THE WORKS OF GEORGE BORROW, VOL.7


* "The End of Sivard Snarenswayne."
* The base text is a redacted version of DgF 2 C "Sivard Snarensvend".
* The Danish (DgF 2C) is Vedel's I, Nr. 17, entitled "Siuard Snaren Suend" available online.
 
 
 
THE SONGS OF SCANDINAVIA
THE END OF SIVARD SNARENSWAYNE
1.
Young Sivard he his step-sire slew
To avenge his mother's wrongs ;
And now to sport in the Monarch's court
Young Sivard sorely longs.

2.
It was Sivard Snarenswayne
To his mother's presence strode :
' Say, shall I ride from hence ? ' he cried,
' Or wend on foot my road ? '

3.
' O never shalt thou go on foot
Whilst I 've a horse in stall;
I'll give thee the steed of matchless breed,
Which courtiers Grayman call.'

4.
They led Grayman out of the stall,
His reins were gilt about;
His eyes were bright as the clear star-light,
And fire from his bit sprang out.

5.
Off Sivard throws his gloves, like snows
The stripling's hands appeared ;
And with all his force he girded the horse,
For to trust the groom he feared.

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THE SONGS OF SCANDINAVIA
 
6.
It was Sivard's mother dear,
In a kirtle red was clad :
' The horse I fear will cost thee dear,
And that fear makes me sad.'

7.
She followed him a long, long way,
Her heart was filled with woe :
' O take good heed of the Grayman steed,
He many a trick doth know !'

8.
' Now list to me, my mother dear,
Quick cast your care aside ;
To a son of worth thou hast given birth,
Who his horse full well can ride.'

9.
Away they go, o'er bridges now,
And now o'er brooks in flood ;
Clung so tight to his steed the knight
That his boots were filled with blood.

10.
The horse he hurried o'er the wold,
Right past the crowded Ting ;
Then wildly gazed the folk, amazed
That the horse he could so spring.

11.
For fifteen nights and for fifteen days
The speed of their race endured ;
Before them tall uprose a hall
With the gates all fast secured.

12.
The Dane King stood on the battlement,
And thence looked far and wide :
' Some drunken peer is coming here,
Who his horse full well can ride.

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AND OTHER POEMS AND BALLADS
 
13.
' O that is either a drunken peer,
On courser good and keen ;
Or that, I swear, is my sister's heir,
And in battle he has been.'

14.
The horse did spit from his mouth the bit,
And, neighing, bounded high ;
Then maids and dames forsook their games
And trembled fearfully.

15.
Then maids and dames forsook their games,
And shook their weeds below ;
To meet the boy, his sister's joy,
The King of the Danes did go.

16.
It was the mighty King of the Danes,
And thus the King he cried :
' Ye archers, straight undo the gate,
And fling it open wide.'

17.
It was Sivard Snarenswayne,
Through the portal in rode he ;
Then dames fifteen of beauteous mien
Before him bent their knee.

18.
The Dane King to his merry men spake :
' I rede ye treat him fair ;
I tell to ye for a verity
No jesting he will bear.'

19.
It was Sivard Snarenswayne,
He made his courser bound
Ten ells and more the ramparts o'er,
And thus his death he found.

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THE SONGS OF SCANDINAVIA
 
20.
From his gilded selle down Sivard fell,
Snapped Grayman's back outright;
Wept great and small in the Monarch's hall
For the wizard steed and knight.


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