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 END OF SIVARD SNARENSWAYNE
Young Sivard he his step-sire slew
To avenge his mother's wrongs ;
And now to sport in the Monarch's court2.
Young Sivard sorely longs.
It was Sivard Snarenswayne
To his mother's presence strode :
' Say, shall I ride from hence ? ' he cried,3.
' Or wend on foot my road ? '
' O never shalt thou go on foot
Whilst I 've a horse in stall;
I'll give thee the steed of matchless breed,4.
Which courtiers Grayman call.'
They led Grayman out of the stall,
His reins were gilt about;
His eyes were bright as the clear star-light,5.
And fire from his bit sprang out.
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.
41 ( ⇒ )
It was Sivard's mother dear,
In a kirtle red was clad :
' The horse I fear will cost thee dear,7.
And that fear makes me sad.'
She followed him a long, long way,
Her heart was filled with woe :
' O take good heed of the Grayman steed,8.
He many a trick doth know !'
' Now list to me, my mother dear,
Quick cast your care aside ;
To a son of worth thou hast given birth,9.
Who his horse full well can ride.'
Away they go, o'er bridges now,
And now o'er brooks in flood ;
Clung so tight to his steed the knight10.
That his boots were filled with blood.
Then wildly gazed the folk, amazed11.
That the horse he could so spring.
For fifteen nights and for fifteen days
The speed of their race endured ;
Before them tall uprose a hall12.
With the gates all fast secured.
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.
42( ⇒ )
' O that is either a drunken peer,
On courser good and keen ;
Or that, I swear, is my sister's heir,14.
And in battle he has been.'
The horse did spit from his mouth the bit,
And, neighing, bounded high ;
Then maids and dames forsook their games15.
And trembled fearfully.
Then maids and dames forsook their games,
And shook their weeds below ;
To meet the boy, his sister's joy,16.
The King of the Danes did go.
It was the mighty King of the Danes,
And thus the King he cried :
' Ye archers, straight undo the gate,17.
And fling it open wide.'
It was Sivard Snarenswayne,
Through the portal in rode he ;
Then dames fifteen of beauteous mien18.
Before him bent their knee.
The Dane King to his merry men spake :
' I rede ye treat him fair ;
I tell to ye for a verity19.
No jesting he will bear.'
It was Sivard Snarenswayne,
He made his courser bound
Ten ells and more the ramparts o'er,
And thus his death he found.
43( ⇒ )
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.
44( ⇒ )