Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAPTER VI.: thorwald gets hallgerda to wife. - The Story of Burnt Njal
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
CHAPTER VI.: thorwald gets hallgerda to wife. - Burnt Njal, The Story of Burnt Njal 
The Story of Burnt Njal. The Great Icelandic Tribune, Jurist, and Counsellor, translated from the Njals Saga by the Late Sir George Webbe Dasent. With Editor’s Prefatory Note and Author’s Introduction. Hon. Rasmus B. Anderson, Editor in Chief (London: Norroena Society, 1907).
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
thorwald gets hallgerda to wife.
Now, it must be told how Hallgerda, Hauskuld's daughter, grows up, and is the fairest of women to look on; she was tall of stature, too, and therefore she was called “Longcoat.” She was fair-haired, and had so much of it that she could hide herself in it; but she was lavish and hard-hearted. Her foster-father's name was Thiostolf; he was a Southislander1 by stock; he was a strong man, well skilled in arms, and had slain many men, and made no atonement in money for one of them. It was said too, that his rearing had not bettered Hallgerda's temper.
There was a man named Thorwald; he was Oswif's son, and dwelt out on Middlefells strand, under the Fell. He was rich and well to do, and owned the islands called Bear-isles, which lie out in Broadfirth, whence he got meal and stock fish. This Thorwald was a strong and courteous man, though somewhat hasty in temper. Now, it fell out one day that Thorwald and his father were talking together of Thorwald's marrying, and where he had best look for a wife, and it soon came out that he thought there wasn't a match fit for him far or near.
“Well,” said Oswif, “wilt thou ask for Hallgerda Longcoat, Hauskuld's daughter?”
“Yes! I will ask for her,” said Thorwald.
“But that is not a match that will suit either of you,” Oswif went on to say, “for she has a will of her own, and thou art stern-tempered and unyielding.”
“For all that I will try my luck there,” said Thorwald, “so it's no good trying to hinder me.”
“Ay!” said Oswif, “and the risk is all thine own.”
After that they set off on a wooing journey to Hauskuldstede, and had a hearty welcome. They were not long in telling Hauskuld their business, and began to woo; then Hauskuld answered—
“As for you, I know how you both stand in the world, but for my own part I will use no guile towards you. My daughter has a hard temper, but as to her looks and breeding you can both see for yourselves.”
“Lay down the terms of the match,” answered Thorwald, “for I will not let her temper stand in the way of our bargain.”
Then they talked over the terms of the bargain, and Hauskuld never asked his daughter what she thought of it, for his heart was set on giving her away, and so they came to an understanding as to the terms of the match. After that Thorwald betrothed himself to Hallgerda, and rode away home when the matter was settled, and the marriage was celebrated with a great feast soon after.
That is, he came from what we call the Western Isles or Hobrides The old appellation Mill lingers in “Sodor (i. e. the South Isles) tad Man.”