The Online 
Medieval and Classical Library


Of Biorn, The Champion
Of The Broadwickers, And
His Dealings With Thurid Of Frodis-Water.

Online Medieval and Classical Library Release #33

Thorleif Kimbi was two winters in Norway, and then went back to Iceland with the same chapmen as he had fared out with. They made Broadfirth and came to Daymeal-ness, and Thorleif went home to Swanfirth in the autumn, and made much of himself as his manner was.

That same summer came out to Lavahaven-mouth those brothers Biorn and Arnbiorn, and Biorn was afterwards called the Champion of the Broadwickers. Arnbiorn had by then brought home a pretty penny; and as soon as he came aland that summer he bought him land at Bank in Lavahaven, and set up house there the next spring. That winter he spent at Cnear with Thord Walleye, his brother-in-law. Arnbiorn was not a man for show, and was of few words in most matters, yet the stoutest and manliest of men in every wise. But Biorn his brother was a very stately man when he came out, and fair was his mien, for that he had shaped himself after the customs of outland chiefs. A far goodlier man was he than Arnbiorn, and in nothing of less skill than he, and in hardihood far more proven, for thereby he had gained renown in the outlands.

Now in the summer, when these were new come out, was appointed a great meeting of men north of the heath under Howebrent, in from Frodismouth. So those chapmen rode thither all of them, in coloured raiment, and when they came to the assembly, there were many there before them, and Thurid withal the goodwife of Frodis-water, and Biorn went to talk with her; and no man laid a word on them therefor, for they deemed that it was to be looked for that they should have much to say to each other, so long as it was since they met last.

Now that day men gave and took wounds, and one man from the Northcountry-men was brought to his death, and he was borne into a copse that was on the ere, and much blood ran from his wounds, and there stood a pool of blood in the copse. There was the youngling Kiartan, the son of Thurid of Frodis-water, with a little axe in his hand; he ran to the copse, and dipped the axe in the blood.

But when the folk from the south side of the heath rode south from the meeting, Thord Walleye asked Biorn how things had gone in the talk betwixt him and Thurid of Frodis-water. Biorn seemed well pleased thereabout. Then Thord asked Biorn if he had seen that day the youngling Kiartan, the son of Thurid and Thorod and them all together.

"Yea, I saw him," cried Biorn.

"In what wise didst thou deem of him?" said Thord.

Then sang Biorn this stave:

     "The young tree I saw there, the eager-eyed sapling,
     The youngling, the very own image of her,
     That gem-bestrewn table; he ran to the tree-grove,
     Whence the brook of the Wolf, even Fenrir, was welling.
     They who waste wide the flame of Morn's river, meseemeth
     Have been hitherto heedful to hide from the stripling
     The name of the father who erewhile begat him,
     He who speedeth the steeds of the streams of the Ocean."