Summary of the Thidrekssaga

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Witig and Heime

134

All this time there had been a feud between king Attila of Hunnenland and king Osantrix of Wilkinenland, and both had had victories and defeats. King Attila had grown stronger, and had made friendships with many powerful lords, and he was loved in his realm with all peoples The saga really presses this point home.

King Osantrix had aged, and had become harsher, and the people in his realm could hardly bear the heavy yoke he put on to them, and everybody suffered from him, rich and poor, courtiers and subjects, and foreign merchants. And although he gave his knights land, he still managed these lands himself and gave it to whomever he wanted. And the heavy wars with king Attila cost him a lot of money, so he demanded more and more tribute The saga really presses this point home.

King Osantrix still had with him the two giants, Widolf with the Pole and Aventrod, his brother. But he had sent another brother of these giants, Etger, to king Isung of Bertangaland because of their friendship, and there he guarded the entry to that realm.

135

King Attile sought reconciliation with king Osantrix, and sent men to him, but Osantrix refused. When Attile found out, he sent a letter with his seal to king Diet­rich to request him to come to Hunnenland with his best warriors for a campaign against king Osantrix, since they had sworn friendship. And king Diet­rich wanted to come immediately, since his friend needed his help.

So he rode forth from Bern with 500 knights and his heroes. And when they came to Hunnenland king Attila received them well, and was ready to go to Wilkinenland with them.

So they went forth to Wilkinenland and made many prisoners and killed many, and some fled from them. They also burned many castles, villages and farmsteads, and gathered great booty, both people and gold and silver.

136

King Osantrix also had a large army, and when he met the army that did not flee from him Did the army flee from him earlier? The saga is unclear they clashed with one another, and a great battle began.

Herbrand, king Diet­richs banner carrier, rode in front, and hit with both hands both men and horses, and behind him came king Diet­rich and his heroes, and they all tried their swords on hard helmets and strong shields and armour, and all the companions helped one another where necessary.

Then Widolf with the Pole came to them and with his pole he hit Witig, who was out in the very front, on the helmet, so that he fell from his horse onto the ground unconscious. Heime was close by, and when Witig had fallen he took his sword Mimung and hurried from there.

The Wilkinen also fought bravely, but king Diet­rich told all his men to advance and show the enemies their handiwork. Now king Osantrix saw that the battle was lost and fled, after he had lost 500 knights. Attila, who had lost only 300, chased after him.

Wildeber and Isung

144

The next morning the king and all his men went out of the castle to a field, and with them as well Widolf with the Pole and Aventrod, and Widolf was in strong chains, since he should never be released except in battle. And they and all of the other king's men were without weapons. Many other people, young and old, men and women and children, came to see what would happen.

And now Witig in his prison heard that Isung, his friend This friendship is not mentioned anywhere else, had come, and suspected he wanted to free him with some plot at the request of king Diet­rich and his companions. Witig broke his fetters.

The people outside let loose sixty large dogs who all attacked the bear at the same time, but the bear took the largest of them with his front paws and with it killed twelve of the best dogs. King Osantrix became angry, walked to the bear, drew his sword, and slashed him at the top of his back, and although the sword went through the skin the armor.

Now Wildeber snatched his sword from the hands of Isung, went after the king and cut off his head this last clause is missing from Von der Hagen and then ran to the giant Aventrod and killed him, and then sprang on Widolf with the Pola and killed him as well. And thus king Osantrix ended his life, and with him two of his giants.

Then all of the king's men, who were unarmed, ran away, and all thought the devil himself had entered the bear, and most of them didn't know what to do.

Wildeber now went to the castle and asked where his good friend Witig was. Witig had already broken out of prison can't have a major hero sitting around passively waiting for a rescue and together they ran through the town and killed sixteen men. They found many goods and weapons and horses, among which Witig's horse Schimming, and all his weapons except for his good sword Mimung, which he could find nowhere.

Now Wildeber took off the bear skin, and all saw he was a man and not a monster troll, and they understood they had been tricked, and went for their weapons. Witig, Wildeber, and Isung thought it inadvisable to stay longer, and thought they had done well. They had found as much gold and silver and treasures as they could carry, and rode out of town. And they rode through wild lands until they came to Hunnenland and king Attila.

The road to Bertangaland

194

Although they did not cultivate it much, Witig and Etger the giant were related. Because Witig was the son of Wieland the Smith, whom the Northmen Væringjar call Völund fyrir hagleiks sakar Google Translate says 'for the sake of good fortune'. This part is missing from Von der Hagen's translation., and Wieland was a son of the giant Wade, and Wade was the son of king Wilkinus and a sea lady sjókona, as was said earlier 23. But king Wilkinus had another son with his own wife eiginkona called Nordian, who was also a king, but a lesser one than his father, and Nordian had four sons who were all strong giants: Aventrod, Widolf with the Pole, and the third was Etger, who lived in this forest, and the fourth was Aspilian, who was also a king, and he was like other children of men i.e. not a giant. In this way Witig and the giant Etger were related.

Status: summary of 5 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)