Summary of the Thidrekssaga

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Dietrich's feast


All these sat on one benchor platform; pall: king Dietrich, king Gunther and Hagen, Hildebrand and jarl Hornboge. To hisDietrich's left hand sat Witig and Amelung, Detlef and Fasold, Sintram and Wildeber, Herbrand the wise and well-traveled, and Heime the Cruel.

And everyone said that they had never seen such noble and brave men, so perfect in all virtues in one hall together.


King Dietrich's coat of arms was as follows: red, with a golden lion whose head touched the top of the shield and its feet the rim. Now that Dietrich was king he had added a golden crown to the lion's head. He had this coat of arms because the lion is the noblest of all animals, and all other animals fear it. Also it was custom that no one was allowed to carry a lion in his coat of arms who would ever flee.


Hildebrand the Old had a coat of arms in the same colour as Dietrich, and on it a white castle with golden towers, and the castle looked like Bern. His armour and clothing was of the same colour as Dietrich'sred, which showed that he would never hide the fact he was Dietrich's man.


Heime the Greatmikilláti had a blue coat of arms, and on it a white horse. The colour blue denoted his cold breast and cruel heart, and the horse the craft of his relativeshorsebreeding; see 18 as well as the fact he was the best riderriddari; or knight?.


Witig the Strong, Wieland's son, used a white colour in his armour, and on his coat of arms was a red hammer and tongs and three carbuncle stones to denote his descent, for his father was a smith, and the three precious stones denoted his mother. A dragon of red gold crowned his helmet.


Jarl Hornboge was a good warrior with sword, spear, and shield, but above all he excelled in archery and spear-throwing. Also he was an excellent horseman that he was never separated from his horsefell off it in battle or duel.

Jarl Hornboge had brown as his colour, and on his coat of arms a golden hawk before which two birds flew, and his son Amelung had the same coat of arms. It meant his knighthood, and how, like the hawk, he often pursued enemies with great speed.

Jarl Hornboge had many lands and castles, and many knights and a wealth of cattleærit lausafé. Dietrich von Bern had heard all this, and therefore he sent his man Hildebrand to him, and Heime with him, to invite Hornboge to come to himand on the way back they met up with Witig; 82..


Amelung, jarl Hornboge's son, looked a lot like his father [and carried the same coat of arms].


Sintram of Fenedi's colour was green, and on it a dragon that was brown on top and gold at the bottom. This was because Dietrich had saved him from a dragon105. And the green colour meant that his sword had a green shine, like grass.


Fasold and Ecke were so alike that they were hard to tell apart. Fasold's colour was gold, and he had a red lion in his coat of arms, but this lion strode along the shield and did not have a crown. Ecke had the same coat of arms, and the lion signified they would never flee, as I have said before172.


Detlef the Dane, Biterolf's son, had dark blue as his colour, and on his coat of arms was depicted in gold the animalelephant that the Germans call alpandýr, but the NorthmenVæríngjar fíl, and he used this because old Sigurd the Greek rode an elephant118, and he wore gold in his shield because his mother was of noble birthhis father wasn't?.


Wildeber the Bold was a good counselor, daring and bold when ruling over other men, but artful and courteous when he served others. On his coat of arms he had a boar and a bear in dark red, but the colour of his coat was gold, with a dark red stripe, and his armour has the same colour.

This coat of arm signifies Villigöltr, which in German is WildeberVildifer, and he took his name because he was never with his kin in his homeland, but always with foreign princes. And the wild boar is the wildest of all animals, and hardest to capture for the hunter. But the bear in his arms signified that he once was disguised as a bear144 when he saved his companion Witig. That is why he wore open armoursundrlita herneskju; I have no idea what this means so that he made himself known when he was traveling.


Herbrand the Well-Traveled's coat of arms was red, and on it one saw a thrown fireskoteldr; some sort of siege equipment that flies faster and further than any other siege equipment. Herbrand was like that in battle, he always rode in fast, and he never sat still, since he had traveled the entire world.


King Gunther's coat of arms was white as silver, and it had a crowned eagle, which he used for all his weapons, and the eagle was crowned because he was a king and the eagle was the king of all birds.


