Notes. Regarding Sigurth/ In Old High German this name is Sigifrid
meaning Peace-Bringing through Victory in Old Norse it is Sigvorth
meaning Victory-Gaurder, which in this text becomes Sigurth.)
Gripir was the name of Eylimis son, the brother of Hjordis; he ruled over lands and was of all men the wisest and most forward-seeing. Sigurth once was riding alone and came to Gripirs hall. Sigurth was easy to recognize; he found out in front of the hall a man whose name was Geitir. Then Sigurth questioned him and asked:
1. Who is it has this dwelling here,
Or what do men call the peoples king?
2. Gripir the name of the chieftain good
Who holds the folk and the firm-ruled land.
3. Is the kin all-knowing now within,
Will the monarch come with me to speak?
A man unknown his counsel needs,
And Gripir fain I soon would find.
4. The ruler glad of Geitir will ask
Who seeks with Gripir speech to have.
5. Sigurth am I, and Sigmunds son,
And Hjordis the name of the heros mother.
Then Geitir went and to Gripir spake:
6. A stranger comes and stands without;
Lofty he is to look upon,
And, prince, thyself he fain would see.
7. From the hall the ruler of heroes went,
And greeted well the warrior come:
Sigurth, welcome long since had been thine;
Now, Geitir, shalt thou Grani take.
(Grani is known as the son of Sleipnir, granted to Sigurth by Odhinn himself. Some texts disagree with his origin and Sigurths attainment of him.)
8. Then of many Things they talked,
When thus the men so wise had met.
9. To me, if thou knowest, my mothers brother,
Say what life will Sigurths be.
10. Of men thou shalt be on earth the mightiest,
And higher famed than all the heroes;
Free of gold-giving, slow to flee,
Noble to see, and sage in speech.
11. Monarch wise, now more I ask;
To Sigurth say, if thou thinkst to see,
What first will chance of my fortune fair,
When hence I go from out thy home?
12. First shalt thou, prince, thy father avenge,
And Eylimi, their ills requiting;
The hardy sons of Hunding thou
Soon shalt fell, and victory find.
13. Noble king, my kinsman, say
Thy meaning true, for our minds we speak;
For Sigurth the mighty deeds dost see,
The highest beneath the heavens all?
14. The fiery dragon alone thou shalt fight
That greedy lies at Gnitaheith;
Thou shalt be of Regin and Fafnir both
The slayer; truth doth Gripir tell thee.
15. Rich shall I be if battles I win
With such as these, as now thou sayest;
Forward look, and further tell:
What the life that I shall lead?
16. Fafnirs den thou then shalt find,
And all his treasure fair shalt take;
Gold shalt heap on Granis back,
And, proved in fight, to Gjuki fare.
17. To the warrior now in words so wise,
Monarch noble, more shalt tell;
I am Gjukis guest, and thence I go;
What the life that I shall lead?
18. On the rocks there sleeps the rulers daughter,
Fair in armour, since Helgi fell;
Thou shalt cut With keen-edged sword,
And cleave the byrnie with Fafnirs killer.
19. The mail-coat is broken, the maiden speaks,
The woman who from sleep has wakened;
What says the maid to Sigurth then
That happy fate to the hero brings?
20. Runes to the warrior will she tell,
All that men may ever seek,
And teach thee to speak in all mens tongues,
And life with health; thourt happy, king!
21. Now it is ended, the knowledge is won,
And ready I am forth thence to ride;
Forward look and further tell:
What the life that I shall lead?
22. Then to Heimirs home thou comest,
And glad shalt be the guest of the king;
Ended, Sigurth, is all I see,
No further aught of Gripir ask.
23. Sorrow brings me the word thou sayest,
For, monarch, forward further thou seest;
Sad the grief for Sigurth thou knowest,
Yet nought to me, Gripir, known wilt make.
24. Before me lay in clearest light
All of thy youth for mine eyes to see;
Nor rightly can I wise be called,
Nor forward-seeing; my wisdom is fled.
25. No man, Gripir, on earth I know
Who sees the future as far as thou;
Hide thou nought, though hard it be,
And base the deeds that I shall do.
26. With baseness never thy life is burdened,
Hero noble, hold that sure;
Lofty as long and the world shall live,
Battle-bringer, thy name shall be.
27. Nought could seem worse, but now must part
The prince and Sigurth, since so it is;
My road I ask,- the future lies open,-
Mighty one, speak, my mothers brother.
28. Now to Sigurth all shall I say,
For to this the warrior bends my will;
Thou knowest well that I will not lie,-
A day there is when thy death is doomed.
29. No scorn I know for the noble king,
But counsel good from Gripir I seek;
Well will I know, though evil awaits,
What Sigurth may before him see.
