Summary of the Thidrekssaga

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Dietrich's flight

289

Diet­rich rode northwards over the mountains until he came to the castle named Balakar that stood on the Rhine, and the mighty margrave Rodinger ruled there. And when Rodinger heard Diet­rich was coming he rode out with all his men and his wife Gotelinde. Gotelinde gave Diet­rich a banner, half green, half red, and a golden lion on it, and also a purple cloak. Margrave Rodinger gave him a horse and good clothes. Then Diet­rich rode into the castle.

290

Then king Diet­rich, together with the count Now greifi instead of markgreifi, rode to Soest and king Attila. When king Attile heard king Diet­rich had come he rode to him with his men, and with him his wife Erka, and many minstrels. King Diet­rich rode into Soest with king Attila, and sat down to a wonderful feast. And Attila offered Diet­rich to stay as long as he wanted, and to serve himself of whatever was available. Diet­rich accepted, and thus he staid with Attila for a long time.

The Wilkinen wars

291

King Attila told king Diet­rich how much trouble king Osantrix of the Wilkinen had caused him, both by killing men and by destroying his country. Diet­rich said that should be avenged since he was in Attila's kingdom now i.e. he would fight with Attila because he was his guest now, and it should no longer be endured.

Not long after messengers came to king Attila who told him king Osantrix had entered his realm and was burning buildings and destroying the land and killing many men. Then king Attila called up all his men to ride out against Osantrix. And king Diet­rich told master Hildebrand to take his banner and that all his men should ride out to help king Attila.

Now king Attila rode from Soest with king Diet­rich and margrave Rodinger and went to the town called Brandenborg, because Osantrix had recently taken this town. King Attila and his men now laid siege to the town, and king Osantrix was also there with his whole army.

298

Now Wolfhart rode from the town at midnight. He went straight to a fire and took a burning branch and thus rode through the army of his enemies. And the Russen thought he must be one of them, since he rode so fearlessly through their camp. When he came to the centre of the army he saw many tents, among which one that was very beautiful and expensive, and he threw the burning branch into it.

In this tent king Waldemar slept, and most of his chiefs. Now the tent started burning, and all that were in the tent rose. But Wolfhart jumped from his horse, entered the tent, and killed eleven chiefs, but he wasn't sure if he had killed the king himself, since the night was dark. Then Wolfhart mounted again and rode away as quickly as he could. King Diet­rich and master Hildebrand stood on the town wall, and were quite happy when they saw the tent burning, I suppose, and went to bed.

Now Wolfhart rode day and night until he came to Hunnenland to king Attila and margrave Rodinger. And when Rodinger saw his weapons he though Diet­rich had returned. But Wolfhart said: Welcome, margrave Rodinger, king Diet­rich sends his greetings. And now Rodinger understood it was one of Diet­rich's men, but not he himself. and he said: Thank God Diet­rich is still alive. We will ride to his aid as soon as possible. And then Wolfhart told Rodinger everything, and the margrave went to the king and told him the story.

King Attila now had his horns blown and tear down his tents Apparently they were still in the field, and turned around to help king Diet­rich and rode to the town.

King Waldemar's men noticed that a mighty army had entered Russland and told their king. And king Waldemar had his horns blown and gathered his men and rode away.

299

When king Diet­rich saw that king Waldemar rode away they sallied forth from the town and tode after them and killed many men.

And when king Diet­rich returned to the town he met king Attila with his army, and Attila was glad Diet­rich was still alive. And then the went up into town.

Margrave Rodinger said: We are sorry we could not come sooner to help you, since you were in so much danger.

And Hildebrand replied: I am now a hundred winters old Slight exaggeration, and I have never been in such danger. We had five hundred men at first, but the hunger was so fierce that we ate five hundred horses, and only seven are left.

Then king Diet­rich went to where Didrik was kept and showed him to king Attila, and said: This is Didrik Waldemar's son. I captured him in the battle, but because of our friendship I'll give him to you to do with as you please, either kill him or allow Waldemar to ransom him. And Attila said: You have given me a gift that pleases me more than two shippounds of red gold.

Then they went back to Hunnenland, and nothing more can be said about their travels until they came home. Diet­rich had many wounds and had to keep to his bed. But Didrik was thrown into prison, and he was also gravely wounded.