Hagen, Gunther's brother, has only one eye244, and was merciless. He had a similar coat of arms to Gunther's, silver with an eagle. His weapons were red, but if his silver-inlaid shield glistened in the sunlight so that no one could look at it for a long time, and that was a wise choice of his. Now it is a law among German men that no one may carry such a silver shield or buckler into duels. His eagle did not have a crown because he was no king.


Sigfrid's skin was as hard as a boar's, or horn, so that no weapon could pierce it, and he understood the language of birds166. His coat of arms was of red gold, and on it a dragon dark brown on top and red at the bottom. He used this because he had killed a great dragon, which the NorthmenVæríngjar call Faðmiusually known as Fafnir, and his name goes forth in all languages from the north to the Greek sea, and so will it be as long as the world stands.


Sibich was a wise and patient man, persistent, resentful, deceitful, well-spoken, cruel, malicious, harsh, and his name will always remain famous.


Master Hildebrand had mastered the sword strike that no one could counter with a shield, and he usually won in one hit. And that is still said of him, wherever his name is written or spoken.


Heime the Proud was a great warrior. After his duel with king Dietrich20 he remarked that Dietrich's weapons and armour were wonderful, but not his horse, and offered to bring him a better one, and wagered his head that it was a much better horse than Dietrich's current one. Dietrich accepted, and promised that if Heime were to do this he would always be the first among all his men, except for master Hildebrand.

Then Heime rode home to his father Studa and took from his stud farm a filly, three winters old, named Falke. And this stallion he gave to king Dietrich, and king Dietrich rewarded him many times over.


Now king Dietrich looked around him on both sides, and praised the heroes present at the feast. And he thought that, if they were all armed and on their horses, they could ride throughout the world peacefully, since no one would dare to fight against them. And if anyone was not afraid of them and attacked them, he would have condemned himself to death.


Now Herbrand the Wise, the king's banner bearer, said that Dietrich was speaking out of ignorance, because Herbrand knew a country called Bertangaland, with a king named Isung, who is the strongest of all men and feared in duels, and he has eleven sons who are exactly like their father, and he has a banner bearer called Sigfrid, who is so great and wonderful in all heroic things that no better man can be found.

His skin is like horn everywhere, and few weapons bite him. His sword is Gram, and his horse is Grani, a brother of FalkeDietrich's horse, SchimmingWitig's horse, and RispaHeime's horse. Gram, too, is the best of all swords, and so are all his other weapons.

If you would fight this man, you would say before you returned home, if you returned at all, that you've never been in this much danger.


King Dietrich said with great courage, that if all that was true, then stand up from this table, arm yourself, take my banner, and I and the eleven others will follow you, and go and ride to Bertangaland. And before I sleep in my own bed for another night I want to know whether they or we are the strongest, and one of us will vanquish the other.

Status: summary of 21 chapters complete.

Other parts

  1. Samson (1-13)
  2. Hildebrand and Heime (14-20)
  3. Wieland the Smith (57-79)
  4. Witig (80-95)
  5. Journey to Osning (96-107)
  6. Witig and Heime (108-110,134-137,146-151)
  7. Detlef the Dane (111-129)
  8. Amelung, Wildeber, and Herbrand (130-133)
  9. Wildeber and Isung (138-145)
  10. Sigmund and Sisibe (152-161)
  11. Sigfrid's youth (162-168)
  12. Origins of the Niflungen (169-170)
  13. Dietrich's feast (171-191)
  14. The road to Bertangaland (192-199)
  15. The tournament (200-222)
  16. Dietrich's fellowship falls apart (223-226,240)
  17. Gunther and Brunhild (227-230)
  18. Walther and Hildegund (241-244)
  19. Ake and Iron (269-275)
  20. Dietrich's flight (276-290)
  21. The Wilkinen wars (291-315)
  22. The battle of Gransport (316-341)
  23. Sigfrid's death (342-348)
  24. Hertnit and Isung (349-355)
  25. Grimhild's revenge (356-394)
  26. Dietrich's return (395-415)
  27. Attila's death (423-428)
  28. Heime's death (429-437)
  29. Dietrich's death (438-441)