30. A maid in Heimirs home there dwells,
Brynhild her name to men is known,
Daughter of Buthli, the doughty king,
And Heimir fosters the fearless maid.
31. What is it to me, though the maiden be
So fair, and Heimir the fosterling is?
Gripir, truth to me shalt tell,
For all of fate before me thou seest.
32. Of many a joy the maiden robs thee,
Fair to see, whom Heimir fosters;
Sleep thou shalt find not, feuds thou shalt end not,
Nor seek out men, if the maid thou seest not.
33. What may be had for Sigurths healing?
Say now, Gripir, if see thou canst;
May I buy the maid with the marriage-price,
The daughter fair of the chieftain famed?
34. Ye twain shall all the oaths then swear
That bind full fast; few shall ye keep;
One night when Gjukis guest thou hast been,
Will Heimirs fosterling fade from thy mind.
35. What sayst thou, Gripir? give me the truth,
Does fickleness hide in the heros heart?
Can it be that touch I break with the maid,
With her I believed I loved so dear?
36. Tricked by another, prince, thou art,
And the price of Grimhilds wiles thou must pay;
Fain of thee for the fair-haired maid,
Her daughter, she is, and she drags thee down.
(Ed. em. or (/Fain of thee the fair-haired one for her daughter is/)
37. Might I with Gunnar kinship make,
And Guthrun win to be my wife,
Well the hero wedded would be,
If my treacherous deed would trouble me not.
38. Wholly Grimhild thy heart deceives,
She will bid thee go and Brynhild woo
For Gunnars wife, the lord of the goths;
And the princes mother thy promise shall win.
39. Evil waits me, well I see it,
And gone is Sigurths wisdom good,
If I shall woo for another to win
The maiden fair that so fondly I loved.
40. Ye three shall all the oaths then take,
Gunnar and Hogni, and, hero, thou;
Your forms ye shall change, as forth ye fare,
Gunnar and thou; for Gripir lies not.
41. How meanest thou? Why make we the change
Of shape and form as forth we fare?
There must follow another falsehood
Grim in all ways; speak on, Gripir!
42. The form of Gunnar and shape thou gettest,
But mind and voice thine own remain;
The hand of the fosterling noble of Heimir
Now dost thou win, and none can prevent it.
43. Most evil it seems, and men will say
Base is Sigurth that so he did;
Not of my will shall I cheat with wiles
The heroess maiden whom noblest I hold.
44. Thou dwellest, leader lofty of men,
With the maid as if thy mother she were;
Lofty as long as the world shall live,
Ruler of men, thy name shall remain.
(Ed. em. /With thy sword between, three nights sleepest/
With her thou winnest for Gunnars wife/)
45. Shall Gunnar have a goodly wife,
Famed among men,- speak forth now, Gripir!
Although at my side three nights she slept,
The warriors bride? Such neer has been.
46. The marriage draught will be drunk for both,
For Sigurth and Gunnar, in Gjukis hall;
Your forms ye change, when home ye fare,
But the mind of each to himself remains.
47. Shall the kinship new thereafter come
To good among us? Tell me, Gripir!
To Gunnar joy shall it later give,
Or happiness send for me myself?
48. Thine oaths remembering, silent thou art,
And dwellest with Guthrun in wedlock good;
But Brynhild shall deem she is badly mated,
And wiles she seeks, herself to avenge.
49. What may for the bride requital be,
the wife we won with subtle wiles?
From me she has the oaths I made,
And kept not long; they gladdened her little.
50. To Gunnar soon his bride will say
That ill didst thou thine oath fulfill,
When the goodly king, the son of Gjuki,
With all his heart the hero trusted.
51. What sayst thou, Gripir? give me the truth!
Am I guilty so as now is said,
Or lies does the far-famed queen put forth
Of me and herself? Yet further speak.
52. In wrath and grief full little good
The noble bride shall work thee now;
No shame thou gavest the goodly one,
Though the monarchs wife with wiles didst cheat.
53. Shall Gunnar the wise to the womans words,
And Gotthorm and Hogni, then give heed?
Shall Gjukis sons, now tell me, Gripir,
Redden their blades with their kinsmans blood?
54. Heavy it lies on Guthruns heart,
When her brothers all shall bring thee death,
Never again shall she happiness know,
The woman so fair; tis Grimhilds work.
55. Now fare thee well! our fates we shun not;
And well has Gripir answered my wish;
More of joy to me wouldst tell
Of my life to come if so thou couldst.
56. Ever remember, ruler of men,
That fortune lies in the heros life;
A noble man shall never live
Beneath the sun than Sigurth shall seem.
Gjuki: Old Norse/Gibeche (The Giver)
Brynhild: (Armed Warrior)