308

Now we have to speak of king Attila's expedition, and how he burned many towns and castles. But when king Waldemar heard of this he gathered all his men and rode against king Attila. Then a great battle ensued when the two kings met one another, and they fought for a long time. King Attila rode at the front and carried his banner himself. And Hildebrand led king Diet­rich's followers and carried his banner. But some of king Diet­rich's men followed margrave Rodinger. But king Waldemar had his horns blown and attacked, and many of king Attila's men fell and he had to flee.

Hildebrand and Rodinger saw this, and Hildebrand considered how well king Diet­rich's men could fight, and thus they went forwards and killed two thousand of king Waldemar's men. A count of Greken rode against them and hit Hildebrand with his spear so that he fell from his horse. When Rodinger saw Hildebrand had fallen he rode to his rescue. He caught Hildebrand's horse, brought it to him, and helped him back in the saddle. And when master Hildebrand was back in the saddle he fought with great anger, and the Reussen fled before him.

But king Waldemar had so much warriors that Hildebrand and Rodinger also had to flee. And they rode back to Hunnenland and they were not happy with their defeat.

309

Master Hildebrand went to where king Diet­rich lay, and told him: I'm happy you're still alive, but I'd be happier if you'd been healed. And Diet­rich asked him how things had gone in Reussland.

Hildebrand replied: Not well. You often told me how courageous king Attila is, but it seems to me he's no hero. As soon as we fought against king Waldemar and the fight was at its height, he fled like an evil dog, and his banner dropped down, and he took the entire Hun army with him. Rodinger and I turned against the enemy three more times, but a count of Greken, king Waldemar's brother, threw me from my horse, and Rodinger saved my life. But then we had to flee, and we had dishonour from this expedition.

King Diet­rich replied: Be silent, Hildebrand, and don't speak of your journey. But if I heal I will once more ride to Reussland and I will see for myself who will flee first, and the Reussen will not long enjoy their victory.

And king Diet­rich's wounds healed.

310

One day king Diet­rich said to king Attila: Do you remember which shame the Reussen did to us? Or do you not want to avenge yourself? Attila replied: I'd love to take revenge, especially if you'll help me. And king Diet­rich said: I'll help you. Gather your men, and king Waldemar will flee from us or die, or we will die.

King Attila gathered a great army, no less than ten thousand knights. And he commanded that everyone over twenty years of age should come to him, and thus he had twenty thousand more knights when he left Hunnenland.

He entered Reussland with this army and burned towns and castles, and laid siege before Palteskia. This town was so strong that they hardly knew how to take it. It had strong stone walls, high towers, and a broad and deep moat, and the town contained a large army, and the defenders didn't fear king Attila's army.

When king Attila saw how difficult it would be to take the town he divided his army into three: under his own banner he set ten thousand knights, and another ten thousands at another place, and he named Diet­rich their leader, and a large number of ribbalda followed them. And the third ten thousand he have to margrave Rodinger.

Now each leader made camp before the town, and they fought with the townsmen for many days, and both sides lost many men.

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And when they had besieged the town for three months Diet­rich told Attila the entire army should not stay before this town any longer, and said: My lord, you should ride deeper into Reussland with your army, and Rodinger as well, but I will stay before this town and not depart before it is won. Or if you want to stay yourself we will go elsewhere.

King Attila replied courteously, but he considered that Diet­rich wanted to have the honour of taking this town for himself, and that the walls had already been weakened, since the siege equipment was working day and night. But on the other hand he thought that if he, king Attila, would stay behind by himself, it could be that king Waldemar could come to him to fight, and that he would lack the help of Diet­rich and Rodinger.

Therefore he replied: I have made such an effort to take this town that I cannot ride from here without placing my banner at the top of the tower, but I ask you and Rodinger not to go elsewhere, since the Reussen cannot move against us if we do not divide our army.

King Diet­rich replied: If we three remain before this town we will not gain a victory over the Reussen. So you stay before this town, and Rodinger as well, but let me go and conquer more places. And they agreed to that.

The battle of Gransport

318

Now queen Erka took her cloak and went to the hall where king Attila sat apparently they have separate halls, and king Diet­rich followed her. When she arrived the king Attila offered her a golden bowl with wine, and asked her to sit on his throne with him, and asked her if she has any business to discuss.

