar, Biflinder, Gondler, Harbard, Suidur, Suidner, Ygger, Thunder, Vacer, Hropter, Gauten, Jalcer, Ofner, Suafner.

[54] "Geirrod trembles." --- He now begins to discover who it is he has been tormenting. The latter part of this verse seems to have been spoken in a strain of Ridicule.