Njála, 104

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Chapter 104

OF GIZUR THE WHITE AND HJALLTI.

That same summer Hjallti Skeggi's son was outlawed at the Thing for blasphemy against the Gods.

Thangbrand told King Olaf of all the mischief that the Icelanders had done to him, and said that they were such sorcerers there that the earth burst asunder under his horse and swallowed up the horse.

Then King Olaf was so wroth that he made them seize all the men from Iceland and set them in dungeons, and meant to slay them.

Then they, Gizur the White and Hjallti, came up and offered to lay themselves in pledge for those men, and fare out to Iceland and preach the faith. The king took this well, and they got them all set free again.

Then Gizur and Hjallti busked their ship for Iceland, and were soon "boun." They made the land at Eyrar when ten weeks of summer had passed; they got them horses at once, but left other men to strip their ship. Then they ride with thirty men to the Thing, and sent word to the Christian men that they must be ready to stand by them.

Hjallti stayed behind at Reydarmull, for he had heard that he had been made an outlaw for blasphemy, but when they came to the "Boiling Kettle" (1) down below the brink of the Rift (2), there came Hjallti after them, and said he would not let the heathen men see that he was afraid of them.[1]

Then many Christian men rode to meet them, and they ride in battle array to the Thing. The heathen men had drawn up their men in array to meet them, and it was a near thing that the whole body of the Thing had come to blows, but still it did not go so far.

ENDNOTES:

(1) "Boiling kettle." This was a hyer, or hot spring. (2) This was the "Raven's Rift," opposite to the "Great Rift" on the other side of Thingfield.

References

  1. that he was afraid of them: "Not having stayed away the requisite three years, Hjalti at first remained behind but eventually joined the Christian party... The last text gives as the reason for Hjalti's change of mind that he did not want to let heathen men think he feared them." Jochens, Jenny. Late and Peaceful. (p. 648).

Kafli 104

Þetta sama sumar varð Hjalti Skeggjason sekur á þingi um goðgá.

Þangbrandur sagði Ólafi konungi frá meingerðum manna við sig, sagði þá vera svo fjölkunnga að jörðin spryngi í sundur undir hesti hans og tæki hestinn. Þá varð Ólafur konungur svo reiður að hann lét taka alla íslenska menn og setja í myrkvastofu og ætlaði þá til dráps.

Þá gengu þeir Gissur hvíti að og Hjalti og buðu að leggja sig í veð fyrir þessa menn og fara út til Íslands og boða trú. Konungur tók þessu vel og þágu þeir þá alla undan.

Þá bjuggu þeir Gissur og Hjalti skip sitt til Íslands og urðu snemmbúnir. Þeir tóku land á Eyrum er tíu vikur voru af sumri. Þeir fengu sér þegar hesta en fengu menn til að ryðja skip. Ríða þeir þá þrír tigir manna til þings og gerðu þá orð kristnum mönnum að við búnir skyldu vera. Hjalti var eftir að Reyðarmúla því að hann hafði spurt að hann var sekur orðinn um goðgá. En þá er þeir komu til Vellandkötlu ofan frá Gjábakka þá kom Hjalti eftir þeim og kvaðst ekki vilja sýna það heiðnum mönnum að hann hræddist þá.[1] Riðu þá margir kristnir menn í móti þeim og riðu þeir með fylktu liði á þing. Heiðnir menn höfðu og fylkt fyrir og var þá svo nær að allur þingheimur mundi berjast en þó varð það eigi.

Tilvísanir

  1. að hann hræddist þá: "Not having stayed away the requisite three years, Hjalti at first remained behind but eventually joined the Christian party... The last text gives as the reason for Hjalti's change of mind that he did not want to let heathen men think he feared them." Jochens, Jenny. Late and Peaceful. (s. 648).

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