Queen Erka replied: Lord, I do have business. King Diet­rich wants to go back to his lands and take revenge, if he gets help from you. King Diet­rich has been in Hunnenland for a long time and has suffered many perils for your sake, battles and duels, and has won many lands for you. So pay him back by giving him an army from your lands to reconquer his realm.

Then king Attila answered angrily, and he didn't like being asked to do so. He said: If king Diet­rich wants help, why doesn't he ask me? Or is he so proud that he doesn't want our help unless we offer it?

The queen replied: King Diet­rich can discuss this himself, but I spoke instead of him because we believed that you would more readily accept than if he had asked alone. But I will give him my not our! sons Erp and Ortwin and a thousand kinghts, and now you can tell us what you will give him.

Then king Attila said: What you said is true, and it is fitting that we offer him help now. Since you have given him your two sons and a thousand knights, I will give him margrave Rodinger and two thousand knights.

Then king Diet­rich said to king Attila: It went as I thought, that queen Erka's help would be of benefit to me, and I will take your offer with many thanks and gladness, and may God reward you.

Now this army prepared all winter, and nothing was forged in Hunnenland but swords and spears, helms and armour, shields and saddles, and all other things knights need when they go on an expedition. And in early spring the army gathered in Soest.

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Now Soest was filled with sounds of weapons, and shouts, and neighing of horses. The entire town was so full of men that no one could pass through, and no one could hear anyone unless they were close to them.

Now king Attila went up into a tower and called loudly: Hear me, men, and be quiet, and hear my commands. And the town fell silent.

Then the king said: Now a great army has gathered here, and now you must go as I will tell you. King Diet­rich will travel alone with his army, and my man margrave Rodinger will go with another part of the knights that I have given to king Diet­rich, and all the other men will follow my sons and young Diether. And all did as king Attile had commanded.

Now margrave Rodinger rode forth from Soest with his army. And Erp and Ortwin mounted, and in their following were duke Nudung of Walkaburg, who bore Diet­rich's banner presumably because of Diether's presence in this group?, and Wolfhart and Helfrich, both Diet­rich's relatives Helfrich's relation is not mentioned anywhere else, and the details of Wolfhart's are unclear..

And when the latter mounted queen Erka said: Good friend Helfrich, guard my sons well, and let them ride beside you when the armies meet. And Helfrich said: I swear by God, I won't come home from this war if I lose your sons. And queen Erka thanked him.

Now duke Nudung rode from Soest, and next Diether, and then Erp and Ortwin and the good knight Helfrich, then Wolfhart, and then all their warriors. Now king Diet­rich mounted his horse Falke, and master Hildebrand bore his banner and went before king Diet­rich, and then Wildeber and the warriors who followed Diet­rich's banner i.e. the personal retainers Diet­rich brought with him on his flight. And in these three groups there were no less than ten thousand knights which would give Diet­rich 7,000 knights; seems rather too much to me and a great lot of other people.

328

Now Hildebrand and Reinald came to the river bank opposite the Hunnish army, and Hildebrand said: You can see a tent with five poles, and golden knots on every one, that is king Diet­rich's tent. And on the right you can see a tent of red silk with nine poles and nine golden knots, and that is king Attila's tent, where his sons and Diether sleep. And to the right of king Diet­rich's tent you can see a green tent, which is margrave Rodinger's, who wants to aid king Diet­rich nd Diether. Now I have told you how our tents are ordered. And Sibich will find out that king Diet­rich will lead his banner mostly against him, oh yes he will.

Then Reinald said: Sibich has also decided to fight against king Diet­rich. But I will lead my banner against margrave Rodinger, because the Huns who follow him are not our friends. But Witig, your friend, will attack Diether and Attila's sons, although he is loath to fight against Diether because he is king Diet­rich's brother, but it must be done.

And now they separated, and wished each other safe travel.

329

Hildebrand rode back through the ford. But when Reinald came to his tent he found there Sibich with many of his men, ready for battle. He had heard about Hildebrand's mission and wanted to ride after him and kill him.

Then Reinald said: If you want to kill my good friend Hildebrand I can get no fewer men than you have in a short time, and then you'll have to fight me rather than him, and you'll have many fewer men before you catch up with him. And it is more likely than not that he will ride his way, whether you pursue him or not likely means: he will kill the lot of you even if I don't.

