The Elder Eddas of Saemund Sigfusson; and the Younger Eddas of Snorre Sturleson eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 255 pages of information about The Elder Eddas of Saemund Sigfusson; and the Younger Eddas of Snorre Sturleson.
and catching up Iduna, carried her treasure off with him to Jotunheim.  The gods being thus deprived of their renovating apples, soon became wrinkled and grey; old age was creeping fast upon them, when they discovered that Loki had been, as usual, the contriver of all the mischief that had befallen them.  They therefore threatened him with condign punishment if he did not instantly hit upon some expedient for bringing back Iduna and her apples to Asgard.  Loki having borrowed from Freyja her falcon-plumage, flew to Jotunheim, and finding that Thjassi was out at sea fishing, lost no time in changing Iduna into a sparrow and flying off with her; but when Thjassi returned and became aware of what had happened, he donned his eagle-plumage, and flew after them.  When the AEsir saw Loki approaching, holding Iduna transformed into a sparrow between his claws, and Thjassi with his outspread eagle wings ready to overtake him, they placed on the walls of Asgard bundles of chips, which they set fire to the instant that Loki had flown over them; and as Thjassi could not stop his flight, the fire caught his plumage, and he thus fell into the power of the AEsir, who slew him within the portals of the celestial residence.  When these tidings came to Thjassi’s daughter, Skadi, she put on her armour and went to Asgard, fully determined to avenge her father’s death; but the AEsir having declared their willingness to atone for the deed, an amicable arrangement was entered into.  Skadi was to choose a husband in Asgard, and the AEsir were to make her laugh, a feat which she flattered herself it would be impossible for any one to accomplish.  Her choice of a husband was to be determined by a mere inspection of the feet of the gods, it being stipulated that the feet should be the only part of their persons visible until she had made known her determination.  In inspecting the row of feet placed before her, Skadi took a fancy to a pair which she flattered herself, from their fine proportions, must be those of Baldur.  They were however Njord’s, and Njord was accordingly given her for a husband, and as Loki managed to make her laugh, by playing some diverting antics with a goat, the atonement was fully effected.  It is even said that Odin did more than had been stipulated, by taking out Thjassi’s eyes, and placing them to shine as stars in the firmament.[137]

THE ORIGIN OF POETRY.

71.  AEgir having expressed a wish to know how poetry originated, Bragi informed him that the AEsir and Vanir having met to put an end to the war which had long been carried on between them, a treaty of peace was agreed to and ratified by each party spitting into a jar.  As a lasting sign of the amity which was thenceforward to subsist between the contending parties, the gods formed out of this spittle a being to whom they gave the name of Kvasir, and whom they endowed with such a high degree of intelligence that no one could ask him a question that he was unable

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The Elder Eddas of Saemund Sigfusson; and the Younger Eddas of Snorre Sturleson from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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