Reginsmál (Sigurðarkviða Fáfnisbana II) – The Lay of Regin

The gods gave Hreithmar the gold, and filled up the otter-skin, and stood it on its feet. Then the gods had to heap up gold and hide it. And when that was done, Hreithmar came forward and saw a single whisker, and bade them cover it. Then Othin brought out the ring Andvaranaut and covered the hair. Then Loki said:

6. “The gold is given, | and great the price
Thou hast my head to save;
But fortune thy sons | shall find not there,
The bane of ye both it is.”

Hreithmar spake:

7. “Gifts ye gave, | but ye gave not kindly,
Gave not with hearts that were whole;
Your lives ere this | should ye all have lost,
If sooner this fate I had seen.”

Loki spake:

8. “Worse is this | that methinks I see,
For a maid shall kinsmen clash;
Heroes unborn | thereby shall be,
I deem, to hatred doomed.”

Hreithmar spake:

9. “The gold so red | shall I rule, methinks,
So long as I shall live;
Nought of fear | for thy threats I feel,
So get ye hence to your homes.”

Fafnir and Regin asked Hreithmar for a share of the wealth that was paid for the slaying of their brother, Otr. This he refused, and Fafnir thrust his sword through the body of his father, Hreithmar, while he was sleeping. Hreithmar called to his daughters:

10. “Lyngheith and Lofnheith, | fled is my life,
And mighty now is my need!”

Lyngheith spake:

“Though a sister loses | her father, seldom
Revenge on her brother she brings.”

Prose. Andvaranaut: “Andvari’s Gem.”

6. Snorri quotes this stanza, introducing it, as here, with “Then Loki said” in the prose. Regius omits this phrase, but inserts “said Loki” in line 1.

8. The word translated “maid” in line 2 is obscure, and “gold” may be meant. Apparently, however, the reference is to the fight between Sigurth and the sons of Gjuki over Brynhild. The manuscript does not name the speaker, and many editions assign this stanza to Hreithmar.

9. The manuscript includes “said Hreithmar” (abbreviated) in the middle of line 1, and some editors have followed this.

10. Hreithmar’s daughters do not appear elsewhere. It has been suggested that originally stanza 10 was followed by one in which Lofnheith lamented her inability to avenge her father, as she was married and had no son.

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