Then Sibich replied: Reinald, do you want to become king Ermenrik's enemy, who made me chief of this campaign? Do you want to help our enemies?

Reinald said: I don't want to become king Ermenrik's enemy. Instead, I will fight for him, even though I fight against my relatives and friends, but I will not let you kill Hildebrand while he rides alone. You will have plenty of opportunity to kill him before the day is over, and when he leads his men I will not prevent anyone from riding against him. But it could be that he defends himself. And these words stopped Sibich and his men from riding after Hildebrand.

But Hildebrand rode to king Diet­rich's tent and told him all he had learned that night. And the king said he had done well, as before.

330

And when light came king Diet­rich rose and had his horns blown, and then Diether did the same, as did margrave Rodinger. And now all rose and armed themselves. And when they had mounted master Hildebrand rode in front with king Diet­rich's banner pole in his hands, and close behind him king Diet­rich with all his men. And they rode to the same ford that Hildebrand had used during the night.

And when the Amelungen saw this, Sibich had king Ermenrik's horns blown, and Witig and Reinald did the same, and all their men armed themselves. Witig mounted his horse Schimming and was ready to fight; and so too Reinald with his army.

Walther of Waskastein bore king Ermenrik's banner in his hand, this banner had the outer part in black like a raven's, and the next part gold, and the third one green as grass, and seventy golden bells were sewn into this banner, so that one could hear it throughout the entire army as soon as the banner was moved or touched by the wind. And behind him came Sibich with his men.

And when king Diet­rich saw king Ermenrik's banner and knew Sibich followed it, he called on master Hildebrand to carry his banner that way; and this banner was made of white silk, and had a golden lion with a crown, and no fewer than seventy bells hung from it; queen Erka had had this banner made and gave it to king Diet­rich. So these two armies rode to one another.

Then rode Reinald with his troupe; and his banner was red silk like blood, and on the tip of the pole were three golden knots. And he led his army against margrave Rodinger.

Then rode Witig with his army, and his banner was carried by the strong Runga - no giant was found with equal strength - and this banner was black, and a white hammer, tongues, and anvil on it. Against him rode duke Nudung, and he bore a white banner with a golden lion, and this banner queen Erka had given to Diether. And after him rode Diether and Erp and Ortwin, Attila's sons, and the good knight Helfrich. Their shoes were covered with red gold so that they had a glow as if of fire.

334

The good knight Wolfhart fought with great courage all day, and he carried margrave Rodinger's banner and had ridden far into the Amelung army. And margrave Rodinger followed him. In the same way Reinald rode into the Hun army and killed many men. Now he saw what great damage Wolfhart his relative did, and his men wanted to flee from Rodinger and Wolfhart. So he rode against them and hit his relative Wolfhart in the breast with his spear, so that it exited through the shoulder blades and he fell dead from his horse.

Margrave Rodinger was close by and took the banner pole and carried his banner himself, and attacked Reinald's banner bearer and beheaded him and also cut the banner pole so that the banner fell to the ground. When Reinald's men saw their banner fall and Sibich had fled they fled as well, and when Reinald saw that he went after them.

337

Now king Diet­rich rode back to the battlefield, and he saw how many of his relatives and friends had fallen. And he went to where his brother Diether lay, and said: There you lay, Diether, and I rue what has been done to you. And Diet­rich took Diether's shield and threw it away, because it was all hacked up and useless.

And then he went to where the princes lay, and he said: My dear princes, losing you is the gravest harm I could have had, because how can I now return to Soest? I'd rather be severely wounded if you had been healthy.

Then king Diet­rich went away from the bodies, I suppose, and all his men had now come to him, and he said: Listen, margrave Rodinger, now bring my greetings to king Attila and queen Erka, and tell them that I will not come back to Hunnenland now that king Attila has lost so many warriors for my sake.

The margrave replied, and many other chiefs with him: Don't do that. It often happens in war that leaders lose their best warriors and still win the battle, as has happened here. So recognised you were victorious here even though you lost the princes. We will ask queen Erka to be content with that, even though she has lost her sons, and we will all make sure that king Attila won't be less of a friend to you than he was before.

Diet­rich said he would never return as matters stood now, because he had promised queen Erka to return her sons, but had not kept his promise. But then all chiefs and knights went to king Diet­rich and said: Good lord Diet­rich, come back with us to Hunnenland, we will support you before king Attila and queen Erka. But if you do not want to return, then we will follow you to reconquer your realm, and we will fight against king Ermenrik, and we will never return until you have your realm back.

King Diet­rich replied: I truly do not wish to lead king Attila's army any more, now that I have lost his two sons, and I would prefer to go home with you.

And now the entire army turned back and rode on the roads that brought them back to Hunnenland to king Attila in Soest.

338

When king Diet­rich came to Soest he went into a cooking house a small house separate from the main structure meant for baking bread and other food that required fire and refused to see king Attila and queen Erka.

But margrave Rodinger went into Attila's hall and greeted him. And Attila asked for news, and whether they had won, and if king Diet­rich had survived.

And margrave Rodinger replied: King Diet­rich is alive and the Huns have won, but still it was an evil dau, since we lost your sons Erp and Ortwin. Then queen Erka cried, and almost all who were in that hall. And king Attila asked: Who else of the Huns fell along with my sons?

And Rodinger replied: Many good warriors, young Diether von Bern, and your good fried Helfrich, and duke Nudung, and Wildeber, and many other good men and chiefs, but the Amelungen lost half as many men, and those who live had to flee.

Then king Attila said, and he was courageous under these tidings: Now it happened as before, those who are fated will fall, and good weapons and strength do not help when you have to die. And we have seen that in this expedition, because Erp and Ortwin and Diether all had the best weapons, but still they all lie dead. And then he asked: But where is my good friend king Diet­rich?

Someone replied: In a cooking house sit king Diet­rich and master Hildebrand, and they put down their weapons and do not want to come under your eyes, my lord, so bad they feel about losing the princes.

Then king Attila said: Two of my knights, go there and ask my friend king Diet­rich to come inside. He should still be close to me, despite all that has happened.

The two knights went to where king Diet­rich sat, and gave him the message. But king Diet­rich replied that his mood was so heavy and sad that he did not want to meet other people. And the knights went back to king Attila and told him what had happened.

Grimhild's revenge

358

Quickly after king Attila prepared his journey to Niflungenland to his fiancée Grimhild, and he took five hundred knights with him. When king Gunther heard kings Attila and Diet­rich had come to his realm he rode to them with his best men, and when they came near king Gunther rode to king Attila and greeted him, and his brother Hagen rode to Diet­rich and they kissed one another, and welcomed one another as the best friends.

Now they all rode to the town of Vernica, and there a most glorious feast was prepared, and at this feast king Gunther gave his sister Grimhild to king Attila.

And when the feast had ended king Attila and king Diet­rich rode home. And when they departed king Gunther gave Grani, Sigfrid's horse, to king Diet­rich, and the sword Gram he gave to margrave Rodinger the saga just says 'the margrave', and to king Attila and Grimhild as much silver as he thought right, and they separated as good friends.

King Attila and king Diet­rich From the rest of the sentence it's clear that 'and king Diet­rich' was added' rode home to his realm, and guarded the kingdom for a while. But his wife Grimhild cried every day for her dear husband Sigfrid.

367

By evening they lay down and Hagen took the watch again. And when everyone was asleep Hagen went out to scout far from his people. And he found a sleeping man in armour who had laid his sword under him, but the hilt was visible. Hagen took the sword and threw it from him, and then he poked the man with his right foot, and told him to wake up.

The man jumped up and reached for his sword, but saw it was gone, and said: Woe to me for this sleep! I lost my sword, and now I guarded my lord's realm badly Von der Hagen adds: my lord margrave Rodinger's; and: I waited for three days and nights, and therefore I slept.

Hagen said: You are a good man, see here a golden ring for your courage sarcasm? and you will enjoy it more than the previous man who got it apparently Hagen took his golden ring back from the pilot, and also I'll return your sword.

The man replied: Thank you for my sword, and also your ring. And Hagen said: Don't be afraid of this army if you guard margrave Rodinger's land. He is our friend, and king Gunther of the Niflungen leads this army with his brothers. But tell me, where do you want us to spend the night? And who are you?

The man said: I am Eckeward, and now I understand where you go. Are you Hagen Aldrian's son, who killed my lord Sigfrid? Take care while you are in Hunnenland, because you may have many enemies here. But for spending the night I can't bring you to a better place than Bakalar, with margrave Rodinger.

Hagen said: You directed us to where we wanted to go anyway. Now ride home to the castle and tell them that we are coming. Also tell them we are rather wet.

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Eckeward rode home, and Hagen went back to his men, and told king Gunther what had happened, and ordered everyone to get up and ride to the castle as quickly as possible. And so they did.

Eckeward rode home as fast as he could, and when he arrived in the hall margrave Rodinger had just eaten and was about to go to sleep. Then Eckward told him what had happened. Then margrave Rodinger rose and ordered all his men to prepare the best meal they could. And he himself jumped on his horse, and when he rode out he met king Gunther with all his men. Margrave Rodinger received the Niflungen well.

369

Now the Niflungen rode into Rodinger's courtyard garð and dismounted, and the margrave's men received them well. And the margrave had ordered two large fires to be made because they were still wet. And king Gunther, his brothers, and several of his men sat with one fire, and the other men with the other. Those who were dry were led to the hall and placed on the benches.

Now the Niflungen undressed near the fires, and Gotelinde, margrave Rodinger's wife, and she was sister to duke Nudung who fell at Gransport, said: The Niflungen have brought many white armours, and hard helemts, and sharp swords, and new shields, but Grimhild still cries for her husband Sigfrid every day. When the fires had gone out king Gunther and Hagen and their brothers went into the hall, sat there and drank with joy, and then they went to sleep.

Now margrave Rodinger lay in bed with his wife, and he asked her: What honourable gift shall I give to king Gunther and his brothers? And she replied: Anything you would like to give, I will agree with. And he said: If you agree, I would like to give our daughter to young Giselher as my first gift. And Gotelinde said: If he could enjoy our daughter it would be well done, but I am afraid he won't.

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When day came Rodinger invited the Niflungen to stay for a few days, but they wanted to ride on. And margrave Rodinger told them he wanted to ride with them. And during breakfast Rodinger had a helmet carried in, and gave it to king Gunther. And the king thanked him for this gift. Then Rodinger gave a new shield to Gernot.

Then he had his daughter brought in and gave her to Giselher, and said: Good Giselher, this maiden I would like to give you for your wife, if you want to tak her. And Giselher replied he would become the happiest of men with her, and took her with many thanks.

And again Rodinger spoke: See here, young Giselher, the sword Gram that I would like to give you. It used to be Sigfrid's sword, and I think it would be the best of weapons to carry where you are going. And again Giselher thanked Rodinger.

Then margrave Rodinger said to Hagen: My good friend, what do you see around here that you would like to have? And Hagen said: I see a shield that is sea blue, and large, and it ought to be strong and has large cuts in it. I would like that for a gift.

And Rodinger said: That shield was carried by a good hero, duke Nudung, and the cut is from Mimung, strong Witig's sword, before he fell. And when Gotelinde heard this she cried many tears for her brother Nudung. And Hagen received the shield, and everyone thanked Rodinger again.

Then alll rode from the castle, including margrave Rodinger and his men. Gotelinde wished them well, and hoped they would return with honour. And margrave Rodinger kissed his wife and asked her to rule his realm until he returned.

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Now nothing more is said of their travel than that they rode on day after day, and when they entered Soest it was rainy and windy, and all Niflungen were wet. And when they came to Thorta Dortmund they met a messenger from king Attila, who had been sent to Bakalar to invite Rodinger to the feast. And Rodinger asked him news from Soest.

The man replied: The latest news is that the Niflungen have come to Hunnenland, and king Attila is preparing them a feast, and I was sent to invite you, but I could just as well return with you, since I have done my errand. And then Rodinger asked how many men king Attila expected to receive. And the messenger said: I think there are no fewer men in this company than king Attila has invited i.e. Attila has roughly as many men as the Niflungen, but queen Grimhild has about half again as many of her friends, and is gathering men across her realm Does she have her own realm? Unclear to help her. And there will be many men at this feast, and it will go on for a long time.

Then Rodinger told the man to ride to king Attila and tell him that the Niflungen and he had arrived. Then king Attila ordered that all houses in the town should be prepared, some with tents or draperies?, others with fires, and there was a big bustle in Soest.

Now king Attila asked king Diet­rich to ride out and meet them. And he did so, met the Niflungen, and they all went to the town.

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King Attila now sat on his throne, and to his right sat king Gunther, and next to him young Giselher, then Gernot, then Hagen, then their relative Volker. On Attila's left sat king Diet­rich von Bern, then margrave Rodinger, then master Hildebrand, and these sat at king Attila's high table.

And in the hall were also the noblest of men one next to the other, and they drank good wine and feasted. And such a large amount of people were in town that all houses were filled. And they all slept in peace this night.

384

Now Hagen and Gernot heard the Huns call that king Gunther had been taken prisoner. Hagen became so angry that he jumped from the doors down onto the street and struck Huns with both hands, and no one dared to stand before him. When Gernot saw that he also jumped on to the street and hewed Huns with both hands, and his sword stopped nowhere but in the ground. And Giselher followed him and killed many men with his sword Gram. And they distinguished themselves so much that no Hun dared to stand before them, and they fled. And now the Niflungen came forth from the garden on to the street, and they shouted that the Huns were cowardly dogs who ran when the Niflungen wanted to avenge themselves. And they spread through the town and killed them men they encountered, and it was night and quite dark. And the Huns fought them only? in groups.

King Attila went to his hall and had the house closed and guarded, so that the Niflungen could not do anything there. And margrave Rodinger went to king Diet­rich's hall thus indicating that he, too, was neutral and stayed there for a while. And duke Osid and his men and Irung and his men also went to halls. That night, a multitude of men Hunnic reinforcements? Or the Niflungen on their killing spree? rushed into town. And now it was dark.

387

When margrave Rodinger heard that duke Osid had fallen he became very angry and told his men they should now fight and kill the Niflungen. And he had his banner carried against the Niflungen, and fought for a long time.

Meanwhile Hagen went forth alone into the Hun army and killed Huns on both sides with his hands as far as his sword could reach, and he also killed many with his spear, and his arms were now bloody up to the shoulders. And he fought so long and went so far into the Hunnic army that he became quite tired and did not know how to get back to his own men. So he went into a hall, kicked open the door to see if anyone was in the hall, I presume and positioned himself in the doorway and rested.

Margrave Rodinger now marched against the Niflungen, and the Huns moved against the hall where Hagen stood, but he defended the door and slew many men. Grimhild saw this, and she called on the Huns to set fire to the hall, because the roof was made of wood, and thus they did.

Then Grimhild called Irung and said: My good Irung, now you can attack Hagen while he is in a house one house? Von der Hagen says his house? Vague. Bring me his head and I'll fill your shield with red gold. And Irung turned to the hall, which was meanwhile filled with smoke. Irung jumped bravely into the hall and struck Hagen with his sword into his thigh, so that the armour was torn apart, and he took a piece from his thigh as large as one would put in a kettle, but then he jumped out of the hall.

Now Grimhild saw that Hagen bled, and went to Irung and said: Now, my dear Irung, best of all heroes, you have wounded Hagen, the next time you will kill him. And she took two golden rings from her arm and put one under his helmet band to the right, and the other to the left Ms. B instead says: and she embraced him, and said: Now bring me Hagen's head, and you will have as much gold and silver as your shield can hold, and then again as much.

Now Irung jumped into the hall a second time, but Hagen was warned and walked to him and pierced him with his spear in the breast, so that it tore through armour and body and exited between the shoulders. And there Irung sank down on the stone road that until this day is called Irung's Road, and Hagen's spear was stuck in the road.

Then Hagen said: If I had avenged Grimhild's evil like I avenged my wound on Irung, then my sword would have sung throuhgout Hunnenland.

388

Margrave Rodinger went forward and killed the Niflungen, but against him came Giselher, and they fought, and Giselher's sword Gram cut through shield, armour, and helmet like through clothes. And margrave Rondinger fell with great wounds beforre Giselher, killed with the same sword he had given to Giselher as a gift.

And Gernot and Giselher attacked king Attila's hall and killed many Huns. But Volker went to the hall where Hagen stood, and killed one man after the other so that he never walked on the ground, but always from body to body.

And now Hagen saw a Niflung was coming to help him, and he asked: Who is this man who comes here so bravely? And he replied: I am Volker One ms. adds: the minstrel; Von der Hagen doesn't tell us which one your companion; now look at the street I have cut here. And Hagen said: Thank God that you let your sword sing on Hunnish helmets.

Status: summary of 27 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)